(WSCR) – There were a lot of things up in the air about the 2011 Cubs season. However, today one of those issue was resolved when the Cubs officially announced their coaching staff.
Five members from last year’s coaching staff will return in 2011: pitching coach Larry Rothschild, hitting coach Rudy Jaramillo, bullpen coach Lester Strode, third base coach Ivan DeJesus and first base coach Bob Dernier. Pat Listach will serve as the club’s bench coach and Dave Keller has been named a major league staff assistant.
Listach enters his 12th season as a professional coach or manager and returns to the Cubs organization after two years as third base coach for the Washington Nationals. Prior to his coaching stint in the major leagues, Listach served nine seasons as a minor league coach and manager in the Cubs organization, most recently as the manager at Triple-A Iowa in 2008, when he led the club to an 83-59 record, a first-place finish and Pacific Coast League Manager of the Year honors.
The 43-year-old Listach began his coaching career in 2000 as hitting coach with Chicago’s Single-A Lansing affiliate. He served the next five seasons as hitting coach with Triple-A Iowa, save the final 55 games in 2002 when he was interim manager upon Bruce Kimm’s promotion to Chicago. Listach received his first full-time managing opportunity in 2006 and led Chicago’s Double-A clubs (West Tenn in 2006, Tennessee in 2007) to a pair of second place finishes, earning a promotion to Iowa for the 2008 campaign.
Listach was the 1992 American League Rookie of the Year with Milwaukee and played six big league seasons as an infielder with the Brewers (1992-96) and Astros (1997). Listach will also serve as Chicago’s infield coach.
Keller, 51, joins Chicago’s major league staff after seven years as the organization’s minor league hitting instructor (2004-10). Prior to his stint with the Cubs, he was a major league staff assistant for Cleveland from 2001-03, also serving as an assistant to hitting coach Eddie Murray.
The 2010 campaign marks Keller’s 26th season as a professional manager or coach. He has served as a minor league manager in the Cincinnati (1987-89), Cleveland (1990-94) and White Sox (1996) organizations and was Cleveland’s minor league hitting coordinator from 1999-2000 before his promotion to the major league staff in 2001.
Rothschild, 56, returns to Chicago for his 10th season as pitching coach. Rothschild is one of only four coaches in franchise history to reach a 10th season, the second as a pitching coach, joining Roy Johnson (pitching coach, 15 seasons, 1935-39, 1944-53), Hall of Famer Billy Williams (15 seasons, first base/hitting coach 1980-82, 1986-87, 1992-2001) and Verlon Walker (10 seasons, first base/bullpen coach, 1961-70).
Jaramillo, 60, enters his second season as Cubs hitting coach, his 17th-straight and his 21st overall season as a hitting coach at the big league level. He previously worked in Houston (1990-93) and Texas (1995-2009).
Strode, 52, returns for his fifth season as a major league bullpen coach and his 23rd year in the Cubs organization. Prior to his current role, he was Chicago’s minor league pitching coordinator from 1996-2006.
DeJesus, 57, returns for his fifth season on Chicago’s coaching staff. He spent three seasons as the special assistant to the manager (2007-09) and split last year as the club’s first base and third base coach. DeJesus spent five of his 15 major league seasons as a player with the Cubs from 1977-81.
Dernier, 53, was promoted to Chicago’s first base coach on August 23, 2010 when Mike Quade was named manager. He began the season as the organization’s outfield and baserunning coordinator, a position he had held since 2007, and will continue to serve as Chicago’s outfield coach next season. Dernier spent four of his 10 major league seasons as a player with the Cubs from 1984-87.
A Chicago Cubs press release contributed to this article.