Stephen Bradley Wilkerson (born June 1, 1977) is an American former professional baseball outfielder and first baseman in Major League Baseball for eight seasons. Wilkerson played college baseball for the University of Florida, and was selected by the Montreal Expos in the first round of the 1998 Major League Baseball Draft. During his Major League career, he played for the Expos, Washington Nationals, Boston Red Sox, Texas Rangers, Seattle Mariners, and Toronto Blue Jays.
Wilkerson with the Red Sox during 2009 spring training
|Outfielder / First baseman|
|Born: June 1, 1977|
|July 12, 2001, for the Montreal Expos|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 28, 2008, for the Toronto Blue Jays|
|Runs batted in||399|
|Representing United States|
Wilkerson was born in Owensboro, Kentucky, where he attended and played baseball at Apollo High School. Wilkerson played for the US national junior baseball team in 1995. He was the most valuable player (MVP) of the World Junior Baseball Championship, pitching a three-hit shutout against Taiwan in the gold medal game, hitting .360, and leading Team USA with three home runs and eight runs batted in (RBI) for the tournament.
A line drive hitter and versatile defensive player, Wilkerson received an athletic scholarship to attend the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida, where he played for coach Andy Lopez's Florida Gators baseball team from 1996 to 1998. A three-time first-team All-American, Wilkerson led the Gators to the College World Series in 1996 and 1998 with both his hitting and pitching. In the 1996 College World Series, he hit a dramatic grand slam to defeat the rival Florida State Seminoles.
As a junior in 1998, he became the first player in college history to hit 20 home runs, steal 20 bases, and win 10 games as a pitcher in the same year. The Gators advanced to the 1998 College World Series, and he was awarded the Rotary Smith Award as the most outstanding player in college baseball.
The pitcher-outfielder holds a number of season and career school records, including career batting average (.381), career slugging percentage (.714), and career on-base percentage (.531).
Wilkerson was inducted into the University of Florida Athletic Hall of Fame as a "Gator Great" in 2010, and the National College Baseball Hall of Fame in 2012. In 2014, he received his bachelor's degree in sport management from the University of Florida.
Wilkerson was selected by the Montreal Expos in the first round (33rd pick) of the 1998 Major League Baseball Draft. Initially, he struggled in the minors. In 1999, Wilkerson hit .235 with eight home runs and 49 RBI at Double-A Harrisburg. Back in the Eastern League to start the (2000) season, Wilkerson tore up the league, hitting .336, 6, 44 with 36 doubles. He was on pace to break the Eastern League record for doubles in a season before he was promoted to Triple-A Ottawa, of the International League. For the season, he was hitting .304-15-75 with 47 doubles in 408 at-bats.
While coming up through the minors, Wilkerson was a member of the gold medal-winning USA baseball team in the Sydney Olympics. In one of the biggest upsets in Olympic history, Team USA defeated Cuba 4–0 in the Gold Medal Game.
From 2002–2003, Wilkerson delivered almost identical seasons with a .266 average, 20 home runs and 59 RBI in (2002), and .268, 19, 77 in (2003). In 2002, he hit 20 home runs, an Expos rookie record and was named Rookie of the Year by The Sporting News. His most productive season came in (2004), when he posted career-highs in homers (32), hits (146), doubles (39), runs (112), walks (106), slugging percentage (.498) and OPS (.872), and hitting .255 with 67 RBI.
In 2004, he hit the last home run in Montreal Expos franchise history.
He appeared once more in a Montreal Expos uniform during the Major League Baseball Japan All-Star Series shortly after the 2004 regular season. The Expos were to become the Washington Nationals for the 2005 season, prompting some to refer to Wilkerson as "The Last Expo."
Wilkerson opened the 2005 season as the regular center fielder and leadoff hitter after the Expos moved to Washington and became the Nationals. On December 7, 2005, Wilkerson was traded to the Texas Rangers along with outfielder Terrmel Sledge and minor league pitching prospect Armando Galarraga for second baseman Alfonso Soriano.
