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Profile: Blazer baseball coach pens guide to offense

VSUs baseball coach, Todd Guilliams, has recently turned his team’s offensive successes into a published book titled “High Scoring Baseball: The complete Guide to Run Production.”

Writing a book was never one of Guilliams’ goals, but when the opportunity presented itself he took full advantage of it.

“Greg and I spoke at a convention a couple of years ago about our offense,” he said. “Then we were approached by a human kinetics publisher and they liked our speech. Then they called us and we thought this was a once in a lifetime opportunity, so we agreed to do it.”

Guilliams is not an experienced author by any means, as this is his first book he has ever written. Many coaches across the country regard him as one of the greatest offensive innovators in the game today.

According to Guilliams, the main thing that separates him from other coaches in that aspect of the game is paying attention to detail.

“I chart every pitch and chart everything that happens, and then I take the time to analyze it,” Guilliams said. “I’m not reinventing the wheel but I’m taking things from other sports too. A lot of the things I’ve done were taken from football and applied to baseball.”

In 1989 Coach Guilliams began his coaching career at Eastern Kentucky University. The offensive philosophies that are prevalent in his book were not always a part of his coaching strategy.

“I would say that [strategy] was really from about 2002 to the present time,” he said. “It actually started on defense, trying to figure out how to stop the other team from scoring. Then when you figure out how to stop someone from scoring the flip side is true on offense.”

It’s no secret that Guilliams has found success everywhere he has been with these innovative ideas. His coaching was one of the main reasons that VSU led the nation with 113 home runs in 2009.

VSU offense has been one of the best in Division II baseball since Guilliams joined the club in 2008. There are four main keys to his ideas that are featured in the book.

“We try to score 7 runs every game,” he said.

Guilliams described in detail the process requires in scoring 7 runs.

“You have to have one big inning, which would be 3 or more runs in a single inning,” he said.

Guilliams also has a game plan for scoring big innings.

“You have to get free bases such as walks, errors, steal a base, and so on,” he said. “And then at the ground floor is what we call our quality at-bats, and the goal for the game is 50 percent quality at-bats.”

These four ideas molded together: 7 runs, big inning, free bases, and quality at-bats are the centerpieces of the book–with a lot more detail to it of course.

Since Guilliams is a very well respected coach, the book should have plenty of successful tips geared towards his target audience of high school and college coaches.

Guilliams has hope for the success of his book and hopefully many down the road.

“That was so exhausting especially in the middle of a season,” he said. “But we’ll see how this one does first.”

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