Sept. 15, 2004
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Eric Parker has joined the Ohio State baseball team as a volunteer assistant, OSU head coach Bob Todd announced Wednesday.
“Eric brings a lot of baseball knowledge to our program,” Todd, who has guided Ohio State to 10 appearances in the NCAA tournament, said. “He was the coach of the freshman team at Upper Arlington and has coached a summer traveling team. He also played professional baseball with the Red Sox organization. All of his experience will make him an asset for Ohio State.”
Parker, who will work with the Buckeye outfielders and catchers, comes to Ohio State after serving as the head coach of the freshman team at Upper Arlington High School in 2003 and 2004. This past summer, he also served as the head coach of the Columbus Sharks Baseball Club, a select traveling team for 17 and 18-year olds from Columbus.
“I am excited to join the coaching staff at Ohio State,” Parker said. “I am looking forward to working with the players and helping them become better baseball players. The experience I gain by working with Coach Todd will be valuable for my career as a baseball coach.”
Parker, 30, played two seasons (1996 and 1997) at James Madison University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in kinesiology in 1997. He played his freshman and sophomore seasons (1993 and 1994) at the University of Virginia before transferring to JMU.
While in college, Parker played three summers in the Shenandoah Valley Collegiate Baseball League, spending the 1993 and 1996 seasons with the Harrisonburg Turks and the 1994 season with the Staunton Braves. He was a league all-star in 1994 and 1996. In 1995, Parker played for the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox in the renowned Cape Cod Collegiate Baseball League and was an all-star after leading the league with nine saves.
Parker was signed as an undrafted free agent with the Boston Red Sox and played the 1997 season with the Lowell Spinners Baseball Club in Lowell, Mass. He finished 3-0 with one save and a 3.24 ERA with 41 strikeouts in 23 innings for Lowell, a member of the New York-Penn League.
A 1992 graduate of Harrisonburg High School in Harrisonburg, Va., Parker returned to his alma mater in 1995 as an assistant coach for the varsity team. As a prep player, he won a school-record 25 games and is the school’s all-time career strikeout leader with 383.
Parker married the former Leann Behrens, who works as an assistant director of athletics communications at Ohio State, on Dec. 18, 1999. The couple resides in Lewis Center.