June 17, 2015
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Former University of Notre Dame head baseball coach Pat Murphy has been named interim manager of the San Diego Padres for the remainder of the 2015 season.
“Pat Murphy’s 30 years of experience coaching and managing, and his success at every level, stood out to me as I came to this decision,” said Padres executive vice president/general manager A.J. Preller. “His leadership ability, his respect in the clubhouse and his familiarity with our system will make this transition a smooth one for our players and coaching staff.”
Murphy becomes the second individual with Notre Dame ties to join the Major League Baseball managerial ranks in 2015. One of Murphy’s former players, Craig Counsell, became manager of the Milwaukee Brewers on May 4. Counsell played for the Irish from 1989-92.
Murphy spent seven seasons (1988-94) as head coach at Notre Dame, where he guided the Irish to a consistent level of success previously unmatched in the history of the program. Building the program with the support of only four full scholarships, Murphy guided the Irish to a 318-116-1 (.732) record, including three consecutive trips to the NCAA Championship regional finals in 1992, 1993 and 1994, a streak matched only by Texas.
Murphy built Notre Dame into a perennial top-25 program. Under his guidance, the Irish averaged more than 46 wins per season and rejuvenated the pride in Notre Dame baseball, which ultimately led to the construction of Frank Eck Stadium in the fall of 1993.
Murphy began his tenure in South Bend in 1988, leading the Irish to a 39-22 mark, the most victories in the 96-year history of the program at the time. Notre Dame triumphed twice over a powerhouse Miami (Florida) squad, setting a precedent for victories over the nation’s premier programs that became a trademark of Murphy’s tenure. The following six campaigns saw the Irish garner national rankings, conference titles, NCAA Championship appearances, 45-win seasons and more.
Murphy’s efforts were rewarded in just two years, as in 1989 the Irish posted a then-school record 48 wins and logged their first NCAA Championship appearance in 19 years. Murphy guided the program to its first national ranking as the Irish were rated that year as high as 16th in The Sporting News, 23rd in Baseball America and 24th in the Collegiate Baseball polls. Later, Notre Dame would earn its first Midwestern Collegiate Conference title by winning the final four games of the conference tournament in a span of 23 hours as Murphy snared his first MCC Coach of the Year honor.
Notre Dame followed the 1989 campaign with back-to-back 45-win seasons in 1990 and 1991. The 1990 squad put together a 46-12 record, good for a .793 winning percentage that ranked fourth in the nation. Over the last 29 games of the year, Notre Dame posted a 25-4 mark to bring Murphy another MCC Coach of the Year award.
In 1991, Notre Dame overcame a schedule that saw the Irish play their first 27 games on the road to notch a 45-16 record. Included were wins away from home over national powers Texas and Miami (Florida) as well as eventual national champion LSU and a midseason 18-game winning streak. Neither the 1990 nor 1991 Notre Dame squads received an invitation to the NCAA Championship.
The 1992, 1993 and 1994 seasons added emphasis to Murphy’s status as one of the nation’s top coaches, as his Notre Dame squads grabbed MCC titles and, in each year, beat regional host opponents to come within one game of a trip to the College World Series. The Irish went 48-15 in 1992 and 46-16 in 1993. In 1992 Baseball America labeled Notre Dame as “the nation’s fastest rising program.”
The 1994 Notre Dame squad finished 46-16 and, again, came within one win of a trip to the College World Series. The MCC champions advanced to the finals of the NCAA East Regional in Clemson, South Carolina, knocking off the host team and No. 1-ranked Tigers along the way. Notre Dame finished the season ranked 18th by Collegiate Baseball and 20th by Baseball America.
Murphy became only the third head coach in Arizona State’s modern baseball history when he was hired in August 1994. His 15-year tenure at the helm of the Sun Devil program featured great success. Murphy went 585-284-1 and led Arizona State to the NCAA Championship 10 straight years (2000-09) and 12 times overall. The 585 wins are the second most in school history. He owns an all-time 55-33 record in NCAA Championship action as a head coach and was 46-25 in postseason play at Arizona State.
In more than 25 years of coaching at the collegiate level, Murphy owns a career 956-457-4 record, averaging over 40 wins a year.
Murphy, who was named Pac-10 Coach of the Year on four occasions (2000, 2007, 2008 and 2009), became the youngest collegiate coach to reach 500 career victories. Eight times over his last 13 years as head coach at Arizona State, the Sun Devils finished ranked in the top 12 in the country. Arizona State finished inside the top 10 four different times over his last five years, a feat only four other schools matched. In fact, three times in that same decade, Murphy had teams finish in the top three in the country.
In May 2011, the Coach Pat Murphy Locker Room was dedicated at Notre Dame’s Frank Eck Stadium, thanks to the benefaction of a group of Irish baseball supporters, including Counsell. On that occasion Murphy received an honorary monogram from the Notre Dame Monogram Club.
The 56-year-old Murphy, a native of Syracuse, New York, had been in his sixth season in 2015 in the Padres organization, including parts of the last three seasons as the manager of the club’s Triple-A affiliate in El Paso, Texas, where he posted a combined 180-172 (.511) record. Prior to starting assignment in El Paso in 2013, Murphy spent a pair of seasons managing Short-A Eugene from 2011-2012, where he produced a 93-59 (.612) record. He spent his first season in the Padres organization as special assistant to baseball operations in 2010.
Prior to joining the Padres organization in 2010, Murphy had spent his entire coaching career in the collegiate ranks–at Arizona State (1995-2009), Notre Dame (1988-94), Claremont-Mudd-Scripps (1986-87) and Maryville College (1983).
A 1982 graduate of Florida Atlantic University, Murphy had a four-year professional playing career in the San Francisco Giants and Padres organizations, along with several independent clubs.