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Hunsicker joins Dodgers' senior management staff

LOS ANGELES -- Gerry Hunsicker, former general manager of the Houston Astros and most recently a senior vice president with Tampa Bay, was hired by the Dodgers Thursday as a senior advisor for baseball operations, the club announced.

Hunsicker, 62, will assist general manager Ned Colletti and is the first front-office addition since Guggenheim Baseball Partners bought the club in May. Hunsicker helped establish Tampa Bay's academy in Brazil and has been instrumental in sharpening the club's international focus, an area the Dodgers consider a high priority.

According to a team release, "Hunsicker will assist Colletti and President and CEO Stan Kasten with the Dodgers' big league club while also lending his expertise to international scouting and development, pro scouting and Minor League development."

Hunsicker was the Houston general manager from 1996-2004, during which time the club won four division titles. The team reached the World Series the following year. In 1998, when the Astros won 102 games, he was named The Sporting News executive of the year. He served in various management positions with the Mets before rejoining the Astros.

Hunsicker filled several roles for the Astros from 1978 to 1981, including traveling secretary, Minor League pitching coach, scout and assistant to the general manager. From 1981 to 1983, he worked for Tal Smith Enterprises in Houston and was involved in preparing salary arbitration cases.

After the 2004 season, Hunsicker resigned from the Houston general manager job with one year remaining on his contract, citing at the time a desire to "take a step back, smell the roses and recharge the batteries" as reasons for his resignation.

After stepping down, Hunsicker spent one year as a Houston advisor, then became a senior advisor to Tampa Bay executive vice president of baseball operations Andrew Freidman while pursuing a passion for breeding thoroughbred horses, at time in partnership with Houston Texans owner Bob McNair. Hunsicker's wife, Irene, died last year after a decade-long battle with cancer.

Before moving to professional baseball, Hunsicker was assistant athletic director and assistant baseball coach at Florida International University, where he received a master's degree in management after doing his undergraduate studies at St. Joseph's University.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for