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Rays announce minor league coaching staffs for 2024

MLB: Spring Training-Tampa Bay Rays at Philadelphia Phillies Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Rays have named the minor league on-field coaching and medical staffs for the 2024 season.

Headlining the announcement is the promotion of Morgan Ensberg from Double-A manager to Triple-A manager, following the promotion of Michael Johns to Rays first base coach for the 2024 season.

Ensberg — an All-Star, Silver Slugger, and MVP finalist in 2005 — retired in 2009 following an attempt at making the Tampa Bay Rays roster in Spring Training of that season. Following his retirement, he coached in various capacities for UC San Diego (2011-2012) and the Astros minor league affiliates (2013-2018) before taking over the Rays Double-A affiliate in 2019.

Also notable has been the promotion of Blake Butera, who will head Player Development at age-31. The promotion comes after a season serving the organization as a Field Coordinator. Prior to that, Butera had served as a manager of the Rays Class-A affiliate from age 25-29.

To support Butera in the role, the Rays have aligned longtime front office employees George Pappas (promoted from assistant director to director) and Simon Rosenbaum (formerly assistant director of Minor League operations and baseball development) to support his leadership, as well as Alejandro Freire, who also served as a Field Coordinator in 2023.

Finally, also worth noting are some of the names the Rays have been fortunate not to lose this off-season, including Winston Doom - one of the Rays pitching development master minds - and former Triple-A manager Jared Sandberg, who currently serves all minor league levels as an Outfield/Baserunning coordinator. He returned to the Rays after a stint on the Seattle Mariners staff last off-season.

Below is the announced roster for all player development and minor league coaching staffs. Changes year-over-year are denoted below the list, per a Rays press release.

RAYS PLAYER DEVELOPMENT LEADERSHIP STRUCTURE

  • Senior Director, Player Development: Blake Butera
  • Director, Minor League Operations: George Pappas
  • Director, Player Programs & Integration: Simon Rosenbaum
  • Director, Pitching: Winston Doom
  • Assistant Director, Coaching & Player Development: Alejandro Freire
  • Assistant Director, Pitching: Ryan Pennell

RAYS MINOR LEAGUE COORDINATORS & ROVING INSTRUCTORS

  • Pitching Coordinator: Alberto Bastardo
  • Pitching Coordinator: Buddy Carlyle
  • Pitching Coord., Performance Development: Christian Wonders
  • Roving Pitching Instructor: Tony Watson
  • Hitting Coordinator: Will Bradley
  • Hitting Coordinator: Kyle Wilson
  • Hitting Research & Video Coord.: Steve Livesey
  • Roving Hitting Instructor: Wuarnner Rincones
  • Catching Coordinator: Jeff Smith
  • Infield Coordinator: Ivan Ochoa
  • Outfield/Baserunning Coordinator: Jared Sandberg
  • Process & Development Coordinator: Josh Kozuch
  • Strength and Conditioning Coordinator: Paul Jones
  • Latin America and Complex S&C Coordinator.: Cesar Gutierrez
  • Minor League Affiliate Medical Coord.: Marty Brinker
  • Complex Medical & Rehab Coordinator: Scott Thurston
  • Minor League Equipment Coordinator: Tim McKechney
  • Asst. Minor League Equipment Coordinator: Shane Rossetti
  • Language Education Coordinator: Lenore Sanchez

DURHAM (TRIPLE-A - INTERNATIONAL LEAGUE)

  • Manager: Morgan Ensberg
  • Hitting Coach: Kenny Hook
  • Pitching Coach: Brian Reith
  • Bench Coach: Reinaldo Ruiz
  • Bullpen Coach: Brett Ebers
  • Assistant Hitting Coach: Tyler Ladendorf
  • Strength & Conditioning Coach: Steve Chase
  • S&C/BB Performance Science: Riley Welch
  • Process & Integration Coach: Mathew Bennett
  • Athletic Trainer: Kris Russell
  • Athletic Trainer: Tsutomu Kamiya
  • Clubhouse Manager: Pat Phelan

MONTGOMERY (DOUBLE-A - SOUTHERN LEAGUE)

  • Manager: Kevin Boles
  • Hitting Coach: Paul Rozzelle
  • Pitching Coach: Steve Merriman
  • Bench Coach: German Melendez
  • Strength & Conditioning Coach: Austin Teets
  • Athletic Trainer: James Ramsdell

BOWLING GREEN (HIGH-A – SOUTH ATLANTIC LEAGUE)

