Chicago Cubs Announce Minor League Coaches and Coordinators for 2022

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Chicago Cubs Announce Minor League Coaches and Coordinators for 2022

Chicago Cubs

Although the announcement of the season’s minor league coaches and coordinators can be a fun moment for the nerdiest among us, the irony is that what makes it potentially fun is the arrival of new voices. But if you’ve got a good system in place, you actually want maybe only a very few new arrivals, and mostly just continuity. People who are working well and working hard, collaborating with many of the same colleagues, and working with the same prospects. You don’t want to ever get TOO set in your ways, but you do want a smooth and clear process for the minor league players. This is a big part of that.

So when you peruse the Cubs’ announcements on the minor league coaches and coordinators, you’ll notice it is MOSTLY returning names, many of whom arrived initially over the past few years (when the scouting and player development infrastructures were getting fundamentally re-shaped). Given the significant strides we’ve seen in player development and talent acquisition for the Cubs, it sounds good to me that there’s a lot of continuity right now.

The full announcements from the Cubs. First, the minor league coaching staffs:

The Chicago Cubs announced today their minor league managers and coaching staffs for the 2022 season. A detailed list of each club’s managers and coaching staffs are included on the following page. The Cubs minor league clubs include Triple-A Iowa, Double-A Tennessee, High-A South Bend, Low-A Myrtle Beach, Rookie League Mesa and the Dominican Summer League Cubs.

Marty Pevey returns for his 10th season as manager of the Iowa Cubs, becoming the longest-tenured manager in franchise history, while his 530 victories are a franchise record. Entering his 14th season in the organization, he has over 30 years of professional experience, beginning with 13 seasons as a player. All told, Pevey owns a 1,174-1,208 minor league managerial record and his 1,174 victories are 10th-most among active minor league skippers. The I-Cubs last year went 51-78 in the Triple-A East League. In 2019, he led Iowa to its first postseason appearance since 2008.

Michael Ryan will begin his first year with the Tennessee Smokies after managing South Bend to a 52-67 record in 2021. Prior to that, he spent seven seasons as a manager in the Pirates chain, including 2017-19 at the helm of Double-A Altoona. He led the Curve to the Eastern League championship in 2017, the first of two-straight campaigns with Western Division titles. The former outfielder played 149 big league games with the Twins (2002-05) and Angels (2010).

Lance Rymel will manage the South Bend Cubs for the first time after guiding the Rookie League Mesa Cubs in 2021. This is his seventh season as a coach or manager in the Cubs organization, where he also managed Single-A Eugene in 2019 following two seasons at the helm of the Cubs Dominican Summer League squad in 2017-18. He began his coaching career in 2016 following a three-year minor league playing career as a catcher in the Cubs chain from 2012-14. Rymel was selected by the Cubs in the 28th round of the 2012 Draft out of Rogers State.

Buddy Bailey will return to manage the Myrtle Beach Pelicans and is in his 34th season as a minor league manager. Bailey owns 2,202 regular season victories, the most among active minor league managers. His clubs have reached postseason play eight times, including three of the last five seasons dating to 2016. In 2021, he guided the Pelicans to a second-place finish in the Low-A East South Division with a 59-61 record. Bailey managed at South Bend in 2019 following three campaigns as manager for Myrtle Beach from 2016-18.

Edgar Pérez begins his first season in the Cubs organization and will guide the Rookie League Mesa Cubs. He brings with him more than 25 years in scouting and coaching since he started out as a scout with Cleveland in 1997. Pérez worked for Boston from 2007-21, most recently as the organization’s Puerto Rico Area Scout and Player Personnel International Crosschecker. He played baseball at the collegiate level at West Valley College in San Jose, Calif.

Carlos Ramírez enters his fourth season as a manager for the Cubs Dominican Summer League team, and his seventh season as a coach or manager in the organization. He was a coach for the Dominican League club from 2016-18 following three seasons as a catcher in the system from 2012-14.

Enrique Wilson is in his fifth season with the Cubs Dominican Summer League club and his first as a manager after serving as a hitting coach. He had a nine-year major league playing career with Cleveland (1997-2000), Pittsburgh (2000-01), the Yankees (2001-04) and the Cubs (2005) in which he batted .244 with 22 home runs in 555 games.

