In The Press

Pat Murphy’s Story Still Has Plenty of Chapters Left

If there’s one thing Murphy didn’t have to learn in his education of the pro game, it’s how to connect with players. There are different intricacies, certainly. In college, the message generally stays the same. Players are cycled through every four years; messages can be re-used. Major League Baseball is full of professionals making a lot of money to play and support families. It’s a job, and everyone has something different at stake.

Pedroia has played for enough coaches to know what works and what doesn’t in professional baseball.

“I think at the major league level it is all about finding a way to get to every player,” he said. “Everyone is different with different personalities. Some guys have families, some guys are single, some are loud or quiet. You have to be able to relate to each player, and if you can you will pull the best out of each guy.

“Murph has all those qualities.”

Tommy Stokke
FanRag Sports

Notre Dame Connection

It has been a smooth season-long adjustment for Murphy, 57, a college baseball legend who went a combined 947-400-2 at Notre Dame (1988-94) and Arizona State (1995-2009). For the first time in Murphy’s coaching career, he gives advice instead of orders and leaves the final say up to Counsell, whose 16 major-league seasons earned him a reputation for being as smart as he was scrappy.

“We were having a 30-year baseball conversation and we just continued it,” Counsell said. “He’s had a great impact on the one-on-one conversations with players, pushing them, motivating them, encouraging them. He’s good at that.”

David Haugh
Chicago Tribune

Meet the Minor League Manager with Major League Potential

Murphy loves his job. And while college coaches and professional coaches generally, for some reason, stay in their lanes, Murphy never much cared for lanes. Coaching ball is coaching ball. Building trust is building trust. Leading is leading. A win’s a win. Hell, those are lanes.

Only the cars in the parking lot change.

So along comes Murphy, whose reputation at ASU was on the blustery, rigid, unapologetically ferocious side, into a game in which the authority is a signing bonus, a list of prospects and the vision of a young man five or six years down the line. The wins are more subtle. Maybe, for Murphy, subtle was going to take some getting used to. Maybe, subtle was where he was headed anyway.

 “Murph was awesome,” said Padres reliever Kevin Quackenbush, who played for Murphy at short-season Class A Eugene and El Paso. “An unbelievable manager and an unbelievable guy to be around. Everybody wanted to play baseball for him. He taught winning baseball.”
Tim Brown
Yahoo! Sports

Murphy Reunited with ASU Legacy

If there is a man in college baseball who needs redemption, it’s Pat Murphy.

He is considered a legend in Arizona State baseball lore, but it was the ASU athletic department that unceremoniously kicked him to the curb in the fall of 2009 amid an investigation by the NCAA’s Division I committee on infractions that eventually led to postseason probation. He left ASU bitter by the way his exit was handled by the NCAA.

Four years after that ugly time, a rejuvenated Murphy will finally get his due this weekend from the program he so loved, and some long-burned bridges will be crossed again at the same time.

ASU will hold a special ceremony before Saturday’s game against Baylor to honor Murphy as part of a salute to historic Packard Stadium, which is in its final season.

Eric Sorenson

Notre Dame Honors Murphy

Paying attention to detail and scouting the opposition helped former Notre Dame baseball coach Pat Murphy reach the coveted 500-victory mark faster than any other college baseball coach.

What never happened on the field to Murphy happened off of it during his return to Notre Dame’s campus on Saturday. He was caught off guard when Notre Dame unveiled its newly renovated clubhouse, which it named for Murphy.

“I’m so surprised at how stupid I was not to know that more was up than throwing out the first pitch,” said Murphy, who thought he was coming back for a reunion of former Fighting Irish coaches. “I’m shocked by myself. How could I not have known about this. I just had no idea. I’m stunned. I’m blown away. I’ve never experienced anything like this in my life.”

Curt Rallo
South Bend Tribune

Managing Pros Takes New Balance

Pat Murphy is known as a college baseball guy, but the new Eugene Emeralds manager arrived in town Friday with a good memory of the city from his professional career.

Murphy played in the Northwest League for Tri-Cities in 1985 and one of his best performances as a pitcher came at Civic Stadium.

