Sources tell FOX 17 that Andrew Graham has been selected as the new manager of the West Michigan Whitecaps with an official announcement coming this week, perhaps as early as today. Graham is 31-years old and had spent the last three seasons as the manager of the Connecticut Tigers. He replaces Larry Parrish, 60, who returned to the Toledo Mud Hens after spending last season managing the Whitecaps.
“He’s a big time motivator,” said Devon Travis, who played for Graham in 2012. “He does a great job of making sure everybody is ready to play everyday. He’s perfect for those cold snowy days in April when it’s tough to get yourself going.”
Graham is no stranger to the Tigers organization or the West Michigan Whitecaps. Graham was drafted as a catcher in the 19th round of the 2003 MLB June Amateur Draft. He spent parts of two seasons with the Whitecaps in 2004 and 2005. Graham spent a total of six seasons playing in the Tigers organization and that recent playing experience is seen as a bonus to some of his players.
“(Graham) is an awesome player’s manager,” says Jeff Holm, who played for Graham in 2011. “He understands the game and still carries the passion of a player.”
A native of Sydney, Australia, Graham also played for the Australian team in the World Baseball Classic in 2006 and 2009.
Prior to managing in Connecticut, Graham served as a coach with the Gulf Coast League Tigers in 2009 and 2010. Graham was also the Tigers roving minor league catching coordinator for the 2010 season.