Eckerd College - BR Bullpen

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Eckerd College

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Division-II College World Series runner-up in 1977

Players who went here

Eckerd College is an NCAA Division II School that plays in the prestigious Sunshine State Conference. Eckerd is located in St. Petersburg, FL, just thirty miles south of Tampa. The Head Coach at Eckerd is Bill Mathews, who played at Eckerd and graduated from the school in 1979. Eckerd has had several alumni who have played baseball professionally. In 2005, Ryan Searage was selected in the 18th round of the Major League Baseball Draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates. The previous year, Billy Evers, the son of former Tampa Bay Devil Rays bench coach Bill Evers, also an Eckerd alumnus, was selected by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays as a right-handed pitcher. Florida Marlins reliever Jim Mecir is an Eckerd graduate, as well. Josh Beauregard ('03) had a successful year in Independent ball in 2005, following a release from the Oakland Athletics. Former Eckerd All American Bobby Darula is currently in the Cincinnati Reds organization and has made it as high as AAA. The most famous baseball alum from Eckerd is former All-Star Steve Balboni, who hit 181 home runs in his major league career. To this day, Balboni still holds the Kansas City Royals' single-season home run record. Other notable alumni include Brian Sabean, general manager of the San Francisco Giants, Brian Butterfield, Joe Lefebvre, and Carlos Tosca.

Eckerd was once a powerhouse Division II program, but has struggled in recent years.

[edit] Coaches

[edit] The School

Eckerd College, formerly Florida Presbyterian College, is a private 4-year liberal arts college at the southernmost tip of St. Petersburg, Florida, in the Tampa Bay. It serves roughly 1750 traditional students, as well as a similar quantity of non-traditional students through its Program for Experienced Learners (PEL) program.

Florida Presbyterian College was founded after World War II as part of the growth of post-secondary education in response to returning GIs seeking college education. The United Presbyterian Church (USA) and the Prebysterian Church (US) worked together to found the college, getting a charter granted by the Florida legislature in 1958 and opening in 1960.

In 1971, Jack Eckerd donated $12.5 million to the college, the largest gift the college had received to date. Mr. Eckerd's contribution ensured the survival of college. In 1972, the board of trustees changed the name of the college to Eckerd College in recognition and gratitude of Mr. Eckerd's support.

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