Randy Wells has stepped down as head pitching coach of the Gateway Grizzlies. Wells made the decision after realizing the time commitment would affect the time he spends with his family.
“I knew going in what the requirements were but feel that it’s unfair to the organization and my family to not do the job to the fullest,” Wells said. “I knew that with Richard Barrett on staff, capable of stepping in to do the job, it was a good move for me and it was the right decision for me to step down. This decision allows me to spend time with family and my son this summer. With the age that my son is at, I want to be around as much as I can after being away for winter and spring baseball.”
Grizzlies’ General Manager Steve Gomric respects Wells’ realization.
“As the General Manager and a father of two, I understand where Randy is coming from,” Gomric said. “The time commitment for me in the summer is substantial. If I had to travel with the team, I couldn’t imagine how I would raise a family.”
Grizzlies’ manager Phil Warren also explained his understanding of Wells’ situation and expressed his excitement in still keeping Randy involved with the organization.
“I support Randy’s decision. The travel involved with coaching at the professional level is demanding,” Warren said. “I’m excited that Randy will still be involved with us. He will be coaching our catchers on a volunteer basis at home games. He will also fill in as a volunteer bench coach during home games. Our players will most certainly benefit from his coaching.”
The Grizzlies have promoted Richard Barrett to head pitching coach for the 2017 season. Barrett was recently hired as the assistant pitching coach after serving as a volunteer instructor for the Grizzlies in 2016.
The former closer spent six years in independent baseball and holds two franchise records for the Grizzlies, including most games pitched and most saves.
“Richard will excel in this role. I look forward to his contributions, on and off the field,” said Warren. “I expect Richard will establish himself as a professional coach, as well as influence our culture at the Gateway Grizzlies.”
Barrett is looking forward to his first season as head pitching coach.
“I’m very excited about taking over the head job. I have to thank the Grizzlies and Phil for giving me this opportunity. I know it’s going to have its ups and downs, but I’m more than ready to handle it,” Barret said. “Working with Randy Martz and Phil last year really helped me see the ins and outs of managing a team. With that being said, there’s more to learn and experience every day, but most of all, I’m ready to take the reins and lead these guys in the right direction.”
Grizzlies’ Opening Day is May 12th at GCS Credit Union Ballpark against the Florence Freedom. First pitch is set for 7:05 pm. Season and group tickets are now on sale! For more information, call the Grizzlies’ box office at 618-337-3000.