DeShields, Tunnell and Pickler Join Staff; Benavides Returns
CINCINNATI – Cincinnati Reds President of Baseball Operations Dick Williams today named Freddie Benavides bench coach, Delino DeShieldsfirst base coach, Lee Tunnell bullpen coach and Jeff Pickler game planning & outfield coach for new manager David Bell. In addition, Billy Hatcher will return to the organization as minor league outfield/baserunning coordinator.
Benavides, 52, DeShields, 49, Tunnell, 58 and Pickler, 42, are the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth coaches added to Bell’s Major League staff, joining pitching coach Derek Johnson, hitting coach Turner Ward, third base/catching coach J.R. House and assistant hitting coach Donnie Ecker.
Benavides spent the last 5 seasons on the Major League coaching staff and the last 3 as first base coach. He spent the 2014 and 2015 seasons as the club’s infield coach. Before he joined the Reds coaching staff, Benavides worked the previous 15 years in the club’s minor league system, including parts of 4 seasons as a manager, 6 seasons as player development field coordinator and 7 seasons as infield coordinator. He was selected by the Reds in the second round of the June 1987 draft and made 219 Major League appearances over parts of 4 seasons with the Reds, Rockies and Expos.
DeShields, in 2018, marked his 10th season in the Reds’ organization, serving as the club’s roving bunting and baserunning instructor. From 2010-2017, he managed in the Reds’ minor league system at Class AAA Louisville, Class AA Pensacola, Class A Dayton and Rookie Billings. DeShields enjoyed a 13-year big league career with the Expos, Dodgers, Cardinals, Orioles and Cubs.
Tunnell returns to Cincinnati after spending the previous 10 seasons in the Milwaukee Brewers organization. He worked as the Brewers’ bullpen coach in each of the previous 6 seasons and before that, served as Milwaukee’s minor league pitching coordinator from 2009-2012. Tunnell was a member of the Reds’ organization from 2006-2008, first as the club’s bullpen coach in 2006, followed by 2 years as a professional scout. From 1997-2005, Tunnell was in the Rangers organization as a minor league pitching coach for 7 seasons and minor league pitching coordinator for 2 seasons. He went 22-28 with a 4.23 ERA in 132 games over 6 Major League seasons with the Pirates, Cardinals and Twins.
Pickler spent the last 2 seasons on the Minnesota Twins’ Major League coaching staff. He was the coach and coordinator of Major League development. Pickler oversaw outfield instruction, advised all coaches and players on game preparation and strategy, and coordinated communication between the Major League staff and player development. He played 8 seasons in the minor leagues with the Brewers, Rangers and Rockies.
Hatcher spent the last 13 seasons as a coach on the Reds’ Major League staff.