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Staten Island Yankees Announce 2019 Coaching Staff – Press Release

The Staten Island Yankees are pleased to announce that David Adams has been named Manager for the 2019 season. Adams will be joined by familiar faces to Staten Island as Pitching Coach Travis Phelps, Hitting Coach Ken Joyce, Defensive Coach Tyson Blaser, Athletic Trainer Jon Becker, and Strength & Conditioning Coach Daniel Smith all return from 2018. Rounding out the staff, Ryan Shute joins as the Clubhouse Manager and Paul Henshaw as the Video Manager.

“I am truly honored and grateful for being chosen to manage the 2019 Staten Island Yankees alongside a knowledgeable and caring staff, both in the front office and on the field,” said David Adams. “I was fortunate enough to play under (General Manager) Jane Rogers my first year of pro ball and (President) Will Smith in Trenton only a few years later, and cannot wait to continue to learn and grow under their leadership. Being in Staten Island presents us with the unique opportunity of impacting young players in our organization as well as newly drafted players in June, a duty we do not take lightly. Instilling our Yankee core values so close to Yankee Stadium, where many of these players hope to play one day, is a special privilege. My family and I are super excited for the challenge and cannot wait for June to roll around.”

David Adams – Manager
Adams joins Staten Island after making his managerial debut with the Gulf Coast League Yankees West in 2018. In 2017, he began his professional coaching career as the defensive coach with the Gulf Coast League Yankees East. Adams was selected by the Yankees in the third round of the 2008 First-Year Player Draft. He made his Major League debut on May 15, 2013 becoming the first Yankee to debut on his birthday. He appeared in 43 Major League games for the Yankees in 2013. Adams made his professional baseball debut with Staten Island in 2008 where he played 67 games at second base and hit 4 home runs with 31 RBI. He spent a total of nine seasons in the minor leagues playing 2008-13 with the Yankees, 2014 with the Orioles, 2015 with the Marlins, and 2016 with the Blue Jays. He batted .282 with 45 home runs, 341 RBI, and 347 runs scored over 701 games played. Adams attended the University of Virginia where he was named to the Baseball America Freshman All-America Second Team and a Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American.

Travis Phelps – Pitching Coach
Phelps returns to Staten Island for a fourth consecutive season after making his pro coaching debut with the team in 2016. Last season, Phelps steered the pitching staff to a NYPL best 2.60 ERA. In his first two seasons as Staten Island’s pitching coach, he guided the pitching staff to back-to-back playoff appearances while boasting the NYPL’s lowest team ERA in 2017 at 2.64 and third lowest in 2016 with a 2.82 ERA. Phelps’ staffs have thrown two of the franchise’s three no-hitters, including a home-opening no-hitter in 2016 and a four-pitcher combined no-hitter in 2017. Prior to joining the Yankees organization, Phelps ran a baseball training facility in Florida for three years before being a sports agent for almost a year. Drafted in the 89th round of the 1996 draft by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Phelps made his MLB debut with the Rays in 2001. He spent two seasons with Tampa, posting a 3-4 record in 75 games (99.2 IP) with a 3.99 ERA and two saves out of the bullpen. Phelps also made 4 relief appearances for the Milwaukee Brewers in 2004. In total, Phelps played 11 seasons in MiLB for the Rays, Braves, Brewers, Reds, Rockies, Cubs and Astros organizations. Before hanging up his cleats in 2009, Phelps played four seasons of independent baseball with Camden, Newark and York.

Ken Joyce – Hitting Coach
Joyce enters his second season as the Staten Island hitting coach. 2017 was Joyce’s first year in the New York Yankees organization when he was with the Class A Charleston RiverDogs. Joyce’s first position in professional baseball came as a volunteer bullpen catcher with the AA Portland SeaDogs (Marlins) in his hometown of Portland, ME. He got his first professional coaching position with Portland as the team’s hitting coach in 1996. In 1997, Joyce got his first taste of the New York-Penn League (NYPL) as the Marlins assigned the Portland native to the Utica Blue Sox as the team’s hitting coach. He was promoted to the team’s manager for the following two seasons, recording a 77-74 record while leading his club to the playoffs once. Joyce moved on to independent baseball from 2000-01 as a coach for the Catskill Cougars for one season and as the manager of the Adirondack Lumberjacks with a 26-28 record for one season. He returned to affiliated ball in the Toronto Blue Jays organization where he coached for eight seasons (2002-09). His first two seasons in the Blue Jays system were as a hitting coach for the rookie level Medicine Hat Blue Jays then for the AA New Haven Ravens where the team claimed the Eastern League’s highest batting average. Joyce was elevated to manager of the Class A Charleston AlleyCats in 2004 where he managed in the league’s all-star game and led the club to a playoff appearance with a 84-56 record. Joyce managed the Class A Lansing Lugnuts from 2005-06 posting a 142-134 record with one playoff appearance. His final three seasons with the Blue Jays organization where spent as a hitting coach with the AA New Hampshire Fisher Cats for two seasons then the AAA Las Vegas 51s for one season where he guided the team to a Pacific Coast League-best in batting average. Before joining the Yankees organization in 2017, Joyce spent seven seasons (2010-16) in the San Francisco Giants organization as a hitting coach, spending one season with the AAA Fresno Grizzlies and six seasons with the AA Richmond Flying Squirrels. As a player at the University of Southern Maine, Joyce set an NCAA record with seven hits in eight at-bats in a Regional Tournament game in 1985. He returned to his alma mater as an assistant for three seasons where the team claimed a Division III National Championship.

Tyson Blaser – Defensive Coach
Blaser returns for his second season with Staten Island serving as the team’s defensive coach. He joined the Yankees organization as a coach in 2017 where he was a coaching assistant for Triple-A Scranton Wilkes Barre. Previously he was the head coach at United Township High School in Iowa from 2015-2017. The Yankees originally signed Blaser as a non-drafted free agent in 2011. Blaser spent four seasons in the organization reaching as high as the Double-A level. In total he batted .263 with 21 doubles, 1 home run, and 48 RBI in 135 games. Blaser played four seasons at the University of Iowa, where he was a four-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree.

Jon Becker – Athletic Trainer
Becker enters his third season in the Yankees organization where he has spent each season as the trainer for Staten Island. Previously he served as an athletic trainer for HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Illinois and Nashville Community High School in Illinois. He interned with the Puget Sound Collegiate League in 2014. Becker graduated from McKendree University in 2013 with a B.S. in Athletic Training.

Daniel Smith – Strength & Conditioning Coach
Smith begins his third season in the Yankees organization and his second as the strength and conditioning coach for Staten Island. He served in the same role for Rookie-level Pulaski in 2017. Prior to joining the Yankees organization, Smith served as the assistant strength and condition coach for Western Kentucky University in 2016 & 2017 and the University of South Florida in 2015 & 2016. He also interned at Penn State in 2015 and Gannon University in 2014 & 2015. Smith graduated from the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford with a B.S. in Sports Medicine in 2014 and earned his M.S. in Sport and Exercise Science from Gannon University in 2015

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