Campus Life

Texas A&M Names Michael Earley New Head Baseball Coach

Director of Athletics Trev Alberts announced the former Texas A&M hitting coach has been named the 21st head baseball coach.
By Texas A&M Athletics Communications July 9, 2024

a photo of a man in a plaid suit jacket standing behind a glass podium in front of a maroon Texas A&M backdrop
Texas A&M Baseball Head Coach Michael Earley speaks at a press conference on Tuesday, July 2, 2024.

Racardo D. Davis/Texas A&M Division of Marketing & Communications


Michael Earley, former Texas A&M hitting coach, has been named the 21st head baseball coach at Texas A&M, Director of Athletics Trev Alberts announced Sunday afternoon.

“I am happy to announce that Michael Earley has been hired as our new Aggie baseball head coach,” said Director of Athletics Trev Alberts . “Michael is a very talented coach and recruiter, but what stood out to me was his character and the relationships he has built with his current and former players. During our interview process he was really impressive. I think it helps that he knows our current roster, which finished second in the country, and he also knows Aggieland and the 12th Man. I am excited about the future of Aggie baseball. Please help me welcome home Michael and his family back to Aggieland.”

“My family and I couldn’t be more excited for this opportunity,” said Earley. “Thank you, General Welsh and Trev Alberts for putting your trust in me. Being a part of this University and this program are a dream come true. I will not let you down. See you in Omaha!”

Earley served as the hitting coach for the Aggies for the past three seasons, helping the squad to two College World Series appearances and a national runner-up finish in 2024. In his tenure, Earley developed Texas A&M into one of the most powerful and potent offenses in the SEC. In 2024, the Maroon & White set program records for home runs with 136 and walks with a nation-leading 422.

In his three seasons, the Aggies have belted 306 homers, logged 704 extra-base hits and drawn 1,178 walks.

“Michael Earley is talented, hard-working, and absolutely committed to Aggie baseball,” said President Mark A. Welsh III. “Not a bad combination when you consider the huge support he has from his players. Add in the street cred he enjoys across collegiate baseball as a position coach, hitting coach and recruiter, and you realize we now have a budding superstar leading Aggie baseball. I’d like to thank Trev Alberts for the hard work leading to this hire. I’d also like to thank our incredible Aggie baseball players for contributing to this search in such a respectful and impactful way. Finally, welcome home Coach Earley. We’re all behind you.”

Under Earley’s guidance in 2024, the trio of Braden Montgomery, Gavin Grahovac and Jace LaViolettebecame the first group of teammates in program history to each surpass 20 home runs in a single season. LaViolette also became the first player in Texas A&M history to record back-to-back seasons with 20 or more homers.

The Aggies also had four offensive standouts earn All-America honors under Earley’s teachings in 2024, including Grahovac, LaViolette, Montgomery and Jackson Appel. Grahovac also set a new Texas A&M freshman record for homers with 23, surpassing fellow team LaViolette, who set the previous mark in 2023.

During his tenure with the Maroon & White, five position players have been drafted with more expected to be taken in the 2024 MLB Draft.

In 2023 he helped direct LaViolette to a breakout freshman campaign with the lefty leading the team with 63 RBI and 18 stolen bases on his way to multiple freshman All-America honors. LaViolette, along with the rest of the Aggie offense, was even better in SEC play where they finished second in runs scored (208) and third in both on-base percentage (.391) and RBI (190) within the league.

In 2022, his first year in Aggieland, the Aggies ranked second in the SEC in batting average (.289) and third in on-base percentage (.398). In the 30-game league schedule, the Aggies topped the SEC in batting average (.290), runs (233), RBI (215) and on-base percentage (.398). The Maroon & White’s 2022 slash of .289/.398/.469 was a stark upgrade from 2021’s .260/.363/.417. Along the way, Earley molded Dylan Rock into an All-America outfielder and MLB eighth-round draft pick.

Prior to Texas A&M, Earley spent five seasons at Arizona State, including four as the hitting coach on Tracy Smith’s staff where he built a reputation for developing hitters with his most notable work being the rise of Spencer Torkelson to the No. 1 overall draft pick in the 2020 MLB Draft. Undrafted out of high school, Torkelson was selected by the Detroit Tigers. He was the first third baseman to be selected first overall since Pat Burrell in 1998 and just the fifth third baseman to be selected first overall in MLB Draft history. It marked the first time a college position player went from being undrafted out of high school to the No. 1 overall pick since Nebraska outfielder Darin Erstad in 1995.

“I would not be where I am at today without Coach Earley,” Torkelson said. “He is the definition of a winner. His hard work and dedication to the game of baseball is contagious.”

In the 2020 MLB Draft, four of Earley’s hitters were selected as Arizona State was the only school in the country to boast five players chosen in the shortened, five-round draft. The list included Torkelson, Alika Williams (37th overall – Tampa Bay Rays), Trevor Hauver (99th overall – New York Yankees) and Gage Workman (102nd overall – Detroit Tigers).

Under Earley’s guidance, Hunter Bishop and Torkelson earned unanimous All-America recognition in 2019, forming one of the most potent offensive duos in college baseball over the last decade. The pair were semifinalist for the Golden Spikes Award and Dick Howser Trophy.

Arizona State led the nation in home runs during the 2019 regular season, clubbing 92 dingers. The Sun Devils were the NCAA statistical champion in home runs per game, sporting a 1.65 clip. Arizona State finished the 2019 campaign with 94 homers, easily eclipsing the Pac-12 record for the BBCOR era, surpassing Oregon State’s 67 in 2018. The Sun Devils were the first Power 5 school in the BBCOR era to have multiple payers hit the 20-HR mark with 23 by Torkelson and 22 by Bishop. The Sun Devils batted .310 in 2019, to rank 10th in the nation. They also ranked 17th in the nation in on-base percentage (.398).

Earley made an immediate impact in Tempe. Arizona State improved in every offensive statistical category from 2017-18. In 2018, the team clubbed 50 home runs after hitting 38 in 2017. The team’s overall batting average also climbed 20 points to .290, second in the Pac-12 behind 2018 NCAA champion Oregon State. In regular-season action, the Sun Devils ranked second in slugging percentage (.446), hits (549), batting average (.290) and total bases (843).

Earley was an All-Big Ten performer at Indiana University. In 2010, he batted .352 with 13 home runs and was the only player in the conference to rack up double-digits in home runs and stolen bases. He was selected by the Chicago White Sox in the 29th round of the 2010 MLB Draft. He played six seasons in the White Sox organization, reaching the Triple-A level with the Charlotte Knights. He wrapped up his professional career with the Southern Illinois Miners in the independent Frontier League in 2015. He was selected to four All-Star teams during his pro career and was named to the Southern Illinois All-Decade Team.

Earley is married to his wife, Lisa, and together they have a son, Marshall, and two daughters, Mia and Madison.

This article originally appeared on the Texas A&M Athletics website.

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