Texas baseball head coach Augie Garrido is a rarity for a manager — he likes to entertain.
Couple that with his constant ability to produce winners, and it puts him in the conversation as one of the top college baseball coaches of all time.
Perhaps the most endearing, or notable, aspect of Garrido is his quick wit and matching personality. Garrido delivers one-liners with the best of them. Here are five quotes, or “Augieisms,” from Garrido this season that best define him.
“I used to have the body of a Greek God. Now, I’ve got the body of a goddamn Greek.”
Garrido isn’t a youngster anymore. He turned 75 on Feb. 6 and is in his 46th season as a head coach. That’s 48 years removed from his playing days at Fresno State and in the Cleveland Indians minor league system.
Time may melt, but it has been kind to Garrido. He owns the college baseball wins record, five National Championships and six National Coach of the Year honors.
“The only thing 1,894 wins proves is that you’re old,” Garrido said after setting the mark in a win against Texas State on March 25.
Garrido knows he’s old, but he isn’t ready to give up the game.
“I like what I do,” Garrido said. “I look forward to doing it. That’s where the reward lies.”
Reporter at opening press conference: “How are you doing?”
Garrido: “I’m not telling you anything.”
Most of the time, Garrido enjoys speaking with the media. It is often tough to get coaches to open up, but not Garrido. He talks. And talks. And talks.
But ask questions carefully. He’s always ready to deliver a clever retort.
“Tell me about Lubbock,” a reporter asked before the Texas Tech series. Garrido responded: “I hear they have a lot of good restaurants.”
When asked at the first practice how the team looks, he said, “Good so far, unscored upon.”
“There are three parts to our game: get on base, advance runner, score runners.”
That defines “Augie Ball.”
He developed the philosophy early in his coaching career at Sierra High School, a team that struggled to hit.
“I had to find some way to get the ball in play,” Garrido said. “You can bunt for a base hit to advance runners and to score runners.”
He references 2013 national champion UCLA and World Series champion Boston Red Sox as models for his team this year. Both won it all with low batting averages but took advantage of
“Runs determine the outcome of the game, not hits,” Garrido said.
As of April 20, Texas leads the nation with 63 sacrifice bunts.
“[You] got to get the bunt down anytime,” Garrido said. “The scope of our offensive game is good enough to beat anyone. We just have to execute. We aren’t anxious to make a lot of changes.”
“It’s the players’ minds and their ability to use them. That’s what makes the use of a bat, a ball and a glove, brilliant.”
This offseason, Texas did not spend much time as a team in the cages or working on its defense. Rather, Garrido had them work on a bigger issue.
“We spent all fall attacking our biggest problem from last year: the word ‘entitlement.’”
Garrido is adamant about the importance of the mental side of the game.
“They’ve been tested and the weaker and self-centered mentalities are gone,” Garrido said.
For a group that finished 27-24-1 last season, it may not have been what they wanted to hear. But they embraced Garrido’s methods.
“[He’s helped us on] being mentally tough,” sophomore outfielder Ben Johnson said. “He is also very inspiring. He can convince you to run through a brick wall.”
After mastering what Garrido calls “the art of losing the one-run game” last season, Texas baseball is 8-2 in those games this year and 3-0 in games that go into extra innings.
“Baseball is nothing more than another classroom in the educational process. Really, baseball is a metaphor for life.”
Garrido has developed 119 major league players and 16 of them were selected in the first round of the draft.
He has coached 52 All-Americans, four national players of the year, six College World Series MVPs, one Rhodes Scholar and four academic All-Americans at Texas.
But Garrido says baseball is more than laying down bunts and hitting the cutoff man. He wants his players to develop skills for life.
“Baseball offers the opportunity to communicate on how to solve problems,” Garrido said. “That’s what matters. Baseball is a game of failure. Some of that is in life too.”
Not only does Garrido teach life lessons, but he says he builds relationships with his players.
“I recognize realities of where we are, what we are doing, problems they have,” Garrido said. “It’s about keeping the game fun. There is so much failure in baseball, you have to help