Dodgers Minor League Fourth Coaches – Full Season

A few years ago the Dodgers and perhaps other MLB teams developed a minor league coaching system that included fourth coaches. That is, a coach listed in addition to a manager, a pitching coach and a hitting coach. There had already been a system of roving coaches and instructors but now a fourth coach is listed for all Dodger affiliates.

Their duties rarely seem to be revealed and initially it was thought that the fourth coach would be Spanish speaking to help with the transition of so many young players coming out of Latin America. That no longer seems to be the case but all Dodger minor league affiliates do have a Spanish speaking coach on their roster. For some , the fourth coach role has morphed into a bench coach position. That is the role for Jeremy Rodriguez with the OKC Dodgers and Pedro Montero with the Tulsa Drillers. Other fourth coaches work with hitters, infield players, outfield players, etc. 

Both Jeremy Rodriguez and Pedro Montero have previously been profiled.


Rancho Cucamonga Quakes – Elian Herrera 

Herrera was born in San Pedro de Macoris, Dominican Republic, a city known as the “Cradle of Shortstops”. During his playing career he played some shortstop but more so at second base, third base and in the outfield. 

He was originally signed by the Dodgers as an amateur free agent in 2003. He then spent the next ten years in the organization before being called up to play with the Dodgers in 2012. In his first 30 games with the Dodgers he hit .305 before settling in to hit .251 over 67 games. 

In 2013 Herrera appeared in only four games with the Dodgers before being claimed off waivers on November 4 by the Milwaukee Brewers. He played two seasons with the Brewers in 69 games for the 2014 campaign and 83 in 2015 in which he posted a combined triple slash of .253/.289/..376. 

A switch hitter, he was originally signed by the Dodgers as a catcher but eventually evolved into a utility player capable of playing every infield spot other than first base and all three outfield positions. Being a utility player was not his own personal option.     

“I was a catcher when the Dodgers signed me,” said Herrera, who was batting .250 in 12 games at Nashville. “When they first started moving me around to different positions, I was like, ‘Ah, I don’t      want to do this. I just want to be at one position and show what I can do.’”

His versatility gained him more time on the Brewers 25-man roster. He actually caught bullpen sessions for the Brewers when catching depth was becoming an issue for them due to injury and suspension. Brewers manager, Ron Roenicke, was most appreciative of  Herrera’s versatility. 

“Herrera can bunt, steal bases. He has some speed, a good arm. If suspensions come down, the    catching part is going to be big. Center (field) is big, too. We don’t have anybody else who can play center.”

He finished out his playing career with short stints in Oklahoma City in 2016, Japan in 2017 and Mexico in 2018. Now 34, Elian Herrera is back home  and begins his first year as a coach in the Dodgers organization.

Great Lakes Loons – Jason Bourgeois

Bourgeois was born in Houston, Texas and attended high school at Forest Brook High School in Houston. He was selected by the Texas Rangers in the 2nd round of the 2000 First-Year Player Draft.

He has played all or part of 19 seasons in minor league baseball and part of eight seasons in MLB with the White Sox, Brewers, Astros, Rays and Reds. In all, he has played for 25 different teams during his professional career.

At the minor league level he has played 1681 games including 41 in Mexico in 2018. He is best known for his time with the Charlotte Knights of the AAA International League. Bourgeois, who has played for the Knights in 2007, 2008, 2016, and 2017, is among the franchise leaders in a number of categories. He is third in hits (401), third in games played (363), third in at-bats (1,397), third in runs scored (190), second in stolen bases (71), and tied for second in triples (11). He is only the third player to ever reach the 400-hit mark with the Knights.

At the MLB level he has played 317 games in which he posed a triple slash of .253/.300/.326. The highlight of his MLB career was playing in his hometown of Houston. In 2011 he had his best year as he hit .294 and stole 31 bases in 93 games with the  Astros.    

“Anytime you get to play in the big leagues it’s a great opportunity, but playing (in your      hometown) is  the ultimate goal,” said Bourgeois, who now resides in Cypress which is just about 20 miles from downtown Houston.

An additional bonus in his 2011 season was that he again became a teammate with fellow outfielder Michael Bourn. They are long time friends who played little league baseball together.

