Las Vegas 51s Announce 2018 Coaching Staff With Astros Feel

By Michael Mayer

January 9, 2018 No comments

The New York Mets last season with the Las Vegas 51s as their Triple-A affiliate is 2018 and the coaching staff gets a complete re-haul including three from the Houston Astros organization.

Tony DeFrancesco replaces Pedro Lopez as the manager of the 51s after spending the previous three years at the helm of the Fresno Grizzlies, the Astros Triple-A affiliate. In 2015, he was named Baseball America’s Manager of the Year for the entire minor leagues.

The native New Yorker also managed 41 major league games as the Astros interim skipper in 2012 and his first win came against the Mets.

Over his managerial career, DeFrancesco’s reputation is that of an analytical manager who not only fosters good relationships with his players, but as one that gets the most out of them.

51s’ have a new athletic trainer with Grant Hufford coming from the Astros organization as well. Also joining the 51s’ staff from the Astros organization is hitting coach Joel Chimelis.

Chimelis, 50, was the hitting coach for the Double-A Corpus Christi Hooks in 2017. The former Met farmhand is from Brooklyn and has been a minor league hitting coach since 2004.

The new 51s pitching coach is Glenn Abbott who will be getting a promotion from Double-A Binghamton. He is swapping spots with Frank Viola.

Las Vegas also created added two new positions in a bullpen coach and an assistant trainer. Former big league pitcher Jeremy Accardo will be the bullpen coach after one season as the pitching coach for the GCL Mets.

Kiyoshi Tada will be the assistant athletic trainer. The staff is rounded out by the loan returning member in strength coach Josh Fields.

The Binghamton Rumble Ponies already announced their coaching staff earlier this offseason.