GREENVILLE — Former major league catcher Landon Powell has joined Furman’s baseball coaching staff as a volunteer assistant.
The addition was announced Thursday by Paladins coach Ron Smith.
The former South Carolina All-American said he is excited to be part of the changes going on within Furman’s program, which include facility upgrades and an increase of scholarships from six to the NCAA-limit 11.7.
“Their new (practice) facility is top notch. Hopefully, they can get phase two of that renovation with the new stadium seating and press box done in the next couple of years. They will have one of the best facilities in the South,” said Powell. “The staff and Coach Smith are on the up-and-up, and I’m very honored to be joining them.”
After Powell’s 5-month-old daughter Izzy passed away in January of a rare autoimmune disease, Powell retired from a 10-year pro career in June.
Powell, who was the Oakland A’s first-round pick in 2004, hit 10 home runs in 123 games with the A’s from 2009-11. He hit 60 homers in 425 games over eight seasons in the minor leagues. Behind the plate, he threw out 40 percent of runners trying to steal in the major leagues, and 44 percent in the minors.
Powell played in the third-most games (251) in USC history. He ranks second in career doubles (61), fourth in hits (265) and fifth in homers (44).