(STATE COLLEGE, Pa.) – The State College Spikes 2023 coaching staff has been rounded out as former MLB pitcher Jerome Williams, along with former MLB draft picks Tim Battle Jr. and Jesus Azuaje, will serve under manager Dave Trembley for the upcoming MLB Draft League season.
Williams comes to the Spikes as pitching coach after spending the last four seasons as a coach in the New York Mets organization, including a stint at Double-A Binghamton in 2022. The 11-year major league vet spent time pitching for the Giants, Cubs, Nationals, Angels, Astros, Rangers, Phillies and Cardinals, making 236 appearances, 149 of them starts, while collecting 52 big league wins. Williams, a native of Waipahu, Hawaii, was a first-round draft choice of the Giants in 1999.
Battle, who will serve as the Spikes’ hitting coach, was selected by the Yankees in the third round of the 2003 MLB Draft and played in that organization for six seasons. The Atlanta native then played independent pro ball for the next six seasons, and now serves as a hitting instructor for youth players in the Atlanta area.
Azuaje has previous experience at Medlar Field at Lubrano Park, having played against the Spikes while a member of the Williamsport Crosscutters in 2017 and 2018. A 25th-round selection of the Phillies in 2017 out of Glendale Community College in Arizona, Azuaje spent two years in the Phillies organization and one in the Rockies system before playing for the Billings Mustangs of the Pioneer League in 2021 under former Spikes manager Joe Kruzel. He follows in the footsteps of his father, also named Jesus Azauje, who played 15 years of pro baseball and is now managing the Rookie-level Arizona Complex League Royals.
The 2023 Spikes will begin the home slate on Friday, June 2 at 6:35 p.m. against the Williamsport Crosscutters, with the 40 games on this year’s regular season home schedule matching the most in franchise history.
Season Tickets, which offer the same great seats for all 40 games plus great benefits like TWO guaranteed giveaway items, early entrance into the ballpark for every game, and much more, are now available, as are Spikes Flex Books, Value Plans, and group and hospitality options for the 2023 season. Ticket packages are now available by calling a Spikes ticket representative at 814-272-1711, or by logging on to StateCollegeSpikes.com.