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New Coaching Staff to Guide Hillcats in 2020

March 3, 2020 - Carolina League (CarL) - Lynchburg Hillcats News Release

Lynchburg, Va. - The Lynchburg Hillcats, in conjunction with the Cleveland Indians, proudly announced an all-new coaching staff Tuesday.

Leading the club in 2020 will be manager Dennis Malavé. Owen Dew will join the team as the Hillcats' pitching coach, Grant Fink will take over as the club's hitting coach and Juan De La Cruz will serve as the bench coach.

Malavé, 40, is entering his 16th year in the Indians organization. The former outfielder played in the minor leagues for Cleveland from 1998-2004. Following retirement, he was an Indians bullpen catcher from 2007-2008. He served as the hitting coach for the AZL Indians from 2011-2017 and spent the 2018 campaign as the bench coach in Double-A Akron. A native of Caracas, Venezuela the new Hillcats' skipper led Short-Season Mahoning Valley last year.

"It's a very exciting opportunity to be with the Hillcats' this year and continue working in the Cleveland system," said new manager Malavé. "This organization in Lynchburg is such a great place for players to succeed and get better because of the tremendous support from the community."

Dew, 31, joins the Hillcats after spending last year as the pitching coach at Single-A Lake County. The Tallahassee, Fla. native was drafted by the Indians in the 21st Round of the 2010 MLB Draft after playing collegiately at Central Florida. Dew played four minor league seasons with the Indians before becoming an Assistant Coach at Seminole State College of Florida. He has been with Cleveland in a coaching role since 2017.

Fink, 29, returns to the Hillcats after serving as the team's bench coach in 2018. He is entering his fourth season as a coach in the Indians organization. The former infielder was drafted by Cleveland in the 23rd round of the 2013 MLB Draft out of Missouri Western State University. A native of Spokane, Washington, he played three minor league seasons for the Indians from 2013-2015. Fink was the hitting coach last season for Short-Season Mahoning Valley.

De La Cruz, 26, joins Lynchburg's coaching staff for the first time. The former catcher played in the minor leagues for Cleveland from 2010-2017, including parts of the '15, '16 and '17 seasons with the Hillcats. The La Guaira, Venezuela native is in his third year coaching with the Indians and spent last season as the bench coach in Double-A Akron.

Jake Legan returns to the Hillcats' staff for his second consecutive year as the team's athletic trainer, his sixth with the Indians. Eric Ortego returns for the third straight year as Lynchburg's strength and conditioning coach, his fourth season overall with Cleveland.

The Lynchburg Hillcats are the Advanced-A affiliate of the Cleveland Indians. The Hillcats are eight-time Carolina League Champions, having most recently won the Mills Cup Championship in 2017. The Hillcats play their home games at City Stadium, which has been home to Minor League Baseball in Lynchburg since 1940. Visit the Hillcats online at, and follow the Hillcats on Twitter (@LynHillcats), Instagram (@LynHillcats) and Facebook (Lynchburg Hillcats). For more information about the Lynchburg Hillcats, please contact Maura Sheridan at

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The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.

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