Minor Changes to 2018 Player Development Staff

The White Sox announced their 2018 player development staff yesterday. As expected there were few changes to the structure that was in place last season. The most significant might be the addition of Omar Vizquel as manager at High-A Winston-Salem. The 11-time gold glove shortstop (and, briefly, former White Sox) has yet to manage at any level other than leading the Venezuelan team in last year’s World Baseball Classic. He served as first base coach, infield and base-running instructor for the Detroit Tigers the last four years. If Vizquel coaches as well as he played the Dash will have some of the slickest middle infielders in all of baseball. He replaces Willie Harris, who has joined the San Francisco organization and will manage the Double-A Richmond Flying Squirrels (yes, I just wanted to write Flying Squirrels).

Richard Dotson will be the pitching coach for the Double-A Birmingham Barons, a role he has held previously in the White Sox organization. Dotson had a strong major league career winning 22 games for the division-winning 1983 White Sox. The breeze you feel emanating from the South this summer may be Barons pitchers generating a heavy amount of swing and miss as a result of picking up on the stellar change-up that Dotson displayed in his career. The current structure does not list anyone with Dotson’s previous title of pitching coordinator. This sort of rotation of coaches through different affiliates, often moving with certain waves of players, is not unusual.

Mark Grudzielanek will be the manager at Triple-A Charlotte after joining the organization in the same role in 2017. Julio Viñas joined the White Sox organization in 2011 and has managed at all minor league levels in the organization other than rookie league. He has spent most of his time leading the Birmingham Barons, a role he’ll repeat in 2018.  Justin Jirschele will be back as manager for Kannapolis. Given the amount of talent the White Sox have at the lowers levels of the minors this is an important role for the 27-year-old who isn’t far removed from his playing days. He performed well last year leading the team to the South Atlantic League championship finals. His team should be stacked again this year. Tim Esmay and Ryan Newman will serve as managers at Great Falls and the Arizona Rookie League respectively.

Below is the complete list of coaches and instructors for 2018…

System-wide Player Development Roles
Director of Player Development: Chris Getz
Field Coordinator: Doug Sisson
Director of Minor League Pitching Instruction: Kirk Champion
Hitting Coordinator: Mike Gellinger
Infield Coordinator: Vance Law
Catching Coordinator: John Orton
Outfield/Baserunning Coordinator: Aaron Rowand
Camp Coordinator: Tommy Thompson
Quality Control Coach: Everett Teaford
Leadership Development Coordinator: Ben Broussard
Assistant, Player Development: Rafael Santana
Pitching Assistant: J.R. Perdew
Rehab Pitching Coach: Brian Drahman
Education Coordinator: Erin Santana
Conditioning Coordinator: Dale Torborg
Minor League Medical/Rehabilitation Coordinator: Scott Takao
Physical Therapist: Derrik Garris
Latin/Cultural Development Coordinator: Anthony Santiago

Triple-A Charlotte
Manager: Mark Grudzielanek
Pitching Coach: Steve McCatty
Hitting Coach: Andy Tomberlin
Coach: Garey Ingram
Trainer: James Kruk
Conditioning: Shawn Powell

Double-A Birmingham
Manager: Julio Viñas
Pitching Coach: Richard Dotson
Hitting Coach: Cole Armstrong
Trainer: Corey Barton
Conditioning: Tim Rodmaker

Class-A Winston-Salem
Manager: Omar Vizquel
Pitching Coach: Matt Zaleski
Hitting Coach: Charlie Poe
Coach: Guillermo Quiroz
Trainer: Josh Fallin
Conditioning: George Timke

Class-A Kannapolis
Manager: Justin Jirschele
Pitching Coach: José Bautista
Hitting Coach: Jamie Dismuke
Trainer: Joe Geck
Conditioning: Goldy Simmons

Advanced Rookie Great Falls
Manager: Tim Esmay
Pitching Coach: John Ely
Hitting Coach: Eric Richardson
Trainer: Hyeon Kim
Conditioning: Tyler Gniadek

Arizona Rookie League
Manager: Ryan Newman
Pitching Coach: Felipe Lira
Hitting Coach: Gary Ward
Trainer: Scott Johnson
Conditioning: Daniel Cobian

Dominican Republic Academy (Summer League)
Academy Supervisor: Ever Magallanes
Complex Operations Coordinator: Manuel Santana
Field Coordinator: Guillermo Reyes
Manager: Julio Valdez
Pitching Coach: Leo Hernández
Hitting Coach: Ángel González
Assistant Pitching Coach: José Brito
Catching Coach: Ángel Rosario
Outfield Coach: Julio Ramírez
Trainer: TBD
Conditioning Coach: Pedro Gómez

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