By Matt Williams
---- — One of Peabody High’s all-time baseball greats is getting a chance to manage and mentor some of the brightest young baseball stars locally and beyond.
The North Shore Navigators, the local Futures Collegiate Baseball League club, named Jon Cahill manager for the 2013 season, general manager Bill Terlecky announced yesterday.
An assistant coach at Endicott College, Cahill served as assistant coach and director of baseball operations in his first season with the Navs, a summer baseball team, last year. North Shore manager Richie Hebner was hired as a Double-A hitting coach in the Toronto Blue Jays organization, opening the door for Cahill to take over as manager.
“I am excited about the new position with the Navigators,” Cahill said in a team statement. “I love managing the game and all the strategic elements that come with each game. I want to thank Bill and Salvi Sports Group for believing in me and giving me this great opportunity. I had a great experience coaching under Richie Hebner last year, and like other managers I have coached with, I will take a little of Richie’s coaching style into my own as we try to bring home another championship to the city of Lynn.”
After leading Peabody to its only appearance in the state final in 1996, Cahill played four years of baseball at UMass-Lowell. A Hall of Famer for the River Hawks, he helped lead the team to its first Division 2 College World Series in 2001. Cahill then played more than 300 professional games in the Anaheim Angels’ organization, reaching as high as Double-A.
Beyond his experience with the Navs and current position assisting Bryan Haley at Endicott, Cahill managed the Traverse City Beach Bums for two seasons.
“While we will miss Richie, Jon will transition perfectly into his role as manager,” said Terlecky. “Cahill’s familiarity with the players, having recruited them to play here, as well as his experience as professional player, coach and manager combined with his past as a Collegiate All-American will resonate well with our players.”
Last year, the Navs finished in second place in their first season as members of the FCBL. They won a playoff series before falling to Nashua in the league championship.