(Greensboro, NC) The Florida Marlins announced Thursday that the 2007 Grasshoppers field staff will feature four new faces, anchored by manager Edwin Rodriguez. The announcement was made by Marlins Vice President of Player Development and Scouting and Assistant General Manager Jim Fleming.
Joining Rodriguez will be hitting coach Anthony Iapoce, pitching coach John Duffy and athletic trainer James Stone.
Rodriguez spent the past two seasons as the manager for the rookie-level Gulf Coast League Marlins, guiding them to an overall 53-54 record. He spent the 2004 season as the hitting coach for the Double-A Carolina Mudcats. Prior to joining the Marlins organization, Edwin was the manager of the Princeton Devil Rays of the short-season Appalachian League from 2000-02, and the skipper for the Hudson Valley Renegades of the New York-Penn League in 1999.
Iapoce will replace Josue Espada as the Hoppers hitting coach after a successful 2006 campaign in the same role with the Jamestown Jammers. The Astoria, New York native played 11 seasons in the minors after being drafted in the 33rd round of the 1994 draft by the Milwaukee Brewers. He spent the 2003 season as a player for the Marlins Triple-A affiliate Albuquerque Isotopes.
Entering his second season as a minor league coach with the Marlins organization, Duffy also comes to Greensboro from the Jammers, where he served as pitching coach. A graduate of the University of Richmond, Duffy signed with the Boston Red Sox in 1996 and made 29 appearances with the Single-A Lowell Spinners. He continued playing professionally for the next eight years, playing with such organizations as the Atlantic City Surf, Somerset Patriots, Sioux City Explorers and the Fargo Moorehead Redhawks.
Stone, a graduate of Cal State University, enters his second season with the Marlins organization and will take over athletic training duties for the Grasshoppers. Prior to joining the Marlins, the Southern California native worked in the Baltimore Orioles organization and interned with the Seattle Mariners.
“We are very excited about what the upcoming season has to offer,” said Grasshoppers President Donald Moore. “We are pleased to welcome Edwin, Anthony, John and James to the Grasshoppers family.”
Season tickets are now on sale for the 2007 season. For more information, please contact the Grasshoppers office at 336.268.BALL or visit www.gsohoppers.com. The Hoppers open their home 2007 season April 9th against the Lake County Captains.