Jim Gazzolo column: Berkman transitions from player to coach – American Press

Despite spending 15 years within the primary leagues and profitable a World Series, Lance Berkman is a rookie as soon as once more.

The former Houston Astros fan favourite who performed 12 years with the membership is again in his baseball house the city and again within the sport he loves.

Berkman is in his first season as the top trainer of Houston Baptist and he’s finding out the sport from a unique viewpoint.

“It is easier to be a player,” Berkman stated. “I am learning this job on the fly for sure.”

The College Baseball Hall of Famer brings his suffering Huskies into Joe Miller Ballpark this weekend for a Southland Conference collection towards McNeese State. HBU is 6-15 as league play is ready to start.

“I’m enjoying coaching for sure,” Berkman stated. “I wish the record was better and we were off to a better start, but the game is still fun.”

Having a participant like Berkman training within the league is certain for the Southland. He brings the league and HBU rapid consideration and larger credibility.

“It is great to have people like him in our league,” stated McNeese head trainer Justin Hill. “It shows the interest and investment by baseball people and school leaders is growing. It’s great to have that kind of commitment.”

Hill stated it’s going to be amusing for his Cowboys (11-10) to play towards this sort of giant title with an area fan following. It can also be one more reason for lovers to come back out to the sport.

“As long as it’s not me pitching against him, that would not be too good for us and nobody would want to see that,” stated Hill, who used to be a glass in school for LSU. “They would have a huge advantage there.”

Now it’s Hill who has the enjoy edge, having gained the remaining two SLC convention championships.

“That’s the type of program we are trying to build,” Berkman stated of the Cowboys. “We are excited to go over there and see where we stand. It has been a long time since I played in Lake Charles.”

Berkman is finding out that endurance is a key on the subject of development a program.

“It is like a puzzle you have to try and solve,” he stated. “You have to understand that they aren’t going to be like you and I have to figure out how I can best teach them.”

But Berkman didn’t get again within the sport merely to cross alongside his wisdom of the sport. He has extra to provide his avid gamers.

“To me the game of baseball is second to having an impact on these kids’ lives,” Berkman stated. “I want to help them avoid making the same mistakes I have made.”

Berkman has stated he’s getting lend a hand from Houston and the baseball neighborhood.

“You can’t do it all by yourself,” Berkman stated. “Having a recognizable name in the city of Houston helps, but it’s the community itself that is a big part of what we hope to do here.”

Building a program is one thing as regards to the center of the 15-year primary league veteran. He helped do it whilst a participant at Rice, the place he used to be a part of that program making the nationwide level.

Berkman led the Owls to their first look within the NCAA postseason in 1995 and their debut shuttle to the College World Series two years later. He gained his World Series ring as a member of the St. Louis Cardinals in 2011. Turning HBU right into a winner is subsequent on his to-do listing.

“I love the idea of taking something and building it into your own,” Berkman stated.

The 46-year previous will have completed so much all the way through his baseball occupation, however on the subject of being a school head trainer, he’s playing being a rookie as soon as once more.

Jim Gazzolo is a contract creator who covers McNeese State athletics for the American Press. Email him at

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