The King’s Academy Athletic Department this week announced the hiring of Jarrod Saltalamacchia to be the new head baseball coach for the Lions.
Saltalamacchia recently retired from his career as a Major League Baseball player and spent the 2019 season on the Lions’ baseball coaching staff assisting another retired Major Leaguer, head coach Brad Wilkerson.
Wilkerson recently announced that he was stepping down as the Lions’ head coach to pursue other opportunities in the baseball world. Saltalamacchia, a Royal Palm Beach High School graduate, is most noted for his key role as the starting catcher for the 2013 World Series champion Boston Red Sox. Saltalamacchia enjoyed a long career as a baseball player that spanned more than a decade. During his MLB career, he hit 110 home runs and 381 RBIs.
‘We are very blessed to be able to transition smoothly from coach Wilkerson to coach Saltalamacchia,” TKA Director of Athletics Dr. Chris Hobbs said. “Jarrod was very impressive in his interview for both the assistant coach role and months later for the head coach role. After a long career in the Majors, with much of that experience as a catcher, I obviously was not concerned about his baseball knowledge. What I value most was how passionate he is about using the platform of baseball to mentor young men for the Lord.”
Saltalamacchia looks forward to coaching at TKA.
“I’m so excited to join a program with such a distinct tradition of faith,” he said. “Leading the baseball program just gives me an opportunity to do the Lord’s work in an area that he blessed me with a unique platform. I cannot wait to see all of the great plans unfold that God has for the young men in our program.”
A member of the Florida High School Athletic Association, the Lions have claimed 123 district titles, 40 regional titles and 11 state championships. Student-athletes at TKA have gone on to successful collegiate athletic careers at some of the most accomplished universities in the country, as well as professional athletic careers in baseball, basketball, football, soccer and volleyball.
The campus features facilities that would rival many small colleges. These facilities include the Loveland Athletic Center, Kahlert Stadium, the TKA Track & Field Stadium and the Full-Page Aquatics Center. For more information, visit www.tkalions.net.