PORTLAND – To replace the longest-tenured manager in Portland Sea Dogs history, the Boston Red Sox dipped into their Double-A affiliate’s teal-colored baseball past Wednesday.
Kevin Boles, the son of the man who sent Portland such early Sea Dogs luminaries as Charles Johnson, Edgar Renteria, Luis Castillo and Kevin Millar, will manage the Sea Dogs in 2011.
Boles, 35, takes over from Arnie Beyeler, who was promoted to manager of Triple-A Pawtucket after four years in Portland.
The rest of Portland’s staff remains intact. Dave Joppie, 45, returns for a fourth consecutive season as hitting coach, and Bob Kipper, 46, is back as pitching coach for the second straight year and fourth overall.
Paul Buchheit also returns for a second season as athletic trainer.
Boles, who spent the previous two seasons in the South Atlantic League as manager of the Greenville (S.C.) Drive, is no stranger to Hadlock Field. He spent much of the 1997 season with the Sea Dogs and Manager Fredi Gonzalez as a bullpen catcher on summer break from the University of South Florida.
John Boles, who as farm director of the Florida Marlins originally hired Gonzalez, spent two stints as Florida’s field manager, finishing up the 1996 season after Rene Lachemann was fired and returning in 1999 after Jim Leyland resigned.
The Sea Dogs were affiliated with Florida for their first nine seasons, from 1994 through 2002, before hooking up with the Red Sox.
Kevin Boles returned to college in 1998, earned a degree in communications and played one season of pro baseball after the Cubs drafted him in the 42nd round that June.
He began his managerial career two years later with the Gulf Coast Marlins, then worked in the Kansas City and Minnesota organizations before joining the Red Sox following the 2007 season.
“He’s a nice little tie to the past,” said Ken Joyce, the Portland native whose pro baseball career also took flight after a stint as a Sea Dogs bullpen catcher. “He’s very good, just like his dad. Very well-prepared, a student of the game. Obviously he’s been around the game his whole life, but for me the big thing is that he communicates well with the (players).”
Joyce and Boles managed against each other in the Class A Midwest League in 2005. Joyce was with Toronto’s affiliate in Lansing, Mich., Boles with the Twins’ club in Beloit, Wis.
Next summer they’ll be reunited in the Eastern League, with Boles in Portland and Joyce as hitting coach for San Francisco’s Double-A club in Richmond, Va.
“He reminds me of John — straight shooter, very good communicator and a no-nonsense type of guy,” Joyce said. “I’ve always heard good things from players who have had him.”
The elder Boles, who is in the Sea Dogs Hall of Fame, is now a special assistant to the general manager in Seattle. Gonzalez is the new manager in Atlanta.
In 10 minor-league seasons, Kevin Boles has an overall record of 602-557 for a winning percentage of .519.
His predecessor, Beyeler, went 282-283 in four seasons with the Sea Dogs, leading them to the playoffs in 2007 and ’08.
Beyeler takes over in Pawtucket for Torey Lovullo, who left after one season to become the first-base coach in Toronto under its new manager, John Farrell, the former Red Sox pitching coach.
Staff Writer Glenn Jordan can be contacted at 791-6425 or at: