Bobby Pierce enters his eighth season as the head coach of the Fort Wayne Mastodons baseball program in 2017.
Breaking new records and achieving new heights has been a theme during Pierce’s tenure.
The 2016 season saw the Mastodons break the all-time school record for wins (33) and earn a second consecutive Summit League Championship Finals appearance. It was a tale of two seasons in 2016. After starting 1-11 in Summit League Conference play, the Mastodons finished the season on a terror to earn the No. 3 seed in the conference tournament. The Mastodons concluded the season as one of the hottest teams in the country, winning 20 of their last 27 games. The stretch included a 12 game win streak. Greg Kaiser received first team ABCA All-Region shortstop accolades for the second consecutive year. Greg Kaiser and Brandon Soat each received National Player of the Week recognition. The Mastodons also had five Summit League All-Conference selections and four Summit League All-Tournament honorees. Evan Miller was drafted in the 22nd round by the San Diego Padres.
The 2015 season was a record-breaking campaign for the Mastodons as well, as the team reached the Championship Game of the Summit League Tournament, broke the program's all-time win record, and finished above .500 for the first time as a member of NCAA Division I. Five different players earned All-Summit league honors, two were named to the Louisville Slugger Freshman All-America team, one ABCA All-Region performer, and another to the Capital One Academic All-America Team. There were also school records set in team strikeouts, individual strikeouts, individual total bases, and individual runs scored.
The 2015 Mastodons continued the winning and record-breaking momentum experienced in the prior season by the 2014 squad. This past season the Mastodon offense produced another top-50 nationally ranked offense, and back-to-back Summit League Tournament appearances for the first time in program history.
Pierce's teams have re-written the IPFW record book, and players have accomplished many noteworthy feats including 13 All-Summit League performers. Ten players have earned Player of the Week honors, three Capital One Academic All-District honorees (Nate Thomas in 2011, and Greg Kaiser in 2014 and 2015), one Capital One Academic All-American (Greg Kaiser in 2015) and two National Player of the Week recipient, Greg Kaiser, who did it twice in 2014 and Brandon Soat in 2015.
Five players have continued their playing careers in professional baseball, and Pierce's teams and players have broken 34 different IPFW baseball records during his tenure. Among the individual records include career home runs, RBI's, total bases, walks, runs, fewest walks per nine innings, and single season games played, at-bats, doubles, home runs, total bases, walks, pitching games started, saves, and times throwing out a baserunner.
Team records set during Pierce's tenure include at-bats, hits, doubles, home runs, total bases, walks, innings pitched, pitching strikeouts, saves, total picked off runners, most caught stealing, and season fielding percentage.
Prior to coming to IPFW, Pierce was the head coach at Metropolitan State College in Denver, where he had a 55-54 record in two seasons. He helped guide the Roadrunners to immediate success in his second season, guiding the team to its highest national ranking (No. 9 by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association), the highest regular season conference finish in program history (second), the highest win total in program history (38), 11 student-athletes named to the All-Conference team, and two student-athletes named to multiple All-American teams.
Before Metro State, Pierce spent three seasons at the University of Arkansas-Little Rock (UALR). While at UALR, he worked primarily with the hitters and infielders. Under his tutelage, Trojan hitters increased their batting average by 19 points from 2004 to 2005, and by 22 points from 2005 to 2006. He also helped put together two nationally-ranked recruiting classes by Collegiate Baseball Magazine in 2004 and 2005.
Over his entire career, he has coached 22 players that have continued their careers at the professional rank.
Coach Pierce currently lives in Fort Wayne with his wife Lizette and their two children Bobby Jr. (10) and Daycee (7).