CURVE, PA – The Pittsburgh Pirates and Altoona Curve are pleased to announce the 2024 Coaching Staff for the upcoming season in Curve, PA, headlined by new manager Robby Hammock.
“I'm looking forward to working with our coaching staff on the field and in the Altoona Community in 2024.,” said Curve GM Nate Bowen. “The announcement of the staff each season is one of the landmarks leading up to Opening Day in 78 days on Tuesday April 9.”
Hammock becomes the 15th Manager in Altoona’s franchise history after spending the 2023 season as the leader for High-A Greensboro. Other new faces joining Hammock in Altoona this season include Hitting Coach Brady Conlan, Pitching Coach Fernando Nieve, Integrated Baseball Performance Coach Justin Orton and Catching Coach Taylor Davis. Hammock will be joined by three returners from the Altoona 2023 staff: Bench Coach Gary Green, Athletic Trainer Victor Silva, and Strength and Conditioning Coach Glenn Nutting.
Hammock, a former Major League catcher and infielder with the Arizona Diamondbacks, led Greensboro to a 68-61 overall record in his first year with the Pirates organization in 2023. Throughout the campaign, Hammock aided numerous Pirates prospects whose successful seasons earned them a promotion to Altoona, including Tsung-Che Cheng, Jase Bowen, Mike Jarvis, Bubba Chandler, Anthony Solometo, and Abrahan Gutierrez.
A Macon, Georgia native who starred at South Cobb High School, Hammock played 14 seasons of professional baseball. Hammock spent two years at DeKalb Junior College before accepting a scholarship to the University of Georgia, where a strong junior season led the Arizona Diamondbacks to select him in the 23rd round of the 1998 MLB Draft.
A catcher in his playing days, Hammock played in a total of 182 Major League games with the Diamondbacks across six seasons from 2003-04, 2006-08 and 2011. He made his Major League debut on April 11, 2003, where he recorded his first hit on the first pitch of his first at-bat, a single off Milwaukee’s Wayne Franklin. Hammock’s most notable moment as a player came in 2004, when he caught Randy Johnson’s perfect game in just his 56th Major League game behind the plate. In his career, Hammock batted .254 with 122 hits, 30 doubles, 12 home runs and 48 RBI.
Hammock retired following the 2011 season but remained with the Diamondbacks organization, serving as a hitting coach with the AZL Diamondbacks. He received his first managerial position with the Class-A Advanced Visalia Rawhide in 2014 and joined Double-A Mobile BayBears for the 2015 and 2016 seasons. Arizona named Hammock to its Major League Staff in November of 2016 as the quality control/catching coach, a role he held through 2021. After spending the 2022 season with the San Diego Padres as the Bench Coach for Triple-A El Paso, Hammock joined the Pirates in 2023 as the Manager for High-A Greensboro. Hammock resides in Phoenix, AZ with his wife Melissa and their five children.
Pitching Coach Fernando Nieve joins the Altoona staff after spending the last two seasons in Greensboro in the same role. A native of Puerto Cabello in Venezuela, Nieve is in his sixth season with the Pirates organization, having previously served as the Pitching Coach for the Low-A Southeast League champion Bradenton Marauders in 2021 and for the GCL Pirates in 2019. Nieve was signed by the Houston Astros as a non-drafted free agent in May of 1999 and pitched professionally for 17 seasons, including 99 Major League games with the Astros and New York Mets. He went 8-11 with a 4.61 ERA in 185.2 innings in his Major League career working both in the rotation and out of the bullpen in four seasons. Nieve has worked with some of the top pitching prospects in the Pirates system, including Quinn Priester, Luis Ortiz, Jared Jones, Anthony Solometo, Bubba Chandler, and Thomas Harrington. Nieve resides in Pearland, TX with his two children.
Hitting Coach Brady Conlan comes to Altoona after spending the 2023 season as the Integrated Baseball Performance Coach with Triple-A Indianapolis. It is his third season in the Pirates organization after serving as the Development coach with Bradenton in 2021. A former infielder, Conlan played at Cal State-Dominguez Hills from 2013-16, hitting .357 with 39 doubles, nine home runs, and 90 RBI in 130 games. He was drafted in the 24th round of the 2016 MLB Draft by the Chicago White Sox and made his professional debut with rookie-level Great Falls in the Pioneer League. After two seasons in the White Sox system, Conlan played one season in the Frontier League with Lake Erie before joining the coaching ranks in 2020 with the LA Dodgers as a coach in the Dominican Republic. Conlan hails from Northridge, CA and now resides in Chatsworth, CA with his wife Erin.
