Marlins Recommit To Latin America

Ramos hired as player development coordinator





MIAMI—The Marlins bill themselves as the organization of the Americas, and they've recommitted to developing players from Spanish-speaking countries.

Former Rays bullpen coach Bobby Ramos is now the club's Latin American player development coordinator. Miami identified a need for a person like Ramos, considering none of their coordinators were of Hispanic descent.

Ramos spent the last six years on Rays manager Joe Maddon's staff, but his contract was not renewed. Several Marlins officials interviewed him over a two-week period.

"They really took the time and did their homework on this thing," Ramos said. "They wanted to make sure they got the guy they really want for the job. We exchanged ideas, talking about player development for the Latin kids and all that. It took a while, but we finally got it done."

A native of Cuba, Ramos played catcher in the major leagues with the Expos and Mets and boasts an extensive player development background. He managed the Astros' Rookie-level Gulf Coast League entry from 1994-96 and took over the Rays' GCL club the following two seasons. In 1999, Ramos managed Rookie-level Princeton.

While with the Astros, Ramos helped several future big leaguers acclimate to life in the States, including Richard Hidalgo, Melvin Mora, Freddy Garcia, Tony Eusebio and Carlos Guillen.

"Those (Astros) guys were a little rough around the edges," Ramos said. "They needed all the help they could get. We got English classes for them. We went out of our way to make sure they understood the way we do things here. We talked about the work ethic and the process. It helps.

"You have to have Spanish-speaking (coaches) down there that have been through the trenches and can give those kids some good guidance and put them on the right track at the early age."

FISH BITES

• Former major league catcher Ron Hassey, who spent the last two seasons managing high Class A Jupiter, will manage Triple-A New Orleans in 2012.

• Former Double-A hitting coach Corey Hart will work in the same capacity at Jupiter next season. Kevin Randel will move up from low Class A Greensboro to join Andy Barkett's Suns staff as hitting coach.