On June 29, 2015 Bourgeois got razzed a bit in New York. He had just been called up by the Cincinnati Reds and entered the game in the sixth inning. His unique last name apparently lacked recognition at Citi Field and was listed in the Cincinnati lineup as “No. 30, Unknown, RF.” It was quickly corrected, but not quick enough.   

“Of course, the fans in New York will let you know about it,” Bourgeois said  when back at    Great American Ball Park. “I’ll make a name for myself. I love that stuff. It keeps me motivated.”

Following his 2018 season in the Mexican League, the 37-year-old Bourgeois signed on with the Dodgers to begin his coaching career.

This article has 45 Comments

  1. Kids can get through high school having coaches from tee ball on up that never did anything more than hit ground balls or fly balls to their players. The players in the minor leagues need to be taught mechanics and basically need tutors.

  2. The more coaches (teachers/instructors) the better in MiLB. The 4th coach can be a surrogate Dad, player’s priest/rabbi, psychologist, English teacher, baseball skills coach… Sometimes (often times), coaches are placed on an affiliate where they can best help the group of players expected to be assigned their. It is not an accident that John Shoemaker is moved around quite a bit. Sometimes (often times) a player is assigned to an affiliate that will best help him achieve his goal.

  3. Maybe I’m just not following it that closely this year, but this seems like one of the most boring Spring Trainings in recent memory. I feel like the standouts have been Urias & The Young Arms [like Gonsolin], but other than that, it’s been mostly rehab updates and barely simmering roster competitions. Maybe this is good for the long serious road ahead. I like the line in “Free Solo” about fear: you can’t eliminate it but you can “expand your comfort zone” to include it.

    1. Probably because the offense has been slow recently, there’s really only one new face in Pollock, and there’s only two position battles with contenders for those battles having spent a significant amount of time on the MLB roster already. No big breakouts from any position player prospects and great pitching isn’t as exciting as great hitting.

      All the position players are basically the same with the exception of the flamboyant Puig replaced by blue collar Pollock. Only two hitters are above average right now in Turner and Kike. Hopefully they change gears now that there’s only 11 more days remaining in Arizona.

      Since there’s nothing better to do, let’s look at the Dodgers position by position so far this Spring.
      C – The Marnes mashup looks like it could be a strength going into the season. Barnes looks more like the 2017 version so far and Martin has looked good in limited action.

      1B – Muncy is full of walks and Ks so far. Freese looks like an aging veteran. Baety and Rios are tapping at the door, but not knocking it down. This could be a problem. Muncy has hit a lot of hard ground balls, I think he’s just missing right now.

      2B – A few days ago CT3 looked like he was a solid choice. He cut his Ks and was hitting and getting on base. Kike has since gone on a tear and Taylor started flailing at pitches. One of the two will be ready to contribute when the season starts.

      3B – JT is carrying the offense, nothing new to see here.

      SS – Seager is slow playing his recovery and keeps his short spring streak in tact upping his performance with the shortest spring of all. No idea who will be manning the most important position when games start to count.

      LF – Verdugo and Pederson look like they’re fighting for a bench spot instead of fighting for the starting job. Verdugo has an edge in the contact department, where Joc leads with walks and extra bases. No surprises here. I’m wondering if the FO is regretting dumping two other outfielders who are killing it this spring.

      CF – Pollock is fitting in nicely with his high K low contact teammates. I was hoping for more. But, like his teammates is starting slowly.

      RF – Bellinger is producing at similar rates as he did at the beginning of last year. Like Muncy, he looks close and is hitting hard ground balls lately.

  4. Be glad to get past all this speculating and get down to the meat and vegetables of the long grind. (I’d say potatoes but I’m on the low carb diet)

    1. I met a guy that only ate freshly picked organically grow fruits and vegetables. I ask him how he felt. He said, “hungry”.

    2. Dirk,
      I’m with you. It is pretty much the same team as last year. Just Pollack in CF. So can’t wait for opening day.

  5. If we only look at the “A” games played then it will always look like a slow ramp up until the final two weeks of spring training. Players are only getting 3 at bats a game and playing only every other day. Most of the real work is done on the practice fields.

    We have to visit spring training and walk around, smell the grass (especially for those visiting from cold spring states), and hope someone will tell us what they are seeing all around camp. We should now start to see players play consecutive days in “A” games. I wish there were more coverage of the “B” games and more coverage of what is going on in the back fields.

