Wings introduce new Manager Toby Gardenhire
Toby Gardenhire has been named the 45th manager in Red Wings history. His staff will include pitching coach Cibney Bello, hitting coach Matt Borgschulte, bullpen coach Mike McCarthy , coach Robbie Robinson, athletic trainer Jason Kirkman, and strength and conditioning coach Jacob Dean.
McCarthy and Dean are the lone returners from the 2019 staff.
Gardenhire, 37, will be in his third season as a manager, serving the same role the past two seasons with Single-A Ft. Myers (2019) and Single-A Cedar Rapids (2018). He led both teams to playoff berths, though the 2019 Florida State League postseason was cancelled due to Hurricane Dorian. The Kernels swept the Midwest League first-round (2-0) vs. Beloit before being swept in the semifinals (2-0) vs. Peoria in 2018. Gardenhire served as the third base coach for the Red Wings in the first half of 2017 before finishing the year as hitting coach for the GCL Twins. He also assisted the GCL Twins in 2016. Prior to that, Gardenhire was the head coach at the University of Wisconsin-Stout from 2012-16. He enjoyed a seven-year professional career, all in the Twins organization, from 2005-11 that included parts of two years and 153 games with the Red Wings, batting .228/.276/.290 (111-for-486) with 15 doubles, five homers, 55 RBI, two stolen bases, and 44 runs scored for Rochester. Gardenhire will become the 16th person to manage the Wings full-time after previously playing for Rochester and first since Andy Etchebarren from 2001-02. Others include Jerry Narron, Johnny Oates, Frank Verdi, Joe Altobelli, Cal Ripken Sr., Ellis “Cot” Deal, Harry “The Hat” Walker, Johnny Keane, Pepper Martin, Estel Crabtree, Ray Blades, Tony Kaufmann, George “Specs” Toporcer and Billy Southworth. Toby is the son of former Minnesota and current Detroit skipper Ron. He resides in Fort Myers, FL with his fiancé, Sara.
Bello, 37, will be in his fifth season in the Twins organization after spending the last four years as a pitching coach with Double-A Pensacola (2019), Single-A Cedar Rapids (2018) and GCL Twins (2016-17). He also joined Minnesota’s major league staff last September and remained with the staff through the American League Division Series. Bello was the pitching coach in the Mariners organization for Single-A Clinton from 2014-15 and AZL Mariners from 2012-13. He was signed by Seattle as an undrafted free agent out of Venezuela and spent eight years in the organization, going 21-26 with two saves and a 5.18 ERA in 121 career games. Bello also pitched in the Mexican League as well as two Independent Leagues from 2008-10. He resides in Gilbert, AZ with his wife, Erika, and children, Tristan, Kiersten, and Kiana.
Borgschulte, 29, enters his third season in the Twins organization after spending the previous two years as a hitting coach with Single-A Ft. Myers (2019) and GCL Twins (2018). He was a coach in the Cardinals organization with Single-A Palm Beach in 2017, eventually serving as the hitting coach for the final two months of the year. Borgschulte also had college coaching positions at Southeast Missouri State University, Tusculum College, and his alma mater Drury University from 2014-16. He played two seasons for the Panthers from 2012-13, setting then single-season records for home runs (11), RBI (60), and total bases (125) and finishing in the top 30 nationally in Division II in all three categories, earning Daktronics Second Team All-American honors. Borgschulte also attended Western Kentucky University from 2010-11. He resides in Fort Myers, FL with his wife, Austin, and son, Baker.
McCarthy, 32, was in his first year as a professional coach in 2018. He is a former 14th-round selection by the Boston Red Sox in 2011 out of California State University at Bakersfield and pitched six seasons in the organization, reaching as high as Triple-A Pawtucket in 2016. McCarthy studied pre-med at Bakersfield and earned his Masters of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix in 2016. He has served as Field Coordinator for Baseball Miracles, a volunteer organization that helps underprivileged youth around the world get baseball equipment and instruction, since 2013. McCarthy resides in Reno, NV.
Robinson, 31, will be in his third season in the Twins organization after spending the last two years as the manager with the GCL Twins (2019) and DSL Twins (2018). His professional managerial record is 80-43 (.650). Prior to joining Minnesota, he spent the prior seven years in the college ranks at Point Loma Nazarene University, Riverside City College, Pfeiffer University and Missouri State University. Robinson also managed Battle Creek of the Northwoods League (2014-15), was an associate scout for the Baltimore Orioles (2015-17), and bullpen catcher for the Double-A Springfield Cardinals (STL) from 2012-13. He played collegiately at Valparaiso University and Irvine Valley College. He resides in Chandler, AZ with his wife, Katelynn, and daughter, Ellie.
Kirkman joins the Twins organization after spending the previous year working as a Clinical Athletic Trainer at the United States Tennis Association National Campus in Orlando, FL for the Andrews Institute for Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine and Nemours Children’s Health System. Prior to that, he was a minor league athletic trainer for the Los Angeles Dodgers at Triple-A Oklahoma City (2018), Double-A Tulsa (2017), and Single-A Rancho Cucamonga (2015-16). Kirkman was named the California League Athletic Trainer of the Year with the Quakes in 2016. He has also served as athletic trainer for Atlanta at Rookie-level Gulf Coast League Braves (2014) and for Philadelphia at Single-A Clearwater (2012-13), Triple-A Lehigh Valley (2008-11), Double-A Reading (2007), Single-A Lakewood (2004-05) and Short-A Batavia (2003). Kirkman also has professional hockey experience working in the West Coast Hockey League with the Tacoma Sabercats (2000-02) as head athletic trainer and Idaho Steelheads (1998-2000) as intern athletic trainer. He earned his Bachelors of Science with an athletic training option from Boise State University in 2000 and Master of Health Science with an athletic training option from Nova Southeastern University in 2007. Kirkman resides in Orlando, FL.
Dean begins his second season at Triple-A after spending 2017-18 with the Twins Single-A affiliate in Fort Myers, winning the Florida State League Championship in 2018 with the Miracle. He is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and studied Human Performance and Exercise Science at the University of Alabama, earning his Master’s Degree in December, 2016.
The Red Wings 2020 season begins on April 9 at Frontier Field against the Lehigh Valley IronPigs.