Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Woodard back at UNC after not making it to the major leagues

The UNC baseball team is fortunate to have its winningest pitcher ever back in the fold, even if as an assistant coach.

Robert Woodard, who was born in Winston-Salem and raised in Charlotte, had a 34-5 record as a Tar Heel pitcher, including a 22-0 record at Boshamer Stadium. Drafted in the 20th round by San Diego in the 2007 draft, Woodard never made it past Triple A Portland.

In fact, he pitched only three games at the Triple A level - one in 2007 and two in 2008. His ERA for those three games was 21.32. His most success was at Single A Fort Wayne where he posted a 3.25 ERA over 72 innings while posting five wins.

It really goes to show how difficult it is to make it to the big leagues. He was arguably the best pitcher the Heels ever had when he left for the pros. (Although that honor would probably go to Andrew Miller '06 or Dave Lemonds '68.) He was a three-time All-ACC selection and he was the 2006-2007 recipient of the Patterson Medal, given to UNC's most outstanding student-athlete. He also helped lead the Carolina program to national prominence with back-to-back appearances in the College World Series in 2006 and 2007.

"I am very excited to have Robert join our staff. As most know Robert had a very distinguished playing career at UNC," UNC coach Mike Fox said. "But his most important role was being a leader in elevating our program to the national level beginning in 2006. Robert will bring great leadership, experience and knowledge to our program and I am excited that he is starting his coaching career as a Tar Heel."

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