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Recent Blogs


Twins Announce Their 2021 Minor League Coaching Assignments

On Tuesday, the Twins minor league affiliates announced their managers and coaching staffs. Despite re-alignment and a couple of new affiliates, there were few changes from the scheduled assignments in 2020.
Image courtesy of Seth Stohs, Twins Daily (photo of Brian Dinkelman and Gilberto Celestino)
The Twins made a commitment a year ago to have at least one bilingual coach (English and Spanish) at each of their affiliates. That remains the case. Also, each affiliate will have two pitching coaches among their four coaches.

ST. PAUL SAINTS - TRIPLE-A

The Saint Paul Saints announced their first coaching staff as a Twins affiliate. Toby Gardenhire was named the manager. He managed in Cedar Rapids in 2018 and in Ft. Myers in 2019. He had been assigned to manage in Rochester in 2020.

Note - The Saints held a press conference to introduce Toby Gardenhire as the Saints first AAA manager. Read Parker's story: Saints Throw a Gardy Party in 2021.

Gardenhire’s hitting coach will be Matt Borgschulte. He filled that role in Ft. Myers in 2019 and in the GCL in 2018. The team will have two pitching coaches. Mike McCarthy spent 2018 and 2019 with the Red Wings. Bello has spent four seasons as a pitching coach in the Twins system, including at Pensacola in 2019. Tyler Smarslok will be the team’s infield coach. He joined the organization before the 2020 season.

WICHITA WIND SURGE - DOUBLE-A

The Wichita Wind Surge will be also joining the Twins affiliation in 2020 as their Double-A team. They announced today that Ramon Borrego will be their manager. He has been in the organization since he was a player in the 1990s. He managed Double-A in 2019.

Ryan Smith was the Cedar Rapids hitting coach in 2019, his first year in the organization. He moves up to Double-A in 2021. Luis Ramirez is in his 16th season with the Twins, his first at Double-A. He spent 2019 in Ft. Myers. Virgil Vasquez, who pitched in the big leagues, is also a pitching coach for the Wind Surge. He has been a coach since retiring in 2015. (He even threw a no-hitter for New Britain in 2014) Finally, Joe Mangiameli is the team’s catching coach. 2020 was his first season in the organization.

CEDAR RAPIDS KERNELS - HIGH-A

The Cedar Rapids Kernels will now be the team’s High-A affiliate. Brian Dinkelman was the Kernels hitting coach for a few years before becoming their manager in 2019. He moved to Cedar Rapids when he became a coach there and now remains manager as the team moves up a level.

Bryce Berg will be the Kernels hitting coach. He spent several years as a coach at Concordia University in Seward, Nebraska, before joining the Twins last year. Mark Moriarity came to the Twins from the University of Mary in Bismarck before the 2020 season. He will be a pitching coach. So will Richard Salazar who has held that role in Elizabethton in recent years. Jairo Rodriguez joins the staff as a coach as well. This will be his 14th season in the organization as a player or coach. (Here is a Get to Know him article from 2016)

Read Jeff Johnson's article on the Kernels coaching staffat The Gazette in Cedar Rapids.

FT. MYERS MIGHTY MUSSELS - LOW-A

The Ft. Myers Mighty Mussels now become the Twins Low-A affiliate. Aaron Sutton left Montana State-Billings last year to be the manager in Ft. Myers.

Brian Meyer was hired a year ago from Butler. He is the hitting coach. Peter Larson and former big leaguer Carlos Hernandez will be the team’s pitching coaches.

GCL TWINS - ROOKIE LEVEL

As you know, there will not be a team in Elizabethton in 2021, so the team’s rookie team will only be the GCL Twins. Their manager in 2021 will be Takashi Miyoshi. This is his fourth season in the Twins organization. He has coached previously in Elizabethton. He was set to be the GCL manager in 2020 as well.

Shawn Schlecter, a Minnesota native, will serve as the team’s hitting coach. Jared Gaynor, who was in the DSL a year ago, will now be a pitching coach in the GCL. So will former big-leaguers Calvin Maduro. Dan Urbina was a pitching coach in the DSL in 2019 as well. He will take on that role in the GCL. Yeison Perez, who caught in the Twins organization until 2018, becomes a coach in the GCL as well.

DSL TWINS - ROOKIE LEVEL

Seth Feldman will be the Dominican Summer League manager for the second season. Ricardo Nanita, who played 16 professional seasons through 2018, will be one hitting coach. So will Steven Rosen who joined the Twins from Notre Dame before the 2020 season.Kevin Rodriguez will again be a pitching coach. So will Joey Skracic who enters his first season as a coach. Jimmy Alvarez will also remain in a coaching position.

MINOR LEAGUE FRONT OFFICE AND COORDINATORS

Alex Hassan begins his second season as the Twins Director of Player Development. (Get to know him from this 2019 article)

Drew MacPhail returns as his assistant director. Tommy Bergjans has been promoted to an assistant director of player development as well. Mauricio Mena will also fill that role.

Kevin Morgan will be the field coordinator. He spent 25 years in the Mets organization before joining the Twins last year. Tucker Frawley will be the assistant field coordinator and coordinator of skill development after spending a dozen years at Yale.

The organization’s minor league hitting coach will again be Donegal Fergus. Michael Thomas remains the catching coordinator. Billy Boyer is the infielder coordinator. Mike Quade is back as an outfield coordinator.

With JP Martinez joining the Giants as their assistant pitching coach, Justin Willard is now the pitching coordinator. Zach Bove will be the assistant pitching coordinator. Nat Ballenberg will be a special projects pitching coordinator.

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5 Comments

Dinkelman got promoted while carrying the exact same position on the exact same team.Glad he's back in Cedar Rapids though.

 

Got the minor league juices flowing.

 

    • Seth Stohs likes this

At last an article that is not a list of who we might, could, should sign!This was interesting even though I really know nothing about these people other than Dinkleman and Gardenhire.I just want the minors to pump players into the majors.

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IndianaTwin
Jan 19 2021 12:51 PM

Did anyone from Elizabethton get retained in another position?

 

Just before Thanksgiving, on a road trip through the area, we took a slight detour to drive past the park. Still had the Twins signage, but the only folks present were a couple of city employees doing grounds work. I was hoping to get a bargain basement E-Twins hat on clearance. 

See that they have six coaches in the DSL. Probably good because those kids are so young and need lots of instruction. Does the DSL still have 35 man rosters?

 

The GCL roster was always 35 in the past, correct? Do you know if that will remain or change with all the MiLB changes?

 

Did anyone from Elizabethton get retained in another position?

 

Just before Thanksgiving, on a road trip through the area, we took a slight detour to drive past the park. Still had the Twins signage, but the only folks present were a couple of city employees doing grounds work. I was hoping to get a bargain basement E-Twins hat on clearance. 

 

Luis Ramirez was their pitching coach in recent years. Unfortunately, Ray Smith and Jeff Reed are no longer in the organization.