The Minnesota Twins today announced minor league managerial and coaching assignments for the 2024 season. For the fifth consecutive year, all six affiliates will have two pitching coaches, one of whom is bilingual (English and Spanish), while the top four levels employ five-person coaching staffs.
Triple-A St. Paul Saints
Toby Gardenhire returns for his fourth-consecutive season as manager of the St. Paul Saints after leading the club to an 84-64 record and a first-place finish in the International League West Division in 2023. It marks Gardenhire’s sixth managerial campaign in the Twins’ organization (High-A Fort Myers in 2019 and Low-A Cedar Rapids in 2018), compiling a record of 376-323 (.538). Burnsville, MN native Shawn Schlechter will be the Saints’ hitting coach, after serving in the same role for High-A Cedar Rapids in 2022 and Double-A Wichita in 2023. Peter Larson and Dan Urbina will serve as the Saints’ pitching coaches. Larson enters his sixth year in the Twins organization and second straight at the Triple-A level, while Urbina makes his Triple-A coaching debut after working as one of Wichita’s pitching coach the last two seasons. Tyler Smarslok will return for his fourth season with the Saints as the club’s defensive coach. Ben Myers will return as St. Paul’s head trainer, Taylor Carpenter returns as assistant athletic trainer and Stephen Hopkins joins as the team’s strength and conditioning coach. Matt Tramp will serve as the Saints’ clubhouse manager. Lincoln Ficek and Alek Hughes will be the club’s coordinators of baseball technology.
Double-A Wichita Wind Surge
Ramon Borrego, who has guided four of his last five clubs to the Postseason, will manage Double-A Wichita again in 2024 after leading his 2023 Wind Surge club to a 64-73, fourth-place finish in the Texas League North Division. Borrego has managed 13 seasons at various levels in the Twins organization, compiling a regular season record of 587-519 (.531). Corbin Day will join the Wind Surge as hitting coach after spending the 2023 season in the same role for High-A Cedar Rapids. DJ Engle and Carlos Hernandez will serve as the club’s pitching coaches. Engle enters his second-straight season with the Wind Surge and fourth in the Twins organization, while Hernandez returns for his seventh season in the organization and first at the Double-A level. Yeison Peréz will serve as Wichita’s hitting and development coach, after holding the same position in Cedar Rapids last season. Katie Lortie and Chase Thompson will be the Wind Surge’s athletic trainers, while Jacob Needham will be Wichita’s strength and conditioning coach. Chase Carder will be the Wind Surge’s coordinator of baseball technology for the second-straight season.
High-A Cedar Rapids Kernels
Brian Dinkelman returns as manager at High-A Cedar Rapids after a successful 2023 campaign in which the Kernels went 82-50 during the regular season and won their first Midwest League title since 1994; Dinkelman was also named Baseball America’s Minor League Manager of the Year for his leadership down the stretch. The 2024 season will be the former Twins infielder’s 10th year as a coach in the organization and his fourth campaign as manager for the Kernels, compiling a record of 300-223 (.574). CJ Baker will join the Cedar Rapids staff as hitting coach, his first professional coaching assignment after working as Stanford University’s video and technology coordinator and assistant hitting coach for the last two seasons. Jairo Rodriguez will serve as hitting and development coach for Cedar Rapids, rejoining the Kernels after spending 2023 as a hitting coach for the Dominican Summer League Twins. Argenis Angulo and Jonas Lovin will serve as the club’s pitching coaches; both are in their second years in the Twins organization, with Angulo spending last season as a pitching coach for the Florida Complex League Twins and Lovin working in Cedar Rapids. Tyler Blair will be the club’s lead athletic trainer, while Randy Yang returns as the club’s assistant athletic trainer. Blake Kretovics will serve as the Kernels’ strength and conditioning coach after working in the Twins organization since 2022. The Kernels’ coordinator of baseball technology will be Jeremy Miranda.
Low-A Fort Myers Mighty Mussels
Brian Meyer returns for his fourth season as the manager of the Low-A Fort Myers Mighty Mussels, after leading the team to a 67-64 record in 2023 and fourth-place finish in the Florida State League West division; he owns a 196-177 (.525) career record at the helm of the Mighty Mussels. Luis Reyes will be the club’s hitting coach, after spending 2023 as the Mussels’ assistant hitting coach. The Mighty Mussels’ pitching coaches will be Ryan Ricci and Richard Salazar. Ricci joins the Twins organization after working as pitching coach at George Mason University; under his guidance, the pitching staff led the Atlantic 10 Conference in ERA and saves, and set the single-season program strikeout record in the most recent season. Salazar begins his seventh year in Minnesota’s system and second with Fort Myers, after working in Cedar Rapids for two seasons. Michael Ahmed will be the Mussels’ hitting and development coach, joining the Twins organization from Complex Sports Academy in his native Massachusetts. Asja Morello will serve as the club’s lead athletic trainer and Morgan Leichtenberger joins as assistant athletic trainer after serving on the FCL Twins staff in 2023. Additionally, the Mighty Mussels’ strength and conditioning coach will be Matt Anti, who spent 2023 with the FCL Twins.
