FRISCO, Texas (January 18, 2023) - The Frisco RoughRiders, in conjunction with the Texas Rangers, have announced Carlos Cardoza will manage the RoughRiders for the 2023 season. Cardoza will be joined by Josh Zeid (pitching coach), Ryan Tuntland (hitting coach), Tripp Keister (bench coach) and Kawika Emsley-Pai (development coach). Yuichi
FRISCO, Texas (January 18, 2023) - The Frisco RoughRiders, in conjunction with the Texas Rangers, have announced Carlos Cardoza will manage the RoughRiders for the 2023 season. Cardoza will be joined by Josh Zeid (pitching coach), Ryan Tuntland (hitting coach), Tripp Keister (bench coach) and Kawika Emsley-Pai (development coach). Yuichi Takizawa (athletic trainer) and Jon Nazarko (strength and conditioning coach) round out the 2023 Riders staff as the only returners.
Cardoza gets the bump to Double-A Frisco in 2023 after managing with High-A Hickory in 2022 and Low-A Down East in 2021. The Puerto Rico native piloted the Crawdads to a 66-65 record last season and has amassed a 312-207 (.601) total over his six seasons as a skipper. Prior to his time in Down East, he managed the Arizona League Rangers (2019) and Dominican Summer League Rangers (2016-2019), twice reaching the championship series. Hired on by the Rangers in 2015, Cardoza was the head coach at his alma mater, Decatur High School, in Georgia for two years. As a player, Cardoza spent two seasons at Georgia State University and two years at Armstrong Atlantic State, where he was a gold glove second baseman and All-Peach Belt Conference selection.
Zeid joins the Rangers organization for his first season after serving as the rehab coordinator and minor league pitching analyst in the Chicago Cubs system for the last four years. Slated to be the pitching coach for Team Israel in the 2023 World Baseball Classic, Zeid pitched for the Houston Astros in 2013 and 2014, amassing a 5.21 ERA over 48 appearances from the bullpen. In the minor leagues, Zeid pitched with the Corpus Christi Hooks in 2011 and 2012. A 10th-round selection by the Phillies in 2009, the New Haven, Connecticut native was traded to the Astros as part of the Hunter Pence deal in 2011.
Tuntland, like Cardoza and Emsley-Pai, will head to Frisco from the 2022 Hickory staff. Starting his third season with the Rangers organization, Tuntland was the hitting coach for Hickory in 2022 after serving as the hitting coach for the Arizona Complex League Rangers in 2021. From 2016 to 2018, the Illinois native coached in the collegiate ranks at Oakton CC, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley and West Virginia, his alma mater. Tuntland was drafted in the 29th round of the 2013 draft by San Francisco, hitting .227/.345/.338/.683 over his two seasons.
A veteran of baseball, Keister comes to the Rangers organization after spending the last eight seasons with the Washington Nationals organization. He managed Double-A Harrisburg over the last two seasons and served as the manager for High-A Potomac (now Fredericksburg) from 2015-2019. Drafted by the Mets in the 1992 33rd round out of the University of Delaware, Keister played four seasons of Minor League Baseball, topping out with Double-A Binghamton.
Emsley-Pai was with Hickory in 2022 and joins the Riders for his first stint in Double-A as a coach. After coaching collegiately from 2019-2021 as the head coach of Centralia College in Washington state, he joined the Rangers organization in 2022. A former catcher, Emsley-Pai played six seasons in the minor leagues for the Diamondbacks (2010) and Pirates (2011-15) systems, making his highest stop at Double-A Altoona in 2014.
Takizawa begins his second season with the RoughRiders and his sixth in the Rangers organization in 2023. The native of Hokkaido, Japan spent 2021 with the High-A Hickory Crawdads. Takizawa holds degrees from HOSEI University in Japan and Southern Arkansas University.
Nazarko joins the Frisco staff for his second season while he will enter his fourth in the Texas organization. Prior to his time in professional baseball, Nazarko worked for his alma mater, the University of Rhode Island, for four years as the primary strength coach for baseball, women's basketball and men's and women's soccer. As a student-athlete for the Rams, he played both baseball and basketball.
The Frisco RoughRiders won the 2022 Texas League Championship, their second title in franchise history. Season tickets for the 2023 season are already on sale. For tickets and more information about the Frisco RoughRiders, visit RidersBaseball.com or call 972.731.9200.
About the RoughRiders
The Frisco RoughRiders are the Double-A affiliate of the Texas Rangers and the 2022 Texas League champions. In 2023, the team is celebrating its 20th anniversary and has consistently finished in the top five among all Double-A franchises in attendance yearly. In August 2014, the RoughRiders were purchased by an ownership group led by Chuck Greenberg. Since then, the new ownership group, together with the City of Frisco, has spearheaded numerous major franchise enhancements, investing over $8 million in a wide array of facility upgrades and improvements, including a state-of-the-art HD video board, sound system, Bull Moose Saloon, Bullpen Bar, Riders Outpost Team Store and the world's largest water feature in a sports facility, the massive Lazy River. These enhancements earned the Riders and the City of Frisco Ballpark Digest's prestigious "Best Ballpark Renovation" award for two consecutive years (2015 and 2016). More than 185 former RoughRiders players have gone on to play Major League Baseball including current Rangers Josh Jung, Cole Ragans and Bubba Thompson. For more information on the Frisco RoughRiders, please visit RidersBaseball.com or contact [email protected].