International League Hall of Famer and former Major League All-Star Larry Parrish will return as manager of the Toledo Mud Hens when the season opens April 4, 2014.
Parrish, who managed the West Michigan Whitecaps in 2013, takes the helm for a third time.
He first took the Toledo Mud Hens reins in May, 1994 and guided the team to a 56-62 record. In September of 1998, Parrish replaced Buddy Bell as manager of the Detroit Tigers. He went 69-92 in 1999, his only full season as a big league manager. Parrish returned to the Toledo Mud Hens in 2003 and led them to back-to-back championships in 2005 and 2006. He was named the International League Manager of the Year in 2005, as well as the Sporting News Minor League Manager of the Year after guiding the Mud Hens to their first Governors’ Cup title since 1967.
|Toledo Mud Hens manager Larry Parrish with
hitting Coach Leon “Bull” Durham. (Photo
courtesy of the Mud Hens)
Toledo Mud Hens President and General Manager Joe Napoli is thrilled to have LP back. “As a manager, he’s a great teacher and I know we’ll see improvement in player development. For our fans, he’s always been a favorite, they will be glad to welcome him back.”
The Tigers also promoted Mud Hens pitching Coach A.J. Sager to the team’s roving pitching coordinator. The University of Toledo graduate spent six years with the Mud Hens and 12 in the Detroit Tigers organization.
“It’s been a pleasure having AJ in Toledo,” says Napoli. “But we’re excited for him and his family and his new role and responsibilities within the Tigers organization, and the best part is we’ll still have the benefit of him coming to Toledo.”
The 2014 baseball season has Al Nipper joining the Mud Hens as pitching coach. He pitched seven seasons in the majors before beginning his professional coaching career in 1992. Nipper spent the last two years with the Tigers. Hitting Coach Leon “Bull” Durham returns for his 14th season with the Mud Hens while athletic trainer Matt Rankin will join the Tigers major league staff as assistant athletic trainer. A replacement hasn’t been named yet for Rankin.