HILLSBORO, Ore. – The Hillsboro Hops 2016 coaching staff was long ago announced on hillsborohops.com. Skipper Shelley Duncan, who was successful in his 2015 campaign with the team, will return and be joined by pitching coach Mike Parrott and hitting coach Jose Amado. Ben Petrick will return as a consultant in his fourth year with the team.
Are some of these names unfamiliar to you? Let’s find out who they are.
Shelley Duncan, Manager
Shelley Duncan joined the Hillsboro Hops in 2015, stepping into the large shoes left by J.R. House after he led the Hops to their first championship in their second season. Duncan quickly filled the those shoes, leading the Hops to a playoff bid in the first half of the season. The team took the second half as well.
As we all know, the Hops beat the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes 2-1 games in the South Division Championship Series and did the same to the Tri-City Dust Devils, ending the season with their second League Championship in as many years, all thanks to the prowess of House and Duncan.
The son of former MLB catcher Dave Duncan, Shelley Duncan got his start in baseball playing alongside Ian Kinsler of the Detroit Tigers at Canyon del Oro High School outside Tucson, AZ. In 1997 their team won the 5A State Championship title.
He then attended the University of Arizona and was named First Team College All-American outfielder and a PAC-10 Conference All-Star in 2001. Later that year he was drafted by the Yankees in the second round, 62nd overall.
Taking his time in the minors, Duncan finally made it to the big league Yankees in 2007 at the age of 27. He saw 83 plate appearances in 34 games, the most he would see in the MLB until he was traded to Cleveland in after the 2009 season.
With the Yankees he collected a line of .219/290/.411 in 68 games and 163 plate appearances.
Duncan then spent the next three seasons with the Indians, seeing anywhere from 76-85 games a season. His numbers improved with more playing time as his average jumped to .231, his on base percentage to .309, and his slugging percentage to .430. A big league player, Duncan accumulate 114 RBI’s and 33 homers in his three year stint in Cleveland.
In 2013 he signed a minor league deal with the Tampa Bay Rays where he played just 20 games and got 10 hits, a .182 average over 55 at bats in the majors. He played his last game in the big’s on April 27th of that year, going 1-6 against the White Sox.
Duncan first came to the Diamondbacks when they signed him to a minor league deal in January of 2014. With nothing coming of that he signed another MiLB deal with the Reds in May of that year just to be released on June 18th.
On January 7th, 2015, just under a year after Arizona signed him as a player, Duncan was announced as the manager for the Hillsboro Hops.
Mike Parrott, Pitching Coach
Mike Parrott was drafted out of Camarillo, CA by the Baltimore Orioles in the 1st round, 15th overall pick, of the 1973 amateur draft.
By 1977 he made his debut for Baltimore, appearing in three games. This was weeks after earning the International League’s Most Valuable Pitcher award while playing for the Rochester Red Wings. In his three games he let by just one earned run.
Despite his success in just 4.1 innings pitched, Parrott found himself back on the West Coast, playing for the Seattle Mariners in 1978. Starting 10 games and appearing in 27, he went 1-5 with a 5.14 ERA, giving up 108 hits in 82.1 innings.
Parrott remained in Seattle through the 1981 season, amounting a 19-39 record with a 4.90 ERA over his four year stint with the team. He recorded a career-high 14 wins in 1979, followed by a career-high 16 losses in 1980.
After the 1981 season Parrott was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers, yet never made a game. Although he never made a Major League roster after the trade, he was named a member of the Ventura County Sports Hall of Fame back in California.
Parrott previously held the pitching coach position with the Reno Aces, AAA affiliate of the D-backs and has been in the organization as a coach for the past 19 years. He finds himself with the Hops for the first time in 2016.
Jose Amado, Hitting Coach
Born out of San Crstobal, Venezuela, Jose Amado spent seven years from 1995 to 2001 in the Minor Leagues. He opened his career with the Northwest League’s Everett AquaSox and found himself bouncing between five total teams for his entire stint, making it as far as Class-A Advanced in the California League.
After taking a brief hiatus, Amado returned to the diamond with Cancun’s Mexican League team in 2005. In the next two years he saw playing time with three more teams, eventually ending his Minor League career in 2007.
Amado ended his career with a .307 catting average and 108 homeruns. Known for his plate discipline, he was walked a total of 421 times while striking out just 281. His highlight season came in 2006 in the Mexican League where he hit 23 homeruns and collected 99 RBI’s while hitting .355.
Having been with the Wichita Wingnuts of the American Association (unaffiliated) for the last 14 seasons, Amado, like Parrott, will be in Hillsboro for the first time this season.
Ben Petrick, Consultant
An Oregon native, Ben Petrick was born in Salem and grew up in Hillsboro, attending Glencoe High School. The Colorado Rockies saw his potential and drafted him in the second round of the 1995 amateur draft.
After playing 20 games with the Rockies’ AAA affilaite, the Colorado Springs Sky Sox, Petrick debuted for the Rockies on September 1 of 1999. He played in 19 games that season, amounting a .323 batting average on 20 hits in 72 plate appearances
He played for the Rockies through July 13, 2003 before he was traded to the Detroit Tigers. Proving unsuccessful in 43 games, Petrick was released later that season.
He attempted a comeback in the Minor Leagues first with the Portland Beavers, coming back to Oregon, and then with the Toledo Mud Hens before retiring.
After his retirement in May of 2004, Petrick let it be known that he had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease after the 1999 season. The truth came out that the Parkinson’s had largely affected his playing career, despite receiving medications.
Petrick returned to Glencoe High School as a football and baseball coach after he retired. When the Hops moved from Yakima, WA to start the 2013 season the Hops added him to their coaching staff as a consultant to help their young players transition to life as a baseball player. He will join the team for their fourth season, his fourth as well, in 2016.
The Hops will open their 2016 season on June 17 on the road against Salem-Keizer. The first home game is set for June 20 against the Eugene Emeralds.