The NCAA approved a third paid assistant coach starting with the 2024 season, and Arizona didn’t have to look far to find who would get that gig.
Volunteer assistant Toby DeMello has been promoted to a full-time role, one that will see him continue as the Wildcats’ hitting coordinator and third base coach, in addition to working with Arizona’s catchers. By being a paid assistant, he also is able to recruit alongside head coach Chip Hale, pitching coach Kevin Vance and recruiting coordinator/first base coach Trip Couch.
The 33-year-old DeMello will be entering his third season with the program, coming to the UA from Sacramento State. He’s also coached at Southern Illinois, Occidental and Sierra College after a professional career as a catcher from 2012-16 after being drafted in the 29th round by the Seattle Mariners in 2012.
This past season DeMello oversaw one of the top offenses in the country. Arizona ranked 12th nationally in batting average (.316) and sixth in slugging (.549) while producing the third-most doubles (151). The Wildcats’ 98 home runs were second-most in school history, while first baseman Kiko Romero set a single-season school record with 89 RBI.
DeMello also oversaw the development of outfielder Chase Davis, a consensus All-American who is expected to get picked in the first round of next week’s MLB Draft.