SOUTH BEND – The World Series Champion Chicago Cubs announced their minor league managers and coaching staffs for the 2017 season.
Jimmy Gonzalez begins his fourth season as a manager for the Chicago Cubs, his third with South Bend. Last season, Gonzalez led the Cubs to an 84-55 regular season record, which tied for second most wins in franchise history. His team won the 1st half Eastern Division title, earning his first trip to the post-season as a manager. The former minor league catcher won the Midwest League Manager of the Year award in 2016. Gonzalez made his managerial debut in 2014 with Rookie League Mesa after serving as hitting coach with the club in 2013. The Hartford, Connecticut native played 14 minor league seasons after he was selected in the first round of the 1991 Draft by Houston.
Brian Lawrence returns to South Bend as the team’s pitching coach, having served in the same role for the club in 2015. Last season, Lawrence was the pitching coach for the Eugene Emeralds and helped guide the team to their first championship since 1975 by winning the Northwest League title. The Fort Collins, Colorado native made his coaching debut in 2012 in the Independent Frontier League after the former right-hander went 50-63 with a 4.19 ERA during a six-year big league career with the Padres and Mets.
Jeremy Farrell joins the team as hitting coach after handling the same duty with Mesa last season. Farrell, the son of Red Sox manager John Farrell, joined the Cubs prior to last season following an eight-year minor league playing career with the Pittsburgh Pirates and Chicago White Sox organizations. Jonathan Mota is the club’s assistant coach, his second season as a coach in the organization following 11 seasons as an infielder in the Cubs farm system.
Logan Severson joins South Bend as the team’s athletic trainer, his second in the organization after serving as Eugene’s athletic trainer last season. Ryan Nordtvedt enters his fifth season in the organization and his first as South Bend’s strength and conditioning coach.
“I’m excited to start another year in South Bend with such an incredible staff for 2017,” said Manager Jimmy Gonzalez. “I’ve known these guys from the last few years and having BLaw (Lawrence) run the pitching staff again is great. We have another group of hard working fun guys and being in the best ballpark in the Midwest League makes it that much more special. It’s a great atmosphere in South Bend and getting another opportunity to work with the people there is truly a privilege.”
The South Bend Cubs open the 2017 season on the road at West Michigan on Thursday, April 6 before returning to Four Winds Field for their home opener against the Whitecaps on Saturday, April 8. Group and season tickets are available by calling the South Bend Cubs Main Office at (574) 235-9988.