Aaron Meade was introduced as the new head baseball coach at Tarleton State University at a press conference Wednesday morning, but that wasn’t his only life-changing event this month.
“I got married a week and a half ago, and it was awesome,” said Meade, who had been the top assistant coach and pitching coach the past four years for Pittsburg State University. “This was an early wedding present.”
Meade is taking charge of the Texans’ baseball program after the resignation of Mike Sirianni. Sirianni’s resignation was announced on June 27, just over one month after he was named as the head coach. He resigned to accept a position on the coaching staff at an NCAA Division I school, Wichita State University.
TSU Athletic Director Lonn Reisman introduced Meade, describing him as a dynamic coach who will bring intensity to the position before presenting him with a Texans baseball jersey.
“The competition level was extremely high for this position,” Reisman said during the news conference. “I could feel the enthusiasm … and the passion he had for this job. (There is) no doubt this gentleman will come in here and do an outstanding job.”
In a news release, Reisman noted that Meade has had success as a top assistant at the NCAA Division II level, and “I expect that he will bring that success to Stephenville. He is a very impressive young man with a strong drive and passion about winning baseball games and helping our young men succeed in the classroom. I’m looking forward to watching him grow as the next head baseball coach.”
After becoming a two-time all-conference player for Missouri State from 2008-2010, Meade was selected in the 10th round of the draft by the Los Angeles Angels. He pitched in the Angels’ minor league system for four years, and was named as the team’s Instructional League Pitcher of the Year in 2010.
But soon after experiencing the low point of being released by the Angels, he bounced back quickly when he met his future wife, Katherine, when they were both attending a Kansas City Royals game.
With his style of coaching even if mistakes are made, Meade explained, it won’t be for a lack of aggressiveness.
“I want to put pressure on the defense,” said Meade, the eighth head baseball coach in TSU history. “I want our guys to get after it and play hard and not be afraid to make mistakes.”
Meade has recruited in Texas several times, including the Houston area, northeast Texas, Blinn College and Howard College.
“He understands Division II,” Reisman said. “He understands the recruiting aspect. He has recruited in Texas before. He brought a lot of things to the table I was impressed with.”
As it is at all levels of baseball, pitching will be one priority for Meade with the Texans.
“We need to go find some arms,” said Meade, who last season helped the Gorillas to their first 30-win season since 2004.
The pitching staff had its lowest team earned run average since 2002 (4.96).
Before his stint at Pittsburg State, Meade spent one year at William Jewell College, helping that squad to its first-ever NCAA regional tournament berth.