DES MOINES, Iowa - The Iowa Cubs will see a mix of familiar and new faces on the 2017 field staff, as announced by the Chicago Cubs on Friday. Manager Marty Pevey returns for his fifth consecutive season at the helm of the club and his ninth overall in the Cubs' organization. Also returning to Iowa are Pitching Coach Rod Nichols, Athletic Trainer Shane Nelson and Strength and Conditioning Coach Ryan Clausen. Desi Wilson and Mariano Duncan join Iowa as the team's hitting coaches and Jon Fierro will serve as the I-Cubs' new Assistant Athletic Trainer.
Pevey is 287-288 overall as the I-Cubs' manager and ranks second to only Joe Sparks (355; 1973-75, 77-79) on Iowa's all-time managerial win list. He is the only skipper to lead the I-Cubs in five consecutive seasons since baseball returned to Des Moines in 1969. Pevey will enter his 34th season in professional baseball in 2017, having played for 13 and coached for 21. Prior to joining Iowa, Pevey managed Short-Season Medicine Hat (1996-97), Single-A Hagerstown (1998), Advanced-A Dunedin (2000-02), Double-A New Haven (2003), Triple-A Syracuse (2004-05) and Single-A Peoria (2009), while also serving as Toronto's bullpen coach in 1999, the team's first base coach in 2006 and third base coach from 2007-08. He worked as the Cubs' catching coordinator from 2010-12.
Nichols enters his second season with Iowa and second in the Cubs' organization. Prior, he worked as the Triple-A pitching coach for the Phillies' organization for eight seasons (2005-12) before becoming Philadelphia's bullpen coach and serving in that role from 2013-15. Nichols was born in Burlington, Iowa but spent the majority of his childhood in Albuquerque, NM. He pitched professionally for 13 seasons, including parts of seven seasons in the majors with Cleveland (1988-92), the Dodgers (1993), and Atlanta (1995).
Wilson embarks on his 10th season in the Cubs' organization. This is Wilson's second stint with Iowa as he took over hitting coach duties for the team in June of 2009 when Von Joshua, Iowa's hitting coach at the time, replaced Gerald Perry in Chicago. He began his Cubs' tenure with Single-A Boise in 2008 as the hitting coach and also served Chicago's Single-A affiliate from 2011-12. He also coached AZL Mesa (2010) and most recently, Double-A Tennessee (2013-16). Wilson played 11 seasons in professional affiliated ball (1991-2002) and five additional seasons in independent ball (2003-2007). He appeared in 41 games for the San Francisco Giants in 1996 and hit .271 with two home runs.
Duncan will share the hitting coach responsibilities as he enters his first season in Iowa and seventh in the Cubs' organization. Duncan joins the Triple-A staff from Advanced-A Myrtle Beach (previously Daytona) where he served a similar role for four seasons (2013-16). His term in the Cubs' organization started with Tennessee (2011-12). Duncan began his coaching career in 2003 with the Gulf Coast Dodgers and spent three seasons in Los Angeles's minor league system before he was named the major league first base coach (2006-10). The 12-year major league veteran infielder (1985-97) was a member of two World Series Championship teams, the 1990 Cincinnati Reds and the 1996 New York Yankees. He was inducted into the Dominican Republic Baseball Hall of Fame in 2008.
Nelson will begin his second season in Iowa and seventh in the Cubs' organization. He was born in Des Moines and earned his degree in athletic training from Central College in Pella, Iowa. He interned for the Iowa Cubs in 2010 and began full-time work with Rookie-Mesa the following season. He continued to work his way up through Single-A Peoria (2012), Single-A Kane County (2013) and Tennessee (2014-15) before joining the I-Cubs last season.
Clausen enters his fourth season with the I-Cubs. The Clinton, Iowa native is in his seventh season in the organization, previously working for Rookie-Mesa (2010-11), Short-Season Boise (2012) and Tennessee (2013). He earned his Bachelor's degree in Kinesiology with a concentration in exercise science in 2011 from Cornell College in Mount Vernon, Iowa and is certified through the National Strength and Conditioning Association.
Fierro began his career with the Cubs organization in 2012 with the Cubs Dominican Summer League and moves to the I-Cubs in 2017 for his first season as the Assistant Athletic Trainer. Fierro worked for the Cubs' Low-A affiliate for three seasons and spent 2016 with Tennessee. He earned a B.S. in Kinesiology from Arizona State University in 2010 and a B.S. in Athletic Training from Grand Canyon University in 2012.
The I-Cubs open their 2017 season on April 6 in Oklahoma City and return to Principal Park for their home opener against New Orleans on Tuesday, April 11 at 6:38 p.m. Season tickets and gift certificates are now available online or in person at Principal Park. For more information, visit www.iowacubs.com or call 515-243-6111.