WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- In conjunction with the Chicago White Sox, the Winston-Salem Dash have announced that former Major League manager Joel Skinner will lead the Dash in 2016. The 45th manager in Winston-Salem's 103-year history of baseball, Skinner will join hitting coach Charlie Poe, pitching coach Jose Bautista, athletic trainer Josh Fallin and strength and conditioning coach George Timke.
Skinner takes over in Winston-Salem after spending four seasons with the Charlotte Knights, the White Sox Triple-A affiliate. During this span, Skinner guided the Knights to a 285-290 (.496) record, including a division title and a trip to the International League's championship round in 2012.
The California native has spent a significant portion of his coaching career in the big leagues, including a 76-game run as Cleveland's interim manager in 2002. In addition, Skinner was the Indians' third base coach for much of 2001-2009, save the aforementioned run as the team's manager and a one-year assignment as the bench coach in 2006. Skinner also was Oakland's bench coach in 2011 before joining the Sox player development staff in 2012.
As a Minor League skipper, Skinner boasts an 804-694 (.537) mark over 11 seasons, during which he has led his squads to six playoff appearances and one championship. A nine-season Major League playing career preceded his work as a coach and manager. While in The Show, the 54-year-old played 564 games with the White Sox (1983-86), Yankees (1986-88) and Indians (1989-91).
Poe is one of two returners to the Dash's staff from 2015. In the same role a year ago, Poe helped a pair of hitters receive Midseason All-Star nods and four earn spots on the Year-End All-Star roster. Third baseman Trey Michalczewski and catcher Omar Narvaez qualified for both distinctions, while center fielder Adam Engel and middle infielder Jake Peter joined that duo on the Year-End list. Before his time in Winston-Salem, Poe spent four seasons with rookie-level Great Falls, including the 2014 campaign as the club's skipper.
Bautista has never coached in Winston-Salem, though he did work in the same role for the Sox Low-A affiliate in Kannapolis over the last five years. In 2015, the Dominican Republic native helped the Intimidators finish second in the South Atlantic League in shutouts (13). Bautista, who made 312 Major League appearances for five teams, was a pitching coach in the Kansas City system from 2001-07.
Fallin will enter his 18th season in the White Sox system and 14th with Winston-Salem in 2016. A three-time Carolina League Trainer of the Year, Fallin was in Winston-Salem from 2001-10 before a two-year stint with Double-A Birmingham. At the collegiate level, Fallin has worked for New Mexico State, his alma mater, and Wake Forest, with whom he served on the 2007 national championship men's soccer team.
Timke will work for the Dash for the first time in his four-year Minor League career. The Suffern, N.Y., native began his White Sox tenure with Great Falls in 2013 before working in Kannapolis over the last two seasons. His professional baseball career began with the Royals' organization from 2009-12.
"We are elated to welcome Joel Skinner, a tremendous manager and teacher of the game, to Winston-Salem for the 2016 season," Dash President Geoff Lassiter said. "Plus, we cannot wait to see Charlie and Josh back with our staff, and I'm confident that Jose and George will enjoy their time in the Triad and in the home dugout here at BB&T Ballpark."
Tim Esmay, who led the Dash to a second-half Southern Division title and a trip to the playoffs in 2015, has jumped to Triple-A Charlotte, where he will work as an assistant coach to manager Julio Vinas, the Dash's skipper in 2011. J.R. Perdew has advanced to Double-A Birmingham after a four-year stint as the Dash's pitching coach. Shawn Powell, Winston-Salem's strength and conditioning coach in 2012 and 2015, will occupy the same position in Charlotte.