Colorado Rockies announce full player development staff for 2024 season

January 31st, 2024

DENVER – The Colorado Rockies announced today the coaching staffs for all of their Minor League affiliates for the 2024 season, as well as the club’s player development staff.

The Triple-A Albuquerque Isotopes will see Pedro Lopez return for his second season as manager after replacing Warren Schaeffer in 2023. Lopez will be rejoined by Pitching Coach Chris Michalak and Hitting Coach Jordan Pacheco, with Michael Ryan joining his staff as bench coach.

Lopez returns to the helm of the Isotopes in 2023, his second year as manager following stints as the club’s bench coach (2022) and hitting coach (2021). He first joined the Rockies staff prior to the canceled 2020 Minor League season. Previously, Lopez spent 12 seasons with the Mets organization where he served in numerous roles, most recently as the manager of Low-A Columbia. The Vega Baja, Puerto Rico native began his coaching career as a manager and coach in the Texas Rangers’ system from 2000-07 after a 13-year professional playing career with the Padres, Brewers and Astros organizations.

Ryan starts his first year in the Rockies organization after spending the previous two seasons managing the Double-A Tennessee Smokies in the Chicago Cubs organization. Overall, 2024 is his 12th season as a Minor League coach. Ryan was previously the manager for Single-A South Bend in 2021 after being scheduled to manage Double-A Tennessee in 2020. Prior to that, he spent the previous three seasons managing Double-A Altoona in the Pirates system (2017-19), winning an Eastern League Championship in 2017. He also managed with Single-A Bradenton (2015-16) and Single-A West Virginia (2013- 14). Originally selected by Minnesota in the fifth round of the 1996 First-Year Player Draft out of Indiana (Pa.) Area High School, he played five Major League seasons with Minnesota (2002-05) and Los-Angeles-AL (2010).

Michalak enters his second season with the Isotopes and in the Rockies organization after coming from the Washington Nationals. The Joliet, Ill. native served as a pitching coach at three different levels in Washington’s system from 2010-17 before assisting the Major League staff. Michalak pitched in parts of four seasons in the Major Leagues with the Diamondbacks (1998), Blue Jays (2001), Rangers (2001-02) and Reds (2006).

Pacheco enters his third season with Albuquerque as the club’s hitting coach. The Albuquerque native and graduate of the University of New Mexico joined the Rockies Minor League staff in 2022 after a 14-year professional player career, including Major League stints with Colorado (2011-14), Arizona (2014-15) and Cincinnati (2016). Originally selected by Colorado in the ninth round of the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, Pacheco appeared in 270 games with the Rockies across parts of four seasons (2011-14). In 2012, the catcher and infielder appeared in 132 games for the Rockies, hitting .309 (147-for-475) with 32 doubles, three triples, five home runs and 54 RBI.

At Double-A Hartford, Bobby Meacham takes the top step after serving as Albuquerque’s bench coach in 2023. He is joined by Bench Coach Luis Lopez, Pitching Coach Dan Meyer and Hitting Coach Zach Osborne.

Meacham first joined the Rockies organization in 2023, spending the previous Minor League season as Pedro Lopez’ bench coach in Albuquerque. Prior to the Rockies, Meacham most recently served as a coaching assistant on Joe Girardi’s Phillies staff from Jan. 2020 - June 2022. The Los Angeles native spent the 2013-19 seasons managing at three levels in the Blue Jays Minor League system. Meacham has also previously served on the Major League coaching staffs of the Marlins, Padres, Yankees and Astros from 2006-12. Prior to his first Minor League coaching role, Meacham played six seasons with the Yankees from 1983-88, primarily as a shortstop, hitting .236 with eight home runs and 114 RBI over that span.

Lopez enters his third season as the club’s bench coach and his third with the Rockies organization. Previously, Lopez served as a hitting coach in the Boston Red Sox organization (2008-11), was the Minor League infield coordinator for the Atlanta Braves (2012-17) and the manager of the GCL Tigers (2018-19). The Cidra, Puerto Rico native began his career at 17 years old in the Padres organization and played professionally from 1988-2005. He appeared in parts of 11 big league seasons with San Diego (1993-94, ’96), New York-NL (1997-99), Milwaukee (2000-02), Baltimore (2002, ’04) and Cincinnati (2005).

