John Kruk to coach varsity softball at Florida high school
Kruk, who also is an analyst at ESPN, will continue his work with the sports network when he takes over the team at Seacrest Country Day School next season. His daughter plays softball in the school district and next year, as a sixth grader, will be eligible to play on the varsity team. Kruk, who has already coached middle school baseball and was a varsity assistant, was unsure if she would play on his team.From the Naples Daily News:
To prepare for his new job, Kruk reached out to University of Florida softball coach Tim Walton and Alabama coach Pat Murphy for advice. The two have combined to win three Women’s College World Series titles. They told Kruk to coach the girls just like he would the boys.
“This is nothing new to me,” Kruk said. “Male or female, it’s no different. If you concentrate on fundamentals, play hard, be aggressive and try to eliminate mental mistakes you’ll be successful.”
The Seacrest softball team hasn’t had a lot of success since becoming a varsity program in 2009. The Stingrays made the FHSAA regional playoffs the past two seasons by virtue of playing in a three-team district (the top two teams make regionals), but had losing records both times.
Kruk will be the team’s fourth coach in as many years. He told the Naples Daily News that the turnover wasn’t fair to the girls and they deserved some stability with the program.
Kruk played 10 years in the majors — most with the Philadelphia Phillies — and retired in 1995 with a career .300 average and 100 home runs.
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