Rangers announce minor league field staff

The Texas Rangers' minor league coaching staffs for the upcoming 2011 campaign were announced on Friday afternoon. Lone Star Dugout takes a look at the list, which includes a handful of position changes and new faces.

The Texas Rangers announced the club's minor league coaching staffs for the 2011 season on Friday afternoon.

In addition to a handful of new individual team coaches, former major league utility player Casey Candaele has been hired as a roving instructor. Candaele will serve as an infield coach while also working with prospects on base running and bunting.

Spike Owen, now with the Triple-A Round Rock squad, was Texas' minor league infield coordinator during the last two seasons. Orioles first base coach Wayne Kirby had served as the base running instructor for five years.

The Rangers have also hired operations intern Mike LaCassa to a full-time job overseeing the player development administration and operations at the team's minor league complex in Surprise, Ariz.

Round Rock (AAA)

Bobby Jones – Manager
Scott Coolbaugh – Hitting Coach
Terry Clark – Pitching Coach
Spike Owen – Third Base Coach

Jason Roberts (Trainer) and Ric Mabie (Strength Coach)

Bobby Jones enters his 40th season as part of the Texas Rangers organization. The 61-year-old has been coaching in the system since 1988, managing clubs at High-A Charlotte (three seasons), Double-A Tulsa (eight seasons) and Triple-A Oklahoma City (11 seasons). He also spent two years––2001 and 2006––as the Rangers' big league first base coach.

The only change to the coaching staff involves Austin native and resident Spike Owen, who slides in as the club's third base coach. Owen spent the last two years as the organization's minor league infield coordinator. He previously coached for the Express––under Houston's affiliation––from 2002 to 2006.

Owen and Scott Coolbaugh are both former University of Texas standouts. Coolbaugh will enter his fifth year as a hitting coach in the Texas system. The San Antonio native coached at Double-A Frisco in '07 and '08 before earning the promotion to Triple-A.

Pitching Coach Terry Clark joined the organization as a coach with Frisco in 2006. The former big league knuckleballer was promoted to Triple-A alongside Coolbaugh in '09. Clark's Oklahoma City pitching staff had the second-best earned-run average in the PCL last season.

Frisco (AA)

Steve Buechele – Manager
Brant Brown – Hitting Coach
Jeff Andrews – Pitching Coach

Carlos Olivas (Trainer) and Eric McMahon (Strength Coach)

The entire coaching staff from last year's Frisco ballclub will return for the 2011 campaign. Former Rangers third baseman Steve Buechele is set to begin his third season as a manager in the Texas organization and his second with the RoughRiders. Buechele took High-A Bakersfield to its first playoff appearance in nearly a decade in 2009 before guiding Frisco to the postseason last year.

Trainer Carlos Olivas held the same position at short-season Spokane last season. Strength and Conditioning coach Eric McMahon served with Bakersfield in 2010.

Myrtle Beach (A+)

Jason Wood – Manager
Julio Garcia – Hitting Coach
Brad Holman – Pitching Coach

Jeff Bodenhamer (Trainer) and Ryan McNeal (Strength Coach)

The only full-season managerial change in the Rangers system occurs as the High-A level, with Bill Haselman out and former hitting coach Jason Wood taking the reigns. Wood, 40, finished an 18-year professional career in 2008 and appeared in a career-high 98 big league games with the Marlins in '07. The California native joined Texas as the Bakersfield hitting coach in '09. The upcoming season will be his first as a professional manager.

Pitching coach Brad Holman earned the promotion to High-A Myrtle Beach after heading the Single-A Hickory pitching staff for two seasons. The Wichita, Kan., resident recently finished coaching the Surprise Rafters pitching staff in the Arizona Fall League.

Julio Garcia brings 20 years of minor league coaching experience to the Rangers. In 2010, Garcia managed the rookie-level Arizona Reds to a 31-24 record and a playoff berth, where they fell in the Arizona League Championship Game. He has previously managed in the Pittsburgh, Baltimore, Tampa Bay, Cubs, and Reds organizations.

Hickory (A)

Bill Richardson – Manager
Jason Hart – Hitting Coach
Storm Davis – Pitching Coach
Corey Ragsdale – Assistant Coach

Jacob Newburn (Trainer) and Anthony Miller (Strength Coach)

Crawdads manager Bill Richardson will be back for his second season at Hickory after two years of managing the rookie Surprise Rangers. Jason Hart also returns while Corey Ragsdale, who coached for the Surprise Rangers last season, will oversee the team's infielders as a special assistant.

Dallas native Storm Davis––who was originally signed by now-Rangers Special Assistant to the GM Tom Giordano––takes over as the Hickory pitching coach. Davis had a 13-year big league career and finished with a 113-96 mark and a 4.02 ERA. The 48-year-old guided The Bolles School in Jacksonville, Fla., to state titles in each of the past two seasons.

Spokane (SSA)

Tim Hulett – Manager
Josue Perez – Hitting Coach
Dave Chavarria – Pitching Coach
Brian Dayett – Assistant Coach

T.J. Nakagawa (Trainer) and Ed Yong (Strength Coach)

Dave Chavarria is slated to continue as the longest-tenured pitching coach in the organization when he returns for an 11th season in 2011. Chavarria led the Spokane pitching staff in 2003 and 2004 before spending time as a roving instructor and then three seasons with High-A Bakersfield.

Manager Tim Hulett, who has earned Northwest League Manager of the Year honors in two of the last three seasons, will come back for his fifth season at the helm. The former big league infielder has also headed up the storied Evangel Christian Academy program in Shreveport for the last six years. Hulett joins Spokane each year after the high school season is completed.

Trainer T.J. Nakagawa, a native of Japan and a graduate of the University of Arkansas, earns the promotion after two years in the rookie-level Arizona League.

Surprise Rangers (RK)

Hector Ortiz – Manager
Ryan O'Malley – Pitching Coach
Oscar Marin – Pitching Coach
Oscar Bernard – Hitting Coach

The trainer and additional assistant coach positions have yet to be filled.

Hector Ortiz returns to a managerial position after serving as a rookie ball hitting coach last season. The 41-year-old Puerto Rico native is a five-year coaching veteran of the system and worked as the Hickory manager in 2009.

While Ryan O'Malley and Oscar Bernard both return to the same position next season, a second pitching coach––Oscar Marin––is set to join the Surprise Rangers staff. Marin brings experience as a coach at Harvard-Westlake High School in California, Los Angeles Valley College, and the University of Arkansas-Little Rock. He also worked with the SoCal Rats youth baseball academy for the last five years.

Jayce Tingler, who served as the AZL Rangers manager last season, is no longer coaching but will remain in the organization.

Dominican Rangers (DSL)

Kenneth Holmberg – Manager
Jose Jaimes – Pitching Coach
Pablo Blanco – Pitching Coach
Guillermo Mercedes – Hitting Coach
Ryley Westman – Catching Coach
Jesus Ovalle – Infield Coach
Alexis Infante – Infield Coach
Osvaldo Oliva – Outfield Coach

Chris Olson (Trainer) and Eduardo Thomas (Strength Coach)

The entire coaching staff from the 2010 DSL Rangers club that finished atop the San Pedro Division with a 42-23 mark will return. The Rangers' top Dominican team has taken the division crown and advanced to the playoffs in each of the last three seasons, combining for a 135-61 (.689) mark. Manager Kenneth Holmberg is back for a second season at the helm of the Dominican program in San Pedro de Macoris.

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