I apologize for it taking me so long to get the blog running again. However, you can expect frequent updates from here on out. The Bees are off to a solid start so far this season, posting an 8-9 record going into Wednesday’s game at the Quad Cities.
The Bees have a lot of new faces this year starting at the top with new manager Brian Rupp. Rupp takes over after four successful seasons in Idaho Falls, a Royals rookie league affiliate. He led the Chukars to the playoffs in 3 of the last 4 seasons. Brian was drafted by St. Louis in 1992 and played 7 seasons in the Cardinals minor league system. He resides in Florissant, MO with his wife, Stacie, and son Andrew. We’re all happy to have Brian here!
Jim Gabella, who managed the Bees the past four seasons, will be managing in Idaho Falls this summer. Right now, Jim is in Surprise, Arizona overseeing the Royals extended spring training. We wish Jim good luck!
Doug Henry joins the Bees’ staff as the pitching coach this year. You may recognize him as Doug played in the Majors between 1991-2001 with the Brewers, Mets, Astros, Giants, and Royals. The former relief pitcher recorded 29 saves for the Brewers in 1992. Doug and his wife, Monique, reside in Hartland, Wisconsin, with their four children, Danielle, Jason, Zachary, and Mikayla.
Ryan Long returns as the Bees Hitting Coach for the 2nd season. Ryan was a 2nd round draft pick by the Royals in 1991 and played for 10 seasons. He played in 6 games for the Royals in 1997, collecting his 1st Major League hit and RBI against “The Big Unit” Randy Johnson. Ryan’s wife, Olivia, is a regular visitor to Community Field.
Yoshi Kitaura also returns for his 2nd season in Burlington as the Bees’ trainer. Yoshi has worked with the Royals since 2003. He resides in Osaka, Japan, with his wife, Emi. J. Allan Potts is the new Strength and Conditioning Coach for the Bees. Allan is a University of Kansas graduate where he played football. He resides in Kansas City, Missouri.
Throughout the year, we will be introducing the players.