Wilkerson has hit for the cycle twice, the first on June 24, 2003, against Pittsburgh (with the Expos). In that first instance, Wilkerson became the first player since 1957 to have the minimum four plate appearances and hit for a natural cycle. The second was on April 6, 2005, against Philadelphia (with the Nationals, in their second game after moving from Montreal). Wilkerson also hit the first grand slam home run hit by a Washington Nationals player
While playing for the Texas Rangers in 2007, Wilkerson hit three home runs in one game – the third player to do so in 2007 behind Alfonso Soriano and Carlos Lee. An injury to, and later the trade of, Mark Teixeira led to Wilkerson making many of his starts at first base in 2007.
On January 31, 2008, Wilkerson signed a one-year contract with the Seattle Mariners. On April 30, he was designated for assignment, and on May 8 was given his unconditional release. May 9, he signed with the Toronto Blue Jays. On August 22, he was put on the 15-day disabled list by the Toronto Blue Jays . On October 30, 2008, Wilkerson filed for free-agency from Toronto.
Wilkerson decided to retire in 2009, having had one hit in nine Triple-A at-bats in the Boston minor league affiliate. He retired with a .247 batting average, .350 on-base percentage and 122 career home runs.
On February 23, 2010, Wilkerson attempted a brief comeback by agreeing to a minor league contract with the Philadelphia Phillies. However, he was released on March 29.
In 2014, Wilkerson agreed to manage a middle school baseball team at The King's Academy in West Palm Beach, Florida, leading the team to a league championship in his first year. After the season, Wilkerson was hired as the school's varsity baseball coach.
Wilkerson is also a coach for USA Baseball. In 2014, he was named Volunteer Coach of the Year by the organization.
Wilkerson married Dana Marie Gleason in 2006. They have three children—Ella, Ava and Max. In 2006, he was named a Kentucky Colonel by Governor Ernie Fletcher, the highest honor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.
Wilkerson participated in numerous charitable functions over the course of his Major League career and he continues to do so post-retirement. He holds a charity golf tournament annually to raise money for various children's charities.
|Awards and achievements|
| Sporting News
National League Rookie of the Year
| Hitting for the cycle
June 24, 2003
April 6, 2005
The 1996 NCAA Division I Baseball Tournament was played at the end of the 1996 NCAA Division I baseball season to determine the national champion of college baseball. The tournament concluded with eight teams competing in the College World Series, a double-elimination tournament in its fiftieth year. Eight regional competitions were held to determine the participants in the final event. Each region was composed of six teams, resulting in 48 teams participating in the tournament at the conclusion of their regular season, and in some cases, after a conference tournament. The fiftieth tournament's champion was LSU, coached by Skip Bertman. The Most Outstanding Player was Pat Burrell of Miami (FL).1997 Southeastern Conference Baseball Tournament
The 1997 Southeastern Conference Baseball Tournament was the 1997 postseason baseball championship of the NCAA Division I Southeastern Conference, held at Golden Park in Columbus, Georgia from May 14-18. Alabama defeated LSU in the championship game, earning the conference's automatic bid to the 1997 NCAA Division I Baseball Tournament.1998 College Baseball All-America Team
An All-American team is an honorary sports team composed of the best amateur players of a specific season for each team position—who in turn are given the honorific "All-America" and typically referred to as "All-American athletes", or simply "All-Americans". Although the honorees generally do not compete together as a unit, the term is used in U.S. team sports to refer to players who are selected by members of the national media. Walter Camp selected the first All-America team in the early days of American football in 1889.The NCAA recognizes three different All-America selectors for the 1998 college baseball season: the American Baseball Coaches Association (since 1947), Baseball America (since 1981), and Collegiate Baseball (since 1991).1998 Major League Baseball draft
The 1998 First-Year Player Draft, Major League Baseball's annual amateur draft of high school and college baseball players, was held on June 2 and 3, 1998. A total of 1445 players were drafted over the course of 50 rounds.2003 Montreal Expos season
