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Hickey to return as pitching coach despite no contest DUI plea

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Jim Hickey was retained Thursday as
pitching coach of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, three days after he
pleaded no contest to charges of driving under the influence and
leaving the scene of an accident involving property damage.

Hickey, who agreed to a one-year contract to complete manager
Joe Maddon's staff for next season, was arrested after a Sept. 30
accident in which he drove his pickup truck into the back of a
vehicle driven by a Devil Rays bat boy near Tropicana Field.

"I'm extremely grateful for the opportunity to continue
coaching for the Rays," Hickey said in a statement released by the
team. "Last month, I let down my family, the organization, and the
Tampa Bay community. I am truly sorry for my actions."

The team said in addition to the court-ordered 50 hours of
community service that Hickey has already completed, the pitching
coach will perform extra community service under the direction of
the club.

"Ever since the incident, Jim has shown contrition and has
taken full responsibility for his actions," Devil Rays executive
vice president Andrew Friedman said. "We are confident he has
learned from his mistakes, and we are ready for him to resume his
responsibilities with our club."

Hickey joined the Devil Rays in October 2006 after spending 16
seasons in the Houston Astros organization.