Springfield, MO - The St. Louis Cardinals have announced that Springfield Cardinals Field Manager Mike Shildt will once again be at the helm in Springfield for the 2014 season. Also returning are Pitching Coach Randy Niemann, Athletic Trainer Scott Ensell and Strength and Conditioning Coach Josh Cue.
Under the guidance of the staff last year, five players started 2013 in Springfield and made their St. Louis debuts in the same year - RHP Carlos Martinez, LHP Kevin Siegrist, RHP Keith Butler, RHP Michael Blazek and C Audry Perez. Martinez and Siegrist played important postseason roles in the Cardinals capturing the National League Championship, before representing St. Louis in the World Series.
Shildt returns for his third season as the Field Manager for the Springfield Cardinals, helping guide the Cards to their first Texas League Championship in his first year as the skipper in 2012. He previously managed the Johnson City Cardinals for three seasons and won back-to-back Appalachian League titles in 2010 and 2011. Shildt is currently managing the Salt River Rafters in the prestigious Arizona Fall League.
"We are very excited to welcome Mike, Randy and our training staff back to Springfield," Vice President/General Manager Matt Gifford said. "Not only is Mike an outstanding manager, but he, Randy and the whole staff are also terrific teachers of the Cardinal way, which is very important to the future of Cardinals Baseball. As part of that, they do an excellent job interacting with our fans, adding to the overall experience of a night at Hammons Field."
Shildt has put together a 265-212 career managerial record and has also served as the Cardinals Minor League Spring Training Coordinator for the past five years. He was presented with the Cardinals prestigious George Kissell Award in 2010, recognizing his dedication to excellence in player development.
"It's an honor to have the opportunity to come back to Springfield for the 2014 season," said Shildt. "Springfield is the crown jewel of our system in terms of fanbase, facilities and front office, and presents a great atmosphere for development. It's also very exciting to have so much of the staff return together - they're tremendously talented and experienced, and I'm very fortunate to continue to get to work with them."
Niemann returns for his second season as the Pitching Coach in Springfield, after previously serving as the Pitching Coach for the Boston Red Sox in 2012. An eight-year Major League veteran, the lefty amassed a 7-8 record with a 4.64 ERA in 122 career games (10 starts) after being selected in the 2nd round of the 1975 draft by the New York Yankees. He pitched for the Pittsburgh Pirates, New York Mets, Minnesota Twins, Houston Astros and Chicago White Sox.
Ensell will begin his second season as the Springfield Cardinals Athletic Trainer and his fifth within the St. Louis system. He previously had stints with the Quad Cities River Bandits (Midwest League) in 2012 and the Johnson City Cardinals (Appalachian League) in 2011, where he worked alongside Mike Shildt. While earning his Master's Degree at the University of Memphis, he interned with the Memphis Redbirds in 2009.
Cue returns for his fourth season as the Strength and Conditioning Coach in Springfield and as a member of the Cardinals organization. Previously, he handled the strength and conditioning duties for the Tri-City Dust Devils, the Northwest League affiliate of the Colorado Rockies, in 2010.
Click here for more information on the Springfield Cardinals Coaching Staff.
Pick up your 2014 Springfield Cardinals Schedule right now
It's never too early to start planning for the 10th Season of Springfield Cardinals Baseball in 2014! The 2014 campaign kicks off at Hammons Field with Opening Night on Thursday, April 3 at 7:10pm. Come by the Cardinals Front Office to pick up a 2014 schedule or click the link below to view it as a PDF. For information on 2014 Season Ticket Plans, call the Front Office at (417) 863-0395.
Click here to view the 2014 Springfield Cardinals Schedule online.
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This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.