By Ray Hamill — Humboldt Crabs Hall of Famer Jeff Giacomini is returning to the team as an assistant coach, the club announced this week.
Giacomini, who was a three-time team MVP in his three seasons playing for the Crabs, will join manager Robin Guiver’s staff this summer, replacing Brad Morgan, who has stepped away because of family commitments.
“Jeff has an impressive baseball background and we’re excited that our players will benefit from his experience and leadership,” Crabs President David Sharp said. “As a former Crabs player and coach he uniquely understands the positive impact Crabs baseball has had on our community since 1945. We’ll be happy to see Jeff back in a Crabs uniform this summer.”
Giacomini, who is also the head coach at Eureka High, coached two years previously with the Crabs, as an assistant alongside Guiver under former manager Matt Nutter in 2012 and 2013.
The news means Giacomini will be stepping down as president of the board for the Humboldt B52s, with the club still undecided on whether they be fielding a team this summer.
“I’m very excited to be back coaching with Guiver again and I’m looking forward to it,” Giacomini said. “It’s kind of bittersweet with everything (regarding the B52s) and how that’s going. But it’s a better fit for me right now and I’m so excited to work with some of the top Division-I talent in the the United States.”
Giacomini, who is a Ukiah High graduate, played two years professionally with the Wichita Wingnuts in 2010 and the Calgary Vipers in 2011 and was inducted into the Crabs Hall of Fame in 2014.
As an assistant coach with the Crabs, he will be working with the catchers and hitters.
“I’ve got 20 years of catching experience, so I may as well put that to good use,” he said.
Giacomini admits he is stepping away from the B52s with a heavy heart.
“There were just a lot of issues outside of our control,” he said. “With everything it takes year round, I just don’t have the bandwidth to be able to continue that and be able to run the organization the way it would need.”
And he says he is looking forward to focusing on coaching again.
“I just want to coach,” he said. “Where my heart really lies is in coaching. That’s my passion.”
Sharp also paid tribute to Morgan for all he has done for the team.
“I’ll personally miss seeing Brad Morgan around the ballpark every game,” the club president said. “Brad is one of the most positive and classiest coaches I’ve been around. The Crabs are grateful for all the summers he spent with us as a player and as a coach and we look forward to seeing Brad and his family back at the ballpark as fans this summer.”