On Wednesday, December 18, 2013 Ben Crockett, Director of Player Development for the Red Sox announced that Billy McMillon will join the Sea Dogs as the 11th franchise manager. Former Sea Dogs manager Kevin Bowles moves up to take the helm for the 2014 Pawtucket Red Sox. Rich Gedman will return as a hitting coach, Bob Kipper returns as the pitching coach and Brandon Henry as the athletic trainer for the Sea Dogs.
McMillon led the High A Salem Red Sox to a 2013 Carolina League Championship and brings a .538 managerial record with him as he moves up to AA. McMillon is a former major-league outfielder playing with the Florida Marlins, the Philadelphia Phillies, the Detroit Tiger's and the Oakland Athletics. He has the distinction of amassing 162 hits in the 1995 Sea Dogs season, a franchise record second only to Kevin Millar.
This coaching move has left an unfilled gap for the Short A Lowell Spinners. Carlos Febles moves up to Single A Salem, Darren Fenster moves up to Single A Greenville and Tom Kotchman will take the helm for the Gulf Coast League Red Sox.
Who will fill the manager's job at Lowell? Any answer to that question would be pure speculation. There are a number of candidates who would be excellent choices. However, it leads me to wonder if this is a good time and a good team for Jason Varitek to try on a manager's hat. Like I said, pure speculation, but wouldn't it be nice.
In 58 days, Red Sox pitchers can report for spring training and fans can see minor leaguers working out with the parent club. Only 70 days till the Boston College/Northeastern University games are played. There are still tickets available for the 2014 Sea Dogs opening day at Hadlock on April 10, 2014. Fans can also purchase season tickets at family friendly prices. Call (207) 879-9500 to get your tickets for a day out at the ballpark and welcome Billy McMillon back to Hadlock.
Remember to bring your glove and I'll see you there.