The coaching staffs for the Mariners seven affiliates are largely unchanged from last season.
The Mariners have announced their 2018 player development staff, including the managing and coaching positions for their seven affiliates. There wasn’t much change within the coaching staffs with the managers all remaining the same with the exception of Denny Hocking taking over at Class A Clinton, which had two managerial changes last season.
As for the player development coordinators, there was some turnover. Andy McKay, the Mariners’ director of player development, brought back Mike Micucci to coordinate all of the instruction. Mariners stalwarts Alvin Davis and Dan Wilson remain as special assistants.
Here’s the list of assignments with a few notes. (* denotes a newcomer to the organization.)
Player Development Coordinators:
- Coordinator of Organization Instruction: Mike Micucci
- Field Coordinator: Carson Vitale*
- Special Assistant, Player Development: Alvin Davis
- Special Assistant, Player Development: Pete Harnisch
- Special Assistant, Player Development: Dan Wilson
- Pitching Coordinator: Oscar Marin
- Hitting Coordinator: Hugh Quattlebaum*
- Assistant Hitting Coordinator/Catching Coordinator: Tony Arnerich
- Organization Pitching Coach: Cody Buckel*
- Organization Pitching Development/Rehab Coach: Brad Mills*
- Minor League Video Coordinator: Craig Manning
- Coordinator of Professional Development: Leslie Manning
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Perhaps the most interesting name of the group is Cody Buckel, who is just 25. He was once considered to be a top pitching prospect and a phenom with the Rangers, but then he developed “the yips” and couldn’t throw a strike anymore. He tried to make a comeback with the Angels last season with minimal succes, but now he’s gone to coaching.
Triple-A Tacoma Rainiers
- Manager: Pat Listach
- Pitching Coach: Lance Painter
- Hitting Coach: Dave Berg
Last season’s staff returns for another year. This will be Listach’s fourth season as Rainiers manager. There was some thought he might find another job on a big league staff or even get bumped up to the Mariners’ big league staff. He’s a pro and well-liked and respected by his players. Painter has been with the organization for 12 years. He’s considered to be a bit of a mechanics guru. His most notable work was fixing James Paxton and his arm slot. Painter was briefly considered for the Mariners’ bullpen coach job this offseason.
Double-A Arkansas Travelers
- Manager: Daren Brown
- Pitching Coach: Ethan Katz
- Hitting Coach: Roy Howell
- Asst. Hitting Coach/Mental Skills: Van Ostrand
Brown has been with the Mariners organization for two decades. He was a long time manager with Class AAA Tacoma and even served as interim manager when Don Wakamatsu was fired in 2010. After former general manager Jack Zduriencik demoted him to a coordinator position, Brown was re-promoted to managing at the Class AA level by general manager Jerry Dipoto two years ago. Brown has a 1156-1044 record over 19 seasons as a manager in the organization. Katz is back with Arkansas for a second season.
Single-A Modesto Nuts
- Manager: Mitch Canham
- Pitching Coach: Pete Woodworth
- Hitting Coach: Joe Thurston
Canham enters his third season as a manger in the Mariners’ system and his second straight year in Modesto. In his first two seasons, he’s led teams to the postseason. Last year, the Nuts finished with a 74-66 record, including a 6-0 record during the postseason and a California League Championship.In 2016, Canham led Class A Clinton to an 86-56 record in first season as a manager. The former Lake Stevens High and Oregon State standout is considered a rising star in the organization.
Single-A Clinton LumberKings
- Manager: Denny Hocking
- Pitching Coach: Doug Mathis
- Hitting Coach: Jose Umbria
Hocking worked as a hitting coach with Class AAA Tacoma in 2017. He takes over his first managing role for a Clinton affiliate that had three different managers last season. Prior to joining the Mariners, he spent four seasons as a coach in the Angels organization under Dipoto and Scott Servais
Short Season-A Everett AquaSox
- Manager: Jose Moreno
- Pitching Coach: Danielin Acevedo
- Pitching Coach: Moises Hernandez
- Hitting Coach: Eric Farris*
Moreno has been with the Mariners for 17 seasons. This is his second straight year managing the Aqua Sox and second stint as their manager. He served as Latin America field coordinator for five years. Moises Hernandez, the older brother of Felix Hernandez, is back for another year as pitching coach.
Rookie Peoria Mariners
- Manager: Zac Livingston
- Pitching Coach: Yoel Monzon
- Clubhouse Manager: Isaac Ruiz
- Asst. MiL Clubhouse Manager: Nelson Martin
Livingston and Monzon return for another season. Monzon also worked in the Arizona Fall League as a pitching coach.
Mariners Dominican Academy
- Director of Dominican Admin: Martin Valerio
- Asst. Baseball Operations (DR): Luis Matias*
- Manager: Cesar Nicolas
- Pitching Coach: Jose Amancio*
- Pitching Coach: . Alon Leichman
- Hitting Coach: David Flores
- Infield Coach:. Richard Paz
- Coach: Luis Caballero
- Coach: Renny Osuna
Valerio will oversee the academy for the eighth season with Nicolas returning as the manager for second season with the organization. Nicolas was named the 2017 Dave Henderson minor league staff member of the year for his efforts last season.