The 2003 Montreal Expos season was the 35th season for the Expos in Montreal and its penultimate season in Canada. It involved the Expos attempting to win the NL East. On August 28, 2003, the Expos led the NL Wild Card, tied for first place with the Marlins, Astros, Phillies, and Cardinals, but faded away in the stretch and failed to make the postseason, finishing 18 games back of the Atlanta Braves in the NL East and 8 games back of the Florida Marlins in the Wild Card. The Expos' 2003 record of 83-79 was identical to the one they finished with the previous year.2004 Montreal Expos season
The 2004 Montreal Expos season was the Expos′ 36th and final season in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The team finished in fifth and last place in the National League East at 67-95, 29 games behind the first-place Atlanta Braves. After the season, the team – which had played in Montreal since its foundation as an expansion franchise in 1969 – relocated to Washington, D.C., and became the Washington Nationals, as Major League Baseball returned to Washington for the 2005 season after a 33-season absence.2005 Washington Nationals season
The Washington Nationals' 2005 season was the first for the team formerly known as the Montreal Expos since moving to Washington, D. C. and 37th overall for the franchise. The team signed four key free agents during the off-season: Vinny Castilla, José Guillén, Cristian Guzmán and Esteban Loaiza. Although they recorded an 81-81 record, the Nationals nevertheless finished last for a second consecutive year although they were only nine games behind the NL East champion Atlanta Braves.2006 Texas Rangers season
The Texas Rangers finished the 2006 season in 3rd place of the West Division of the American League. They had two players feature in the 2006 All-Star Game: Michael Young who in his 3rd appearance was named the All Star Game's Most Valuable Player; and Gary Matthews, Jr. making his first appearance.2007 Texas Rangers season
The Texas Rangers' 2007 season began with the team trying to win an AL West title for the first time since 1999.2008 Seattle Mariners season
The 2008 Seattle Mariners season was the 32nd Major League Baseball season in the team's history. Coming off the heels of the previous 2007 season, in which the M's finished with their first winning record since 2003, the team was widely expected to once again compete for the American League West division championship. The team was bolstered by some major roster additions during the previous offseason, most notably starting pitchers Érik Bédard and Carlos Silva. However, by the end of May, it became apparent that the team had gone back to its losing ways of the 2004–06 seasons. Despite their losing ways, they won their first and last game of the season. Their longest winning-streak of the season is 4 games after a Cleveland sweep at the end of August and a 12-6 win against the Texas Rangers on the first day of September. However, standing at 57-87, their longest losing-streak of the season is 12 games, 11 on the road, 1 at home, after being swept by the L.A. Angels, Kansas City Royals, Oakland Athletics, and suffering a loss at the last homestand opener against the L.A. Angels. On September 23, the Mariners became the first club to spend $100 million in payroll and lose 100 games. The team finished the season with a 61–101 (.377) record, last in the West for the 4th time in 5 years, and second worst in the majors.
With the team underperforming and underachieving, a number of people who had become scapegoats for the team's underperformance were dismissed during the season, most notably general manager Bill Bavasi, field manager John McLaren, first baseman Richie Sexson, and designated hitter José Vidro.Andy Lopez
Andrew Lopez (born November 30, 1953) is a retired American college baseball coach. He was most recently the head baseball coach at University of Arizona, and has served as the head baseball coach at Cal State Dominguez Hills, Pepperdine, and Florida. Lopez compiled an overall win-loss record of 1,177–742–7 in thirty-three seasons as a head coach.
He is one of only three coaches to lead three different programs to the College World Series and one of only two coaches, along with Augie Garrido, to win the College World Series with two different programs. His Division I teams (Pepperdine, Florida, and Arizona) have appeared in the postseason seventeen out of twenty-six seasons. He has earned National Coach of the Year honors two times, and Conference Coach of the Year honors eight times.
