Infielder Janae Jefferson (right) led UT with her .408 batting average in 2019 while outfielder Reagan Hathaway (7) hit .309. This upcoming season, those players will be instructed by new hitting coach Steve Singleton. [NICK WAGNER/AMERICAN-STATESMAN]

BEVO BEAT Softball

Texas calls up its softball team’s next assistant coach from the Minnesota Twins’ farm system

Posted July 1st, 2019

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Texas softball coach Mike White has tabbed Steve Singleton to replace hitting coach Kerry Shaw in the Longhorns’ dugout.

Singleton, 33, worked this year as the hitting coach for the Pensacola Blue Wahoos, the Double A affiliate of the Minnesota Twins. Softball America was the first to report on Singleton’s hire.

Texas head coach Mike White went 46-17 during his first year with the Longhorns. [NICK WAGNER/AMERICAN-STATESMAN]
Singleton has never coached a softball team before. An instructor in Minnesota’s minor leagues since 2016, Singleton spent the 2015 season as an assistant coach with the baseball team at Florida SouthWestern State College. Singleton played baseball at the University of San Diego and was the Twins’ 11th-round draft pick in 2006.

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Through their first 80 games this year, the Blue Wahoos were hitting a Southern League-low .226. The offense’s 730 strikeouts were the second-most in its 10-team league. The 69 homers hit by Pensacola, though, ranked second in the Southern League.

At Texas, Singleton will inherit a veteran line-up that is set to retain six players who hit at least .297 in 2019. Two-time All-American infielder Janae Jefferson will enter next year as UT’s all-time leader in batting average (.400), and catcher Mary Iakopo is coming off an 11-homer season. This past season, Texas set a school record with its 91 doubles.

Texas, however, ranked 74th nationally in 2019 with its 5.03 runs per game. Eighty-six teams hit more home runs than the Longhorns, who went deep 41 times. The UT offense also floundered near the end of the season. In its 20-game lead-in to the NCAA tournament, Texas was shut out three times while exceeding five runs on only two occasions.

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