Baseball Coaching Staff
Saint Joseph's baseball's all-time leader in coaching victories, Fritz Hamburg is now in his 10th season as the head coach of the Hawks.
Since taking over the Hawk baseball program, Hamburg has guided the team to an increased win total in six of his eight seasons, tying the school record for wins in a season in 2012 before breaking it in both 2013 and 2014. His 2016 squad then went on to become the program's second team to reach the 30-win plateau, while the senior class of 2016 posted the most victories of any four-year class in school history. Hamburg has led the Hawks to six consecutive 20-plus win seasons, the only coach in Saint Joseph's history to achieve that feat.
Hamburg has taken the Hawks to heights never before seen by the Crimson and Gray, as his tenure has included three Liberty Bell Classic championships (2012, 2014, 2016) and three trips to the Atlantic 10 Championship (2012, 2014, 2016). Prior to his arrival on campus, the Hawks had never won the LIberty Bell Classic, nor qualified for the Atlantic 10 postseason.
Over the course of his extensive coaching career, Hamburg has established a reputation as one of the nation's finest tutors of young pitchers and catchers and has brought his track record of success to his first head coaching job, as evidenced by former SJU hurlers Ryan Kemp and A.J. Holland being selected in the 2011 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. Jimmy Yacabonis followed in their footsteps when he was selected by the Baltimore Orioles in the 13th round of the 2013 Draft, while backstop Brian O'Keefe was a seventh-round selection of the St. Louis Cardinals and righthander Jordan Carter went in the 22nd round to the Cleveland Indians in 2014. A number of his Hawks have signed professional free agent contracts as well.
The 2017 season saw the Hawks win 20 games for the seventh consecutive season and reach double-digit victories in Atlantic 10 play for the eighth year in a row. Catcher Deon Stafford, Jr., earned All-Conference First Team honors for the second consecutive season before being selected by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the fifth round of the MLB Draft in June. Later that month, the program saw the third major leaguer in its history as Yacabonis was called up by the Orioles.
In 2016, Hamburg led the Hawks to their second 30-win season in program history, and second in three years, as SJU notched 31 wins en route to a third-place finish in the Atlantic 10. Hamburg guided Stafford to multiple Player of the Year awards, All-Region honors, and a Third Team All-America selection. Stafford was joined on the Atlantic 10 All-Conference First Team by John Brue, who became just the fourth Hawk to be named to the league's First Team in consecutive seasons.
Hamburg also guided Tim Brennan, Charlie Concannon, and Lucas Rollins to Atlantic 10 All-Rookie honors. Brennan was named the Philadelphia Big 5 Baseball Co-Pitcher and Rookie of the Year, while Concannon was named a Louisville Slugger Freshman All-America honoree.
As a team, Saint Joseph's enjoyed another banner season, claiming the Liberty Bell Classic title, qualifying for the Atlantic 10 Championship, and being voted the Big 5 Team of the Year, all for the third time in five seasons.
With a 10-2 win at La Salle on May 7, Hamburg notched his 185th victory in a Saint Joseph's uniform, making him the program's all-time leader in coaching victories. He later added his fourth Big 5 Coach of the Year award in eight seasons.
Hamburg's 2015 squad reached the 20-win plateau for the fifth consecutive season, marking the first time the Hawks achieved that milestone in program history. Their 11 wins in league play marked the sixth year in a row that SJU reached double-digits in conference victories; prior to Hamburg's arrival, the Hawks had notched 10-plus league wins just five times. Brue set a then-program record with 13 home runs during the 2015 campaign en route to All-Atlantic 10 First Team honors, while Stafford was named to the Second Team and earned Freshman All-America accolades as well. Both Stafford and Justin Aungst, who led the A-10 in earned run average, were chosen to the All-Rookie Team.
The 2014 season may go down as one of the greatest campaigns in the history of Saint Joseph's athletics, as the Hawks shattered the school record with 35 wins en route to a second place finish in the Atlantic 10 and SJU's second A-10 Championship berth in three years. The Hawks broke a number of team and individual records throughout the season and ranked among the NCAA statistical leaders in over a dozen categories. Collin Forgey became SJU's first-ever Atlantic 10 Player of the Year, Carter earned the Hawks' first-ever Atlantic 10 Pitcher of the Year honor, and Hamburg himself became the first SJU head coach to earn the league's Coach of the Year award. The trio also swept the Big 5 awards – Hamburg's third Big 5 Coach of the Year honor in his six seasons on Hawk Hill – and the Hawks were named the organization's Team of the Year for the second time in three seasons. Also for the second time in three years, Saint Joseph's won the Liberty Bell Classic title, topping La Salle at Citizens Bank Park on April 22.
In 2013, Hamburg led the Hawks to a then-school record for wins in a season with a 26-26 overall mark, the first time Saint Joseph's posted a .500 or better winning percentage since 1993. Playing one of the tougher schedules in the conference, the Hawks also posted a 12-12 record in Atlantic 10 play, giving SJU four consecutive seasons of double-digit conference victories for the first time in program history. Hamburg's squads have won 11 or more conference games in four straight seasons after having achieved the feat just once before 2010.
2012 was a banner year for baseball on Hawk Hill as Hamburg's charges became the first Saint Joseph's squad to qualify for the Atlantic 10 Championship. The Hawks won a pair of games in the tournament, signalling their arrival in the Bronx with a 3-0 shutout of third-seeded Rhode Island in their first game before eliminating the Rams two days later. The tournament appearance came on the heels of a 13-10 conference mark, SJU's first winning record in conference play since 1984. The 2012 Hawks also achieved another first for the program on April 17 when they defeated Penn, 6-3, at Citizens Bank Park to claim SJU's first-ever Liberty Bell Classic title. In addition, Saint Joseph's opened the new John W. Smithson Field on the Maguire Campus with a 5-1 win over Iona on March 9. The game marked the first varsity baseball contest on the Saint Joseph's campus since 1958. Pitcher Kyle Mullen became the first Hawk starting pitcher in program history to be named to the Atlantic 10 All-Conference First Team and was named the Philadelphia Big 5 Baseball Pitcher of the Year. First baseman Kevin Taylor was an All-Conference First Team selection as well, while the squad was named the Big 5 Team of the Year and Hamburg pulled in Big 5 Coach of the Year honors for the second time in four seasons.