Press Release Baseball Australia
Baseball Australia is proud to announce the coaching staff that will lead Team Australia at the 2017 World Baseball Classic. Team Australia’s coaching staff is littered with decades of Major League Baseball experience, and is one of the most experienced coaching staff at the World Baseball Classic.
Jon Deeble – Manager
One of the highest profile figures in Australian Baseball, Deeble leads Australia for the fourth time at the World Baseball Classic. Deeble took Australia to a Silver Medal at the 2004 Athens Olympics as well as overseeing the Australian team that defeated the Arizona Diamondbacks at the 2014 MLB Opening Series. Deeble spent 2016 as heavily involved as ever in national team programs, with the World Baseball Classic Qualifier, the Honkbalweek tournament in The Netherlands as well as a coach of the Silver medal winning U23 World Cup team.
Tony Harris – 3rd Base Coach
Another long-time member of the national team setup, Tony Harris returns for his fourth World Baseball Classic. Harris’ roles have varied in his 17 years involved with the national team, including On-Field Coordinator at three World Cups. Harris was an integral part of the National Team setup in 2016, having coached at the 2016 World Baseball Classic Qualifier, 2016 Honkbalweek and the 2016 ABL All-Star Game. Harris also lead the U23 World Cup team to a silver medal at the 2016 World Cup in Mexico.
Michael Collins – 1st Base Coach
At 32 years of age, Canberra Cavalry manager Michael Collins has gained experience beyond his years in various roles with the Australian National Team and in US Minor League Baseball. Having reached AAA-level as a player in 2009, Collins was immediately touted as a manager, and took control of his first Minor League team as a 27 year old. Collins lead the Canberra Cavalry to the 2012/13 ABL Championship as well as a historic title in the 2013 Asia Series.
Craig Shipley – Bench Coach
After making his MLB debut in 1988, Craig Shipley has become one of the most influential and well-known figures in Australian baseball. Shipley currently is based in the US and holds the prestigious role of Special Assistant to the GM at the Arizona Diamondbacks, a role that Shipley has held for four years. Shipley was an assistant coach at the 2006 World Baseball Classic, and his experience will be vital in Team Australia’s pursuit for a second round berth.
Graham Lloyd – Bullpen Coach
A two-time World Series winner with the New York Yankees, Graeme Lloyd will make his third appearance as a coach at the World Baseball Classic. A member of the 2004 silver medal winning Athens Olympic baseball team, Lloyd has spent time at the highest level both as a player and a coach and continues his time with the Australian National Team following the World Baseball Classic Qualifier in February 2016.
Phil Dale – Pitching Coach
After starring as a player in the Australian Baseball League, Phil Dale returns to Team Australia as the Pitching Coach. Dale began his tenure as Pitching Coach at the 1999 Intercontinental Cup, where Australia claimed the Gold Medal. Since then, Dale has been the Pitching Coach at the last three World Baseball Classic’s, as well as the silver medal winning 2004 Olympic baseball team.
Kevin Jordan – Hitting Coach
After serving as the Hitting Coach for Australia’s 2016 Honkbalweek campaign in The Netherlands, Kevin Jordan will make his return to Australia’s coaching staff for the 2017 World Baseball Classic. Jordan was a feature in the Philadelphia Phillies infield for six years after making his debut in 1995 and has spent time as a hitting coach in the Phillies organisation. Jordan was a part of Jon Deeble’s staff at the 2016 ABL All-Star game and the 2016 World Baseball Classic Qualifier, and is a career .258 hitter in the MLB.
Andrew Graham – Assistant Coach
The newest member of Team Australia’s coaching staff for the World Baseball Classic is NSW native Andrew Graham. Graham spent four seasons in the Detroit Tigers Minor League system where he reached AAA level. Graham also played for the Sydney Blue Sox between 2010-2012. Graham has had significant experience playing on the international stage, with three consecutive World Cup appearances between 2005 and 2009, as well as playing for Australia at the 2006 and 2009 World Baseball Classic.
Australia will travel to South Korea on the 24 February for a pre-tournament camp, before taking on Japan, China and Cuba in Round 1 of the World Baseball Classic in Tokyo beginning on March 6.