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Cubs Name Minor League Managers, Coaching Staffs

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You won't see too many changes in the Cubs' system from last year, as many of the same managers and coaches will move to the team's new affiliates.

Principal Park in Des Moines, home of the Iowa Cubs
Principal Park in Des Moines, home of the Iowa Cubs
Dylan Heuer

Tuesday, the Cubs announced other managing and coaching assignments in the system. Many of these men will also serve in some capacity as spring-training instructors.

At Iowa, Marty Pevey returns as manager and Brian Harper will return as batting coach, assisted by Leo Perez, who begins his seventh season as a coach in the organization and first with Iowa. Mike Cather is new to the organization as the Triple-A pitching coach. He spent 2014 as Triple-A El Paso’s pitching coach in the Padres system. Originally drafted by the Rangers in 1993, he pitched in parts of three seasons with the Braves from 1997-99.

At Tennessee, Buddy Bailey (manger), Storm Davis (pitching coach) and Desi Wilson return from last year. Wilson will be assisted by Guillermo Martinez, who was at Boise last yer.

At Myrtle Beach, Mark Johnson will manage, in a promotion from Kane County, where he managed the Cubs' Low-A team to the Midwest League title. David Rosario comes with Johnson from Kane County, and Mariano Duncan will be the hitting coach there. Last year Duncan was at Tennessee. He'll be assisted by Chris Gutierrez, who was also at Kane County a year ago.

The Cubs' new Midwest League affiliate in South Bend will be managed by Jimmy Gonzalez, who managed the team's Arizona League Rookie League team in Mesa in 2014. Brian Lawrence, Boise's pitching coach in 2014, will serve in that capacity for South Bend and Jesus Feliciano (Boise in 2014) and Osmin Melendez (Mesa in 2014) will be batting coaches.

At Eugene, Gary Van Tol moves over from Boise to manage the Cubs' short-season club in the Northwest League, as noted by Josh a few days ago. Anderson Tavares, who was pitching coach at Mesa last year, will move up to Boise, and Ricardo Medina, also at Mesa last year, will be the hitting coach, assisted by former major-league outfielder Terrmel Sledge.

Former Cub Carmelo Martinez will manage the Cubs' Mesa team in the Arizona Rookie League. Martinez has managed at Mesa before (1999-2003, 2006) and has most recently been the Cubs' Latin America field coordinator. Ron Villone, in his fourth year in the organization, will be the pitching coach and Oscar Bernard the batting coach. He'll be assisted by longtime Cubs organization outfielder Ty Wright, who is beginning a coaching career after an eight-year minor-league career, seven of which were with the Cubs.

One thing that seems clear here is that the Cubs are adding a number of Spanish-speaking coaches to their staffs, which will certainly be a help for all the Latin players in the organization. The Cubs also named the following men to be coordinators in 2015.

Tim Cossins returns for his third season as the organization’s minor league field/catching coordinator.

Derek Johnson returns for his third year as the Cubs minor league pitching coordinator following 11 seasons (2002-12) at Vanderbilt University as the team’s pitching coach, including the last three as the school’s associate head coach/pitching coach.

Anthony Iapoce begins his third season as the organization’s Special Assistant to the GM and Player Development, overseeing the minor league hitting program while contributing to additional projects within the organization.

Jose Flores returns for his third season as minor league infield coordinator, his 15th year as a coach or manager.

Dave Keller enters his 30th season as a minor league coach or manager, his 12th year in the Cubs organization and his first as minor league Latin America field coordinator. He managed Single-A Daytona in 2013-14 and led the club to the 2013 Florida State League title after he served as Iowa’s hitting coach in 2012.

Mike Mason begins his second season as assistant pitching coordinator after spending the previous six years as Triple-A Iowa’s pitching coach.

Tom Beyers returns for his 16th season with the Cubs organization, and his first as the minor league assistant hitting coordinator, following two seasons as Single-A Kane County’s hitting coach.

Rey Fuentes begins his third season with the organization and first as Latin Coordinator, Mental Skills Program, following two years as cultural programs coordinator. In this role, he oversees all educational classes and mental skills programs for the Cubs Latin American players.

Darnell McDonald begins his first season as the organization’s mental skills program coordinator, and will work with players throughout all levels of the farm system. McDonald served as a Cubs baseball operations assistant in 2014 following his retirement in April after 16 professional seasons, one of them for the Cubs in 2013.

Doug Jarrow begins his eighth season as minor league strength and conditioning coordinator.

Nick Frangella begins his 12th season with the organization and his second as head minor league athletic training and performance coordinator. He spent the previous two seasons as Triple-A Iowa’s athletic trainer.

Chuck Baughman enters his 15th year with the Cubs organization, his second season as assistant athletic training coordinator. He spent the previous eight seasons as a rehabilitation coordinator and joined the organization as Single-A Boise’s athletic trainer in 2001.

Rick Tronerud returns for his 20th year with the Cubs and his second as minor league rehab pitching coordinator. He spent the previous 13 seasons with Rookie-League Mesa, serving as the club’s rehab pitching coach.