Todd Steverson

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Todd Steverson
Chicago White Sox – No. 31
Outfielder/Hitting Coach
Born: (1971-11-15) November 15, 1971 (age 43)
Los Angeles, California
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
April 28, 1995 for the Detroit Tigers
Last MLB appearance
April 3, 1996 for the San Diego Padres
Career statistics
Batting average .256
Home runs 2
Runs batted in 6
Teams

Todd Anthony Steverson (born November 15, 1971) is an American professional baseball coach and a former left and right fielder in Major League Baseball. Steverson is the 2014 batting coach of the Chicago White Sox and the former first base coach of the Oakland Athletics. During his active career, he played for the Detroit Tigers and San Diego Padres. Steverson threw and batted right-handed, stood 6 feet 2 inches (1.88 m) tall and weighed 194 pounds (88 kg).

College and minor league playing career[edit]

Steverson was born in Los Angeles, California, and attended Culver City High School. The cousin of Tigers outfielder Ron LeFlore, Steverson attended Arizona State University, where he was part of the famed "Million Dollar Outfield". Originally selected by the St. Louis Cardinals in the sixth round of the 1989 draft, Steverson opted not to sign. He would have to wait until 1992 to be drafted again; he was drafted 25th overall by the Toronto Blue Jays, and this time he did sign. His signing bonus was $450,000.

He spent three years in the Blue Jays' farm system, showing nothing more than mediocre statistics: he was speedy (he had a career high 23 stolen bases in 1992 while with the St. Catharines Blue Jays), but he also struck out a lot (118 times in 413 at bats in 1993 with the Dunedin Blue Jays) and was not an average hitter (.209 batting average in 1992).

He was drafted by the Tigers in the 1994 Rule 5 Draft, and although he had had a fairly unimpressive minor league career, he found himself with the big league club before the end of April 1995.

Major league career[edit]

He made his debut on April 28, 1995 at the age of 23 against the Seattle Mariners. In his only at bat of the game, he hit a fly ball out to right field off of a pitch from Ron Villone. He appeared in 30 games for the Tigers in 1995, collecting 11 hits in 42 at bats for a .262 batting average. He spent nine games in the minors that year, but he hit only .107.

Steverson hit only two home runs in 1995, but they came in back-to-back games. He victimized pitcher Eddie Guardado of the Minnesota Twins on June 10,[1] then pitcher Dave Stevens of the Twins the very next day. The top game of his season may have come on June 15 of that year, though. Playing the New York Yankees, he collected three hits in four at bats, driving in two runs and scoring once. Interestingly, those were the last hits of his career.

Although his rookie season was short but fairly impressive, the Tigers did not keep him for more than a season. Instead, right before the beginning 1996 season, he was traded by the Tigers with Cade Gaspar and Sean Bergman to the Padres for Raul Casanova, Richie Lewis and Melvin Nieves.[2] That would basically seal the fate for his big league career-it ended on April 3 of that year. Pinch hitting for pitcher Joey Hamilton, he was called out on strikes in his final big league at bat. Turk Wendell was credited with the strikeout.

Coaching and managerial career[edit]

He continued playing in the minor leagues until 1998. After his playing days ended, he became a minor league baseball coach and manager. He coached the Potomac Cannons in 1999, 2001 and 2002. He coached the Peoria Chiefs in 2000, the Palm Beach Cardinals in 2003 and the Vancouver Canadians in 2004. He managed the Stockton Ports in 2005 and 2006. He was set to manage the Midland RockHounds in 2007. He was the manager of the Triple-A Sacramento River Cats in 2008. He was hired in December 2008 to be the Oakland Athletics first base coach.[3]

Steverson received a one-year suspension for his actions in a June 23, 2012 game. While serving as acting manager for the Modesto Nuts, he ordered his pitcher to intentionally balk, allowing the winning run to score in the 18th inning of a game against the Stockton Ports. He explained his decision, saying: "We had a position player out there and I didn’t want to put another position player on the mound and get him hurt … I didn’t get any of my pitchers hurt and I didn’t get any position players hurt." [1]

After Steverson's two seasons on the MLB Oakland staff (2009–2010), he returned to minor league baseball and the Athletics' farm system as the hitting coach for the River Cats (2011) and then as the organization's roving minor league hitting instructor (2012–2013).

On October 25, 2013, the White Sox announced that they had hired Steverson as their new hitting coach, replacing Jeff Manto.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Chicago Tribune. "Tigers 7, Twins 5". June 11, 1995. Retrieved on May 15, 2013.
  2. ^ Associated Press. "Looking to future, Tigers trade away Bergman and Plantier". The Argus-Press, March 23, 1996, p. 9. Retrieved on May 15, 2013.
  3. ^ Urban, Mychael. "A's round out Geren's coaching staff". MLB.com, December 23, 2008. Retrieved on May 15, 2013.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Jeff Manto
Chicago White Sox hitting coach
2014
Succeeded by
Incumbent
Preceded by
Tye Waller
Oakland Athletics first-base coach
2009–2010
Succeeded by
Tye Waller
Preceded by
Tony DeFrancesco
Sacramento River Cats manager
2008
Succeeded by
Tony DeFrancesco
Preceded by
Von Hayes
Midland RockHounds manager
2007
Succeeded by
Webster Garrison