The defending American Association champion Winnipeg Goldeyes baseball team has hired former pitcher Jamie Vermilyea as the new pitching coach.
Vermilyea, 30, retired as a player after the 2011 season and spent last season as manager of the Maui Na Koa Ikaika (Maui Strong Warriors) of the independent North American League. He led the team to a 36-30 record and a berth in the playoffs.
Vermilyea was the Goldeyes' closer in 2011 when he posted a 3-3 record with a 1.81 ERA and 15 saves in 45 appearances.
Goldeyes manager Rick Forney said in a statement he is "thrilled to have Jamie back."
"I wanted to find somebody that I was familiar with and that was familiar with the organization as well. Jamie was the first person that came to mind," he said. "He's not that far removed from pitching, which I think helps, because he's going to be able to relate to everybody.."
Vermilyea replaces Bill Pulsipher, also a former Goldeyes pitcher, who was Winnipeg's pitching coach for most of the 2012 season but left in late August for personal reasons.
"Being more specific towards being a pitching coach is going to help me out," Vermilyea said in a release. "I can implement what I would like to have happen with the pitching staff."
Vermilyea was a ninth-round draft pick of the Toronto Blue Jays in 2003 and spent seven seasons in the Toronto organization.
He had two MLB appearances as a September call-up with the Blue Jays in 2007. His minor-league career included parts of four seasons at triple-A.
His 45 appearances in 2011 are tied for second-most all-time by a Goldeyes pitcher in a season, behind Brian Beuning's 51 appearances in 2008.
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