LAS VEGAS — Omar Vizquel’s first year as manager of the Class A Winston-Salem Dash was such a success he is receiving a promotion inside the White Sox organization.
NBC Sports Chicago has learned that Vizquel will manage the Double-A Birmingham Barons in 2019.
In 2018, his first season as a manager at any level, Vizquel was named the Carolina League’s manager of the year after leading the Dash to a first-half title and an 84-54 record.
Vizquel, 51, oversaw the development of many of the White Sox top prospects last season, including Dylan Cease, Luis Robert, Blake Rutherford, Micker Adolfo, Luis Gonzalez, Gavin Sheets and Nick Madrigal. Many if not all of those players have either already made it to Birmingham or will likely find their way there next season, and Vizquel will be there to lead them once again.
Having a manager who played winning baseball at the major league level and can share that experience with the White Sox farmhands is a huge bonus for the rebuild. Vizquel made the postseason six times with the Cleveland Indians, reaching the World Series in 1995 and 1997.
And thanks to his leadership, he helped create a winning culture with the Dash.
“It didn’t matter that it was the minor leagues. That team was something else,” White Sox pitching prospect Zach Thompson said on a recent edition of the White Sox Talk Podcast. “I think that team is a sign of what we’re doing with the White Sox organization. I think it’s a sign of what’s to come for us. That team clicked. Everyone was best friends. We all got along.”