Brian Poldberg is moving up a level to replace Mike Jirschele as the manager at Class AAA Omaha as part of a series of in-house moves the Royals announced Friday regarding their minor-league staff.
By BOB DUTTON
The Kansas City Star
The Omaha position became open when the Royals recently promoted Jirschele to the major-league staff. He spent the last 11 years at Omaha, and guided the club to two Pacific Coast League crowns in the last three years.
Poldberg shifts to Omaha, which is just a few miles from his home in Carter Lake, Iowa, after spending the last six years as the manager at Class AA Northwest Arkansas.
The Royals replaced Poldberg by promoting Vance Wilson, who served the last two seasons as the manager at Hi-A Wilmington. Wilson began his managerial career in 2011 at Lo-A Kane County.
The new Wilmington manager is Darryl Kennedy, who spent the last four years at Surprise in the Arizona Rookie League. He previously managed Wilmington in 2008.
The Royals also announced they won’t field an affiliate next year at Surprise but will instead distribute players among their two other short-season clubs: Idaho Falls and Burlington.
The decision trims the Royals’ affiliate roster to six domestic clubs, which is what most organizations have.
Brian Buchanan is returning as manager at Lo-A Lexington. It marks his third season at the Royals’ Lo-A affiliate, including 2012 when based at Kane County.
Omar Ramirez, at Idaho Falls, and Tommy Shields, at Burlington, are also returning for a third season in their roles. Ramirez guided the Chukars to the 2013 Pioneer League title.
A manager for the Royals’ club in the Dominican Summer League will be announced at a later date.
The Royals announced Chino Cadahia will be an advisor to the player-development department. He spent the last two years as the big-league bench coach but missed the closing weeks because of a personal family matter.
The Royals also retained Jack Maloof and Andre David, who began the just-completed season as hitting coaches on the big-league staff before getting reassigned May 30.
Maloof will serve on the roving staff as a special assistant to player development for hitting. David will be the hitting coach at Northwest Arkansas.
The 2014 minor-league staff assignments:
• Class AAA Omaha: manager Brian Poldberg, pitching coach Larry Carter, hitting coach Tommy Gregg, trainer David Iannicca and strength-and-conditioning coach David Kathmann.
• Class AA Northwest Arkansas: manager Vance Wilson, pitching coach Jim Brower, hitting coach Andre David, trainer Masa Koyanagi and strength-and-conditioning coach Austin Driggers.
• Hi-A Wilmington: manager Darryl Kennedy, pitching coach Steve Luebber, hitting coach Jose Castro, bench coach Justin Gemoll, trainer James Stone and strength-and-conditioning coach Joe Greany.
• Lo-A Lexington: manager Brian Buchanan, pitching coach Steve Merriman, hitting coach Abraham Nunez, bench coach Glenn Hubbard, trainer Mark Keiser and strength-and-conditioning coach Aaron Reis.
• Short-season Idaho Falls: manager Omar Ramirez, pitching coach Mark Davis, hitting coach Damon Hollins, bench coach Juan Bruno, coach Willie Aikens, trainer Robbie Oates and strength-and-conditioning coach (to be announced.)
• Short-season Burlington: manager Tommy Shields, pitching coach Carlos Martinez, hitting coach Nelson Liriano, bench coach Scott Thorman, trainer Sab Hagihara and strength-and-conditioning coach (to be announced).
• Dominican Academy: coordinator Victor Baez, manager (to be announced), coach Rafael Roque, coach Juan Guadron, coach Miguel Benard, coach Ramon Martinez, coach Onil Joseph, trainers Martin Berroa and Manny Plazza, strength-and-conditioning coaches Jose Rosario and Reymundo Sido.
• Minor-league roving positions: field coordinator Tony Tijerina, advisor to player development Chino Cadahia, senior pitching advisor Bill Fischer, special assistant to player development for hitting Jack Maloof, special assistant to player development John Wathan.
• Others: Special assistant to general manager and pitching coordinator Steve Foster, hitting coordinator Terry Bradshaw, outfield/bunting/baserunning coordinator Milt Thompson, medical coordinator Chris DeLucia, Latin America medical coordinator Tony Medina, strength-and-conditioning coordinator Garrett Sherrill, Latin America strength-and-conditioning coordinator Luis Perez, rehab coordinator/physical therapist Justin Hahn, rehab pitching coach Carlos Reyes, cultural development coordinator Jeff Diskin, manager of Arizona operations Nick Leto, minor-league equipment manager Will Simon and mental skills coach Freddy Sandoval.
To reach Bob Dutton, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him at twitter.com/Royals_Report.