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Cubs hire Johnson as minors pitching coordinator

CHICAGO – The Cubs have hired Vanderbilt assistant Derek Johnson as their minor league pitching coordinator.

Johnson spent the past 11 seasons as the Commodores' pitching coach, helping develop Tampa Bay star David Price and also helping the 2011 team reach the College World Series.

Price, the No. 1 pick by Tampa Bay in 2007, is a three-time All-Star. He won 20 games this past season.

The 2011 Commodores were the first from Vanderbilt to reach the College World Series.

Two pitchers on that team were selected the early picks in the amateur draft that year, with Sonny Gray going to Oakland at No. 18 and Tampa Bay taking Grayson Garvin at No. 59.

Johnson also helped develop first-round picks in Mike Minor (seventh overall, Atlanta, 2009), Casey Weathers (eighth, Colorado, 2007) and Jeremy Sowers (sixth, Cleveland, 2004) as well as Jensen Lewis, a third-round pick by Cleveland in 2005 who has pitched four seasons in the majors.

The Cubs announced the hiring Tuesday.

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