2021 Hops Field Staff Staff Announced
Hillsboro, OR. -The Hillsboro Hops (@HillsboroHops) will have a new manager in 2021, as Vince Harrison has been named by the parent Arizona Diamondbacks (@Dbacks) to lead the club in their first year as a long-season High-A affiliate. The staff also includes pitching coach Shane Loux, hitting coach K.C. Judge, and Juan Francia. Damon Reel will serve as the team's trainer, and Nathan Friedman will be strength and conditioning coach.
Vince Harrison will be in his second season as manager, having served previously as skipper at Class A Kane County in the Midwest League in 2019. He spent the previous five seasons as a hitting instructor in the Diamondbacks chain, and helped Double-A Jackson to the best team batting average in the Southern League, as well as the league title, in 2018. Harrison played baseball and football at the University of Kentucky, followed by five minor league seasons with the Rays, Mets and Marlins. His career batting average was .292. Harrison's brother, Josh, is entering his 11th major league season in 2021, and was a two-time All-Star with the Pittsburgh Pirates.
"(Former Hops manager) Javier Colina is one of my closest friends in baseball," said Harrison. "He and guys like (former Hops hitting instructor) Micah Franklin and (former Hops pitching coach) Mike Parrott always told me how great it was in Hillsboro. With the Hops being Short Season before, I felt like I missed my opportunity moving past them on the ladder to go there. With them moving up to High A, I'm glad I get the chance."
Pitching coach Shane Loux (pronounced "Lukes") begins his fourth season with the Diamondbacks and his second at High-A. His 17-year playing career included parts of five seasons in the major leagues with the Detroit Tigers (2002-03), Los Angeles Angels (2008-09) and San Francisco Giants (2012). Though he didn't pitch in the postseason, he earned a World Series ring with the Giants in 2012, working in 19 regular season games with a 4.97 ERA. His 16-season minor league career featured 104 wins, including 77 over 11 seasons in Triple-A.
Hitting coach K.C. Judge begins his second season with the Arizona Diamondbacks and first at High-A. He worked at Rookie-level Missoula in 2019. Judge played parts of four seasons as an infielder/outfielder in the independent leagues from 2012-15 after graduating from Division III Cal Lutheran in 2011. He served as a private hitting instructor from 2015-18 in both Durham, North Carolina and Tallahassee, Florida. He is no relation to the Yankees' Aaron Judge.
Coach Juan Francia (pronounced "frawn-SEE-uh") enters his fifth season with the Diamondbacks. In 2016, he was a coach for the Diamondbacks' Dominican Summer League affiliate, followed by three seasons as manager-two in the Dominican, and in 2019 with the D-backs' Rookie-level Missoula affiliate. His playing career included eight seasons in the affiliated minor leagues with the Tigers and Yankees, topping out at Triple-A with the Yankees in 2007.
The Hops enter the 2021 season having been promoted from Short Season Class A to High A-now, only Triple-A and Double-A stand between Hillsboro and the parent Arizona Diamondbacks. The Hops' typical season, formerly 76 games (38 at home), has grown to 132 games (66 at home). Details on the 2021 schedule will be released at a later date.
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High-A West League Stories from February 16, 2021
- 2021 Hops Field Staff Staff Announced - Hillsboro Hops
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