Rolen named to IU baseball coaching staff

Herald File Photo
Scott Rolen, pictured here playing for the Cincinnati Reds toward end the of his MLB career, has accepted a position as the director of player development on Jeff Mercer’s Indiana University baseball coaching staff. In an official IU press release, Rolen said that he’s enjoyed watching the success of IU baseball over the past five years and is excited to contribute to future successes in Bloomington.

From Herald Staff Reports

After retiring from Major League Baseball a little over five years ago, Scott Rolen has found his way back into the sport of baseball — this time, in a completely new fashion.

On Wednesday, new Indiana University baseball head coach Jeff Mercer tabbed the Jasper native and Wildcat alum to serve as the director of player development on the Hoosiers baseball staff.

In his new role, Rolen will work with the coaching stuff when preparing for practice and game situations while also giving valuable advice to players on lifestyles and making informed decisions when pursuing pro baseball careers. Rolen will also get to assist with a little bit of on-campus recruiting.

“I’ve enjoyed watching the success and developed of IU baseball over the last five years under Tracy Smith and Chris Lemonis,” said Rolen in an official IU press release. “Hopefully I can be a positive contribution to future successes here in Bloomington — I’m excited to be a Hoosier.”

Indiana University and Rolen have connected in the past. In 2013, Rolen gave IU a ‘major gift’ in support of IU baseball and Bart Kaufman Field. Rolen said the contribution was in honor of his parents who are longtime educators and Hoosier fans.

Rolen enjoyed a long and fruitful MLB career that spanned 16 seasons while playing with four different teams — the Philadelphia Phillies (1996-2002), the St. Louis Cardinals (2002-2007), the Toronto Blue Jays (2008-2009) and the Cincinnati Reds (2009-2012).

During his time in the MLB he recorded 2,007 hits, 316 home runs, 1,287 RBIs and scored 1,211 runs. He was a World Series champion with the Cardinals in 2006 and has received several accolades such as a Silver Slugger Award in 2002, the National League Rookie of the Year in 1997 and was a seven-time All-Star and an eight-time Golden Glove award winner.

While at Jasper, Rolen was a three-sport athlete participating in baseball, basketball and tennis. He was named Indiana’s Mr. Baseball during his senior year in 1993 and was also the runner-up for Indiana’s Mr. Basketball award.

Rolen originally had committed to playing college basketball for the University of Georgia over other esteemed programs such as Oklahoma State but after being drafted by the Phillies in the 1993 MLB draft, the club was able to woo him away to play baseball instead of basketball.

“I couldn’t be more excited to add Scott Rolen to our staff,” said Mercer in the IU press release. “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.”

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