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Rutgers baseball promotes Mike Garza to Hitting Coach



Photo credit Tom Gilbert/Rutgers Athletics

On Friday, Rutgers announced that Mike Garza was being promoted from volunteer coach to full-time hitting coach with the program. He replaces Kyle Pettoruto, who was in the same role the previous four seasons for the Scarlet Knights and was hired by Cincinnati earlier this month. Garza assisted with hitters previously. In his new role, he will also continue to oversee the infield defense and take an active role in recruiting.

“Mike will enter his third year in our program and will take over the primary hitting responsibilities with our team,” head coach Steve Owens said. “As he did with our infield, Mike will establish strong relationships with our hitters and develop specific plans to help them perform consistently. He is excited to get to work on evaluating our strengths and building our 2024 offense around them.”

Garza has been a key factor in the Rutgers defense playing so well the two previous seasons. The Scarlet Knights were ranked fourth in the Big Ten with a .976 fielding percentage last season. RU also led the Big Ten and were sixth nationally with 54 double plays turned. Most impressive, Rutgers replaced its starters at every infield position.

In his first season in 2022, Garza helped Rutgers to having a Big Ten best .980 fielding percentage, including 0.985 fielding percentage in the infield.

Prior to joining Owens’ staff at RU, Garza was the coordinator of video and scouting for Virginia from 2019 to 2021. The Cavaliers went to the College World Series in his last season on the staff.

In 2018, Garza was an assistant coach at Navy.

Garza previously starred at Georgetown and was named First Team All-Big East selection in 2012. He was then selected in the 20th round of the 2012 MLB Draft by the Milwaukee Brewers. In total, Garza spent four seasons in the minor leagues with the Brewers.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. FlaRef

    July 22, 2023 at 9:56 am

    Looks like a great hire for the offense to complement the pitching staff rebuild! Go RU!

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