Beavers Announce 2004 Field Staff

PORTLAND, Ore. - A new field staff will lead the Portland Beavers during their fourth Pacific Coast League season. <br><br> The Beavers and their major league parent club, the San Diego Padres, announced today that Craig Colbert will assume the managerial duties for the Triple-A team in 2004.

Colbert's field staff will be rounded out by hitting coach Tommy Sandt and pitching coach Tom Brown. Trainer John Maxwell returns for a fourth season with the club.

Colbert, 38, joins the Beavers after two seasons as the skipper of the Mobile Bay Bears, the Padres' Class AA affiliate. Colbert guided the Bay Bears to a 61-77 record in 2003 after leading the team to a pair of second-place finishes in the Southern League's West Division in 2002 with a combined 76-63 ledger.

A native of Iowa City, Iowa, Colbert was a back-to-back recipient (2000-01) of the Jack Krol Award for excellence in player development in the Padres chain. He led Class A Lake Elsinore to a 91-49 regular-season record and a share of the 2001 California League championship.

Since beginning his managerial career in 2000 with Class A Fort Wayne in the San Diego system, the former major league catcher has posted a 300-254 record (.542).

Colbert concluded a 13-year playing career as a player-coach with the Padres' Triple-A affiliate in Las Vegas in 1998. He served as a coach with the Stars in 1999 as well. Colbert played in the Giants, Marlins and Padres organizations from 1986-98, including 72 games in the major leagues with San Francisco in 1992 and 1993. Colbert was drafted by the Giants in the 20th round of the 1986 draft out of Manhattan (KS) High School. He signed with the Giants, but attended Oral Roberts University during the off-seasons.

A Portland resident, Sandt, 52, comes to the Triple-A Beavers after serving as a long-time major league first-base coach, doing so for the better part of two decades with Pittsburgh (1987-96, 2000-2002), Colorado (1999) and Florida (1997-98).

An infielder during his playing days, Sandt, a former Portland Beavers player and coach, was a second-round selection of the Oakland Athletics in 1969. He made his major league debut on June 29, 1975 and batted .209 in 42 big league games over two seasons. Sandt began his coaching career as a player/coach with the Beavers in 1980-81 and went on to manage in the Pittsburgh organization for five seasons (1982-86).

Brown, 54, joins the Beavers staff after serving as the Padres' minor league pitching coordinator the past four seasons. Brown is no stranger to Triple-A, having spent a season as the pitching coach of the Padres Las Vegas affiliate in 1999 and four seasons in the same capacity with Oklahoma, the Texas Rangers' top farm club.

Prior to that, Brown served seven seasons as a coach in the Baltimore Orioles organization. He was the pitching coach at Class AA Hagerstown from 1988-90 and with the rookie-level Gulf Coast Orioles in 1991. Brown, a veteran of 17 seasons as a pitching instructor, was Baltimore's minor league pitching coordinator from 1992-94.

As a player, the right-hander pitched in the Kansas City Royals and Seattle Mariners organizations, making six major league appearances with Seattle in 1978.

Maxwell marks his 10th season in the Padres organization. A graduate of San Diego State with a degree in Sports Medicine, Maxwell is a certified athletic trainer, strength and conditioning specialist and licensed physical therapist.

The Beavers open the 2004 season April 8 at Las Vegas. Ticket packages for the upcoming season are currently available by calling (503) 553-5555.

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