FORT MYERS, Fla. (January 31, 2017) - The Fort Myers Miracle, in conjunction with the Minnesota Twins, are pleased to announce the field staff for the 2017 season including the return of Doug Mientkiewicz as the manager.
"We are thrilled to have Doug Mientkiewicz, Henry Bonilla and Alan Rail back with the Miracle and welcome Steve Singleton to full season baseball," said Miracle Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Ben Hemmen. "The Minnesota Twins continue to show their commitment to developing the best talent in baseball by employing top level field staff like the one at Hammond Stadium this summer."
Mientkiewicz, 41, begins his second stint in Fort Myers after spending the last two seasons in Double-A with the Chattanooga Lookouts. Beginning his managerial career with the Miracle in 2013, Mientkiewicz won his first 14 games of the season, led the Miracle to the best record in the Florida State League at 79-56 and a FSL South Division first half championship with a 45-22 record. The first half winning percentage of .672 in 2013 was the best in team history and the 45 wins matched the most in a half.
"I'm excited to come back to Fort Myers and work with a new wave of players that don't know me from Adam," said Mientkiewicz. "Even though I'm coming home, it feels fresh and new. I'm looking forward to working with the coaching staff and continuing the success we had here my first time, both on the field and developmentally."
After being named the FSL Manager of the Year in 2013, Mientkiewicz led the Miracle to a first-ever FSL Championship in 2014. The Miracle posted 41 wins to claim a first half championship and then totaled 41 more victories in the second half. Fort Myers finished at 82-57 with the 82 wins marking the second-most in team history. In the FSL Playoffs, Mientkiewicz guided the Miracle to a two-game sweep of Bradenton to earn the FSL South Division crown. The Miracle followed with a defeat of Daytona, then a Cubs affiliate, in four games for the championship.
Mientkiewicz owns a 161-113 record as a manager in the Florida State League. After winning the FSL Championship with the Miracle, Mientkiewicz moved up to Chattanooga and guided the Lookouts to the 2015 Southern League Championship with a 76-61 overall record and a 6-3 showing in the postseason. In four seasons as a manager in the Twins organization, Mientkiewicz has a 312-239 mark with a .566 winning percentage.
Prior to the start of his managerial career, Mientkiewicz was with the Los Angeles Dodgers organization where he was the hitting coach for the Ogden Raptors of the Pioneer League in 2012. Mientkiewicz played in 1,087 games in the Major Leagues from 1998-2009 with the Minnesota Twins, Boston Red Sox, New York Mets, Kansas City Royals, New York Yankees, Pittsburgh Pirates and Los Angeles Dodgers.
Mientkiewicz was drafted by Minnesota in the fifth round of the 1995 Major League Baseball Draft and debuted with the Miracle in 1995. Mientkiewicz played two seasons with the Miracle appearing in 171 games in 1995 and 1996.
A .271 career hitter at the Major League level, Mientkiewicz appeared in 643 games with Minnesota from 1998-2004. As a Twin, Mientkiewicz hit .275 with 43 home runs and 266 runs batted in. Mientkiewicz won a Gold Glove Award in 2001 with Minnesota.
In 2000, Mientkiewicz helped the United States Olympic baseball team to a gold medal in Sydney, Australia. As a member of the Boston Red Sox in 2004, Mientkiewicz won a World Series championship becoming one of only five American players to win Olympic gold and a World Series ring.
After playing high school baseball at Westminster Christian School in Palmetto Bay, Florida, Mientkiewicz played three seasons of collegiate baseball with the Florida State Seminoles before being drafted by the Twins.
Henry Bonilla returns for his second season as the pitching coach for the Miracle. Bonilla, 37, served as the pitching coach for the Cedar Rapids Kernels (A) last season, at rookie-level Elizabethton in 2014 and in the Gulf Coast League in 2013. An eight round draft pick by the Twins out of Tulane University in the MLB First-Year Player Draft in 2000, Bonilla spent 10 seasons in the minor leagues and posted a 61-71 career record with a 4.66 earned run average over 987.1 innings pitched. Bonilla played two seasons in Fort Myers with the Miracle and appeared in 29 games with a 4-3 record, 5.01 earned run average and four saves.
Steve Singleton begins his second season in the Twins organization and first with the Miracle as hitting coach. Singleton, 31, was the hitting coach for the GCL Twins last year. A former 11th round draft pick by Minnesota in 2006, Singleton 654 games in the minor leagues including 142 with the Miracle during the 2008 and 2009 seasons. In a Miracle jersey, Singleton hit .281 with 34 doubles, 10 triples, 10 home runs and 64 runs batted in while posting a .348 on-base percentage. Prior to joining the GCL Twins, Singleton was on the coached at Florida Southwestern State College in Fort Myers in 2015.
Alan Rail, 37, returns for his fourth season as the athletic trainer on the Miracle staff. Previously, Rail worked eight seasons with the Beloit Snappers and began his athletic training career in 2004 with Elizabethton.
Season tickets and mini-plans for the 2017 Miracle season are currently on sale now. To order, call (239) 768-4210. Visit www.miraclebaseball.com for more information.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.