And the coordinators:

The Chicago Cubs today announced their minor league coordinators for the 2022 season.

Dustin Kelly is in his second season with the organization as minor league hitting coordinator after three campaigns as a hitting coach in the Dodgers farm system from 2018-20. He served as hitting coach for Single-A Rancho Cucamonga in 2019-20 after handling hitting coach duties for Rookie League Ogden in 2018. Kelly was selected by the Boston Red Sox in the 15th round of the 2004 Draft from Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, Calif., and played three seasons in the Red Sox farm system, reaching Double-A.

Casey Jacobson starts his third season as the organization’s coordinator of pitching development. A former instructor at Driveline Baseball in Kent, Wash., Jacobson coached six seasons in the college ranks with Macalester College (pitching coach, 2014-18) in St. Paul, Minn., and Augustana University (assistant coach, 2019) in Sioux Falls, S.D. The former right-handed pitcher played collegiately at St. Mary’s in Winona, Minn., and Augustana prior to a stint with Roswell in the independent Pecos League in 2013. He graduated from Augustana University with a B.S. in Physics.

James Ogden begins his third season as the organization’s coordinator of pitching performance. He had a seven-year tenure as pitching coach for Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tenn., where he helped the team to the 2015 Atlantic Sun championship. He graduated from Lipscomb with a B.A. in Oral Communications with a minor in Health in 2008 and earned his Master’s in Education with an emphasis on Instructional Leadership in 2010.

Mark Johnson enters his 12th year in the Cubs system and will serve as minor league catching coordinator for the fourth-straight season while also serving as assistant field coordinator. In nine seasons as a minor league manager, he earned a Midwest League title with Single-A Kane County in 2014 and a Carolina League title with Single-A Myrtle Beach in 2015 before he guided Double-A Tennessee from 2016-18. Johnson played 17 seasons (1994-2010), including 332 major league games with the White Sox (1998-2002), Oakland (2003), Milwaukee (2004) and St. Louis (2008).

Doug Dascenzo is in his eighth year as the organization’s minor league outfield and baserunning coordinator, bringing with him 23 years of coaching experience. He played parts of seven seasons in the majors, including five with the Cubs (1988-92). He coached in the Padres system from 1999-2011, including six seasons as a minor league manager. He also coached in the Braves system from 2012-14, including third base coach for the major league team in 2014.

Dave Keller begins his 19th year in the organization and his eighth as minor league Latin America field coordinator. He brings over 35 years of minor league coaching and managerial experience, managing three clubs to championship series appearances, including a Florida State League title with Single-A Daytona in 2013. The former first baseman played in the Reds chain for three seasons (1982-84) after Cincinnati selected him in the 28th round of the 1982 Draft.

Ryan Serena joins the Cubs as minor league infield coordinator coming from Rogue Baseball Performance in Englewood, Colo. The former shortstop played baseball at Lamar (Colo.) Community College and Colorado Christian University, where he earned National Christian College Athletic Association first-team all-region honors his senior year. He earned his degree in Social Science from Colorado Christian in 2011.

Tom Beyers starts his 23rd season in the Cubs organization and his eighth as assistant coordinator, hitting. He joined Chicago in 2000 following 21 seasons in the Dodgers minor league system as a player, coach and manager. Beyers managed nine seasons in the Dodgers and Cubs chains and he led Single-A Boise to a Northwest League title in 2004. Beyers, a former outfielder, was selected by the Dodgers in the 15th round of the 1979 Draft.

Steven Pollakov is in his third season with the Cubs and this year will serve as assistant hitting coordinator as well as a hitting coach for Low-A Myrtle Beach. He served as a hitting apprentice in the Houston Astros farm system in 2019, integrating technology and biometrics into hitting programs. In 2018, he served as catching coordinator in the Boston Red Sox Dominican Republic Academy. Signed as an undrafted free agent in 2016 by the Chicago White Sox, Pollakov is a graduate of Buffalo Grove High School in Illinois.

