Gamecock baseball switches up roles of coaching staff
By: Mike Olson
In his year-end press conference Tuesday, head coach Mark Kingston announced that the coaching staff will see changes in responsibilities following a disappointing 2019 campaign.
These changes affect every coach on staff except for pitching coach Skylar Meade.
After spending two seasons as the assistant coach, hitting coach and recruiting coordinator, Mike Current will take over as the team’s director of player development, a role previously held by Trip Couch. Couch will be the team’s new recruiting coordinator and on-field coach while volunteer assistant coach Stuart Lake becomes the team’s full-time hitting coach.
Kingston says the purpose of these changes is to utilize everyone’s talents best. Having previously worked with Current, Kingston believes he can be best utilized in a role where he is closer to the team.
“Mike Current has done a really good job on the recruiting trail for us,” said Kingston Tuesday. “But with me, he’s always been close to me in terms of the inner workings of our program, and he has not been able to do that for the last two years. And I think that’s where he really helps me the most.”
Couch’s role may be new with the Gamecocks, but it is a job he is already familiar with. He previously spent nine years as a scout with the Arizona Diamondbacks, and he has all the confidence from Kingston who called him “one of the highest regarded talent evaluators in the country,” in his press conference Tuesday.
Undergraduate assistant, Justin Row, is graduating and moving on to the Cape Cod League where he is looking for a coaching position. Another former player, Sawyer Bridges, will be taking his place. Bridges pitched for the Gamecocks this past season but will no longer be playing due to injury.