Alan Cockrell

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Alan Cockrell
New York Yankees – No. 62
Outfielder / Hitting coach
Born: (1962-12-05) December 5, 1962 (age 53)
Kansas City, Kansas
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
September 7, 1996, for the Colorado Rockies
Last MLB appearance
September 29, 1996, for the Colorado Rockies
MLB statistics
Batting average .250
Home runs 0
Runs batted in 2
Teams

As player

As coach

Atlee Alan Cockrell (born December 5, 1962) is the current hitting coach for the New York Yankees of Major League Baseball.

Football career[edit]

Twice named first-team all state, Cockrell led Joplin, Missouri's Parkwood High School Bears to a 31–3 record during his three years as starting quarterback. An outstanding athlete, Cockrell's could pass (3,499 yds, 44 TDs), run (1,541 yds, 36 TDs) and even kick (154 PATs, 8 FGs).

Cockrell led the Bears' offensive attack to an undefeated season (14–0 - outscoring opponents 653-33) and the Missouri State Class 4A High School Championship in 1980, despite being one of the smallest schools in Class 4A. That team has recently been inducted into the Joplin Area Sports Hall of Fame, alongside the likes of NASCAR's Jamie McMurray.[1] Heavily recruited by several schools, he chose to attend the University of Tennessee.

Cockrell became the first true freshman ever to start at quarterback for the Volunteers in 1981. Fifth game into the season he suffered a major knee injury vs Auburn and his future became uncertain. One of the first football players to come back from such major knee damage, he led the Vols for the 1982 (6-5-1) and 1983 (9-3) seasons,[2] culminating in a 30-23 victory over the Maryland Terrapins (led by future NFL standout Boomer Esiason) in the inaugural Florida Citrus Bowl (now Capital One Bowl).[3] The victory was a great ending for Cockrell, as it would be his last game at UT. He was soon to be a first round draft pick by The San Francisco Giants.

Baseball career[edit]

Cockrell's first love had always been baseball and he was an even better outfielder than he was a quarterback. An All-American, he was named to the University of Tennessee All-Century Baseball Team in 2009. The San Francisco Giants made Cockrell the ninth pick overall in the 1984 MLB draft so he chose to forgo his senior year in college and play pro baseball.

He played in the minor leagues for nine years (five different organizations), including a five-year stint with the Colorado Springs Sky Sox. He is a member of the Sky Sox Hall of Fame. On September 7, 1996, Cockrell made his Major League Baseball debut with the Colorado Rockies, a pinch hit appearance in which he struck out against All-Star closer Billy Wagner. His first major league hit came three days later in the form of a pinch hit double off Tom Glavine vs. Atlanta at Coors Field.

Coaching career[edit]

His leadership skills and teaching ability, though, shone through and Cockrell spent the next few years working as a manager and hitting coach in various parts of the Colorado Rockies' development system.[4][5] He returned to MLB when he was named hitting coach for the Rockies November 7, 2006 – his second stint, having previously served as hitting instructor the last five months of the 2002 season when Clint Hurdle was promoted to manager. Under Cockrell's guidance in 2007, the Rockies slugged their way to a National League Championship, leading the circuit in batting, on-base percentage, and total hits. Cockrell was one of four coaches let go by the Rockies after a disappointing 2008 season in which the team won only 74 games.

On December 7, 2008, Cockrell was named hitting coach for the Seattle Mariners.[6] On May 9, 2010, Cockrell the first of four coaches who were relieved of their duties alongside manager Don Wakamatsu. He was replaced by Alonzo Powell.[7]

On January 11, 2015, the New York Yankees hired Cockrell to be one of the two hitting coaches employed by them in 2015 along with Jeff Pentland.[8] On November 2, 2015, Cockrell was named the hitting coach of the Yankees after the firing of Jeff Pentland. Marcus Thames was hired as assistant hitting coach.[9]

Personal life[edit]

Cockrell and his wife Polly Dunaway Cockrell reside in Cliffside, NJ during the season but also maintain a home in Beaufort, SC during the off season. Having met and dated in High School, he reunited with his first love in 2013 and they were married in St. Lucia. He is a born again Christian and has often been a Featured Guest Speaker concerning his faith, his sports career, and his journey towards healing and the life he shares with his wife.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Dominant Parkwood team enters hall of fame". Joplin Globe. Retrieved November 3, 2015. 
  2. ^ Tennessee Volunteers football
  3. ^ "1983 Florida Citrus Bowl". utsports.com. Retrieved November 3, 2015. 
  4. ^ "Manager and Coaches". Colorado Rockies. Retrieved November 3, 2015. 
  5. ^ "Manager and Coaches". Seattle Mariners. Retrieved November 3, 2015. 
  6. ^ Mariners tab Cockrell as hitting coach Official site
  7. ^ "Seattle Mariners fire hitting coach Alan Cockrell". Associated Press. May 9, 2010.
  8. ^ "Yankees hire 2 new hitting coaches". ESPN. Retrieved January 11, 2015. 
  9. ^ "Yankees fill hitting coach jobs with promotion, former player". New York Post. Retrieved November 3, 2015. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Jeff Pentland
New York Yankees Hitting Coach
2016–present
Succeeded by
Incumbent