Rookie-level Florida Complex League Twins/Lee County Sports Complex
Seth Feldman will manage the Florida Complex League Twins, his third consecutive season with that team and sixth year in the organization, after previously managing the Dominican Summer League affiliate in 2019 and 2021. The FCL team and complex staff will comprise three hitting coaches: Emilio Guerrero, Humberto Miranda and Collin McBride, all of whom were in the same roles with the team last season. The four pitching coaches will be Anders Dzurak, Chris Powell, Kevin Rodriguez and Jesus Sanchez. Josh Tols will serve as the rehab pitching coach, after joining the organization last year. Nico Giarratano and Tristan Toorie will be the development coaches. Allison Susa will serve as the lead trainer for the club, with Thaddeus Hayes and Matt Smith as the assistant trainers. John Behr, Jean Castillo and Serena Dahring will be the strength and conditioning coaches, with John Gentile serving as the rehab strength and conditioning coach. Nick Coberly, Danny DiGregorio and Danielle Honnette will be the physical therapists for the FCL team and the complex. Matt Cheesman is the minor league equipment manager and Jimmy Couto is the assistant minor league clubhouse manager. The complex’s coordinator of baseball technology will be Kevin Marable, with Tyler Hickman, Alex Lazarony and Michael Lewis-Wedderburn serving as the fellows, baseball technology.
Rookie-level Dominican Summer League Twins
Rafael Martinez will take the helm of the Dominican Summer League Twins for the third consecutive season. Steven Cardona and Carlos Lara will be the hitting coaches; Cardona most recently worked as a hitting instructor at Infinite Hitting, while Lara was a fellow with the Twins’ baseball technology group last season. Dylan Hawley and Erick Julio will split duties as pitching coaches for the DSL Twins; Minnesota native Hawley joins the Twins from Driveline, while Julio returns to his same role. Ruben Santana will shift to the infield coach, after serving as a DSL hitting coach last season. The DSL medical staff will consist of trainers Carlos Frias, Wladimir Morales and Camille Pacheco, along with strength and conditioning coaches Miguel Cabrera and Chris Collins, and Latin American strength and conditioning coordinator Juan Carlos Pinto. Francisco Solano is the manager, Dominican academy operations and Carlos Naut serves as the assistant, academy administrator. Nataly Burgos is the assistant, international operations and Christian Balbuena is the Dominican academy’s maintenance assistant. Benedicto Herrera is the academy’s driver, Wilkin Mora is the maintenance lead, Jose Carrion is the clubhouse manager and Kelvin Pantaleon is the clubhouse assistant. Pierre Jacotin will serve as specialist, language and continuing education and Jose Miguel is the coordinator, baseball technology for the academy.
Player Development Staff and Minor League Coordinators
Jeremy Zoll enters his fifth season as vice president, assistant general manager and seventh overall with the Twins. Alex Hassan enters his seventh season in the Twins organization and second as vice president, hitting development and acquisitions. Drew MacPhail is the Twins’ director, player development and Brian Maloney is the director, minor league and high performance operations. Tommy Bergjans is the director, minor league pitching development, Amanda Daley is the director of player education and Frankie Padulo will serve as the club’s assistant director, player development. Josh Ruffin is the assistant director, player development research and Grey Wilburn is the assistant director, player development research. Chad Raines serves as the analyst, pitching development and Nihar Maskara is the analyst, baseball research.
Kevin Morgan will return as minor league field coordinator; he joined the Twins in 2020 after a 25-year stint with the New York Mets organization. Edgar Varela will be the coordinator of instruction for the third-consecutive season and Julio Borbón will be assistant coordinator of instruction, his third year in the role. Nat Ballenberg is the assistant pitching coordinator and Bobby Hearn takes over the role of complex pitching coordinator. Bryce Berg returns to his role of hitting coordinator for the third year, his fifth year in the organization. Ryan Smith returns as assistant hitting coordinator; he is joined in the role by Rayden Sierra, who served as a hitting coach with Fort Myers for the last two seasons. Tucker Frawley will serve as infield and catching coordinator and Mike Quade returns for his seventh campaign as outfield coordinator.
Ian Kadish returns as the club’s director of strength and conditioning. Bryan Housand begins his third season with the Twins and has been promoted to director, minor league medical services. Chad Jackson enters his 23rd season with the Twins as minor league medical administration coordinator. David Rak will return as minor league strength and conditioning coordinator and Evan McDonald will serve as Florida complex strength and conditioning coordinator. Axel Lopez is the Latin American medical coordinator, his 11th season with the Twins.
Martijn Verhoeven is the research lead, sports science and Colin Robertson is the manager, sports science. Tyler Schmitz is the manager, baseball technology. Chris Curran is the biomechanist, sports science and Chris Bailey is the analyst, sports science. Kara Lynch enters her fifth season with the Twins and fourth as director of performance nutrition, with Lilly Araujo serving as the performance dietician and Isabella Burrola as the Latin American nutrition coordinator.
Victor Gonzalez is the assistant director, Florida and Dominican Republic operations, Jason Davila is the manager, minor league operations and Lisa Maria Tolentino is the coordinator, minor league operations. Linda Merlo will again be the club’s language and culture development supervisor. Cole Satterfield has been promoted to assistant manager, Florida operations, and Alec Sotolongo and Sebastian Vela will serve as the 2024 Florida operations fellows.
(info courtesy of Twins)