Blue Jays announce Minor League appointments
The Toronto Blue Jays are pleased to announce the minor league field staffs for the 2017 season. Former Major League Manager Eric Wedge will lead the Player Development Team as Field Coordinator following his inaugural season with the club in an Advisor role, with Mike Mordecai being promoted to Assistant Field Coordinator from his previous position as Coordinator of Instruction. Among other notable additions, Jeff Ware is promoted to Pitching Coordinator after three seasons as a Pitching Coach in the Blue Jays system and Devon Whtie joins the coaching staff as Hitting Coach with AAA-affiliate Buffalo. White previously served as outfield and baserunning coordinator for Washington (2008-10) and baserunning coordinator for the Chicago White Sox (2011-12).
Key changes in Player Development will see Ken Huckaby elevated to the role of Catching Coordinator after managing Dunedin in 2016, while Danny Solano is promoted to Infield Coordinator following two seasons as Minor League Infield Coach. The recently created High Performance team has promoted Jeremy Trach to oversee the Minor League Strength and Conditioning operations as S&C Coordinator, after serving as the Dunedin S&C Coach in 2016. Ben Freakley Jr. joins the club in the capacity of Mental Performance Coach, while Pat Chase does the same in the role of Rehab Coordinator.
Among the field staff for 2017, Luis Hurtado makes his managerial debut with the Gulf Coast team, while Andy Fermin (Position Coach, New Hampshire) and Chris Schaeffer (Position Coach, Lansing) enter the coaching ranks after the completion of playing careers in the Blue Jays system. Ronnie Ortegon joins the organization as Hitting Coach with New Hampshire after four seasons coaching in the Braves minor league system (2013-16) and one as Major League Assistant Hitting Coach for the Cincinnati Reds (2012). Michel Abreu assumes the role of Position Coach in Dunedin after a lengthy playing career in Mexico, Cuba, Japan and the United States. John Tamargo Jr. has been enlisted to manage the DSL squad, working with Dominican Field Coordinator Pablo Cruz in the development of key prospects in the Dominican, marking his 5th season as a minor league manager.