Reds name new Dragons manager
By Marc Katz
Monday, October 13, 2008
DAYTON Jamie Dismuke, who has been with the Reds organization almost from the day he was taken in the 12th round of the 1989 free agent draft, today was named manager of the Class A Dayton Dragons as they prepare to enter their 10th season.
Dismuke will be joined by two former major leaguers, hitting coach Todd Benzinger and pitching coach Rigo Beltran, to form an all-new staff for the Dragons.
"Jamie has been with us a long time and he has related well with the players," said Reds director of development Terry Reynolds. "He works hard, and he knows what we want. He told us he wanted to do it (manage) and he showed us he could (finishing the last month of this season as Class AA Chattanooga's manager)."
Donnie Scott managed the Dragons the last two seasons (and five in all) with Darren Bragg as his hitting coach and Doug Bair as the pitching coach. Scott and Bair were let go by the organization, while Bragg was retained in another coaching capacity.
Dismuke played nine seasons of minor league ball before becoming a hitting coach with Chattanooga in 1999 after playing a year in Italy.
He also managed the Lookouts the last month of this season when manager Mike Goff unexpectedly quit for personal reasons.
Dismuke's best season as a player was 1993 when he made the Southern League All-Star team, hitting .306 with 20 home runs and 91 RBIs. He also played parts of three seasons in Class AAA, including 1996 when he was a part of the Toronto organization.
That 1996 season when he was also with the Detroit organization along with his year in Italy, are the only two he spent out of the Reds' organization.
Benzinger was selected in the 4th round of the 1981 draft by the Red Sox and played in the minors most of seven seasons before advancing to Boston in 1987. He also played parts of three seasons with the Reds, and was their first baseman during the championship 1990 season.
"Todd has been with us as a guest instructor at spring training," Reynolds said. "He's also a proven coach at other levels. He coached the Cincinnati Steam in the Collegiate League this summer and he has coached girls basketball. He's going to be the girls coach at Lakota East. He's a coach."
A native of Dayton, Ky. (just across the border from Cincinnati), Benzinger attended New Richmond, Ohio, High School. He also played for Kansas City, the Dodgers and finished his major league career with the Giants in 1995.
During nine major league seasons, Benzinger hit .257 with 66 home runs and 376 RBIs. His on base percentage was .301 and slugging percentage .386.
Beltran, who spent the last two years as pitching coach for the Gulf Coast Rookie League Reds, spent parts of five seasons in the majors with St. Louis (1997), the Mets ('98-99), Colorado ('99-00) and Montreal (2004). He also pitched a year in Japan.
"This is Rego's third year with us," Reynolds said. "He's very experienced as a player, is bi-lingual and he had a lot of the pitchers who will come to Dayton next year. He earned a promotion."
A Tijuana, Mexico, native, Beltran attended high school in San Diego and college at the University of Wyoming. He was drafted in the 26th round of the 1991 draft by St. Louis.
Mostly a starter in the minors, Beltran pitched in 78 major league games covering 106 1/3 innings all in relief compiling a 2-3 record and 4.40 ERA.