LOS ANGELES -- Though the Dodgers front office went through a myriad of changes this offseason, including new director of player development Gabe Kapler, there aren't major changes to the organization's minor league coaching staffs for 2015. Managers remain in place at every level from 2014, but the one big change in 2015 is the addition of a fourth coach at each level rather than the traditional three.
Kapler said a big reason for adding a fourth coach at each level was to ensure at least one Spanish-speaking coach at every stop.
"It was very important to us that we have a Spanish speaker at each affiliate. It's tremendously important especially at the lower levels, but even at the upper levels," Kapler explained. "Cultural assimilation for us organizationally is as important as any other element of player development.
"We are making certain we have systems in place for guys for whom English is a second language to assimilate comfortably so they can feel the most comfortable in the batters box, on the mound, in the outfield. Only when they are comfortable and stress free will they perform to the best of their ability."
Listed below are the staffs for the six Dodger affiliates.
Triple-A Oklahoma City:
Manager: Damon Berryhill
Hitting Coach: Franklin Stubbs
Pitching Coach: Scott Radinsky
4th Coach: Johnny Washington
The Dodgers are in their first year in Oklahoma City, with Berryhill remaining in Triple-A for a second season, and seventh season managing in the Dodgers' system. Stubbs enters his third year in Triple-A and his fifth with the Dodgers system. Radinsky moved up from Double-A, and Washington was hitting coach in Great Lakes in 2014 after two years in the same position with Rancho Cucamonga.
"We value open-mindedness. We value research-based decisions," Kapler said. "We value men who are willing to both share and are willing to listen."
Manager: Razor Shines
Pitching Coach: Matt Herges
Hitting Coach: Shawn Wooten
Coach: Leo Garcia
Razor Shines remains in Double-A for a second year as manager, as the Dodgers shift from Chattanooga to Tulsa. Wooten begins his second season coaching in Double-A for the Dodgers. Herges moves up after three years in Rancho Cuamonga. Garcia was hitting coach in Ogden the last three years.
"The Dodgers and I are both very excited about coming to Tulsa," said Shines. "I know ONEOK Field is one of the best ballparks in baseball, not just the Texas League. We plan on putting an exciting team on the field for the fans of Tulsa, and I cannot wait to get started."
Single-A Rancho Cucamonga:
Manager: P.J. Forbes
Pitching Coach: Bill Simas
Hitting Coach: Mike Eylward
4th Coach: Rafael Ozuna
Forbes is in his second year of managing at Rancho and third year in the Dodgers' system; same for Eylward. Simas comes up from Great Lakes, while Ozuna was the infield and baserunning coach for the Dodgers' Dominican League team in 2014.
Single-A Great Lakes:
Manager: Bill Haselman
Pitching Coach: Glenn Dishman
Hitting Coach: Jay Gibbons
4th Coach: Luis Matos
Haselman is in his second year managing the Loons, joined by Dishman after four years as the pitching coach in Triple-A Albuquerque. They are joined by newcomers Gibbons, who played for the Dodgers in 2010-2011, and Matos, who was hitting coach for Crillos de Caguas of the Puerto Rican Winter League last year.
"We are excited to have Bill and Glenn back with the Loons coaching staff," said Loons Vice president and general manager Scott Litle. "Both were great to work with during their time here in the past and we look forward to working with them again this season."
With top pitching prospects Grant Holmes and Jose De Leon, among others, likely making their way through Great Lakes in 2014, Kapler said Dishman was the right man to work with them.
"He is an incredible team player. He's just really excited about getting back to spring training and working with a bunch of great pitchers. We recognize his capability to work with some our younger pitchers, his ability to connect," Kapler said. "Remember, that level especially early in the season can be cold, and can be overwhelming for guys their first time out. We needed a guy to be patient. There is a lot of failure associated with that level. It's the first full season for guys, and we wanted someone to keep the pitchers positive, and Dish is the right guy for that."
Manager: John Shoemaker
Pitching Coach: Bobby Cuellar
Hitting Coach: Darryl Brinkley
4th Coach: Fumi Ishibashi
Shoemaker swaps manager spots with McDowell. Cuellar was bullpen coach the last two seasons with the Twins. Brinkley is another newcomer to the Dodgers, having coached and managed for five years in the Golden Baseball League. Ishibashi was a Dodgers bullpen catcher in 2014, moving into a new role as fourth coach in Ogden.
Rookie-level Arizona League Dodgers:
Manager: Jack McDowell
Pitching Coach: Greg Sabat
Hitting Coach: Aaron Bates
4th Coach: Gil Velazquez
McDowell and Sabat held the same roles in 2014 in Ogden. Bates played in 11 games for Double-A Chattanooga in 2014 before retiring. Velazquez is another newcomer to coaching, having played most recently in 2013.
Field Coordinator: Clayton McCullough
Hitting Coordinator: Damon Mashore
Catching Coordinator: Travis Barbary
Pitching Coordinator: Rick Knapp
Infield Coordinator: Juan Castro
Outfield/Baserunning Coordinator: Brady Clark
Assistant Hitting Coordinator: Todd Takayoshi
Lower-level Pitching Rover: Kremlin Martinez
McCullough comes to the Dodgers after eight years coaching in the Blue Jays system. Mashore was outfield and baserunning coordinator the last two years. Clark, who played for the Dodgers in 2007, is new to coaching. Barbary, Knapp, Castro and Takayoshi held the same positions last year. Martinez was field coordinator in 2014 at the Dodgers' facility in Campo Las Palmas.
"We wanted guys who are nimble, who brought a wealth of experience to lean on, and who bought into our care-first, trust-building, culture-building system," Kapler. "Our staff members will be good listeners."