BERKELEY – Brad Sanfilippo, a former UC Davis standout who was a member of the Golden Bears’ coaching staff during their 2011 College World Series run, has been hired as the hitting coach and will handle the third base coaching duties for the Cal baseball program, it was announced today by head coach David Esquer.
“We are extremely excited to welcome Brad back to the Cal baseball family,” said Esquer. “He was instrumental in our success during our latest postseason appearances and is familiar with our offensive and defensive philosophies. He is someone our kids enjoy playing for and is a tireless worker.”
Sanfilippo has spent the last two seasons as the recruiting coordinator and third base coach at San Jose State after being a volunteer assistant for Esquer during the 2010-12 campaigns in which the Bears appeared in two NCAA regionals, capturing the 2011 Houston Regional and the Santa Clara Super Regional on the way to the school’s sixth College World Series appearance.
With Sanfilippo handling the first base coaching duties, Cal averaged more than 31 wins per season, including defeating Texas A&M, 7-4, in Omaha to give the Bears their first CWS victory since 1980. He assisted 18 different Cal players who were drafted by major league teams, including Tony Renda, a second-round selection by the Washington Nationals, and Marcus Semien, a sixth-round pick by the Chicago White Sox.
“I am thrilled to be returning to the University of California and the Cal baseball family,” said Sanfilippo. “Berkeley is a very special place with incredible people, and having the opportunity to work with coach Esquer again is a big part of that for me. I am looking forward to working with the talented group of players coach Esquer and coach (Mike) Neu have put together, knowing that I have existing relationships with many of them already. My energy and efforts will be to help build upon the winning tradition of this program and I am thankful to be a Golden Bear again.”
Prior to this first stint coaching at Cal, Sanfilippo had spent six seasons as the head varsity coach of Los Gatos High School where he led his squad to its first two Central Coast Section titles in school history in 2006 and 2009. Both years Sanfilippo's teams finished 28-5 and were ranked 12th in the final California Division II rankings. He concluded his coaching tenure at Los Gatos High School with a record of 139-51 (.731), which included four Santa Clara Valley Athletic League/De Anza Division titles (2005, 2006, 2007, 2009). Sanfilippo was named San Jose Mercury News and Palo Alto Newspaper Group Coach of the Year in 2006.
As well as excelling in coaching at the high school ranks, Sanfilippo was an assistant for the Brewster Whitecaps of the Cape Cod League in the summer of 2009 where he coached Cal's former standout first baseman/outfielder Mark Canha. In 2006 and 2007, he was an assistant coach for the Northern California squad in the North vs. South Series. In 2002, Sanfilippo served as the Director of Baseball Operations at Santa Clara, and also served as an assistant to former UC Davis Athletic Director Greg Warzecka (a former Cal baseball player and assistant coach).
As a player, Sanfilippo was a three-year starter in the outfield at UC Davis from 1996-98; batting .349 as a sophomore, .350 as a junior and .320 as a senior. In 1998, he was team captain and a first-team Western District GTE/CoSIDA Academic All-American. Sanfilippo ranked in the Top-10 in single-season bests for triples (five, 1997) and runs scored (56 in 1997) for the Aggies.
Sanfilippo competed in football, basketball and baseball at Los Gatos High School and was inducted into his high school's Athletic Hall of Fame in 2009. He and his fiancé, Colleen, reside in San Francisco.