With the call-up to becoming a Triple-A franchise comes a new coaching staff for the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp. In conjunction with their parent, Miami Marlins, the Shrimp announced their coaching staff for the 2021 season, led by veteran minor league manager Al Padrique.
Jacksonville is slated to begin the season on Tuesday, May 4, at 121 Financial Ballpark against Norfolk. Jacksonville will also serve as the host for the Marlins' alternative training site during the month of April, meaning the 20 to 28 players not selected to the Marlins' Opening Day roster will begin the year training at 121 Financial Ballpark. The Major League Baseball season begins Thursday, April 1.
Here is the full release and bios for this year's on-field staff, courtesy of the Jumbo Shrimp:
Skipper Al Pedrique enters his first year with the Marlins’ organization after spending the previous three years on the Oakland A’s major league staff as first base coach (2018) and third base coach (2019-20). His major league coaching experience includes a stint in 2004 with the Arizona Diamondbacks as third base coach and interim manager. Pedrique was also the third base coach for Houston in 2009 before serving as the Astros’ bench coach from 2010-11.
In addition to his wealth of MLB coaching experience, Pedrique has managed 13 seasons in the minor leagues. He skippered the 1995 Spokane Indians (Short Season Class A, Kansas City Royals) before spending the 1996 and 1997 campaigns with the Rookie-level GCL Royals. Pedrique led the Low-A Michigan Battle Cats (Houston Astros) in 1999 and 2000, finishing his tenure with a Midwest League championship. He moved onto Arizona’s organization, piloting Double-A El Paso in 2001 and Triple-A Tuscon in 2003-04. Prior to his time on Oakland’s MLB coaching staff, Pedrique managed for five seasons in the New York Yankees’ organization, guiding Low-A Charleston in 2013, High-A Tampa in 2014, Double-A Trenton in 2015 and Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in both 2016 and 2017.
Originally signed by the New York Mets as an infielder in 1978, Pedrique played in the minor leagues for nine seasons before finally making his major league debut with the Mets in 1987. He appeared in five games with New York before being traded on May 29, 1987 to the Pittsburgh Pirates, where he batted .301/.354/.362 in 88 contests to close out the 1987 campaign. Pedrique played the 1988 season with Pittsburgh before signing with the Detroit Tigers for the 1989 campaign, his last year as a major league player. A career .247 hitter in 174 MLB games, Pedrique’s playing career concluded in 1994 after spending the 1989-94 campaigns in Triple-A in the Tigers, A’s, Mets, Royals and Marlins’ systems.
Pitching coach Jeremy Powell enters his ninth season in the Miami’s organization and his third as the club’s Triple-A pitching coach. His tenure with the Marlins began with the GCL Marlins (2012-13) before rising to Low-A Greensboro (2014-15), High-A Jupiter (2016-17) and Triple-A New Orleans (2018-19). Powell’s coaching career began in 2010 with the Diamondbacks as a pitching coach for the amateur development summer scout teams.
Originally drafted by the Montreal Expos in the fourth round of the 1994 draft out of Highlands High School (Calif.), Powell pitched for the Expos from 1998-2000. He also played in Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball from 2001-08, compiling a 3.97 ERA and recording 10-plus wins in four campaigns. Powell’s playing career concluded with Triple-A Indianapolis in the Pirates’ farm system in 2009-10.
Hitting coach Phil Plantier joins the Marlins’ organization after spending the 2018-19 seasons in the Yankees’ system as the hitting coach of Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. After being drafted by the Boston Red Sox in the 11th round of the 1987 draft out of Poway High School (Calif.), Plantier launched 91 home runs over portions of eight seasons in the major leagues with Boston, San Diego, Houston, Oakland and St. Louis. Plantier’s MLB tenure came to an end in 1997 and he retired as a player following the 1998 campaign with Triple-A Norfolk in the Mets’ organization.
Plantier moved into coaching in 2007 and was named the manager of the Macon Music in the now-defunct South Coast League. He entered into the minor league ranks in 2008 as the hitting coach of Double-A West Tennessee (Seattle Mariners) in the Southern League before managing the Diamond Jaxx in 2009. Plantier was the Mariner’s minor league hitting coordinator in 2010 before working as the hitting coach and manager of High-A Lake Elsinore (San Diego Padres) in 2011. He was promoted to become the Padres’ hitting coach at the major league level, serving in that role from 2012-14. In August 2019, Plantier was a coach for the United States national baseball team at the 2019 WBSC Premier12 tournament.
A former Marlins farmhand and member of the Jacksonville Suns from 2012-15, Danny Black begins his fourth season as a defensive coach in Miami’s organization. Originally drafted in the 14th-round of the 2010 draft by the Marlins out of the University of Oklahoma, Black played six seasons in the club’s farm system, reaching as high as Triple-A New Orleans in both 2014 and 2015. He totaled 203 games at the Double-A level with Jacksonville, helping the Suns win the 2014 Southern League title. Black was named an MiLB.com Organizational All-Star in 2011 and 2012, and was named a Florida State League All-Star in 2012 with High-A Jupiter. He served the 2017-19 seasons as the defensive coach of the Hammerheads.
The 2021 campaign will mark athletic trainer Greg Harrel’s fifth as a Triple-A athletic trainer in Miami’s farm system. In the midst of his second stint with the organization, Harrell previously worked as the Marlins’ Triple-A athletic trainer with Albuquerque in 2004 and New Orleans from 2017-19.
A native of Cashion, Okla., Harrel’s career in professional baseball dates back to 1986. He worked as a minor league athletic trainer in the Texas Rangers’ organization from 1986-2003 before his stint with Albuquerque in 2004. After one season in the Padres’ system in 2006, Harrel joined the Los Angeles Dodgers organization in 2007. He served as the club’s Triple-A athletic trainer until he joined the major league staff in 2012 before returning to the Triple-A ranks in 2015 with Oklahoma City.
Strength and conditioning coach Jon Cioffi joins the Marlins’ organization in 2021, debuting in the system with Triple-A Jacksonville. Prior to joining Miami’s organization, Cioffi spent the 2015-19 seasons as the New York Mets’ Triple-A strength & conditioning coach. A graduate of Arizona State University, Cioffi broke into baseball as a strength & conditioning coach in the Minnesota Twins’ organization from 2010-13. He worked as high as Triple-A Rochester. In 2014, Cioffi was a tactical strength & conditioning coach in the U.S. Army, based in Fort Bragg, N.C.