UNITED STATES – The Arizona Winter League (AWL), the premier instructional showcase league for professional level baseball players in the U.S. has announced the 8 team slate for the upcoming season which begins with players reporting on January 24, 2010. Also as part of the announcement is the list of managers and instructors and pro leagues that are sending coaches and scouts.
For 2010 the returning list of teams includes the champion Yuma Scorpions, Blythe Heat, San Diego Surf Dawgs, and San Luis Atleticos in the U.S. Division and the Western Canada Miners, Team Canada, and Saskatchewan Silver Sox in the Canadian Division.
The Palm Springs Chill have been dropped from the league and replaced with 2009 Golden Baseball League Champion Calgary Vipers who will round out the Canadian Division and be managed by former Montreal Expo legend Boots Day.
Managers and Instructors for the 2010 Arizona Winter League include the following (more may be added as the season approaches):
• Garry Templeton (pictured), former major league all-star and currently manager of the Long Beach Armada in the independent Golden Baseball League.
• Brent Bowers, former major leaguer with Baltimore and currently manager of the Edmonton Capitals of the independent Golden Baseball League
• Boots Day, former major leaguer and currently bench coach with the Calgary Vipers of the independent Golden Baseball League.
• Cory Snyder, former major leaguer and currently manager of the St. George Roadrunners of the independent Golden Baseball League
• Tim Johnson, former major league player and major league manager and currently manager of the Tucson Toros of the independent Golden Baseball League
• Mike Marshall, former major league all-star and currently manager of the Yuma Scorpions of the independent Golden Baseball League
• Les Lancaster, former major leaguer with the Cubs and currently manager of the Sioux City Explorers of the independent American Association
• Brooks Carey, former major leaguer and currently pitching coach with the Sussex Skyhawks of the independent Can-Am League and manager of the San Luis Algodoneros of the Liga Del Norte in Mexico.
• James Frisbie, currently pitching coach with the Fort Worth Cats of the American Association
• Toby Rumfield, 13-year minor leaguer and currently manager of the Florence Freedom of the independent Frontier League
• Nick Belmonte, legendary independent leagues scout and currently scout for the Boston Red Sox.
• Dave Marcon, award winning minor league playing career and currently instructor for the Detroit Tigers
Major league organizations that have confirmed that they are sending scouts include the Philadelphia Phillies, Boston Red Sox, Detroit Tigers, Arizona Diamondbacks, Milwaukee Brewers, Toronto Blue Jays, San Diego Padres, Los Angeles Angels, Los Angeles Dodgers, Seattle Mariners, Kansas City Royals, Cleveland Indians, and Colorado Rockies so far.
“It’s great to see the Arizona Winter League continue to grow and be recognized by players as the best showcase and development opportunity available in the winter in the U.S. and this list of managers and instructors is incredible,” said Arizona Winter League Commissioner Kevin Outcalt.
“In three years there have been over 100 AWL players signed and playing in professional leagues in the U.S. and abroad. Two have already made the major leagues and I’m looking forward to seeing the extraordinary players that arrive this year, as are the many teams and leagues that are sending instructors, managers, and scouts.”
Photo courtesy of Long Beach Armada