Lance Berkman Joins Athletic Program as Assistant Baseball Coach
Baseball legend Lance Berkman has joined the University of St. Thomas - Houston Baseball Program as an Assistant Coach.
"The obvious thing that will stick out to most people is that the name Lance Berkman is synonymous with Houston baseball, and this is another remarkable impact he's made in the long history of the sport in our city," Baseball Head Coach Clayton VanderLaan said. "While we’re excited to be a small part of that legacy, there’s no question that he's been brought on staff because he's a tremendous coach and a true baseball guy."
Berkman's Illustrious MLB Career
Berkman had an illustrious MLB career where he played 15 seasons for the Houston Astros, New York Yankees, St. Louis Cardinals and Texas Rangers. He was drafted in the first round by the Houston Astros where he spent the majority of his career. The six-time MLB All Star won a World Series championship and the National League Comeback Player of the Year Award with the Cardinals in 2011. At the conclusion of his career, Berkman hit 366 homeruns and recorded 1234 RBIs. He is the all-time leader in Houston Astros history for On-Base Percentage (.410), second for career homeruns and fifth for hits with 1648.
Berkman's Ties to Houston
Berkman's ties to Houston run much deeper than his seasons with the Astros. He also played college ball at Rice University where he was named National Player of the Year and earned first team All-American honors. During his collegiate career he helped lead Rice to their first ever College Baseball World Series and set multiple NCAA records with his bat. After playing, Lance returned to Houston to coach at Second Baptist School. In 2016, he led them to a TAPPS 4-A state championship.
Berkman Joins the UST Coaching Staff
"I'm thankful for the opportunity to help coach at UST,” Berkman said. “Coach VanderLaan and his staff have a great energy and passion for baseball that is contagious. Coaching college baseball has always been a dream of mine, and it will be exciting to help build the foundation for a championship program."
Berkman will join VanderLaan and fellow Assistant Coach, Tyler Bremer. The trio looks to add to the culture already established and continue to build a premier program in the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference (SCAC).
"One other thing I think is important to note, is that Lance is a first-class person through and through" VanderLaan said. "He is exactly the type of example we want our players to mimic and model as they grow and develop as men."
The Celts will return to the diamond Feb.12, when they will travel to Brownwood, Texas, to take on Howard Payne University.