Aug. 23, 2011
HUNTINGTON, W.VA.- The Marshall baseball program welcomes back former players, Andrew Blain and Tyler Gatrell, as they return to the Thundering Herd to join the coaching staff. Blain will be working mainly with the outfield and pitching as an assistant coach and serve as a liaison with the strength & conditioning department. Gatrell has been named Director of Operations and will help Head Coach Waggoner with the business side of the program.
Blain graduated from Marshall in 2008 with a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science, and in 2010 with a Master’s of Science in Exercise Science/Cardiac Rehabilitation. He is currently pursuing a Master’s of Arts and Teaching degree in Health/Physical Education. For the past year, Blain lived in Washington, PA working for the Jefferson Regional Medical Center as an Exercise Physiologist in Cardio-pulmonary rehabilitation.
Blain was a left-handed pitcher for the Herd from 2005-2009. He led the team in ERA as a freshman in 2006 with a 2.25, and again as a senior in 2009 at 2.35. He is currently third at MU in career appearances with 82. Blain was also the Herd Challenge champion his sophomore year and received the baseball leadership award in 2007 and 2009.
Head Coach Waggoner talked about Blain, saying, “I’m very excited to have Andrew Blain join our staff this year. Andrew and I have talked ever since he graduated about coming back and helping the program. I know Andrew wants to become a college baseball coach and I respect what Andrew did here on and off the field. He was a true leader in the program and one of the hardest workers I have ever been a part of. The players will benefit having Andrew as a part of this coaching staff.”
Gatrell will be returning to the baseball program to take over as Director of Operations. He will be working closely with Coach Waggoner in the business aspects of the Marshall University baseball program. This past year Gatrell signed with the Kansas City Royals after finishing his senior season with the Herd. He played professionally for the Royal’s farm team, the AZL Royals. During his time with the Royals, he was the only reliever in the league to make the Arizona League All-Star team after finishing as the league leader in saves (12) and strikeouts per 9 innings (+17).
While with the Herd, Gatrell was a member of the record setting 30 win team in 2008. He is ranked second all-time in career games pitched and in games pitched in a single season. He collected the Baseball Team Leadership Award in 2008 and was a Cam Henderson Scholarship Award winnder and MU Scholar Athlete of the Year Award Finalist in 2009.
Gatrell graduated cum laude from Marshall with a Bachelor’s in Accounting and Legal Enviroment in December of 2010. He will be pursuing a master’s in accounting in the fall and hopes to take up a professional career in public accounting.
“It’s great having the two former players come in here”, commented Coach Waggoner. “Tyler just finished playing pro ball. He was a part of a Kansas City organization, where he was an all-star. When he was playing here, I felt like he was the MVP of the program his senior year and a guy who competed every time he went out there. He will be able to help me in all phases of the business side of the program. So we are excited as a coaching staff to bring these two guys back. They understand what our program is about, in the development end and helping me with the younger recruits.”
The Marshall baseball team is set to start their season with the Coastal Carolina Tournament, February 17, 2012.