Meyer is in his first season with the Rockies organization after spending the previous two seasons with the Pirates organization as a pitching coach. Prior to the Pirates, Meyer spent the previous nine seasons in the Atlanta farm system, most recently as the interim manager of the Double-A Mississippi Braves, where he was named Southern League Manager of the Year while capturing the championship in 2021. He began his coaching career as the pitching coach for the Danville Braves in 2014, then served as the Minor League pitching rehab coordinator in 2015, before spending six years as a pitching coaching in the Braves system. He was originally selected by Atlanta in the first round of the 2002 First-Year Player Draft (34th pick overall), and spent parts of five Major League seasons with Atlanta (2004), Oakland (2007-08) and Florida (2009-10). Meyer played college baseball at James Madison University, where he was a member of the Dukes’ 2002 NCAA Tournament team.

Osborne enters his sixth season as a hitting coach in the Rockies system, his first with Hartford, after spending the past three seasons with Spokane. Osborne also previously served as a hitting coach in Grand Junction from 2017-18. He played five years in the Rockies Minor League system (2012-16) and was signed as a Minor League free agent on June 10, 2012. Osborne reached as high as Double-A, batting .252 (49-for-206) in 329 career games across six teams. The Louisville, Ky., native attended Pleasure Ridge Park High School in his hometown, which won the state title in 2008. Osborne went on to attend the University of Tennessee where he started 188 of 189 games across four seasons as a Volunteer.

The High-A Spokane Indians will once again be led by Robinson Cancel, who moved from Single-A Fresno to take over as the Indians manager in 2023. He will be rejoined by Bench Coach Joe Mikulik, while also adding Pitching Coach Blaine Beatty and Hitting Coach Tom Sutaris to his staff.

Cancel enters his second season as Spokane’s manager and his eighth overall season as a coach in the Rockies organization. He joined Spokane following playoff berths in both 2021 and 2022 with the Single-A Fresno Grizzlies. Cancel previously served as a coach with Short-Season Boise in 2017, his first season with the Rockies, and spent two seasons in the Atlanta Braves organization as the manager of Rookie Level Danville (2016) and the Gulf Coast League Braves (2015). Cancel was originally drafted by Milwaukee in 1994 and played parts of four Major League seasons with Milwaukee (1999), New York-NL (2008-09) and Houston (2011).

Mikulik returns to Spokane’s bench coach role after joining the Rockies organization in 2023. Previously, he was Single-A Asheville’s manager from 2000-12. The Weimar, Texas native began his coaching career in 1995 in the Cleveland organization. Mikulik served as a manager in the Rangers system from 2014-19 before becoming the hitting coach for the Grand Junction Rockies in 2021 and manager of the Rocky Mountain Vibes in 2022, both of the Pioneer League. Prior to his coaching career, Mikulik played in the Astros Minor League system from 1984-1994, reaching Triple-A.

Beatty embarks on his sixth season in the Rockies organization, his 27th season coaching, and his first as the pitching coach with the Indians. In 2022-23, Beatty was the pitching coach for Double-A Hartford, and previously served in a similar role with Albuquerque (2021) and Grand Junction (2019). Prior to joining the Rockies, Beatty spent 12 seasons with the Baltimore Orioles organization (2006-18), three seasons in the New York Mets organization (2003-05) and five seasons in the Pittsburgh Pirates organization (1998-2002). As a player, Beatty was drafted by the Orioles in the ninth round of the 1986 First-Year Player Draft and totaled 12 seasons in the Minor Leagues. He debuted in 1989 with the Mets and appeared in seven Major League games from 1989-91.

Sutaris enters his first season as Spokane’s hitting coach and his seventh in the Rockies organization after spending the past three season with Hartford as a hitting coach. He spent 2018-19 with High-A Lancaster and previously served as an assistant baseball coach at the University of Incarnate Word in 2017 and a special assistant for the University of Texas baseball team from 2014-17. The New Jersey native played professionally in the independent Frontier Baseball League from 1993-96, earning All-Star nods in 1993 and 1996, while also serving as the team’s hitting coach in 1995.

Returning as manager, Steve Soliz will take the reins of the Single-A Fresno Grizzlies. He will be rejoined by Bench Coach Cesar Galvez while also adding Pitching Coach Rolando Garza and Hitting Coach Trevor Burmeister.