Mike Mason is in his 15th year in the system and brings over 25 years of coaching experience. In 2022, he will serve as an advisor to pitching development/reliever coordinator. He was in an advisory role for pitching development last year after he served as assistant coordinator, pitching in 2019-20. Mason was Triple-A Iowa’s pitching coach from 2008-13 after serving four seasons as the Royals minor league pitching coordinator from 2004-07. Mason played seven major league seasons with Texas (1982-87), the Cubs (1987) and Minnesota (1988), posting a 29-39 record with a 4.53 ERA.

Carlos Chantres is in his fourth season with the organization, and his third as assistant coordinator, pitching. The 2022 season will be his 17th as a coach, coordinator, or special assistant. He spent two years with Atlanta, including as a special assistant to player development in 2018, after stints coaching in the Tigers (2015) and Mariners (2016) chains. Chantres spent nine seasons coaching in the Yankees system (2006-14) after 12 minor league seasons (1994-2005) pitching with the White Sox (1994-2000), Brewers (2001), Devil Rays (2002), and Phillies (2004-05) organizations.

Josh Zeid is in his fourth season as pitching coach/rehab pitching coordinator following a nine-year pitching career that included 48 major league relief appearances with Houston in 2013-14. Originally selected by the Phillies in the 10th round of the 2009 Draft out of Tulane University, the righthander went 46-29 with a 4.39 ERA (317 ER/650.0 IP) in 291 career minor league contests (70 starts) in the Philadelphia (2009-11), Houston (2012-14), Detroit (2015), Mets (2016) and St. Louis (2017) farm systems.

Sam Chinitz joins the Cubs as coordinator, player development technology and video. He spent the 2021 season as a video and technology intern with the Boston Red Sox. Chinitz earned his Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Franklin & Marshall College in 2019.

Andrew Craig has been named assistant minor league video coordinator/Mesa development coach after serving as a player development associate with the Phillies in 2021 and an affiliate intern with the Rays in 2020. Craig earned his degree in Business Administration and Management from Utah Valley University in 2021.

David Da Silva starts his fifth year as mental skills coordinator after nine years as a mental conditioning consultant for IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from New Hampshire College/Southern New Hampshire University in 2000 and earned a Master of Science in Movement Science from Barry University in 2003.

Javier Guerrero is in his third season as mental skills coordinator and his eighth season in the organization. He spent 2018-19 as a minor league mental skills assistant following three seasons as a Dominican Republic video operations assistant. He graduated with a B.S. in Clinical Psychology from Universidad Iberoamericana in 2006 and earned his graduate certificate in International Family & Community Studies from Clemson University in 2007.

James Edwards is in his sixth season in the Cubs organization and enters his first as minor league medical coordinator after he was minor league assistant medical coordinator in 2021. He handled athletic trainer duties with Double-A Tennessee (2020), Single-A South Bend (2018-19) and Single-A Eugene (2017), and also served as an intern with the Arizona League Cubs in 2016. He earned a B.S. in Athletic Training from Aurora University and a M.S. in Exercise Science from California University of Pennsylvania.

Cory Kennedy continues as head of minor league strength and conditioning and performance science for a third season. He earned his degree in Physical Education and Health at the University of Toronto. He is a certified strength and conditioning specialist through the National Strength and Conditioning Association and completed his Master of Science in Exercise Science with a focus on strength and conditioning from Edith Cowan University in Australia.

Sean Folan begins his eighth season with the Cubs and his first as the minor league assistant medical coordinator. In 2021, he served as a rehab athletic trainer and strength and conditioning coach following three seasons as Single-A Eugene’s athletic trainer. Folan earned his Master’s in Athletic Training from Florida International University in Miami in 2014 after he graduated from Concordia University of Chicago in 2012 with a degree in Exercise Science.

Yimi Rodríguez has been named the organization’s head of minor league nutrition. Rodríguez, a former right-handed pitcher in the Dodgers chain (2010-11), has been the lead sports dietician at the University of Rochester Sports Medicine since 2018. He earned his B.S. in Clinical Nutrition from SUNY College at Buffalo in 2017.

Along with the minor league coordinators, Will Remillard has been named a hitting initiatives coach and George Thanopoulos has been named manager, minor league pitching development. Remillard is in his fourth season as a coach in the Cubs system after six seasons as a catcher in the organization (2013-18). Thanopoulos joined the Cubs as a minor league development coach last season and pitched two seasons in the Rockies system from 2016-17.



Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.