Five from high school and two junior college players
Former professional pitcher Tim LaVigne begins his second year on the Monarchs staff as pitching coach.
"I am excited to get to work with Tim on our staff. He did a fantastic job not only with the pitching staff last season, but everyone I talked to in the Tidewater Area says great things about how he has immersed himself into the community and that is what we want to be about at ODU. Tim's experiences as a player at Virginia and as a professional player with help us paint a well rounded picture for our current ODU players as well as all future Monarchs and their families." - Chris Finwood.
In 2011, the Monarch pitching staff featured three with eight or more wins along with the CAA's leader in saves in Mike Wisniewski who had an ODU record 15. Five of the Monarch pitchers earned honors from the CAA. Kyle Hald was named CAA co-pitcher of the Year, Hald and Wisniewski were named All-CAA, while Phil McCarthy and Ben Tomchick earned CAA All-Tournament honors. Freshman reliever Dean Ali was named to the CAA All-Rookie squad.
Since leaving professional baseball, LaVigne has volunteered at three Virginia Beach High Schools, coaching pitchers and providing help with mechanics and mental approach.
LaVigne, a standout reliever at the University of Virginia played 11 seasons in the minors after being selected in the 32nd round of the 2000 Major League Baseball draft by the New York Mets. He also played in the New York Yankees and Houston Astros organizations.
In 2002, LaVigne had 16 saves for Binghamton, the New York Mets AA affiliate. He had 22 saves, a 5-3 record with a 2.87 earned run average in 2009 with Acereros de Monclova in the Mexican league. He won six games in 2001 and 2009, as he finished his career with 109 saves and a 3.71 earned run average. Lavigne also fanned 451 batters in 664.2 innings of work.
"My wife and I are very excited to join the ODU baseball family, said LaVigne. "I am extremely grateful To Dr. Selig and coach Goulet for this opportunity to begin my coaching career at a program I have followed and admired for many years."
In 2006, LaVigne appeared in 45 games for the AAA Norfolk Tides, going 3-2 with a 2.62 ERA while Striking out 49 batters. He was named the Norfolk Tides Pitcher of the Year. That same year, LaVigne was selected to the Puerto Rican League All-Star Team. He was also named to the 2009 Mexico Summer League All-Star Team.
At Virginia, LaVigne played shortstop and closed for the Cavaliers. He currently ranks third all-time at UVa. in appearances with 92, and career saves with 18. He ranks fifth in single season appearances with 27 in 1997, and led the Cavaliers in saves in 1998 with seven and 2000 with six. As a hitter, he still holds the school's all-time mark for being hit by a pitch 48 times.
LaVigne was the team captain at Virginia and was named second team All-ACC shortstop and ACC All-Tournament, in 2000. He was named the Cape Cod Summer Baseball League Outstanding Relief Pitcher in 1998.
In 1999 and 2000 LaVigne was awarded the Billy Word Memorial trophy presented to that athlete who exemplifies the highest qualities of leadership, cooperative spirit and unselfish service in the interest of Athletics at the University of Virginia.
LaVigne led Cox High School to the 1996 Virginia AAA state title. He earned first team All-Beach District, All-Eastern Region, and second team All-state as a senior. His jersey number was retired at Cox High School in 2009.
LaVigne graduated in 2000 from the University of Virginia with a Bachelor of Arts degree in American Politics. Tim and wife Michelle reside in Virginia Beach.
Tim and his wife Michelle welcomed the birth of their first child,Jax Harper LaVigne born on May 8th.