He began his coaching career at California State University, Dominguez Hills in 1983. The team won California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) championships, and became a Division II national championship contender. From 1986 to 1987, his teams won back to back CCAA championships. In six seasons as the head coach, he compiled a 168-152-2(.525) record.
In 1989, he was hired as the head baseball coach Pepperdine Waves baseball team at Pepperdine University. In six seasons, he compiled a 241-107-3(.691) record. In only his first season, he went 41-19-1, and ultimately won four consecutive post-season tournaments. In 1992, his team won the only National Championship in school history. The 3-2 victory over Cal-State Fullerton earned him consensus National Coach of the Year honors.
During his seven seasons coaching the Florida Gators baseball team at the University of Florida, he compiled a 278-159-1(.636) record. He won two Southeastern Conference (SEC) championships and appeared in five NCAA Tournaments and two College World Series. While at UF, he coached major leaguers David Eckstein, Mark Ellis, Brad Wilkerson, David Ross, Ryan Shealy, and Josh Fogg. He also averaged 39 wins per season, including a school record 50 games and a College World Series appearance in 1996. Lopez, however, was controversial with some Gators faithful for not recruiting local players and for not extending scholarships to players that he did not recruit to the program. His tenure crested with a second College World Series appearance in 1998. Following a 35-27 season in 2001, Florida fired him.
After being dismissed by the University of Florida, Lopez was hired as head coach of the Arizona Wildcats baseball at the University of Arizona. In his fourteen seasons as head coach, UofA qualified for the NCAA tournament eight times, including two College World Series appearances and one national championship. His 2012 national championship team went undefeated in post-season play winning 10 games, three at the Tucson Regional, two at the Super Regional against St. John's at Hi Corbett Field in Tucson, and five at the College World Series in Omaha. Lopez is only the second coach in NCAA history to win the CWS with two different teams. As the Wildcats' head coach, Lopez has an overall record of 459-300-1 (.604), and a conference record of 174-165 (.513).
Lopez announced his retirement on May 25, 2015 in a press conference alongside Athletic Director Greg Byrne.On July 18, 2017, the American Baseball Coaches Association announced that they would induct Andy Lopez into their 2018 Hall of Fame Class.Apollo High School (Kentucky)
Apollo High School is a high school that is part of the Daviess County Public Schools district, located in Owensboro, Kentucky, United States. It was named after the Apollo Space Program, and opened in 1969 as a junior high school. It then converted into a high school in 1972 and held its first graduation in 1974. The school paper is named The Challenger, after the Space Shuttle Challenger. This school also has a marching band program called the Apollo Marching Eagles.
Apollo has been involved in a 1-1 laptop project since August 2005, providing a laptop to every incoming freshman for their use during the school year.Jason Jennings
Jason Ryan Jennings (born July 17, 1978) is an American former professional baseball pitcher. He pitched in Major League Baseball with the Colorado Rockies (2001-2006), Houston Astros (2007) and Texas Rangers (2008-2009).List of Florida Gators baseball players in Major League Baseball
This list of Florida Gators baseball players includes former members of the Florida Gators baseball team that represents the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida, who have played in one or more regular season Major League Baseball (MLB) games. The list includes such former Gators baseball players as David Eckstein, World Series Most Valuable Player, Al Rosen, former American League Most Valuable Player, and Haywood Sullivan, former managing partner of the Boston Red Sox.Montreal Expos Player of the Year
The Montreal Expos Player of the Year award was voted by the Montreal chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America (BBWAA) at the end of each season, until the Montreal Expos moved to Washington, D.C., US, following the 2004 season.Rotary Smith Award
The Rotary Smith Award was created in 1988 to honor the most outstanding college baseball player of the year. The award was founded by the Greater Houston Sports Association. In 1996, the Rotary Club of Houston joined the award committee. Prior to the 2004 season, the award was succeeded by the Roger Clemens Award, honoring the most outstanding college baseball pitcher.Terrmel Sledge
Terrmel Sledge (born March 18, 1977) is a retired American professional baseball outfielder and the current assistant hitting coach of the Chicago Cubs. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Montreal Expos/Washington Nationals and San Diego Padres and in Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) for the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters and the Yokohama BayStars. Prior to being hired by the Cubs, he was the hitting coach for the Tulsa Drillers in the Texas League.
