Devil Rays Not Renewing Contracts of Bulls Coaching Staff
The Tampa Bay Devil Rays announced on Saturday, September 9, 2006, Durham Bulls Manager John Tamargo, Pitching Coach Joe Coleman, Hitting Coach Richie Hebner and Trainer Tom Tisdale will not have their contracts renewed for the 2007 season. It marks the first time in the Bulls’ ten-year relationship with the Devil Rays that Durham will have a completely new coaching staff.
“We’ve had a lot of success with some of these coaches, including two championships,” Bulls General Manager Mike Birling said, “The Bulls organization appreciates all their years of service to this team and community and we wish them well in the future. My staff and I look forward to welcoming a new staff here in 2007.”
Bulls Pitching Coach Joe Coleman
Coleman completed his seventh season as pitching coach for the Bulls. In four of his seven years, the Bulls were in the playoffs, including International League Championships in 2002 and 2003.
Coleman began his coaching career in 1980 after a fifteen-year major league career with Washington, Detroit, Chicago (NL), Oakland, Toronto, San Francisco, and Pittsburgh. He twice won at least 20 games in a season with Detroit (1971, 73).
Hebner joined the Bulls as hitting coach in 2002. He has eighteen years of coaching experience with the Toronto, Boston, Pittsburgh, and Philadelphia organizations. Hebner compiled a 184-182 (.503) record in three seasons as a minor league manager with Myrtle Beach (A) in 1988, Syracuse (AAA) in 1996, and most recently Nashville (AAA) in 2000. He spent the 2001 season as hitting coach for the Philadelphia Phillies.
Bulls Hitting Coach Richie Hebner
Originally a first round draft choice of the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1966, Hebner had an eighteen year major league playing career with Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, New York (NL), Detroit, and Chicago. In 1,908 career games, he batted .276 with 203 home runs and 890 RBI. He was a member of the 1971 World Champion Pittsburgh Pirates.
Tisdale completed his fourth season with the Bulls and 19th season in baseball as a trainer. He joined the Devil Rays Organization in 1998 with the GCL Devil Rays, spent 1999-2002 with Orlando (Double-A) and joined the Bulls in 2003. He owns a Bachelor of Arts in Physical Education from California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, CA and is certified by the National Athletic Trainers Association.
Bulls Manager John Tamargo
Tamargo spent only one season with the Bulls following the highly successful skipper Bill Evers, who joined the Devil Rays major league staff as bench coach this season. The Bulls finished 2006 with a record of 64-78, good for second place in the South Division of the International League.
Since 1982, Tamargo has coached or managed at the minor and major league levels with the Mets, Astros and Brewers. He has a 15-year managerial career in the minors, including 11 in the Mets’ system (1983, 1987-96) and has a lifetime managerial mark of 912-859 (.515). In 2005, Tamargo managed at Brevard County, the Brewers’ affiliate in the Class A Florida State League.
From 1999 through 2004 he served as a major league coach for the Astros including three seasons as bench coach under Jimy Williams.
Thanks to DBBC’s Matt DeMargel for this capcom story & these capcom photos.