Craig Shipley is in his eighth season with the D-backs as Special Assistant to General Manager and his 35th year in professional baseball. Shipley assists the Baseball Operations Department in international and special assignment scouting, evaluating the D-backs’ farm system and serving as an advisor to the GM. Among the current prospects in which Shipley has played a key role in signing is Kristian Robinson.
The Australia native played an instrumental role in the D-backs opening the 2014 season in Sydney, the first time Major League Baseball has hosted an Opening Day in an emerging market. In 2013, Shipley took part in a promotional and goodwill tour of Australia and New Zealand, as the club contingent was the highest-ranking Major League group to ever visit the latter country.
Shipley joined the D-backs in 2012 following nine seasons with the Boston Red Sox, including two world championships (2004 & ‘07). He joined the organization in player development and was promoted to Vice President of Professional and International Scouting in 2006, eventually serving as Vice President of Player Development and International Scouting.
During his tenure with the Red Sox, Shipley played an integral role in the evaluation and signing of pitchers Daisuke Matsuzaka, Felix Doubront, Frankie Montas, Hideki Okajima and Junichi Tazawa, outfielder Manuel Margot and infielders Xander Bogaerts and Jose Iglesias. During the 2005-06 offseason, Shipley was part of a committee of team executives that handled the general manager’s duties for the Red Sox.
He began his baseball operations career in 2000 as the Montreal Expos’ Minor League infield and baserunning coordinator while also helping the Australian national team prepare for the Olympics. He then served as a professional scout with the San Diego Padres from 2001-02 before joining the Red Sox in December 2002.
A native of Parramatta, Australia, Shipley played in 11 Major League seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers (1986-87), New York Mets (1989), San Diego Padres (1991-94, ‘96-97), Houston Astros (1995) and Anaheim Angels (1998) and hit .271 in 582 career games.
Shipley was the second Australian-born player and first to debut in the modern era of Major League Baseball when he made his debut on June 22, 1986 vs. San Diego. Australia’s Joe Quinn played in the Major Leagues from 1884-1901. He was involved in a 12-player deal between the Padres and Astros in December 1994, the largest volume of players traded in 37 years.
Shipley attended the University of Alabama, where the Crimson Tide reached the College World Series championship game in 1983.
Shipley served as a coach for Team Australia in the 2006 and 2017 World Baseball Classic and continues to work closely with numerous organizations that promote the game of baseball in his native country.
He has 2 daughters, Amanda and Kylee.