CORPUS CHRISTI - Keith Bodie, reigning Texas League Manager of the Year, returns for his second season as manager of the Corpus Christi Hooks in 2013. The announcement was made Friday by the Houston Astros.
Bodie, 56, embarks upon his sixth consecutive year in the Astros system and his 38th professional season. He served as Hooks hitting coach in 2009.
Last season, Corpus Christi topped the Texas League with a franchise-best 81-59 regular-season record. The Hooks took the South Division second-half crown, claiming 63 of their final 97 games for a .649 winning percentage. Corpus Christi led the league in runs (736), RBIs (665), slugging percentage (.410), on-base percentage (.342) and tied for first in batting average (.268). The campaign marked Bodie's return to the managerial ranks for the first time since 2005, when he directed the Harrisburg Senators of the Eastern League.
Bodie's current run in the Houston organization began in 2008, when he worked as hitting coach for Salem (Va.) of the Carolina League. The Brooklyn native also tutored Astros Triple-A hitters in Round Rock (2010) and Oklahoma City (2011).
In 16 seasons as a manager from the short-season Class A level through Triple-A, Bodie's teams have compiled a regular-season record of 1,067-984 for an overall winning percentage of .520. Nine of his clubs qualified for post-season play, including last year's Hooks and the Texas League's Wichita Wranglers from 2000 through 2003.
In five campaigns as a Texas League manager, Bodie's clubs have won five second-half championships.
His TL charges stand 387-306 for a .558 winning percentage. That ranks as the seventh-highest career winning percentage among circuit skippers with at least 500 games.
A third-round pick of the New York Mets in the 1974 draft out of South Shore High School in Brooklyn, Bodie spent nine seasons as a player in the Mets and Astros farm systems, reaching the Triple-A level with Tucson in 1981. Primarily a third baseman and outfielder, Bodie posted a career .256 batting average with 42 home runs, 294 RBIs and 98 stolen bases in 869 games.
He transitioned to coaching in 1983 with the Auburn Astros of the New York-Penn League. He coached with Double-A Columbus of the Southern League for two seasons before landing his first managerial post in 1986 with Auburn.
Bodie was named South Atlantic League Manager of the Year in 1987 when he guided the Asheville Tourists to a 91-48 record and finals appearance. The following year his Osceola Astros made it to the Florida State League title series after going 83-54 during the regular season. His other managerial assignments included Clinton, San Bernardino, Calgary, Phoenix and Bakersfield. In 1993, Bodie had the opportunity to manage Maui in the inaugural season of the Hawaiian Winter League.
He also spent six years as San Francisco's Minor League Field Coordinator (1994-1999). Following Wichita's exit from the 2001 playoffs, Bodie served as a coach with the Kansas City Royals during the season's final month.
Bodie is the fifth manager in Hooks history, following Tom Lawless (2011), Wes Clements (2010), Luis Pujols (2008-09) and Dave Clark (2005-07).
Filling out Corpus Christi's field staff in 2013 are pitching coach Gary Ruby, hitting coach Tim Garland, development specialist Mark Bailey, athletic trainer Bryan Baca and strength coach Trey Wiedman.
Ruby returns for his sixth season as a pitching coach in the Astros system and his second in Corpus Christi. He came to South Texas after three years as pitching coach for the New York-Penn League's Tri-City ValleyCats.
Ruby, 63, has worked as a pitching coach or a minor league pitching coordinator since 1987, when he was hired by the California Angels. His nine-year stint with the Angels included stops in Midland, Edmonton and Vancouver. He then worked two seasons (1996-97) as pitching coach for Cleveland's Triple-A affiliate in Buffalo.
Ruby spent four seasons (1998-2001) in the Phillies organization, concluding his term as the system's director of player personnel for a year and a half. He then moved on to Pittsburgh, where he spent six seasons (2002-07) as the Pirates' minor league pitching coordinator. He joined the Astros in 2008 as the pitching coach for Salem of the Carolina League.
Ruby served parts of three seasons as pitching coach for Leones del Escogido in the Dominican Republic. Escogido captured the Dominican Winter League title in 2012, posting a team ERA of 3.28.
Garland begins his first season with the Astros organization following seven years as a coach in the Oakland system. Garland, 42, served as hitting coach of the rival Midland RockHounds over the past two seasons. The 15-year minor league veteran made his coaching debut in 2006 with Kane County of the Midwest League and tutored High-A Stockton hitters from 2007-10.
Drafted by the New York Yankees in 1989 out of Pensacola Junior College, Garland notched a career .281 batting average in 1,356 games and 5,138 at-bats. He tallied 1,445 hits, 41 home runs, 471 RBIs and 388 stolen bases.
Garland played four seasons as a Yankee farmhand, reaching the Carolina League before moving to the independent ranks. He finished a two-year term in the Texas-Louisiana League with Rio Grande Valley in 1995. Garland hit .301 with 20 doubles, nine home runs, 44 RBIs and 37 stolen bases in 96 games for the White Wings, prompting San Francisco to sign him as a free agent the following year.
He played in the Giants and Orioles systems over the next three seasons before being picked up by the Athletics. Garland played for the RockHounds in 1999, the first season of their Oakland affiliation, batting .289 with six home runs, 55 RBIs and 28 stolen bases.
Bailey returns to Corpus Christi following two years as hitting coach for Tri-City of the New York-Penn League. Bailey will focus on instructing the club's catching prospects, working with the Hooks during homestands. When Corpus Christi travels, he'll scout the Texas League or serve as a roving instructor in the Astros system on a case-by-case basis.
Last season, the ValleyCats captured first place in the Stedler Division before falling to Hudson Valley in the finals. Bailey's hitters placed first in home runs, tied for first in team batting and ranked second in runs scored.
Following eight years as Houston's bullpen coach, Bailey, 51, served as Hooks' hitting chief in 2010. It marked a return to the Texas League for the first time since early 2002, when the former Astros catcher coached then-Double-A Round Rock. Under Bailey's guidance, Round Rock led the circuit in team batting and home runs in 2000.
Now in his 15th year as a coach in the Astros organization, Bailey returned to baseball as a hitting coach in 1998 with Kissimmee of the Florida State League. In 1999, he moved up to Double-A Jackson, coaching for the Generals in their final Mississippi season before the franchise relocated to Round Rock.
Selected by the Astros in the sixth round of the 1982 draft out of Southwest Missouri State (now Missouri State), Bailey was a three-year letterman in both baseball and basketball for the Bears. He played 13 seasons professionally as a catcher, spending portions of seven years in the Major Leagues with Houston and San Francisco. His best season was 1985, when he hit .265 with 10 home runs and 45 RBIs while starting in 96 games behind the plate for Houston. Bailey played 57 games for the 1986 National League Western Division champion Astros.
A switch-hitter, Bailey became the 13th player in National League history to homer from both sides of the plate in the same game when he clubbed a pair of solo shots at the Astrodome in Houston's 10-9 win over San Diego on September 16, 1984. He is one of 52 NL players to accomplish the feat.
Baca is in his seventh season with the Astros organization and his first at Corpus Christi. He comes to the Sparkling City after a two-year stay at Lancaster of the California League.
Baca began with Houston in 2007 as Rookie League Greeneville's athletic trainer. He then served three seasons for the Tri-City ValleyCats in the New York-Penn League from 2008-10.A native of Santa Fe, NM, Baca graduated from New Mexico State.