    Has anyone seen players work on bunting, etc.?

  6. The players are just getting ready for a 162 game grind – most have been through this several (many) times before. I have never cared about the Spring scores… and neither does Doc or Friedman. They want to get it over with and head into the season with a healthy and in-shape 25-man roster. Many of these players are on different paths, but when the bell rings, they will be ready. These games mean nothing.

    Corey is hitting in minor league games.

    CT3 is struggling as is Max Max.

    JT can get out of bed and double before his feet hit the floor.

    Kike is hot.

    Verdugo is adding energy to the team.

    Belli is looking comfortable.

    All are getting adjusted to the new Hitting approach and dogma. It won;t happen overnight and some players will “get it” quicker than others.

    All of this has been expected for me. Frankly, I am surprised the Dodgers have a winning record.

    1. Pitching looks pretty lights-out to me, although they are usually ahead of hitters at this point. Have to think we’ll have a top three NL staff again this year.

      What have our rankings been during this six-year run?

      1. Rank in All of MLB:

        2013 – #2
        2014 – #6
        2015 – #5
        2016 – #5
        2017 – #2
        2018 – #2

        Then there is this from Jonathan Mayo of

        Having a team compete annually in the big leagues or having a continually strong farm system — it’s typically an either/or situation. Just look at teams like the Royals and Cubs as examples of organizations that had top systems then won a World Series. Generally, the expense of going for it all is the drying out of the pipeline.

        One big exception to the rule has been the Dodgers. They’ve made the postseason six years in a row, playing in the World Series in the last two. At the same time, they have the only farm system to be ranked in the top 10 by MLB Pipeline in each of the nine preseason and mid-season rankings since the start of 2015, including coming in at No. 7 this spring.

        But then you read this kind of stupid stuff at other sites:

        Don’t think for a second that I think this is all Roberts, in fact, I think if Roberts had his way he would be doing all things more old school. His leash is so short his feet barely touch the ground. I think this whole thing is all Friedman, and although many of you don’t see it, this thing has a lot to do with the ego of Friedman. His ego drives him to stay on the Small Market Method and prides himself of turning s___ into gold. He wants a bargain and he searches for bargains, he is a owner of a reclamation squad.

        87 wins on top and 84 on bottom.

        1. Good stuff. Now we just need to get hot for the last 7 games of the season. Or hotter than the other guys.

        2. Why doesn’t that guy go directly to Doc and tell him he is not man enough to tell AF that he is the manager and he will manage his way. Gabe Kapler was the odds on favorite to be the manager, but Doc blew management away in his interview. I think that he espoused much of the same theory in winning that AF subscribes to, or he would not have been hired. I think a lot more of Doc than him being a lap dog for AF. Absolute Horse****. That does not mean that I agree with every move Doc makes. Just as I did not approve of every move Tommy or Smokey made. The game is different now, no matter how much those of us who grew up appreciating the game in the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s want to complain about the changes.

          Cheap as in trading 5 prospects for Manny Machado or three prospects for Yu Darvish or three highly regarded pitching prospects for Hill and Reddick? There were a few pretty decent prospects in those packages. Cheap as in $80MM for a reliever, $64MM for an aging 3B, and $48MM for an aging pitcher…all of whom are performing.

          Does he mean turning sh** into gold such as CT3 and Max Muncy? Or Kike’ and Barnes? Gimme more!!

          What it all boils down to is bitterness for not spending $300MM to $350MM for Manny Machado or Bryce Harper. But then they would find something else to bitch about, Haters just gonna hate.

  7. Bum – Dodgers + bunting… What the heck is that??? I’ve bitched yearly about the lack of bunting in the MLB.. .
    To me it could be a great shift killer or just plain moving people over..
    Camelback Sunday with my green and blue on!!!

    1. These next couple games against the Reds should make it a little more interesting tomorrow afternoon, and on Friday night.

      Because like 59 pointed out, it looks like most of the Red’s regulars other then Votto and their third baseman, seem to be getting their timing to hit a little faster.

      But as everyone knows, Votto didn’t have a very good year last year, so that might concern me, if I was a Red’s fan.

      They are starting Sonny Grey against us tomorrow afternoon, and Tanner Roark on Friday night.

