MiLB News-AAA

Toby Gardenhire Returns for Third Season as Saints Manager

Saints Steal Game from Storm Chasers with 4-3 Walk-Off Win

January 19, 2023 – International League (IL)St. Paul Saints News Release

ST. PAUL, MN – The role of a Triple-A manager is a difficult one. The revolving door of players coming through the clubhouse makes one wish they wore “Hello My Name Is” stickers upon arriving for each game. While the players give their all each game, their mind often wanders to the larger prize one step above. It’s a juggling act of getting players ready for the Major Leagues while at the same time trying to win the game you’re managing. Over the first two seasons as the St. Paul Saints manager, Toby Gardenhire has navigated that path exceptionally well. Gardenhire, the only manager the Saints have known since becoming the Minnesota Twins Triple-A affiliate, will return for his third season at the helm of the Saints. He will be joined by two returning coaches: pitching coach Cibney Bello and Defensive Coach Tyler Smarslok, both entering their third seasons with the Saints. Joining the coaching staff are Pitching Coach Peter Larson from Double-A Wichita, and Hitting Coach Nate Spears, who spent the last six seasons in the Boston Red Sox organization. Rounding out the staff are Strength & Condition Coach Cody Drouin, who returns for his second season, lead Certified Athletic Trainer Ben Myers (second season), Assistant Certified Athletic Trainer Taylor Carpenter (first season), AAA Clubhouse Manager/Assistant, Baseball Operations Matt Tramp (third season), and Coordinator’s, Baseball Technology Luke Ficek and Alek Hughes, both returning for their second seasons.


The 40-year-old Gardenhire has produced a winning record over his first two seasons as Saints manager, going 141-138. He earned his 100th victory as manager of the Saints on June 10, 2022. Last season, the Saints produced their longest winning streak in franchise history, rolling off eight straight from June 5-14 and closed the season on a five-game winning streak that vaulted the team into a tie for fourth place. He did all of this, while navigating through 89 different players. They were the fourth most prolific home run hitting team in the league, with 194.

In 2021 the Saints finished just 7.0 games out of the top spot in the Midwest Division and finished in the top third of Triple-A East with a .515 winning percentage. From June 26-August 21, when the Saints took over first place in the division, they were a league tying best 33-17. Following the first six weeks of the season, the Saints were the best hitting team…

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