The Los Angeles Dodgers and Oklahoma City Dodgers have announced the 2018 OKC Dodgers field staff, led by returning manager Bill Haselman.
Haselman enters his third consecutive season as Oklahoma City manager. Also returning for his third season is coach Luis Matos. Pitching coach Bill Simas and hitting coach Adam Melhuse each will be joining the OKC Dodgers for the first time.
In his first two seasons as a Triple-A manager, Haselman has guided the OKC Dodgers to a combined 153-129 regular season record and has finished in the top two in the American Northern Division each season. The 153 victories are the most by an Oklahoma City manager in his first two seasons with the team since Grady Hatton in 1963-64.
Last season the Dodgers went 72-69, finishing in second place in the division. During Haselman’s first season with the team in 2016, he led the Dodgers to an American Northern Division title and a berth in the PCL Championship Series. In three of his last five seasons as a minor league manager, Haselman has led his team to its league championship series.
The 2018 season will mark Haselman’s fifth in the Dodgers organization and his eighth overall as a minor league manager. Prior to joining OKC, he spent the 2015 season with High-A Rancho Cucamonga and led the Quakes to the team’s first California League championship since 1994. He has also managed minor league teams for the Texas Rangers and Los Angeles Angels and has compiled a career record of 496-472. Haselman’s coaching career began with the Boston Red Sox as their first base coach (2004, 2006) and bullpen coach (2005).
Over a 13-year Major League career, Haselman played primarily as a catcher for the Texas Rangers (1990, 1998, 2000-02), Seattle Mariners (1992-94), Boston Red Sox (1995-97, 2003) and Detroit Tigers (1999). Between 1991-92, he appeared in 143 games with the Oklahoma City 89ers and spent the entire 1991 season in OKC.
After spending the last two seasons as the pitching coach for Double-A Tulsa, Simas enters his eighth season as a pitching coach in the Dodgers organization and his first at Triple-A. Last season Simas was part of a Tulsa coaching staff that led the Drillers to a 77-63 regular season record and advanced to the Texas League Championship Series.
Over two seasons with the Drillers, Simas’ pitching staff posted a combined 3.66 ERA. During the 2017 season, the Drillers ranked in the top three in the Texas League in ERA, WHIP, opponent average and home runs allowed.
Simas has spent his entire coaching career in the Dodgers organization. His previous stops prior to Tulsa include the Rookie Ogden Raptors (2011-12), Low-A Great Lakes Loons (2013-14) and High-A Rancho Cucamonga Quakes (2015). Simas was the pitching coach under Haselman in 2015 when Rancho Cucamonga won the California League Championship.
Simas played professionally for 16 seasons, including a six-year run as a reliever for the Chicago White Sox between 1995-2000 and made a total of 308 appearances. He spent the 2003 season in the Dodgers organization, primarily at Triple-A Las Vegas.
Another former Major League veteran, Melhuse enters his first season as a coach with the Dodgers. He spent the past two seasons as manager of the Low-A Burlington Bees in the Los Angeles Angels organization. In his initial campaign with Burlington, Melhuse’s squad went 68-72 and finished one game out of a playoff spot. Prior to his coaching stint with the Angels, Melhuse served as an advance scout for the Chicago Cubs for four seasons.
Melhuse played parts of eight seasons in the Major Leagues after making his Major League debut with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2000. He also suited up for the Colorado Rockies (2000-01; 2008), Oakland A’s (2003-07) and Texas Rangers (2007-08).
Matos will continue to serve as the team’s primary third base coach and outfield coach. He has been able to assist several infielders in making the transition to the outfield over his two seasons, most notably Chris Taylor in 2017.
Matos began his coaching tenure with the Dodgers in 2015 when he managed Low-A Great Lakes. He led the Loons to an overall record of 68-69 and a spot in the Midwest League playoffs. During the offseason, Matos also serves as a hitting coach in the Puerto Rican Winter League.
Matos spent seven seasons in the Majors as an outfielder, primarily with the Baltimore Orioles (2000-06) before a brief stint with the Washington Nationals (2006).
The OKC Dodgers open the 2018 season on the road and will begin the team’s 21st season at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark Tuesday, April 10 against the Round Rock Express.