  • Manager: Rafael Valenzuela
  • Hitting Coach: Braxton Martinez
  • Pitching Coach: Jim Paduch
  • Bench Coach: Perry Roth
  • Strength & Conditioning Coach: Garrett Hudson
  • Athletic Trainer: Ruben Santiago
  • Clubhouse Manager: Jacob Osborne

CHARLESTON (LOW-A – CAROLINA LEAGUE)

  • Manager: Sean Smedley
  • Hitting Coach: Brett Schneider
  • Pitching Coach: Levi Romero
  • Bench Coach: Ronnie Richardson
  • Strength & Conditioning Coach: Giovanni Caraballo
  • Athletic Trainer: Halee Williams
  • Clubhouse Manager: John Horaz

FCL RAYS (FLORIDA COMPLEX LEAGUE)

  • Complex Programming & Fundamentals Coordinator: Frank Maldonado
  • Manager: Héctor Giménez
  • Hitting Coach: K.C. Judge
  • Hitting Coach: Hez Randolph
  • Hitting Coach: Alejandro Segovia
  • Pitching Coach: Henry Bonilla
  • Pitching Coach: Jose Gonzalez
  • Rehab Pitching Coach: Doc Watson
  • Bench Coach: Esteban Gonzalez
  • Coach: Jim Morrison
  • Coach: Leandro Francisco
  • Coach: Julio Zorrilla
  • Coach: Chris Roberson
  • Coach: Manny Castillo
  • Process & Development Coach: David Lianes
  • Strength & Conditioning Coach: Victor Cruz
  • Strength & Conditioning Coach: Andrew Mitchell
  • Physical Therapist: Sarah Clay
  • Physical Therapist: Colleen Hamman
  • Athletic Trainer: Kyndell Crowell
  • Athletic Trainer: Nick Faciana
  • Athletic Trainer: Brianna Tovar
  • Athletic Trainer: Halee Williams
  • Clubhouse Manager: Steve Berhalter
  • Clubhouse Manager: Cesar Guillen
  • Minor League Clubhouse & Nutrition Assistant: Sean Jones

Below are the organizational changes for minor league managerial roles:

  • Triple-A Manager Morgan Ensberg, spent last season managing Double-A Montgomery
  • Double-A Manager Kevin Boles, spent last season managing the Princeton WhistlePigs in the summer-collegiate Appalachian League
  • Florida Complex League Manager Héctor Giménez, spent last season as a coach for the FCL Rays

Below are the organizational changes for minor league coordinator and roving instructor roles:

  • Hitting Research and Video Coordinator Steve Livesey, spent last season as a Hitting Coordinator
  • Strength and Conditioning Coordinator Paul Jones, spent last season as Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coordinator
  • Process and Development Coordinator Josh Kozuch, spent last season as Mental Performance Coordinator
  • Roving Hitting Instructor Wuarnner Rincones, spent last season as Hitting Coach for Double-A Montgomery

Below are the new hires for minor league coordinator and roving instructor roles:

  • Pitching Coordinator Buddy Carlyle, spent last season as Minor League Pitching Coordinator for the Los Angeles Angels
  • Pitching Coordinator, Performance Development Christian Wonders, spent last season as a Sports Science Instructor for the San Diego Padres
  • Roving Pitching Instructor Tony Watson, retired from MLB in 2022 having last pitched for the San Francisco Giants in 2021

Below are the new hires to the minor league on-field coaching and medical staffs:

  • Assistant Hitting Coach Tyler Ladendorf (Triple-A Durham), spent last season as a Hitting Fellow for Double-A Tennessee (Chicago Cubs)
  • Hitting Coach Brett Schneider (Class-A Charleston), spent last season as Hitting Coach for the ACL Mariners
  • Hitting Coach K.C. Judge (Florida Complex League), spent last season as Hitting Coach for the ACL Diamondbacks
  • Coach Chris Roberson (Florida Complex League), played in 2023 for Acereros de Monclova in the Mexican League
  • Process and Development Coach Elliot Cox, was previously a Mental Performance Coach for IMG Academy

Below are new roles in Player Development Leadership and Administration:

  • Assistant Director of Player Programs and Integration Dani Dockx, spent last season as Coordinator of Baseball Development
  • Assistant Director of Latin America Player Programs Jairo De La Rosa, spent last season as Latin America Cultural Coordinator
  • Senior Manager of Minor League and International Administration Giovanna Rodriguez, spent last season as Senior Administrator of Minor League and International Operations
  • Pitching Development Assistant Matthew Bruno, spent last season as a Baseball Performance Science Assistant
  • Player Programs and Integration Assistant Sam Bennett, spent last season as a Baseball Operations Intern