COLUMBUS, Ohio – New Ohio State baseball coach Greg Beals rounded out his coaching staff today by naming former Major Leaguer and Ohio State pitching standout Josh Newman as the team’s volunteer assistant coach.
“It is an honor and a privilege to be back,” said Newman, a four-year Ohio State letterman between 2001-04. “My journey began here at The Ohio State University and as a professional player you need a home base. I made mine Columbus and OSU. I worked out in the off season right here on campus. I stayed close with the baseball program and athletic support staff. They were and still are my support. Now I will be happy to provide that same support to the new recruits and players of this great university; to welcome them to the Buckeye family just as warmly as I was welcomed.”
The announcement of Newman joining the staff means that former Buckeyes now hold two of the four coaching positions with the baseball program. Beals, named Ohio State’s new head coach June 17, had previously named former Buckeye reliever Mike Stafford as his pitching coach. Stafford has coached with Beals the past seven seasons at Ball State University. Kent State graduate Chris Holick was named an assistant coach July 14.
“I am very excited about Josh joining our coaching staff,” Beals said. “He brings great experience at the professional level and at the collegiate level here at Ohio State that will be extremely valuable to our program and pitching staff. His addition further emphasizes the importance of pitching to the future of Ohio State baseball and the attention that our pitchers will receive. Josh’s conviction about Ohio State and what we in the baseball program are doing will be very valuable.”
A native of Wheelersburg, Ohio and a 2004 Ohio State graduate with a degree in history, Newman ranks third all-time on the Ohio State career wins (32), innings pitched (369.0) and strikeouts (291) lists. He was a freshman All-American in 2001 and a three-time all-Big Ten honoree, including a first-team selection in 2004. He posted eight victories in each of his four seasons as a Buckeye starter and in the process posted a 17-8 record vs. Big Ten Conference foes. He had 17 complete games during his career.
A three-time Academic all-Big Ten honoree, Newman helped the Buckeyes to a 161-84-1 record, a Big Ten regular season championship (2001) and two Big Ten tournament championships (2002 and 2003) in his career. Ohio State went to three NCAA Regional tournaments and hosted an NCAA Super Regional (2003) in his four years in Columbus.
Newman has pitched and performed well in as big a game as any Buckeye in the last 40-plus years, picking up a Game 1 win in the Auburn Regional in 2003 over host Auburn and also starting Game 1 of the Columbus Super Regional one week later against Missouri State.
Newman was drafted in the 19th round of the 2004 MLB First Year Player Draft and signed a professional contract with the Colorado Rockies. He had previously been drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in 2003 but he elected to stay at Ohio State for his senior season.
The Wheelersburg High School graduate spent three seasons in the minors before making his Major League debut against Philadelphia on Sept. 12, 2007, and making the Colorado Rockies World Series roster that season. He jumped between Triple-A Colorado Springs and the Rockies in 2008 before being claimed off waivers by the Kansas City Royals in July. Newman pitched in 14 games over his two seasons between Colorado and Kansas City, making his last appearance in September 2008.
After retiring from professional baseball in March of 2010, Newman went on to start his own baseball instruction business, Pitch TO Pitch, which provides individual and team lessons to Central Ohio youth. He resides in Dublin, Ohio, with his wife, Sarah, and daughter, Ayda.
“I have been blessed,” Newman said. “I have a beautiful family; I received a great education/athletic career from OSU; I fulfilled a childhood dream to play professional baseball and now I get to continue in the sport…to be a part of other baseball players’ dreams. No one will work harder and be more committed to see those through. I am proud to a part of the Buckeye family once more.”