LANCASTER, LANCASTER COUNTY—Butch Hobson, one of the most successful managers in Atlantic League history, has been hired by the Lancaster Barnstormers for the 2011 season, it was announced Tuesday by team president Jon Danos.
Hobson, 59, replaces Tom Herr, whose contract was bought out by the Barnstormers earlier this month.
In addition to being the field general, Hobson will run the baseball operations and prepare for a future front office position.
Hobson has previously managed in the Atlantic League with the Nashua Pride from 2000-2005 and with Southern Maryland the last three seasons. He won his only Atlantic League title in 2000 and has grabbed three Atlantic League Manager of the Year honors (2001, 2005 and 2008). Overall, his record in the league stands at 654-549 (.544). Seven of his nine Atlantic League teams have reached the playoffs with four advancing to the final round.
Remaining in Nashua for two years after the Pride switched to the Cam-Am League, Hobson won a pennant and a Manager of the Year honor in 2007.
A former Major League third baseman, Hobson began his managerial career with the New York Mets Class A team in Columbia, South Carolina in 1987. After two years there, he joined the Boston Red Sox minor league system in 1989, spending one year with Class AA New Britain and two years with Class AAA Pawtucket.
Hobson took over at Fenway Park, replacing Joe Morgan, to begin the 1992 campaign and led Boston for three seasons, winning 207 games as a big league skipper. The Alabama native also spent time managing in the Philadelphia farm system.
Following a career as a two-sport athlete at the University of Alabama, Hobson was selected by the Red Sox as their eighth round draft choice in 1973. He made his Major League debut, September 7, 1975, returned to Class AAA Rhode Island to begin 1976, then settled in as the everyday third baseman at Fenway Park by the 1976 All-Star break.
Hobson put together his signature season in 1977, finishing fourth in the American League with 112 RBI and eighth with 30 homers. He added 28 homers and 93 RBI in 1979. He later played for the Angels and Yankees and compiled a career .248 average with 98 homers and 397 RBI.
"We are excited to have Butch in Lancaster," said Danos. "His track record on the field speaks for itself, and I look forward to being part of this new opportunity."
"This is a good move for me and my family," said Hobson. "Lancaster is a beautiful area, and I've always enjoyed talking with the fans there. They always treated me well as a visiting manager. I will do my best to get the Lancaster team back to the playoffs."
Hobson has named his 2011 coaching staff. Hitting and bench coach Lance Burkhart will be retained. Burkhart, 35, caught for the Barnstormers from 2005-2008 and was with Southern Maryland in 2009 before returning to join Herr's staff last season. The pitching coach will be former Toronto Blue Jays right-hander Marty Janzen. Janzen, 37, pitched for Hobson parts of four seasons in Nashua then rejoined him in 2010 as the pitching coach for Southern Maryland.
Replacing Hobson in Southern Maryland will be Patrick Osborn, who has been the Blue Crabs third baseman the past three seasons. Osborn worked closely with Hobson in the Blue Crabs dugout in 2010 and occasionally took the reigns of the team.
The Lancaster Barnstormers will enter their seventh season as a member of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball in the spring of 2011. Home games are played at Clipper Magazine Stadium in downtown Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Please call 717.509.HITS (4487) or visit LancasterBarnstormers.com for more information.