Integrated Baseball Performance Coach Justin Orton begins his fifth season as an instructor in the Pirates minor league system. A Leamington, Ontario, Canada native, Orton spent the 2023 season under Hammock in the same role for High-A Greensboro. Orton began his coaching career as a Development Coach in the Dominican Republic and served as a Hitting Coach in the D.R. for the 2021 season. A former infielder for the University of British Columbia from 2014-18, Orton now resides in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Catching Coach Taylor Davis begins his first season coaching in the Pirates minor league system after an 11-season career behind the plate. Davis played in 22 major league games with the Chicago Cubs and Pirates across the 2017-19 and 2021 seasons. A Tampa, Florida native, Davis attended Jupiter Community High School and Morehead State University before signing with the Cubs in 2011. Davis made his major league debut with the Cubs on September 8, 2017, against the Milwaukee Brewers and picked up his first major league hit on September 14 off Mets right-hander Seth Lugo. Davis spent the majority of the 2021 season and the 2022 campaign as a catcher with Triple-A Indianapolis where he played 40 games in each season. Davis went 2-for-5 in two games for the Pirates in the final week of the 2021 season. In his minor league career, Davis played 723 games and combined to bat .275 with 37 home runs and 322 runs batted in. Davis, 34, resides in Sellersburg, Indiana with his wife Amberleigh and their children, Brook and EmmaLeigh.
Bench Coach Gary Green returns to Altoona for the 2024 season after holding the same role in 2023 with the Curve and in 2022 with Indianapolis. A Pittsburgh native, Green was the organizations Minor League Infield Coordinator and Roving Infield Instructor from 2011 through 2020. Green earned extensive managerial experience in the Pirates and Detroit Tigers organizations, amassing a 588-713 record (.488) across 11 seasons. Green’s most recent managerial experience came in a four-year run in the South Atlantic League with West Virginia (2009-10) and Hickory (2007-2008). His managerial stops include one season in Lynchburg (2006), three seasons with Lakeland (2002-2004), two seasons with Oneonta (2000-2001), and one season in the Gulf Coast League with the GCL Tigers (1999).
A former major league infielder for parts of five seasons, Green’s professional career on the diamond began after the San Diego Padres selected him 27th overall in the 1984 Amateur Draft. Prior to starting his professional career, Green was the starting shortstop for Team USA in the 1984 Olympic Games. Green went on to spend five seasons in the Padres organization, making his major league debut in September of 1986, two years in the Texas Rangers system and concluded his playing career after four seasons in the Cincinnati Reds organization. Green batted .222 with nine doubles and 11 RBI in 106 major league games with the Padres, Rangers and Reds.
A Pittsburgh native, Green played four years of baseball at Oklahoma State. His father, Fred, pitched for the Pirates for parts of four seasons (1959-64) and was a member of the 1960 World Champion Pirates.
Athletic Trainer Victor Silva returns for a third season in his role in Altoona. The 2024 campaign will be Silva’s eighth in the Pirates organization where he has served in the Dominican Summer League (2018 and ’19) in Pittsburgh (2020 as a COVID-19 Screener) and Greensboro (2021). In addition to his work with the Pirates, Silva gained extensive experience practicing Sports Medicine in the collegiate ranks with St. Bonaventure (2017-19), and Binghamton (NY) University (2016-17). Born in Lawrence, Massachusetts, Silva earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Movement Science with a concentration in Athletic Training from West Field State University in May of 2013 and his Master of Science Degree in Athletic Training from Texas State University.
Strength and Conditioning Coach Glenn Nutting will also return to the Curve after holding the same role with Altoona last season. Nutting, a native a Livonia, Michigan who know resides in Mission Viejo, California, has worked as a Strength and Conditioning Coach in the organization since 2018 where he spent two years in the Dominican Summer League, a season in Pittsburgh (2020) and one season at the team’s Pirate City Complex in Bradenton and in the Dominican Republic (2021). Nutting earned a bachelor’s degree in Human Physiology from the University of Oregon in 2013 and a master’s degree in Sports Training and Nutrition from Universidad Eurpoea in Madrid, Spain.
Opening Day at Peoples Natural Gas Field is Tuesday, April 9. For more information, visit AltoonaCurve.com, call 877.99.CURVE or stop by the PNG Field box office. Additionally, the Stockyard Team Store is open Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., during every home game and online 24/7/365.