The Colorado Rockies and the Tri-City Dust Devils have announced their on-field staff for the 2014 season. Manager Drew Saylor and the majority of the 2013 staff will return for their second seasons in Tri-City. The only change will be at the Development Coordinator position, where Duane Espy replaces Ron Gideon.
Saylor made his managerial debut with the Dust Devils in 2013 as the youngest manager in Minor League Baseball. The Dust Devils finished 34-42 in his first season. He spent 2012 as the hitting coach for the Rookie-Level Grand Junction Rockies. Prior to that he coached at the University of Akron and Cleveland State University after completing a five year minor league career. Saylor was a 13th round selection by the Florida Marlins in the 2006 MLB First-Year Player Draft.
Frank Gonzales returns to the Dust Devils as pitching coach. After an eight-year professional career spent mostly in the Detroit Tigers organization, Gonzales spent four years as the head coach at Fort Collins (CO) High School before joining the Rockies organization in 2013.
Returning as hitting coach will be Warren Schaeffer. Prior to his coaching debut in 2013, Schaeffer spent six seasons as a player in the Rockies organization, and played one game for the Dust Devils in 2007 after being drafted out of Virginia Tech.
Espy joins the Dust Devils as Development Supervisor, which is a leadership role created in 2013 that is highly responsible for the oversight and implementation of the Rockies' development philosophies and practices. He held the same position with the Tulsa Drillers, the Rockies' Double-A affiliate, in 2013. In addition to having over 30 years of experience in the Minor Leagues as a player, coach, and manager, Espy spent more than six seasons as a Major League hitting coach for both the Rockies and the San Diego Padres. He will essentially be switching spots with Ron Gideon, who will now be the Development Supervisor for Tulsa.
Elsewhere in the Rockies organization, former Tri-City manager Stu Cole returns to the major league staff for a second season as third base coach. Freddie Ocasio, who managed the Dust Devils from 2006 to 2012, will return to the Asheville Tourists (Low-A) for a second season as manager, while former Dust Devils hitting coach Anthony Sanders will return to the Grand Junction Rockies for his second season as manager. In addition, three pitching coaches at levels above Tri-City in the Rockies organization are former Dust Devils pitching coaches: Dave Schuler at Colorado Springs (AAA), Darryl Scott at Tulsa (AA), and Dave Burba at Modesto (High-A). Another former pitching coach, Doug Linton, is the Rockies' minor league Head Pitching Coordinator.
The Dust Devils' 2014 season begins on the road June 13th against the Boise Hawks, while the home opener is June 18th versus the Everett AquaSox. Ticket packages are on sale now and start at just $49, with full-season tickets available for as low as $259. Special ticket rates are available for groups of 20 or more. Season tickets, mini-plans, and group tickets can be purchased by contacting the Dust Devils front office at (509) 544-8789 or at the Gesa Stadium box office.
Dust Devils Baseball… "It Will Blow You Away!"