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GreenJackets announce 2018 coaching staff

Posted: December 26, 2017 - 6:03pm

The Augusta Green­Jackets announced their coaching staff for the 2018 season, highlighted by a new manager.

Jolbert Cabrera has been named the GreenJackets' manager for the debut season of SRP Park in North Augusta. The 45-year-old has more than four years of coaching experience between low-level minor league affiliates in the Cincinnati Reds system and with the San Francisco Giants' short-season affiliate Salem-Keizer last season.

He was also a coach for Colombia in the 2017 World Baseball Classic in the country's first trip to the event.

Cabrera played parts of eight seasons in the major leagues between the Reds, Cleveland Indians, Seattle Mariners and Los Angeles Dodgers. He was a career .257 hitter while seeing time at every position except pitcher and catcher.

He played 141 games for the Indians in 2001 and hit .261, while perhaps his most notable season was 2003 with the Dodgers, when he hit .282 with 32 doubles, six home runs and six stolen bases in 128 games.

"I am very excited and humbled to be a part of opening the new stadium in Augusta," Cabrera said in a news release. "It is an honor to be the manager for the club, and I look forward to working with a quality staff as we continue to help develop quality young men. Augusta is a passionate baseball community, and I know our players look forward to playing in front of them next season."

Clay Rapada will return as Augusta's pitching coach for a third season. The 36-year-old pitched parts of seven seasons in the major leagues, including recording a 2.82 ERA in 70 appearances for the New York Yankees in 2012.

Thomas Neal will return as Augusta's hitting coach. The 30-year-old shared the duties last season. Neal briefly saw time in the major leagues and was a GreenJacket in 2008.

Another former GreenJacket, Ydwin Villegas, returns as fundamentals coach. The 27-year-old spent six seasons in the Giants system and played for Augusta in 2010-11.

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Reach David Lee at (706) 823-3216 or david.lee@augustachronicle.com.

 

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