Moab native's baseball journey finds him coaching for the Boston Red Sox
On April 1, after a 26-year journey through the minor leagues, Moab native Arnie Beyeler will finally slip into a big league uniform.
The promotion has yet to sink in for the new Boston Red Sox first base coach, part of recently hired manager John Farrell's new staff. He will also coach the outfielders.
"All of the people, all those who helped me on my way flashed through my mind," said the 48-year-old self-described baseball lifer. "When [Farrell] told me, it all came together.
"I feel like I'm ready for it."
It's been quite the journey for Beyeler, who managed Boston's Triple-A affiliate Pawtucket to the International League championship in 2012. It was Beyeler's second season as the Pawtucket skipper, following four seasons at Double-A Portland (Maine).
Beyeler has seen and experienced almost everything in baseball, including a cock fight behind home plate between games of a double header while playing in Mexico.
"Arnie has had a successful professional career as a player, coach and manager," said Farrell in a statement through the Red Sox. "This allows him to bring a wealth of experience to this position."
The upcoming season will be Beyeler's 10th in the Boston organization. He's also scouted, coached or managed for the Detroit, Texas, San Diego and New York Yankees farm systems.
In fact, the Yankees still owe Beyeler a World Series ring. As with all major league organizations, coaches throughout a team's minor league system are rewarded with a championship ring for their help in developing talent.
And Beyeler got one for the 1998 championship. Not so for the Yankees' 1999 title.
"I never got my ring when I went to the Red Sox [as a coach in 2000]," Beyeler said.
As an infielder, mostly second base in the Tigers' organization, Beyeler never made it past the Triple-A level, hitting .254 with 69 steals in six minor league seasons. Following his final year in 1991, Beyeler, now living in Florida, became a scout before being hired by the Yankees as a batting instructor and infield coach.
The right-handed 5-foot-9 infielder whose baseball hero was former Atlanta second baseman Glenn Hubbard graduated from Grand County High. Beyeler eventually played college baseball for Wichita State.
"It's been a long journey," Beyeler said. "When I got the job I went on Facebook, which I do to keep track of my children, and I couldn't believe all the people who left [messages of] congratulations."
Beyeler also feels fortunate that he was able to watch the Boston meltdown in 2012, which led to the firing of Bobby Valentine after one season, from Pawtucket.
"I was dealing with it on an everyday basis," he said. "My guys were up there playing. It gave the young guys experience. When things like all the injuries happen, the young guys get a chance to play."
A Triple-A manager's best moment comes when he sees the look on a player's face after learning he is going up to the big club. On April 1, when Boston opens the season in New York, it will finally be Beyeler's turn.
"Yankee Stadium is pretty cool," he said. "It's been a nice journey."
• Moab native and Grand County graduate Arnie Beyeler was hired as a first base and outfield coach for the Boston Red Sox.
• After playing six seasons of minor league baseball in 1991, Beyeler retired to become a scout and then a coach.
• Beyeler has worked for Detroit, Texas, San Diego and the New York Yankees, and has a career managerial record of 802-756.