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Gregorio Petit Named Corpus Christi Hooks Manager

January 28, 2020 - Texas League (TL) - Corpus Christi Hooks News Release

CORPUS CHRISTI - Former MLB infielder Gregorio Petit has been named manager of the Double-A Corpus Christi Hooks, their parent club Houston Astros announced today.

Petit, 35, will embark on his first professional coaching and managerial post. He will be the eighth manager in the 16-year history of the Hooks.

A native of Ocumare, Venezuela, Petit played 15 seasons of professional baseball from 2003-'18, including 197 games in the major leagues, hitting for a .249 lifetime average. Most of his experience came in Minor League Baseball, compiling a .269 average with 71 home runs and 548 RBIs in 1,315 career MiLB games.

Petit spent the 2014 season in the Houston organization, hitting .278 in 37 games with the Astros and .297 with 10 home runs and 43 RBIs at Triple-A Oklahoma City, earning Pacific Coast League Midseason All-Star honors. He was also a 2007 Texas League Midseason All-Star with the Midland RockHounds of the Oakland A's system, which signed him as a 16-year-old in 2001.

"We're eager to have Gregorio in Corpus Christi and welcome him back to the Astros organization," Hooks General Manager Wes Weigle said. "His extensive experience at the Major and Minor League levels as a player will be invaluable as the leader of our clubhouse and in guiding the Hooks' staff."

Pitching coach Graham Johnson returns for his second season in Corpus Christi after leading the Hooks staff to a Texas League-record 1,453 strikeouts and club-record .221 opponents' batting average in 2019, both among the top-five marks in MiLB. Johnson played collegiately at Culver-Stockton College and spent six years as a coach at Morehead State University prior to joining Houston.

Jason Kanzler, 29, joins the staff as hitting coach after holding the same role in 2019 with the Advanced-A Fayetteville Woodpeckers, who led the Carolina League in runs scored, homers and on-base percentage. Kanzler was a 20th round draft pick by the Minnesota Twins in 2013 and played three seasons in their system, reaching Advanced-A Fort Myers.

Kanzler was an assistant coach at Katy High School from 2016-'18 and an assistant for the Brewster Whitecaps of the Cape Cod League from 2017-'18, helping lead the team to the league championship in 2017. He was a decorated athlete at the University of Buffalo, where he was named 2013 Mid-American Conference Player of the Year and 2013 University of Buffalo Male Athlete of the Year. Kanzler became the first player in NCAA history to win two Rawlings Gold Glove awards in center field.

Sean Connole, beginning his first year in the Astros system as the Hooks' Mental Skills & Development coach, has instructed in the college ranks since 2014. He spent the past two seasons as an assistant at Hood College, where he primarily worked with outfielders, hitters and base runners.

Connole gained coaching experience at Georgetown University, Springfield College and with the Torrington Titans of the Futures Collegiate Baseball League. He played at Washington College as an outfielder and pitcher, earning All-Centennial Conference First Team honors in 2012.

Athletic trainer Christian Bermudez returns for his second year with Corpus Christi, his seventh in the Houston organization. Prior to this stint with the Hooks, Bermudez served as athletic trainer for 2018 Carolina League champion Buies Creek. He graduated from the University of South Florida in 2012 with a bachelor's in athletic training.

Rounding out the Hooks staff will be strength coach Mike Myers, joining Kanzler from Advanced-A Fayetteville. Myers has spent the past three seasons with Houston, including stops with the DSL Astros Orange and Short-A Tri-City ValleyCats. He has his bachelor's in kinesiology from Penn State and completed a master's degree in exercise science from the University of South Florida.

The Hooks open the season on Thursday, April 9 at 6:35 p.m. against the Northwest Arkansas Naturals at Whataburger Field. Call 361-561-HOOK (4665) or click here for information about Hooks Season Memberships.

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