Jan. 27, 2014
2014 Schedule | UTTIX.com
The start of the 2014 Tennessee baseball season is just 18 days away!
In January and February, UTSports.com will count down the days remaining until the start of the Vols' 2014 campaign (Feb. 14) with looks back at the many players who donned jersey numbers 30-1.
The baseball season in Knoxville kicks off on the diamond on Feb. 14 when the Vols host the Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks at Lindsey Nelson Stadium at 4 p.m. With one of the youngest teams in the country in 2013, head coach Dave Serrano and company have the foundation in place on Rocky Top.
The 2014 slate is highlighted by 33 games in Knoxville, including early nonconference matchups against Purdue (Feb. 15-16) and UNLV (Feb. 21-23). The Vols open with a 13-game homestand, starting things off with three straight days of doubleheader action.
Practice has officially begun on Rocky Top. The Diamond Vols are in action throughout the week. All outdoor practices at Lindsey Nelson Stadium are free and open to the public. For more information, visit UTSports.com
In total, 21 Vols have worn the Orange and White No. 18, and that's where it will forever stand. The No. 18 is one of two Tennessee baseball retired jerseys. It is retired in honor of former Vol and Major League Baseball player and manager, Phil Garner.
#18 PHIL GARNER
1968-70 | INF | 5-10 | 180 lbs. | R/R | Jefferson City, Tenn.
A native of Jefferson City, Tenn., Phil Garner transferred to Bearden High School in Knoxville for his high school career and earned a scholarship at the University of Tennessee. During his three-year career with the Vols, Garner was a two-time All-Southeastern Conference selection and the 1969 NCAA home run leader with 12.
Primarily a middle infielder, Garner finished his career with a .296 batting average, 17 home runs, 73 RBIs and 91 total hits.
Following the 1970 season, three Vols wound up being selected in the first round of the 1971 January regular and secondary phases of the major league draft. Pitcher Steve Raines, outfielder Sam Ewing and Garner all signed professional contracts. Garner was selected by the Oakland Athletics with the third overall pick in the draft and went on to make his MLB debut on Sept. 10, 1973. He played 16 seasons for five different teams, including the A's, Pittsburgh Pirates, Houston Astros, Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants. He finished his major league career with over 1,500 hits and won the World Series with the 1979 Pirates.
Garner began his career as a manager with the Milwaukee Brewers in 1992. He coached there for eight seasons then joined the Detroit Tigers from 2000-02. Garner then coached the Houston Astros from 2004-07, leading the club to the 2005 World Series.
He was inducted into the Tennessee Baseball Hall of Fame in 1995 - a member of the first class - and then later inducted into the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame in 2002. Garner returned to Rocky Top in 2009 to have his No. 18 retired and be named a member of Tennessee's All-Century Team.
NOTES ON GARNER
- Played in three MLB All-Star Games
- Led the SEC with 35 RBIs in 1970
- Garner actually wore four different numbers while at UT