Morgantown-native and former WVU baseball star Jedd Gyorko will make a homecoming this summer, being named the manager for the WV Black Bears of the MLB Draft League, the team announced Monday.
🚨 🚨 BREAKING NEWS OF THE BEST KIND 🚨🚨
Hometown Hero JEDD GYORKO is named the manager for the 2021 West Virginia Black Bears season!
— WV Black Bears (@WVBlackBears) April 12, 2021
Gyorko will lead the Black Bears through their inaugural season as a member of the newly-formed MLB Draft League. He is the fifth manager in the Black Bears’ history.
“It’s only fitting to have someone who has meant so much to baseball in our region lead our hometown team in our first year in the MLB Draft League,” Black Bears general manager Matt Drayer said in a statement. “From his early days bringing state championships to University High, to his record-breaking performances at WVU to his great success at the game’s highest stage, Jedd played the game the right way and will be bringing a wealth of experience and knowledge to lead our young squad of MLB-hopefuls.”
The MLB Draft league will feature six teams of the top draft-eligibile prospects playing a 68-game schedule.
“I am hoping to provide our young players with experiences and give them knowledge on what the next level will look like and hopefully prepare them for successful careers,” Gyorko said in a statement. “I am thankful for the opportunity and look forward to gaining managerial experience, especially in my hometown, where I’ll be able to spend more time with my family.”
Gyorko began his baseball career by leading Univerity High School to state championships in 2004 and 2007 as a three-time All-State honoree. He then played three seasons at WVU, setting program records in batting average (.404), extra-base hits (113) and home runs (35). He garnered 10 total All-American honors during his time as a Mountaineer.
He turned pro after being selected 59th overall in the 2010 MLB draft by the San Diego Padres. Gyorko’s big-league career spanned eight seasons across three teams, the Padres, Cardinals and Brewers. His career average is .245 with 121 home runs and 370 RBI in 846 MLB games. He was inducted into the WVU Hall of Fame in 2020 and also finished his degree last summer.
The Black Bears’ Opening Day is scheduled for May 24 at Mon County Ballpark.