June 27 - Shawn Camp was officially hired this morning as the pitching coach at George Mason University, where he pitched for three seasons in the mid-1990s before an 11-year Major League career.
Camp, 43, was a 16th round draft pick of the San Diego Padres in 1997 and would go on to pitch for Kansas City, Tampa Bay, Toronto, the Chicago Cubs and Philadelphia before retiring following the 2014 season. He has spent the past five seasons as the pitching coach at Battlefield High School.
“I am excited for the opportunity to give back to the same program that started my journey,” Camp said when reached early this afternoon. “I’ve known [Patriots coach Bill] Brown my entire life and to be able to coach alongside him brings a lot of excitement to me and my family.
“I feel the Northern Virginia and surrounding areas are full of incredible baseball talent. To have the ability to not let those players get out of this area and join an amazing university is an amazing feeling. I’m looking forward to bright things ahead for Mason baseball.”
Added Brown, in a release by the school: “I am incredibly excited to have Shawn coming back home, it is a great day for Mason baseball. He has a passion for teaching the art of pitching and his impact will be obvious from day one with our pitching staff.”
Camp, a graduate of Robinson, appeared in 541 games as a relief pitcher in the big leagues, leading baseball with 80 appearances with the Cubs in 2012. While at George Mason, he set the record for strikeouts per nine innings (9.21), which still stands, and is among the program’s leaders in several other categories.
“He is not far removed from playing and will do and outstanding job connecting with his players,” said longtime MLB reliever Javier Lopez, a teammate of Camp’s at Robinson, in George Mason’s release. “He knows the area very well and he has a strong baseball acumen. He has tremendous energy and will do an outstanding job.”
Camp currently operates the Shawn Camp Pitching Academy and serves in leadership capacities with the Marucci Stars travel program and the Complete Game Sports & Fitness facility in Manassas. Current George Mason pitching coach Brian Pugh will shift to a new role as the program’s recruiting coordinator.
“His credentials bring immediate credibility in the baseball world and his addition to our staff instantly changes the trajectory of Mason baseball,” Brown said.
Photo of Shawn Camp by Fred Ingham