COD Baseball welcomes DiMatteo as new head coach

COD Baseball welcomes DiMatteo as new head coach

College of the Desert Baseball officially has a new head coach, as former Roadrunners assistant coach, Sam DiMatteo now helms the program.

DiMatteo looks to turn the fortunes of the Roadrunners around as Desert Baseball moves into the new Inland Empire Athletic Conference (IEAC) this season.

Coach DiMatteo discussed about turning those fortunes around, commenting, "One big change we want to make is allowing our kids to be comfortable and free to play their game of baseball. I believe that you get the best results from your players when you allow them to be free to play to their strengths and of course as the season's progress our job as coaches is to utilize practice to better their weaknesses."

Adding, "The way I played reflects how I coach, I want our team to be aggressive in all aspects and not be afraid of the outcome. I also believe that the reputation and rapport my coaching staff has throughout the state, locally as well as nationwide will open doors to our recruiting process. This will be great for bringing athletes in as well as sending them off to further their academic/athletic careers."

No doubt that the Roadrunners will count on short stop Ryan Rodriguez (Rancho Mirage H.S.), first baseman Mario Ramirez (Rancho Mirage H.S.) and left fielder Anthony Gutierrez (Yucca Valley H.S.) to return for their sophomore seasons and regain their All-Conference form in 2020.

Coach DiMatteo talked about holding onto that talent, commenting, "A big part of retaining last year's talent is building off of what they learned last year. That's how sports works and how life works really. Every year no matter what you're doing, the goal should be showing up better, stronger, smarter. The overall goal is to keep building these players up as athletes as well as adults so they are prepared and ready for their next step attending a 4 year college."

Adding, "I am a big believer in teaching these kids about life as well as baseball. Baseball ends, sports end, there is a lot of lessons that need to be taught and it just so happens that sports has an awesome way of teaching those lessons on and off the field."

Coach DiMatteo is from Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. He attended California University of Pennsylvania, majored in business marketing, and was a two-time All-American breaking several school records during his time as a Vulcan. He also played in the Coastal Plains League in 2009 and was named to the all-star team.

DiMatteo began his professional career with the Washington Nationals in 2010 and continued to go on and play professional independent baseball for 6 years. He began his coaching career with the Palm Springs Power in 2017 (SCCBL Championship) and remains heavily involved in sports, teaching and coaching our upcoming generations.

DiMatteo also is the founder of a 501c3 nonprofit called The SD Project, which was created to support athletes of all ages who struggle financially or battle against mental or physical disability all over the world.

Coach DiMatteo talked about the local buzz about his hiring, commenting, "It is very refreshing to hear that my hiring has come with a lot of positive feedback in the area. Coaching summer ball out here in the Palm Springs Collegiate League has allowed players from all over the U.S to come to the desert to play all through the month of June and most of these players are looking to transfer or need a place to play."

Adding, "It's a unique opportunity for us because we are the only college in the area and it seems that a lot of the players one way or another come introduce themselves to me and ask me about COD. We won the championship this summer in the PSCL so that also helped out the cause. I had numerous players wanting to come out or showing interest from outside of the state as well as in.  We also will be creating relationships with all of the high schools in the area, keeping tabs with players and trying to restore the COD reputation and make this something the local athletes want to be part of."

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For additional information, please contact the COD Sports Information Office at 760.423.6641.

Information, Story & Photo provided by COD Sports Information.