Soliz enters his second season as Fresno’s manager following a 78-54 campaign that earned him California League Manager of the Year in 2023. It is his fifth season in a coaching role in the Rockies system after serving as Fresno’s bench coach in 2022 and as the team’s development supervisor in 2021. He previously served as the manager of Short-Season Boise in 2019. Prior to joining the Rockies, Soliz spent 15 seasons with the Angels organization, most recently with the Major League team, serving as the catching and information coach from 2016-18. He was the Angels bullpen catcher for eight seasons (2003-10) and was originally selected by the Cleveland Indians in the 13th round of the 1993 First-Year Player Draft. Soliz played eight professional seasons as a catcher with Cleveland (1993-99) and San Diego (2000-01), compiling a .236 batting average with 168 runs scored, 62 doubles, three triples, 13 home runs and 144 RBI in 473 Minor League games.

Galvez returns to the Grizzlies bench coach role, his eighth year as a coach, after serving in the same position in the Arizona Complex League in 2022. He spent the 2021 season as a coach with Double-A Hartford. Prior to his time in Hartford, Galvez spent three seasons (2017-19) as a coach with Short-Season Boise, and was tabbed to manage Boise in 2020 prior to the cancellation of the Minor League season. Galvez spent seven seasons as an infielder in the Rockies’ Minor League system from 2010-16, reaching as high as Triple-A.

Garza enter his first season with the Rockies after serving as the Tampa Bay Rays pitching coordinator from 2020-23. Previously, he spent five seasons as the pitching coach at Pepperdine University from 2015-19. In 2016, Garza helped lead the Waves to a West Coast Conference-best 3.57 ERA, and eventually a WCC regular-season title in 2018. A Southern California native, Garza was originally selected in the ninth-round of the 1997 First-Year Player Draft by the Chicago White Sox, going on to play eight Minor League seasons in the Chicago-AL and Atlanta organizations.

Burmeister enters his fifth season with the Rockies organization, his second as the hitting coach with Fresno after previously serving in the same role with the Arizona Complex League Rockies. He was originally hired as the hitting coach for Rookie Level Grand Junction prior to the canceled 2020 season. Prior to joining the Rockies, he served as the assistant baseball coach and recruiting coordinator for Madison College (2016-19) and as the assistant baseball coach for the University of Minnesota Duluth (2015-16).

The Arizona Complex League will again be led by Manager Fred Ocasio, with Tony Wolters joining as bench coach, Ryan Kibler and Helmis Rodriguez serving as the pitching coaches and Julio Campos and Greg Jones as the hitting coaches.

Ocasio enters his third year in his managerial role following a 40-15 campaign that earned him Arizona Complex League Manager of the Year honors in 2023. Ocasio originally joined the ACL Rockies after serving as the High-A Spokane development supervisor in 2021 and the supervisor of development for Short-Season Boise in 2019. His previous managerial stint came with High-A Lancaster/Modesto, where he managed from 2015-18. Entering his 27th season with the Rockies organization, Ocasio has also served as a manager of Low-A Asheville (2013-14), manager of Short-Season Tri-City (2006-12), hitting coach for Tri-City (2001-05), hitting coach for High-A Salem (2000) and hitting coach at Rookie Level Tucson (1998-99). His managerial record includes a championship with Asheville in 2014 and three trips to the Northwest League Championship with Tri-City. The former infielder spent two years as a player in the Rockies organization from 1994-95 before moving into a coaching role.

Wolters enters his first season coaching after joining the Rockies organization following his retirement in Jan. 2024. Selected by Cleveland in the third round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft, Wolters went on to play seven Major League seasons with Colorado (2016-20), Chicago-NL (2021) and Los Angeles-NL (2022). His 2,764.2 innings caught rank third in Rockies franchise history while his 351 games caught rank fourth all-time. Additionally, his .310 caught stealing percentage is the highest by a catcher in franchise history (min. 250 games). In the 2018 National League Wild Card Game, Wolters was responsible for a go-ahead RBI single in the 13th inning, helping the Rockies capture a 2–1 victory over the Chicago Cubs to advance to the National League Division Series against the Milwaukee Brewers.

