New Indiana baseball coach Jeff Mercer has made a major addition to the IU baseball staff naming former MLB All-Star Scott Rolen as the Director of Player Development. Rolen was a seven time National League All-Star. Rolen’s MLB career spanned from 1996 to 2012 and he played for Philadelphia, St. Louis, Toronto and Cincinnati. He was a career .281 hitter with 316 home runs.
The Jasper, Indiana native did not play college baseball. Rolen made a major gift to IU back in 2013 in connection with the construction of Bart Kaufman Field.
— Indiana Baseball (@IndianaBase) July 18, 2018
Here is the full release from Indiana:
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Indiana baseball head coach Jeff Mercer has named former eight-time Gold Glove winner and seven–time National League All-Star Scott Rolen to his staff. Rolen will serve as the Director of Player Development.
As the Director of Player Development, Rolen will assist with on-campus recruiting in accordance with NCAA rules. In addition to collaborating with the coaching staff when preparing for practice and competition, he will also give valuable advice to players on lifestyle choices and making informed decisions when pursuing pro baseball careers.
“I couldn’t be more excited to add Scott Rolen to our staff,” said Mercer. “The impact Scott will have on the student athletes in our baseball program will be unique among college programs. The value for the staff and players, gaining knowledge daily from someone with such a historic career and who truly values the growth of young people, is special.”
For his MLB career that lasted from 1996 to 2012, Rolen played with four clubs (Phillies 1996-02; Cardinals 2002-07; Blue Jays 2008-09; Reds 2009-12), was a World Series champion (2006), and a Silver Slugger Award winner (2002). He was a lifetime .281 hitter with 2,077 hits, 316 home runs, 1,287 RBIs and scored 1,211 runs. In 2011, he became just the fourth third baseman to have 2,000 career hits, 500 doubles, 300 home runs and 1,200 RBIs, joining Mike Schmidt, George Brett and Chipper Jones in that group.
“I’ve enjoyed watching the success and development of IU baseball over the last 5 years under Tracy Smith and Chris Lemonis, ” said Rolen. “Hopefully I can be a positive contribution to future successes here in Bloomington. I’m excited to be a Hoosier.”
Rolen reached the major leagues for the first time in 1996 with the Phillies and was named the National League Rooke of the Year the following season. During the 1998 campaign with the Phillies, he won the first of his eight Gold Glove awards. The eight Gold Gloves rank third all-time amongst third basemen, trailing Hall of Famers Brooks Robinson (16) and Schmidt (10).
In 2002, he was traded to the St. Louis Cardinals and later that year earned the Silver Slugger Award, given annually to the best offensive player at each position in both the National and American leagues.
His 2004 season was one of the best of his career, as he hit .314 with 34 home runs and 124 RBIs, finishing first in the All-Star voting and fourth in the NL MVP voting while his team won the NL Central. Later that postseason, he hit a two-run home run in game seven of NLCS that proved to be the game-winner.
In 2006, he returned from an injury and hit .292 with 22 home runs and 95 RBI, as the Cardinals went on to win the World Series. He was a nominee for NL Comeback Player of the Year after missing 2015 with the injury.
A native of Jasper, Ind., Rolen attended Jasper High School and was named Indiana’s Mr. Baseball during his senior season in 1993. He additionally played basketball and tennis, and was a runner-up for Indiana’s Mr. Basketball. He was drafted by the Phillies in the 1993 MLB Draft.
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