Written by Press Release
Thursday, 02 November 2006 12:00
The Gateway Grizzlies announced today that former Frontier League All-Star and Grizzlies' all-time hits leader Phil Warren has been named as the field manager for the Frontier League club.
Warren replaces Danny Cox, who resigned the position last month. He becomes the fourth manager in the team's history. Former River City Rascals manager Randy Martz has also joined the staff as the Grizzlies' pitching coach.
Warren, a St. Louis native, is back in uniform after spending the 2006 season as the Grizzlies Director of Player Personnel. Prior to the 2006 season, he spent three seasons on the playing field for the Grizzlies and parts of six seasons total in the Frontier League.
Warren retired following the 2005 season, holding many of the Grizzlies career offensive records including most games (270), most at-bats (1016), most home runs (45) and most RBIs (181). Warren holds 11 total Grizzlies career offensive records.
"I'm honored," Warren said of the appointment. "It has definitely been a goal of mine to manage and there's no other place I would rather start. I never anticipated that it would happen this fast."
Warren also appears in the top five in five career Frontier League categories, including being second all-time in hits with 420 for his FL career. He is third in games played (387) and third in at-bats (1,426). He is fourth in RBI with 251 and tied for fifth with 54 career home runs.
"We had a lot of interest in this position," Grizzlies General Manager Tony Funderburg said. "Rich [Sauget] and I talked about a lot of candidates. Former players have done well in this league in the past. We think Phil is the right person for this job."
Warren will continue to work closely with little leagues in the Metro East and the St. Louis area. He will direct Grizzlies Summer camps at GCS Ballpark as well as the local league facilities.
"I love the game of baseball," Warren said. "My parents provided me with what I needed to get as far in baseball as my talents would take me. If I can help even one kid reach that I would be happy."
Martz joins the Grizzlies after seven full seasons in O'Fallon, MO. He joined the Rascals in 2000 as the pitching coach. He served as the Rascals' field manager for three full seasons after taking over the final month of the 2003 season.
Martz compiled a record of 153-163 over the three-plus seasons. His 153 Frontier League wins ranks 11th all-time among league managers. Martz also continues as head coach at Lewis and Clark Community College.
"This is a great opportunity for me," Martz said. "This is what I love to do. I love to be a pitching coach. This is even closer to home for me so that is good."
Martz was the 12th overall pick, by the Chicago Cubs, in the 1977 amateur draft and spent the 1980-1982 seasons with the Cubs. Martz finished his career with one game in a White Sox uniform in 1983. He compiled a 17-19 record with seven saves in 68 appearances as a major league hurler.
"I have nothing but the utmost respect for Randy," Warren said. "He has a proven track record in the league and a passion for teaching pitching. He's going to be a valuable asset to me as a former manager."
The Grizzlies will begin their seventh Frontier League season in May 2007.