      As much as I talked about Taylor’s strike outs yesterday, he doesn’t lead this team in strikeouts.

      I totally agree with Mark that there is going to be a different learning curb for our players, getting to learn our new hitting instructor’s hitting approach, and dogma.

      But Kike and Barnes were not the only Dodgers working with our new hitting instructor in the off season, but both Barnes and Kike, seemed to come to spring training ready to hit, and work and practice on their approach.

      I think our new hitting instructor’s approach is quite obvious, so it would be nice to see some of the hitters that struggled in these situations last year, to at least adjust their swings, in these situations.

      Like Rick and others pointed out yesterday, because it isn’t going to get easier, as the regular season approaches.

      Because the pitching is only going to get tougher not easier.

      And like Mark pointed out today, not every player on this team is going to have the same learning curb, so you would like to see those with a tougher learning curb, to at least adjust to the different situations, even in these spring training games.

      Because like 59 mentioned, the regular season in coming quickly, because there are only 11 more days left in Arizona.

  8. Anyone out there – Doesn’t the old addage “the pitchers are ahead of the hitters” hold true now or ever…
    I’m sorta like Alfred E. Newman and his infamous “What Me Worry” in regards to our offense…
    Freese will be just fine…

  9. Since Urias and Buehler have innings limits and Kershaw is dealing with an injury, what about adding Stripling to the mix and starting the season with a combo package where each pitcher only pitches a maximum of 4 innings.

    Kershaw could start a game and pitch 4 innings followed by Urias who also goes 4 innings. Buehler could start and go 4 followed by Strip who goes 4. That way we can keep all four pitchers stretched out without any of them accumulating a significant amount of work. Hill, Ryu and Maeda can pitch on their normal schedules. Seems like a no brainer to me – of course I have often been accused of having no brain.

  10. John – Having been told by the media that Kersh threw 20 pitches, all fastballs at about 80% per Honeycutt does not give me a warm feeling… What’s the hurry???
    Just go with Hill, Ryu and Strip and see where were at and let the others get ready in town or at Camelback… Or can we do that???

    1. peterj
      Kershaw always worries me now. He has a bad lower back and having one myself, as I have explained causes on to compensate with other parts of the body for strength. I think it is the root of his problem that has to be solved. I can’t recall if they did surgery or not, but perhaps they should. It is much different now than in the past.

  11. From Gammons:
    The Dodgers can afford to take it slowly with Clayton Kershaw, who still might be ready to open the season. Teammates point out that he worked so intensely this winter than his body was going to hit a temporary wall. The Dodgers are very good in their rehab programs, especially since Andrew Friedman brought Ron Porterfield west from Tampa Bay; two of Porterfield’s former rehab pitchers, David Price and Nathan Eovaldi, called Kershaw to tell him to completely trust Porterfield.
    The Dodgers also have unusual starting pitching depth. Another Porterfield patient, Julio Urías, looks ridiculously good, 94-96 mph, but with a newfound edge to go with his delivery and arsenal. “He looks very different, in a very good way,” says Friedman. This may be a year in which Buehler and Urías are held back to 150-175 innings but are dominant starters.
    And, while we’re on the subject of Dodger rehabs, Corey Seager’s body looks totally different. Gone is the thickness in his core, remaining is the bat speed and power and internal clock on defense. Families that want to develop athletes should get the Seager Brothers dietary and conditioning programs from this past winter.

    1. As much as I know this is not easy, especially for a trainaholic like Kershaw, Kershaw would probably be better off, practicing a little more moderation.

      Everyone’s body has a unique threshold, and I am sure Kershaw has tested his own body’s threshold, more then a few times.

      It would probably be a good idea like Gammons suggested, if the Dodgers could slow Kershaw down, and protect Kershaw from himself.

      With Corey, I can’t wait to see Corey once he is ready to take the field in the regular season, or before that.

      Although I know Corey may not get the results he might want to get from the start, I think he will not only have more power after his hip operation correction, I think he will also probably be quicker on the field, and on the bases, with the weight he has lost.

      But with that loss of weight, Corey is going to have to make sure he doesn’t wear down, as the season goes on too.

    2. I forgot about Ron Porterfield. He was hired last off-season (before 2018) as the Dodgers Medical Director and reports directly to Andrew Friedman. This is another excellent hire by AF.

