May Comes Early in Springfield

Derrick May steps in for Joe Cunningham as the Springfield Cardinals new hitting coach, moving up from Palm Beach for 2007.

The Springfield Cardinals announced Thursday that Derrick May has been promoted from Class A Palm Beach of the Florida State League. May will take over as Springfield's Hitting Coach, replacing Joe Cunningham, who has asked for a leave of absence due to personal reasons. Cunningham will remain within the Cardinals' organization upon returning.

May is no stranger to new Springfield Manager "Pop" Warner, having spent the last two seasons as Hitting Coach for the Palm Beach Cardinals. May's only two years within the Cardinals' system have both been spent on the Palm Beach staff with Warner at the helm.

Drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the first round of the 1986 draft, May enjoyed a ten-year career with six Major League teams: the Cubs, Brewers, Astros, Phillies, Expos and Orioles. A life-time .271 hitter in 797 career games, his best season came with the Cubs in 1993, when he played in 128 games, batting .295 with ten homers and 77 RBIs. May finished his career by playing three years in Japan for the Chiba Lotte Marines.

May, 38, joins Warner along with returnees, Pitching Coach Blaise Ilsley and Athletic Trainer Brad LaRosa, who both begin their third year in Springfield.

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