PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (February 19, 2020) - The St. Lucie Mets are excited to announce that Rich Donnelly has been named the 18th field manager in club history.Donnelly takes over for Chad Kreuter, who was slated to manager St. Lucie for a fourth consecutive season until he was promoted
PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (February 19, 2020) - The St. Lucie Mets are excited to announce that Rich Donnelly has been named the 18th field manager in club history.
Donnelly takes over for Chad Kreuter, who was slated to manager St. Lucie for a fourth consecutive season until he was promoted to Triple-A Syracuse on February 8th.
Donnelly enters his sixth season with the Mets organization. Last year he managed rookie-level Kingsport to a 34-34 record. His other managerial experience in the Mets system came with the Brooklyn Cyclones from 2011-2013.
"When I first joined the Mets in 2011 and managed in Brooklyn I didn't know much about the system," Donnelly said. "Then I saw St. Lucie and thought that would be an ideal job. There is great weather, great travel, you are playing in big league parks and you are going to get some great prospects. Here we are nine years later and when (Executive Director of Player Development) Jared Banner asked me to be manager I said it was a dream come true."
Donnelly has a wealth of experience coaching at all levels of baseball. He spent 29 seasons as a major league coach, including 14 years in a row on Jim Leyland's staffs with the Pirates, Marlins and Rockies (1986-1999).
His most recent big league assignment was serving as the third base coach for the Mariners from 2013-2014. He was the Dodgers third base coach from 2006-2007 and the Brewers third base coach from 2003-2005.
Donnelly coached third base for the Marlins' 1997 World Series championship team.
The 2020 season will be Donnelly's 15th as a minor league manager. Before his stints in Brooklyn and Kingsport, Donnelly managed 10 consecutive years in the Rangers' organization (1972-1981). His stops included Greenville (A), Gastonia (A), Anderson (A), Sacramento (AAA), Tucson (AA), Wichita (AA) and Denver (AA).
His minor league managerial record across 14 seasons is 868-787.
Donnelly's playing career consisted of four minor league seasons as a catcher in the Twins' organization (1967-1970).
Donnelly, 73, is a native of Steubenville, Ohio and lives with his wife Bertie.
Donnelly was inducted into the Sports Faith International Hall of Fame in 2012. His book, "The Chicken Runs at Midnight," shares his family's story about the passing of his daughter Amy. Donnelly is also a world-class racquetball player.
The rest of the St. Lucie field staff will remain in place. Royce Ring takes over as pitching coach after spending last year with Single-A Columbia. Bruce Fields returns for his second season as hitting coach. Endy Chavez joins the team as the bench coach.
Hiroto Kawamura is back for his second year as trainer. Kory Wan will be the performance coach. Wan was also St. Lucie's performance coach in 2016.
The Mets open their season on April 9th with a road contest at the Fort Myers Mighty Mussels. The first home game of the season is April 11th vs. Fort Myers. Tickets to all St. Lucie home games at Clover Park on are now on sale.