Results tagged ‘ 2012 ’

Astros announce 2012 Minor League staff



Field Coordinator                            Paul Runge

Pitching Coordinator                     Jon Matlack

Hitting Coordinator                       Ty Van Burkleo

Roving Infield Instructor              Tom Lawless

Roving OF / Base Running           Milt Thompson

Roving Catching Instructor         Danny Sheaffer

Strength & Conditioning              Frank Renner

Medical Coordinator                     Jamey Snodgrass

Rehab Coordinator                         Daniel Roberts



Manager                                              Tony DeFrancesco

Pitching Coach                                 Burt Hooton

Hitting Coach                                   Leon Roberts

Athletic Trainer                                Mike Freer

Strength & Conditioning              Gary McCoy



Manager                                              Keith Bodie

Pitching Coach                                 Gary Ruby

Hitting Coach                                   Joel Chimelis

Athletic Trainer                                Eric Montague



Manager                                              Rodney Linares

Pitching Coach                                 Don Alexander

Hitting Coach                                   Darryl Robinson

Athletic Trainer                                Bryan Baca



Manager                                              Ivan De Jesus

Pitching Coach                                 Dave Borkowski

Hitting Coach                                   Josh Bonifay

Athletic Trainer                                Grant Hufford



Manager                                              Stubby Clapp

Pitching Coach                                 Rick Aponte

Hitting Coach                                   Mark Bailey

Athletic Trainer                                Michael Rendon



Manager                                              Omar Lopez

Pitching Coach                                 Hector Mercado

Hitting Coach                                   Cesar Cedeno

Athletic Trainer                                Corey O’Brien



Manager                                              Ed Romero

Pitching Coach                                 Jaime Garcia

Pitching Coach                                 Charley Taylor

Hitting Coach                                   Edgar Alfonzo

Assistant Coach                               Gordy MacKenzie

Athletic Trainer                                Steve Miller



Manager                                              Luis Martinez

Pitching Coach                                 Jose Martinez

Bullpen Coach                                  Joel Santo

Hitting Coach                                   Luis Mateo

Infield Instructor                             Johan Maya

Assistant Coach                               Ramon Garcia

Outfield Instructor                          Juan Zapata

Catching Instructor                        Sixto Ortega

Athletic Trainer                                Ambiorix Reyes

Assistant Trainer                              Edwin Garcia

Strength & Conditioning              Geremias Guzman

Heck discusses challenges of top pick

For only the third time in their 50-year history, the Astros will have the overall No. 1 pick in the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. The Astros earned that distinction when Minnesota won its 60th game on Thursday, ensuring the Astros would have the worst record in baseball.

The last time the Astros had the No. 1 overall pick was in 1992, when they selected Phil Nevin, whose career took off after he left Houston. They also had the top pick in 1976 and chose left-handed pitcher Floyd Bannister.

“You better get it right picking No. 1,” Astros assistant general manager/director of scouting Bobby Heck said. “Obviously, it’s an opportunity. I hope it’s the only opportunity I ever have to pick one. The idea is to pick in the late 20s and even better, pick 30.

“These are the types of players you need to get you back to that point. As far as our approach, we walk into every year taking about candidates for the first pick, and I suspect we’ll have a smaller number going into the year. We’re still going to be open-minded and do our do diligence and select the best player.”

Unlike in recent years when phenoms Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper were the clear-cut no. 1 overall picks, Heck said there is a pack of players who have separated themselves. Stanford right-hander Mark Appel, Arizona State shortstop Deven Marrero, Florida catcher Mike Zunino and high school pitcher Lucas Giolito of California and outfielder Byron Buxton of Georgia are among the players who could go No. 1.

“That group will grow as we walk through the fall and enter the spring,” Heck said. “It’s just a matter of getting a group and expanding on it as you get towards the end and then shrinking it down.”

With the No. 1 pick comes a healthy financial commitment. The Astros this year paid a $2.525 million signing bonus when they took University of Connecticut outfielder George Springer with the 11th pick, and they could have to shell out about three times as much. This year’s No. 1 pick, pitcher Gerrit Cole, got an $8 million bonus from the Pirates.

“The precedent says you’re going to pay a lot of money for that first pick,” Heck said. “First and foremost, we better put the talent in the right order and deal with the money factors at a later time.”

Barmes would like to return

Astros shortstop Clint Barmes is facing free agency this off-season for the first time in his career. He’s certainly open to exploring his options, but he’s had a good experience in Houston and would like to return to the Astros.

The Astros are rebuilding and could use some veteran influences, and there are no top shortstop prospects on the immediate horizon.

“I’d love to come back here, but I haven’t put a whole lot of thought into that yet,” he said. “Coming up to the off-season, I haven’t talked to my agent much about that at all to even know what other options there even are. There’s going to be a lot of changes [with the Astros] and a lot of things going on, which is another reason nobody knows what direction it’s going to head.”

Barmes, traded to the Astros from the Rockies last year, has been a valuable commodity on and off the field. A broken hand suffered in Spring Training led to a slow start at the plate, but he’s one of the best defensive shortstops in baseball. He’s hitting .243 with nine homers and 29 RBIs in 104 games.

Astros got it right with this coaching staff

It’s rather unusual to see a Major League coaching staff get multi-year deals, but the Astros felt so good about what they had in manager Brad Mills’ staff that they announced Saturday they had extended the contracts of the field staff by two years, though 2012.

The Astros will have to wait a couple of more weeks before hitting coach Jeff Bagwell tells them whether he wants to return, but Mills and general manager Ed Wade have put together a terrific coaching staff in Brad Arnsberg (pitching coach), Dave Clark (third-base coach), Bobby Meacham (first-base coach), Al Pedrique (bench coach) and Jamie Quirk (bullpen coach).

Not only do they have the respect of the players, but the group puts in long hours poring over advance scouting reports and in the video room before the players even arrive at the ballpark.

“I knew from basically July on we wanted to keep this group together,” Wade said. “I talked to [owner] Drayton [McLane] and [president of baseball operation] Tal [Smith about doing two-years and they see the same things I’ve seen and they’re very supportive of extending beyond this organization’s norm.

“If you look at coaches’ contracts, there’s not a lot of multi-year deals out there. There are some, but not the vast majority. To be able to do that with the entire unit sends a message to them that we appreciate the kind of work they’ve done and a message to the players, too, that there’s continuity and stability. With a younger group, that’s an important message to try to deliver.”

Don’t be surprised to see the Astros pick up Mills’ option for 2012. He’s under contract next year, but with his staff getting contracts through 2012, it only makes sense the manager gets the same deal.