The Chicago White Sox announced their 2011 player development staff today. And if you look closely at the list, you may find some familiar names among the team's various minor league coaching staffs. First and foremost, none other than Pete Rose Jr., son of the somewhat infamous Cincinnati Reds great, will be managing the Sox Advanced Rookie team in Bristol, Virginia.
From a more Sox-centric perspective, none other than Bobby Thigpen, the right-handed reliever who spent almost his entire career on the South Side from the mid-1980s to the early 1990s, returns to his position as pitching coach of the team's Class A team in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Thigpen's career high point was probably 1990 when he put up a sparkling 1.83 ERA and made the AL All-Star team.
The Sox also still have Richard "Rich" Dotson as pitching coach of their Triple A team in Charlotte, South Carolina. Dotson was mainly a starter for the South Siders between 1979 and 1987, receiving Cy Young votes in 1983 and appearing in the 1984 All-Star game.
A couple more great names to consider: Devon White, who spent 17 years in the big leagues (though never with the Sox) and racked up 346 stolen bases, is now the organization's base-running instructor. And Buddy Bell, an 18-year MLB vet who hit 201 career home runs, shall return for his third full season as director of player development. Here's a quick breakdown of the Sox four primary minor league coaching staffs:
1. Triple A - Charlotte: Joe McEwing (manager), Richard Dotson (pitching coach), Tim Laker (hitting coach)
2. Double A - Birmingham: Bobby Magallanes (manager), J.R. Perdew (pitching coach), Andy Tomberlin (hitting coach)
3. Single A - Winston-Salem: Julio Vinas (manager), Bobby Thigpen (pitching coach), Gary Ward (hitting coach)
4. Class A - Kannapolis (North Carolina): Tommy Thompson (manager), Jose Bautista (pitching coach), Robert Sasser (hitting coach)
For more info on the White Sox minor league affiliates, click here.