The Royals today announced their minor league coaching staff for the 2015 season and there is constancy. Sweet, sweet constancy.
Brian Poldberg returns as manager of the Omaha Stormchasers (AAA), his second year of running the club. Poldberg led the Stormchasers to a third-straight Pacific Coast League title and the AAA Championship. Poldberg has been with the Royals organization for two decades, and has managed in the minor leagues since 2008. Al Nipper re-joins the Royals organization after serving in the Tigers organization the last three years. Nipper will serve as pitching coach, a job he once served for the Major League club in 2001-2002. Former Braves infielder Tommy Gregg returns for his seventh season as Omaha's hitting coach.
Vance Wilson returns for his fifth season in the Royals organization, returning to manage the Northwest Arkansas Naturals (AA), who went 53-87 last season. Pitching coach Jim Brower returns for his third season and the club adds Brandon Moore as hitting coach.
Brian Buchanan takes over as manager of the Wilmington Blue Rocks (High A), his sixth season with the Royals. The former Royals farmhand is joined by pitching coach Steve Luebber and hitting coach Abraham Nunez, both of whom served on Royals minor league staffs last year.
Omar Ramirez moves up from Idaho Falls to manager the Lexington Legends (A). Ramirez has served with the Royals since 2009. Ramirez is joined by pitching coach Carlos Reyes, hitting coach Damon Hollins, and bench coach Glenn Hubbard.
Idaho Falls (Advanced Rookie) will have a first-time manager in former Royals farmhand Justin Gemoll. Gemoll previously served as bench coach for Wilmington and is in his seventh season as a coach in the organization. Former Royals Major League hitting coach Andre Davis will serve in that capacity for Idaho Falls. Former Royals pitcher Jeff Suppan begins his coaching career as pitching coach for the Chukars.
Scott Thorman has been promoted from bench coach to take over the reigns of the Burlington Royals (Rookie). The former Braves first baseman is in his second year with the Royals organization. Jesus Azuaje comes over from the Dodgers organization to serve as hitting coach, while Carlos Martinez brings his thirteen years of Royals coaching experience as pitching coach.
The Royals have also announced they will field a team in the Arizona Rookie League, after failing to field one last year. Darryl Kennedy will serve as manager, with former Royals reliever Mark Davis and Mitch Stetter serving as pitching coaches. Nelson Liriano and former Royals first baseman Willie Aikens will serve as hitting coaches.
Jose Gualdron will manage the Royals Dominican League team with Gustavo Martinez (pitching coach), Miguel Bernard (coach), Sergio De Luna (coach), Onil Joseph (outfield coach) and Ramon Martinez (infield coach) and Victor Baez (field coordinator) serving on his staff.
The Royals will also have a number of roving minor league coordinators and special advisers, notably former Royals manager John Wathan, former bench coach Chino Cadahia, former Braves infielder Rafael Belliard, and former Major League outfielder Milt Thompson. Former Major League infielder Freddy Sandoval will return as "Mental Skills Coach."