BLUEFIELD — The Bluefield Ridge Runners baseball team announced three new additions to the 2021 coaching staff, on Wednesday.
Dennis Rasmussen has been named pitching coach, Angel Sanchez has been hired as hitting coach and Garrett Schilling is on board as Player Development coach.
Rasmussen joins the Bluefield staff with 12 years of major league playing experience under his belt. Rasmussen was selected by the California Angels with the 17th overall pick of the 1980 MLB June Amateur Draft. He made his Major League debut in 1983 and spent his 12-year career with five different teams, including the San Diego Padres, the New York Yankees, the Cincinnati Reds, the Chicago Cubs and the Kansas City Royals. In that time, Rasmussen recorded 835 strikeouts, went 18-6 while throwing 202 innings for the Yankees in 1986, and collected a 16-10 record for the Padres over 204.2 innings on the mound in 1988.
Rasmussen began his coaching career in 1996 as the pitching coach for the Butte Cooper Kings before working with the Charleston RiverDogs and Lowell Spinners in 1997 and 1998, respectively. Rasmussen played collegiate baseball at Creighton University where he tallied a 3.38 ERA and a school-record 84 strikeouts in 61.2 innings of work as a junior, and was named to the All-Missouri Valley Conference First Team.
Sanchez joins the Bluefield staff after working as a coach in the Los Angeles Dodgers and Red Sox organizations. He began his coaching career in 2015 as a bench coach for the Great Lake Loons and the Ogden Raptors before joining the Red Sox organization to serve as the first base coach for the Salem Red Sox. Most recently, Sanchez was the first base coach for the Portland Sea Dogs in 2019. Before coaching, he was selected in the 11th round of the 2001 MLB Draft by the Kansas City Royals and made his Major League debut in 2006.
Sanchez played in 185 Major League games across four different seasons with the Kansas City Royals, the Boston Red Sox, the Houston Astros, and the Chicago White Sox. During his playing career, he hit .254 with 54 RBIs.
Schilling joins the Appy League with a plethora of experience in the Bluefield community, having served as the Head JV and an Assistant Varsity Coach at Bluefield College since 2016. The former catcher also had a playing career at Bluefield College, playing his final two years of collegiate baseball for the Rams after transferring from San Diego Mesa Community College.
Schilling has also served as a head coach and recruiting specialist in the Palm Springs Collegiate League since 2017.