Sledge's career began in 2004 with the Montreal Expos. He moved with the team to Washington, D.C. the following season as the Expos relocated to the American capital, and hit the first-ever home run for the Washington Nationals. He was traded to the Texas Rangers along with fellow outfielder Brad Wilkerson for second baseman Alfonso Soriano on December 7, 2005. He was then traded to the San Diego Padres in a six-player deal on December 20.
His best season came in 2004, when he batted .269/.336/.462 with 15 home runs and 62 runs batted in. On October 3, 2004, Sledge recorded the final RBI in Expos history when he drove in Jamey Carroll in a game against the New York Mets.
Sledge attended John F. Kennedy High School in Granada Hills, California and played college ball at Long Beach State.
Sledge is half Korean and half African American; his mother was Korean and his father was black. According to his father, his name is a combination of Terrence and Melvin, two names his parents had considered naming him when he was born.
In January 2003, Sledge was the first position player suspended for violating Major League Baseball's enhanced steroids policy, enacted after accusations that steroid use was rampant in baseball in the 90s and early 2000s. He tested positive for traces of 19-norandrosterone and 19-noretiocholanolone, chemical derivatives related to androstenedione.On November 29, 2007, Terrmel was granted permission from the Padres to sign with the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters of the Nippon Professional League.
On December 17, Terrmel signed a contract with Yokohama BayStars for the 2010 season.
He retired after the 2012 season and spent 2015 as the assistant hitting coach for the Eugene Emeralds. In 2016, he was named hitting coach for the Tulsa Drillers of the AA Texas League.In late 2018 the Chicago Cubs hired Sledge as assistant hitting coach for 2019. He takes over the position held by Andy Haines, who was hired to be the Milwaukee Brewers' hitting coach.Wilkerson
Wilkerson is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:
Brad Wilkerson (born 1977), American baseball player
Cathlyn Platt Wilkerson (born 1945), American radical and member of the Weather Underground
David Wilkerson (1931–2011), American evangelist
Eric Wilkerson (born 1966), American football player
Gerald Eugene Wilkerson (born 1939), Auxiliary Bishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles
Herbert L. Wilkerson (born 1919), U.S. Marine Corps Major general
Isaiah Wilkerson (born 1990), American basketball player
James Herbert Wilkerson (1869–1948), US federal judge
Jerry O. Wilkerson (1943–2007), American painter
Joshua Wilkerson (1992–2010), American student murdered by an illegal immigrant in Texas
Kimberly Wilkerson, former Miss Wyoming
Lawrence Wilkerson (born 1945), U.S. Army officer, deputy to Colin Powell
Lizzie Wilkerson (1895–1984), African-American folk artist
Mark Wilkerson (born 1976), lead singer and guitarist of the rock band Course of Nature
Muhammad Wilkerson (born 1989), American football Defensive End for the New York Jets of the National Football League
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson (born 1972), Gitksan artist from British Columbia, Canada
Pinkie C. Wilkerson (1948–2000), African American Louisiana state representative
Ponchai Wilkerson (1971–2000), American murderer who was executed in Texas
Robert King Wilkerson (born 1942), Black Panther Party member
Tichi Wilkerson Kassel (1926–2004), American film personality and the publisher of The Hollywood Reporter
Tim Wilkerson (born 1960), NHRA drag racer
Tyler Wilkerson (born 1988), American basketball player
Wallace Wilkerson (c. 1834–1879), American murderer whose execution by firing squad in Utah was botched
William Wilkerson (1890–1962), founder of The Hollywood Reporter, Ciro's, and the Flamingo HotelFictional characters:
Wilkerson, the family name in the television show Malcolm in the Middle
Members of the National College Baseball Hall of Fame
1998 College Baseball All-America Team consensus selections