Kibler enters his 13th season as a pitching coach in the Rockies organization, his first as an ACL pitching coach after spending the past three seasons as the pitching coach for Spokane. He previously served as the pitching coach for Short-Season Boise (2019), Low-A Asheville (2017-18) and Rookie Level Grand Junction (2012-16). Kibler was originally drafted by Colorado in the second round of the 1999 First-Year Player Draft and spent his entire six-year playing career in the Rockies organization, missing two seasons due to injury. The right-handed pitcher had a career Minor League record of 37-30 with a 3.64 ERA (566.2 IP, 229 ER) in 95 games from Rookie Level to Double-A.

Rodriguez returns for his fourth season as a pitching coach with the ACL Rockies, his seventh season as a pitching coach in the Rockies organization overall. Prior to joining the ACL club in 2021, Rodriguez served for three seasons as a pitching coach in the Dominican Summer League. He was originally signed by the Rockies as a player at the age of 16 in 2010, playing seven seasons in the Rockies organization from 2011-17.

Campos enters his fifth season in a coaching role within the Rockies system and his 12th with the club overall. In 2023, Campos served as the ACL Rockies bench coach after spending 2022 in the same role with High-A Spokane. He managed the Dominican Summer League Rockies for two seasons (2018-19), earning DSL Manager of the Year and All-Star Team manager honors in 2018 after helping DSL Colorado win the Northeast Division with a 53-19 record. Campos primarily served as an area scouting supervisor in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic after joining the club in 2012 when he transitioned from being an infield instructor at the Puerto Rico Baseball Academy (2002-12). The Hato Rey, Puerto Rico native was drafted by Philadelphia in the 21st round of the 2000 First-Year Player Draft out of Missouri Baptist University. Campos saw action across four professional seasons in the Phillies system with the Batavia Muckdogs (2000), GCL Phillies (2000-01) and Clearwater Phillies (2001).

Jones returns as the Rockies ACL hitting coach after spending three seasons in the Rockies Minor League system with Short-Season Boise (2018), Low-A Asheville (2019) and Double-A Hartford (2021). In 2022, he served as the bullpen catcher in Albuquerque before transitioning to coaching. Jones was originally signed by Colorado in Dec. 2017 out of the independent United Shore Professional Baseball League where he was a member of the Utica Unicorns. He played four seasons of collegiate baseball at Carson-Newman University, where he earned Second-Team All-SAC and SAC All-Tournament team honors as a senior in 2017. Over 132 games of his college career, Jones slashed .273/.366/.514 with 23 doubles, three triples and 20 home runs, also finishing with a 51.7 caught stealing percentage (30 CS, 28 SB).

In the Dominican Summer League, Mauricio Gonzalez and Eugenio Jose each return as managers of the Rockies’ two DSL clubs. Joining them will be Pitching Coach Sam Deduno and Hitting Coaches Florentino Nuñez and Felix Rosario.

Gonzalez enters his 25th season as the manager for the Rockies’ Dominican Summer League team. In addition to his role as manager, he also oversees all aspects of infield work and fundamentals for both of the DSL clubs and the complex. Prior to becoming a coach, Gonzalez spent five seasons as a player in the Minor Leagues with Oakland (1989), Colorado (1992-95) and Cleveland (1996), as well as two seasons in Taiwan and Italy (1996-97).

Jose begins his 19th season with the Rockies, his fifth as manager of the Rockies’ second DSL team. He previously served 14 seasons as a hitting coach in the DSL. In addition to his managerial duties, he also works in various areas of player development. A former professional player who originally signed with the Rockies in 1999, Jose played in Colorado’s system for three years.

Deduno enters his fifth season as a pitching coach with the Rockies after joining the club prior to the canceled 2020 season. Deduno entered the coaching ranks after a professional pitching career that included Major League stints with Colorado (2010), San Diego (2011), Minnesota (2012-14) and Houston (2014-15).

Nuñez begins his 17th season with the Rockies, all as a coach in the Dominican Summer League. The former Rockies Minor Leaguer (2001-06) works with players in all areas of defense, baserunning and hitting.

Rosario will serve as a hitting coach for the DSL clubs for the fifth season. A native of San Juan, Puerto Rico, Rosario played in the Puerto Rican semi-pro leagues for 12 years and served as the travel manager for Team Puerto Rico in the 2013 World Baseball Classic. He also worked for Major League Baseball’s After School Program for kids ages 14-18, where he coordinated tryouts and games and recruited coaches.