University of Michigan has hired 3-time Bull Cup champion pitching coach Matt Shank as their new manager for the 2018 baseball season, the Ann Arbor-based school announced today.
Shank spent his entire coaching career with the Montreal Metros, solidifying a reputation for success with the organization that has time and time again produced some of the best pitching in the Bull League over the years.
Since 1995, Montreal’s record is 1087-783, for a .581 winning percentage, which is the best in the league. Shank was pitching coach for all of those years, coaching and mentoring top-tier pitchers like Ricky Terrazas, Judson Martel, Yoshiaki Fujimara, Paul Stone and many others.
The Michigan Wolverines will need all the help they can get, if early assessments about the team are correct. The Big Ten team only has two players who are ranked in the top 10 of their position, Dana Mashaw at SS (4th), and reliever Tim Austin (9th).
The team’s rotation is headed up by 22-year-old southpaw Joe Atkinson, who despite having great work ethic will need to seriously surprise scouts if he is to find himself drafted next year.
Shank comes in to replace Mark Stady, a 32-year-old who graduated a baseball management program at University of Lethbridge, but who has not managed a baseball team before. However the dean of the sports program was rumored to be concerned that Stady was not a right fit for the organization.
NCAA Division I baseball opens February, and the Wolverines start the season away at University of Washington for a two-game series, before returning to Michigan to play state rivals, Michigan State Spartans.