Mike Hampton enters his 15th season at St. John's as the program's recruiting coordinator and hitting coach. A former collegiate All-American and fourth round draft choice, Hampton's keen eye for talent has given St. John's a presence in every level of competitive baseball.
Hampton has recruited six Major Leaguers, including first round draft pick and World Series champion Joe Panik, and has seen 51 players drafted or signed to professional contracts in his tenure.
A program-record-tying six players were taken in the 2015 MLB Draft, including five that were drafted in the top 498 picks. St. John's also had a program-record 11 All-BIG EAST selections, a total that featured eight first team honorees. Alex Caruso posted a league-leading .382 average as a Red Storm player won the BIG EAST batting title for the second-straight season.
Hampton guided an offense in 2014 that ranked ninth nationally in on-base percentage (.393), 20th in scoring (6.4 runs per game) and 23rd in batting average (.296). Freshman All-American Michael Donadio was also a first team All-BIG EAST choice and earned BIG EAST Rookie of the Year accolades. Robbie Knightes, who ranked eighth in the nation and won the batting BIG EAST batting title with a .399 average, also earned both Freshman All-America and second team All-BIG EAST honors.
St. John's had five players selected in the 2013 MLB Draft, including a fourth round pick in Ryan Horstman. The five-man 2013 draft class came just one season after St. John's also had five players taken in the 2012 MLB Draft, including four in the top six rounds. Jeremy Baltz, the second two-time All-American in program-history and the first BIG EAST player since 2002-04 to earn three first team All-Conference selections, highlighted the 2012 draft class with a second round selection.
All-American Joe Panik, a first round selection of the San Francisco Giants, highlighted a group of four players that went on to play professionally in 2011. St. John's had four players drafted in 2010 and had two 2009 draft picks after a five-man 2008 draft class that featured future Major Leaguer Scott Barnes, who was drafted by the Giants in the eighth round.
Future Major Leaguer Rob Delaney signed as an undrafted free agent in 2006 and a record seven players were signed to professional contracts in 2005, including a then-record six selected in the MLB Draft. Among the players selected that season were two future Major Leaguers: first rounder Craig Hansen and 12th round pick Anthony Varvaro.
St. John's set new school-records in runs (473), hits (750), RBI (457) and doubles (150) in 2010 as a prolific offense helped the squad win a program-record 43 games. Jeremy Baltz earned NCBWA National Freshman Hitter of the Year honors and was named the Louisville Slugger National Freshman Player of the Year after leading the nation's freshman, and setting new single-season school-records, in both home runs (24) and RBI (85). The second consensus All-American in school-history, Baltz and classmate Kyle Hansen each earned Freshman All-America honors to give St. John's at least one freshman All-American in four-straight seasons.
The offense ranked sixth in the country with a school-record .349 batting average in 2009. For a third-straight season, St. John's had a freshman All-American as Joe Panik earned the accolades after a rookie campaign in which the shortstop batted .332 with 11 doubles, five home runs and 47 RBI. Tim Morris also earned third team All-America honors and first team All-BIG EAST accolades after batting .415 with 17 doubles, 12 home runs and 62 RBI.
Led by eight All-BIG EAST selections, the 2008 team finished 42-16 to set what was then a program-record for victories. For the second-straight season, the Red Storm had a Freshman All-American as Paul Karmas earned the honors after batting .312 and leading the team in both doubles (17) and RBI (45).
St. John's finished seventh in the country in average (.326) and 12th in the country in scoring in 2007, while Brian Kemp earned Freshman All-America honors after batting .348 with a team-best 53 runs and 25 stolen bases. The 2006 squad ranked eighth in the country with a .328 batting average.
Hampton came to St. John's from BIG EAST Conference rival West Virginia, where he served as the Mountaineers hitting coach from 2000-01. He spent the 1999 season as a volunteer assistant on Jack Leggett's staff at Clemson.
Prior to his stay at Clemson, Hampton played professionally in the Cincinnati Reds organization and advanced to High-A before retiring due to injury.
A fourth-round draft choice by the Reds, Hampton was an All-American third baseman for Leggett at Clemson, helping the Tigers to a 57-18 record and the nation's No. 1 ranking for a portion of the 1994 season.
A native of Colorado Springs, Colo., Hampton spent the summer of 2001 in the Coastal Plain League as the head coach for the Wilmington Sharks and the summer of 1999 as an assistant for the Thomasville Hi-Toms, also of the CPL.
Hampton earned his master's degree in athletic coaching education from West Virginia in 2001, and his bachelor's degree in biological science from Clemson in 1997.
Hampton resides in Seaford, N.Y., with his wife, Lisa, and son, Jack.
The Hampton File
At St. John's
• Has recruited six future Major Leaguers, including Scott Barnes, Rob Delaney, Danny Burawa, Craig Hansen, Joe Panik and Anthony Varvaro
• Has coached 51 players that have been drafted or signed to professional contracts, including two first round picks
• Recruited and coached 2011 first round draft pick and World Series champion Joe Panik (San Francisco Giants, 29th overall), who also earned All-America honors and was a Brooks Wallace Award Finalist
• Recruited and coached two-time All-American Jeremy Baltz, who earned NCBWA National Freshman Hitter of the Year, Louisville Slugger National Freshman Player of the Year and BIG EAST Rookie of the Year accolades in 2010
• Has recruited eight Freshman All-Americans, including Michael Donadio (2014), Robbie Knightes (2014), Ryan Horstman (2013), Jeremy Baltz (2010), Kyle Hansen (2010), Joe Panik (2009), Paul Karmas (2008) and Brian Kemp (2007)
• Has led St. John's to a top ten national ranking in batting average three times (2006, 2007, 2009)
Previous coaching experience
• Served as hitting coach at West Virginia for two seasons (2000-01)
• Spent two summers in the Coastal Plains League, serving as head coach of the Wilmington Sharks (2001) and as assistant coach of the Thomasville Hi-Toms (1999)
• Spent one season as a volunteer assistant at Clemson (1999)
• Earned first team Collegiate Baseball All-America and first team All-ACC accolades at third base in 1994
• Selected by the Cincinnati Reds in the fourth round of the 1994 Major League Baseball Draft
• Advanced to High-A before retiring due to injuries Education
• Earned a bachelor's degree in biological science from Clemson in 1997 and a master's degree in athletic coaching education from West Virginia in 2001 Personal
• Resides in Seaford, N.Y., with his wife, Lisa, and son, Jack