  12. I have a meeting with George Stienbrenner IV later this month. He lives in Indy and owns an Indy Car team. He wants us to sponsor a car and I told him I’d talk to him, but we do the water treatment for a lot of race teams already and probably can’t draw lines in the sand, and besides that I’m a Dodger fan! i can’t deal with no damn Yankee. They still want to explore options… so OK. At least we can talk baseball. 😉

    We are also currently doing the home of a significant foot ball player. I can’t tell you who but with a little luck, you might guess it.

        1. Mark

          I hope your company continues to book many significant clients that just keep the word going, on how well your company treats their customers, and the advantages your different products can bring to someone’s life.

          1. Mark

            This is another well produced video.

            I think it is good that you are having a young business guy narrating your video, to reach out to the next generation.

            Especially someone that knows the different science that it takes, to have the right water for his business.

            I wouldn’t even think about using soft water in this way, as part of the process.

            Although I don’t think many people understand how much soft water can do for your skin.

            Forgot about the pipes, soft water makes you feel like you are coming out of the shower, already having lotion on.

            Not to mention what a difference in water, can do for one’s health.

        1. Mark

          To tell you the truth, the process that guy talked about in making his water just right, went over my head.

          But like with wine, it sounds like a complete science even with only the water.

      1. I have Sinatra silver dollars. Jerry Lewis gold cuff links from their days in Vegas. My Aunt was their personal maid at Ceasars Palace back in the day and the stories she told us were amazing. Cool guys.

    1. I sold games to Patrick Caddell who chatted with me. He just passed away. He worked for Pres. Jimmy Carter and was a very nice man who like playing war and strategy games in his adult life. He lived in VA and had a famous photo shaking Pres. Carters hand while not looking him in the eyes.

        1. On Ebay you sometimes get orders from famous people. If you reach out, they will talk to you. He did and was fun to chat with. He loved strategy games and was planning to purchase more, just before he passed. Very sad.

  13. If anyone is going to be in Denver April 8 – 11, I can get you into the National Craft Beer Conference.

  14. This is my story and I’m sticking to it.
    1. Doesn’t matter who pitches opening day, purely ceremonial and NOBODY will remember in October. With that said, throw Dick Mountain out there, he has been making guys look flat out foolish so far, he is dialed in big time.
    2.110% agree with Mark, Justin Turner can roll out of bed with a double. He is the KEY to the Dodgers coming out of the gate on fire. Him, Hill, Kershaw, are the old dogs who will bring up the future leaders this year,(Bellinger, Seager,Bueller)and show the way through the fire.
    3. If I hear one more time about Freidman being cheap, I am going to hurl my Dodger Dog in your lap. After the Harper drama, on SportsTalk LA, Roggin and Rodney couldn’t believe that Andrew offered 45 million dollars and 4 years for a guy that couldn’t hold Trout and Arenado’s jock strap. They called that insane, but at least Freidman tried. After following Freidman since he took power, I have learned that he is a patient poker player. Sometimes that bites him in the ass, but overall he has protected the Dodgers from 10 year albatross contracts. After watching most of the spring training games, he has a buttload of chips at the poker table come July 31st when we need That Guy.
    4. Not gonna back it off, we will be in the World Series again this year, and who knows what will happen, but all we have to do is get there and let the players take care of it

      1. Oh Arenado’s Jock 🙂
        1. I agree, who cares who pitches opening day. Never understood why it is Breaking News.
        2. Turner’s eyesight must be tremendous, like Ted Williams. The guy can plain out hit. You left out Julio in the Dodgers Future.
        3. But Harper can at least touch Trout and Arenado Jock Strap. He isn’t that bad. Is anyone worth what he is getting? No.
        4. Have you been to Vegas in the last few days, because it sounds like you have laid down some money on the Dodgers going the distance this year????? 🙂

  15. You know Ham, I think I do in my closet somewhere, next to Harper’s contract, which the Phillies in 4 years (like the D-bags with Grienke right now) will be bitching about financial flexibility. We can thank our cheap ass GM for our good fortune right now.

    1. I just watched those 4 guys on the Comedy Channel who pull pranks, and one joke they made one do was act like he was conducting an interview. During it, they had him pull out and wet Jock Strap and hang it on the desk in front of the person he was “fake” interviewing, to see the guys reaction.

Comments are closed.