Southington Native and Former Major Leaguer to Manage Yard Goats in 2020
Chris Denorfia Named Yard Goats Skipper
Hartford, Conn- The Hartford Yard Goats Baseball Club, the Double-A Eastern League Affiliate of the Colorado Rockies, announced that Chris Denorfia has been named manager for the 2020 season. Denorfia, who grew up in Southington, comes to the Rockies organization after spending last season with the Chicago Cubs as Quality Assurance Coach on manager Joe Maddon's staff. This will be his first season as a manager in professional baseball. Denorfia played 10 years in the Major League's with Cincinnati (2005-06), Oakland (2008-09), San Diego (2010-14), Seattle (2014) and the Cubs (2015). The former outfielder finished his playing career in the Rockies system at Triple-A Albuquerque in 2017. Denorfia graduated from Choate Rosemary Hall in Wallingford before playing at Wheaton College (Norton, MA), where he was a NCAA Division III All-American, and drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the 19th round in 2002. The Yard Goats will have an entire new coaching staff in 2020 and the hitting coach and pitching coach will be announced at a later date.
"We are excited to welcome Chris back to Connecticut and to our Yard Goats family," Yard Goats General Manager Mike Abramson said. "I look forward to working with Chris and having him part of our wonderful community which he knows well. He will love the energy that our fans bring to each game at Dunkin' Donuts Park."
Denorfia, 39, is the fourth manager in Yard Goats history and replaces Warren Schaeffer, who guided Hartford in 2018 and 2019. After his playing career, Denorfia joined the Cubs front office as a Special Assistant to the President/GM in 2018. In 10 seasons in the Majors, he batted .272 with 103 doubles, 17 triples, 41 home runs, 196 RBI and 56 stolen bases in 808 games. He was part of the Cubs 2015 Playoff Roster and appeared in all three rounds helping Chicago advance to the NLCS. Denorfia played for Italy during the 2009 and 2013 World Baseball Classic and batted a combined .387 in eight games across the two tournaments.
"Chris brings a unique set of experiences to our organization having recently played several years of Major League Baseball and working this past season as a Major League staff member in another organization," Colorado Rockies Assistant GM, Player Development Zach Wilson said. "These experiences, along with his passion for the game, eagerness to grow, local upbringing, and strong character, combine to make him a great fit for the Colorado Rockies as manager of the Hartford Yard Goats."
Denorfia enjoyed his best season in the Majors in 2013 when he batted .279 with 21 doubles, 10 homers, and 47 RBI for the San Diego Padres, and led the club with 132 hits. He had a walk-off, pinch hit home run off Aroldis Chapman of the Reds on July 29th. In June of 2012, he had a career-high 12-game hitting streak. Denorfia made his MLB debut with the Reds on September 7, 2005 against the Brewers.
Hartford Yard Goats Managers
2016 Darin Everson
2017 Jerry Weinstein
2018-2019 Warren Schaeffer
2020 Chris Denorfia
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.