Now entering his third season at Rocky Top, Tony Asaro assumes the role of director of baseball operations following two years as the Vols volunteer assistant coach. In his previous capacity, Asaro worked with the Volunteers' outfielders, assisting associate head coach Greg Bergeron with the squad's offense and man the first base coaching box. In his new assignment, he will continue to assist the Vols coaching staff with coordinating offseason baseball camps and community service outings for the Tennessee baseball team. He will also serve as a primary liaison between the University and the Vols Baseball program.
Head Coach Dave Serrano dipped into his extensive base of former players when originally hiring Asaro and is glad to retain the California native as a part of his staff.
"I was happy that Tony decided to change hats and go into our Director of Baseball Operations position," said Serrano. "He brings great qualities with his personality, organization and communications skills to serve in that role in a first class way. I've known Tony since he was a player for me at UC Irvine and I'm excited that he is also still part of our family."
A former pupil of Serrano, as well as Greg Bergeron, at UC-Irvine, Asaro spent three seasons as an assistant coach at El Camino College (2010-12) where he was the team's hitting instructor, recruiting coordinator and third-base coach.
"I was one of the fortunate few to have the opportunity to get a chance to play for Coach Serrano and Coach Bergeron," Asaro said. "To play for those coaches and now have the opportunity to come out here and coach with them was not something I was going to pass up and I am extremely excited about it.
"The feeling of trust and the family environment is very unique to our program. It's something we strive for and build our program around. It's not every day an opportunity like this comes around, so when the phone call came there was no hesitation and I'm glad to be a part of the Big Orange family."
After playing for the 2006 West Coast Conference champion Pepperdine, Asaro transferred to UC Irvine which he helped reach the College World Series for the first time in school history in 2007.
The next season, the Anteaters advanced to the Super Regionals at LSU. Asaro was selected by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 47th round of the 2008 MLB Draft but elected to return to school for his senior season. He played for the Anchorage Glacier Pilots that summer as well, winning the Alaska Baseball League before participating in the NBC World Series.
Prior to his collegiate career, Asaro was selected to the 2003 USA National Team Trials and also played for the American Samoa National team participating in the World Baseball Challenge in 2002 in Grand Forks, British Colombia.
He was also a four-year varsity letterwinner at West Torrance High School where he won three Bay League championships and the El Segundo tournament championship. Asaro was named All-Bay League all four years and all-area three times.