“I think I had a perfect game going into the sixth inning,” Murphy recalled as he stood outside the Ems’ new home at PK Park. “(Michael) Loggins broke it up when our kid twisted his ankle on the football field they used to have in center field. We ended up losing the game 4-3. It wasn’t like a seventh- or eighth-inning perfecto, but I thought I was going to do something special.”

Steve Mims
The Register Guard

Pat Murphy Still Has A Love for the College Game

For a little more than two months, Pat Murphy was college baseball’s most reluctant stay-at-home dad.  Now that he’s working for the San Diego Padres— he’s technically a special assistant in baseball operations — Murphy has drawn a paycheck outside of college baseball for the first time.

Murphy did not want to dwell on how he left Arizona State, which makes sense.  After all, it ended badly, with an NCAA investigation hanging over the program and Murphy, and an obviously frosty relationship between Murphy and athletic director Lisa Love—who was quoted on that fateful fall day as calling Murphy’s departure “an amicable parting dictated by Pat.”  Whatever it was, it wasn’t that.

But true to his Springsteen fashion statements, Murphy tries not to focus on the negative. “How’s that song ‘Rosalita’ go?” he asks.  “Someday we’ll look back on this and it will all seem funny.”

John Manuel
Baseball America

Yeah, Pat Murphy is a lunatic.  But he was our lunatic.

There have only been three head coaches in the storied annals of ASU baseball.  You had Bobby Winkles, the architect and foundation builder.  You had Jim Brock, the doctor and cranky overachiever.  And you had Murph – who never won a national championship like his predecessors, but it sure was great fun watching him try.

All of the stories you’ve heard about his Sybil-like personality changes are true.  He would call you at 7 a.m. on a Sunday morning to quibble with a certain paragraph in your story one day, and then introduce you as the fine writer from the local paper the next. Sometimes he held a grudge for 15 minutes, sometimes it carried on for months.  And the only time you knew it was over was when he marched up to you with a smile and handshake.

Jerry Brown

Mondo Bizarro World: Murph Resigns

You’ve heard it before when it comes to Coach Murphy, you either loved him or hated him.  That’s how he was described in a 1997 Baseball America article labeled “Black Hat Pat” and how he was described last week in a Q&A by Kendall Rogers.  Like an American politician, he was a polarizing figure in college baseball.

I have to admit, I was on the side that loved the guy. He reminded me of just about every football coach I ever had.  A little on the crazy side, but pushed you and your boundaries to the edge, all in an effort to prepare you not only for a game, but prepared you to be a man. And typical of those same coaches of mine, you always heard that Murphy’s players would run through a wall for him. And if they bounced off, they’d try to do it again.

Eric Sorenson
College Baseball Today

One-on-one with Arizona State’s Pat Murphy

Q: You’ve had the luxury that a lot of fathers don’t have. You’ve had your nine-year-old son with you at a lot of games. A few years ago, he even took the podium with you in Omaha. What is that relationship like and what does it mean to you?

A: I’m so lucky to have him around the program. For years it was just he and I as a family and it’s just something that is a great blessing and that I’m so grateful for. It’s great for me to be able to have a job like this and have him around. Being around the other coaches and the players in this program has been good for him, too.

Kendall Rogers
Yahoo! Sports

ASU’s Murphy seeks validation

For the third consecutive season, he is the Pac-10 Coach of the Year. Of his 993 career victories, 940 are in Division I. The current leader is Texas coach Augie Garrido, 70, who has 1,668.

Before Murphy is finished, he could rank among the all-time greats. You can see the thought has crossed his mind, as if his face one day might be carved on the Mount Rushmore of college baseball coaches.

Dan Bickley
Arizona Republic

The world of ASU baseball’s Pat Murphy

Murphy smiles. Raising his son full time hasn’t been easy. Although his 22-year-old daughter, Keli, has come back to lend a hand and has been a “godsend” to her father, Murphy refuses to hire a nanny.

Instead, he bought this unique property a stone’s throw from campus and does much of his work from home. Young Kai also comes to practices, games and all road trips, and dad is occasionally seen in embarrassing states of parenthood, like kissing his son in the dugout.

Dan Bickley
Arizona Republic