Jeff founded Carolinas Baseball Center (Charlotte, NC) in 2007 and since then his focus has been on developing and creating opportunity for high school players with the desire to play at the next level. For 14 years Jeff played professional baseball, including six years in the Major League with the White Sox, Mariners, and A's. Through opportunities and exposure created by Jeff, over 200 players have moved on to play at the collegiate and professional levels and the number continues to grow. His reputation today is as an authority on travel/showcase baseball and a national leading source for player evaluation and promotion.
For 13 seasons John pitched professionally, reaching the Major League with the Braves, Tigers, and Phillies. Now that John has moved on from playing professionally his focus has turned to development. John is CBC's Director of Baseball and he is involved in coaching teams, individual lessons, teams evaluation and consultation in the Charlotte, NC area and beyond. John resides in Charlotte with his wife, Anna, and their sons Grady and Hayes.
Ross Gload originally hails from Long Island, NY where he is the owner of several county home runs records, as well as the recipient of the Carl Yastrzemski Award (awarded to the most outstanding high school player in Suffolk County). Following high school, Ross attended the University of South Florida in Tampa, FL, and in 1997 was drafted by the Florida Marlins. Ross played 15 seasons of professional baseball, which includes 10 seasons in the Major League. Ross’ Major League stops included the Chicago White Sox, Colorado Rockies, Florida Marlins, Philadelphia Phillies, and New York Mets. Ross earned a World Series ring with the White Sox in 2005. Ross has made Charlotte his home since originally playing here with the Knights in 2003, residing here with his wife, Betsy, and their children, Greyson and Belle.
Cockrell's first love had always been baseball, and he was an even better outfielder than he was a quarterback. An All-American, he was named to the University of Tennessee All-Century Baseball Team in 2009. The San Francisco Giants made Cockrell the ninth pick overall in the 1984 MLB draft, and he chose to forgo his senior year in college and play professional baseball.
Cockrell played in the minor leagues for thirteen years with five different organizations. At the end of the 1996 season, at the age of 33, he debuted for the Colorado Rockies on September 7, 1996 with a pinch hit appearance in which he struck out against All-Star closer Billy Wagner. His first major league hit came three days later in the form of a pinch hit double off Tom Glavine against the Atlanta Braves at Coors Field. He had nine plate appearances for the Rockies, and retired at the end of the season.
Jack is a native of Southern California. He was drafted by the Boston Red Sox in the 20th round of the 1984 MLB draft but did not sign, choosing to attend Stanford University instead. At Stanford he was the co-Freshman of the Year in 1985, a 2nd team All-American in 1986 and a 3rd team All-American in 1987. He led Stanford to the 1987 College World Series championship. Jack was drafted again, this time in the 1st round (5th pick) of the 1987 MLB draft by the Chicago White Sox. After just 6 games in the Minor Leagues, Jack made his Major League debut. He played for 12 years in the Major League, with the White Sox, New York Yankees, Cleveland Indians and Anaheim Angels. "Black Jack", as he is nicknamed, was a three time All-Star and won the American League Cy Young Award in 1993. During his MLB career Jack compiled a 127-87 win-loss record with a 3.85 ERA. In 2014, Jack was hired by the Los Angeles Dodgers to manage in their minor league system for their Ogden Raptors (Rookie League), and then in 2015 he was named manager of the Arizona League Dodgers. Prior to this, he coached high school baseball at San Dieguito Academy in Encinitas, CA for 7 years. Off the field, Jack has also been a professional musician, with the rock bands V.I.E.W. and stickfigure. Jack is married to his wife, Kerrie, and is father to sons Lucas, Rhett and Rory, and daughter Molly.
Rashad Cunningham - Instructor & Coach
Rashad has been coaching baseball for over 16 years. As an assistant at Presbyterian College, serving as hitting and outfield coach, the Blue Hose finished the 2017 season with a 32-29 record with wins over Alabama and Auburn, and finished runner-up in the Big South Tournament. During his time at Presbyterian College the Blue Hose set school records for most wins and most Big South Conference wins (15, the most in the Division 1 era), had their first winning season in the D1 era, and led the Big South in hits, sac bunts and total bases. In 2016-17, Rashad served as Director of Baseball Operations at Winthrop University, working alongside the coaching staff coordinating various activities as well as organizing and supervising youth and high school camps. This seasoned instructor has coached several 16u-18u Showcase teams and Dixie Majors teams, and he has assisted 75 baseball players in obtaining baseball scholarships throughout his coaching career. In 2007, he led the Lancaster American Legion Post 31 to their first ever State Tournament appearance along with a League V Championship, and he was honored with the Region V Coach of the Year Award and The Lancaster News Coach of the Year Award. Rashad began his coaching career at Lancaster High School as a Varsity Assistant Coach, then traveled across town to Buford High School where he served 6 years as a Head Junior Varsity Coach and Varsity Assistant Coach. In 2015, he was named Assistant Head Coach/Pitching Coach at York Comprehensive High School. This proud graduate of the University of South Carolina is a native of Lancaster, SC, and he currently resides in Rock Hill, SC with his wife Julieta. In addition to being a CBC Baseball Club team head coach, Rashad also offers private hitting lessons and is directing our BIC Showcases.
Dylan Hamel - Catcher Instructor
Dylan is from Lenoir NC, where he attended Hibriten High School and played four years of Varsity baseball. He was named All-Conference 3 years in a row and then accepted a scholarship to play D1 baseball at Appalachian State University. After catching for the Mountaineers, Dylan had the opportunity to help coach his former collegiate team in the Fall of 2018. Following, he decided to pursue his baseball passion and try out for a pro ball team. Dylan played in the Frontier League for the Evansville Otters. Now, he is back and ready to help catchers reach their goals and play at the next level.
Evan Helms - Coach
Evan was born and raised in Charlotte, NC and played baseball for East Mecklenburg HS as a first baseman, third baseman and pitcher. He was recruited and played for Winthrop University under scholarship as a pitcher. Evan served as a coach in the Tega Cay Recreation Program in 2005-2010 (baseball, football and basketball). In 2012, Evan became assistant baseball coach for Gold Hill Middle School, and since 2015 he has been the head coach. Evan joined CBC's coaching staff in 2015, primarily working with middle school and high school age players. Evan and his wife, Lisa, reside in Fort Mill, SC with their two sons, Hunter and Dylan.
Vinnie Izzo - Instructor & Coach
Vinnie was raised in Brooklyn, NY and played as a shortstop and third baseman for his high school. He continued to play recreationally for many years. Since 2005, Vinnie went on to coaching and he has been doing so in the Charlotte/Fort Mill area. He started at the tee ball level and has worked with every level player up to and including High School/Showcase. Vinnie's teams are consistently successful because he invests in each player individually so that they are prepared to contribute to the collective effort of the TEAM's success in all aspects of the game.
Tim Kirk - Instructor & Coach
Tim grew up in Salisbury, NC and played baseball there at North Piedmont HS. During his junior and senior high school years Tim was named Conference Player of the Year, Rowan County Player of the Year, and to the All-State team. Following high schoool, Tim attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC). As a left-handed pitcher at UNC, Tim set the career record for relief appearances and for games pitched, and in the 1986 MLB draft he picked by the Pittsburg Pirates. Tim went on to play professionally for 4 years, in the Pittsburgh Pirates and Atlanta Braves organizations, topping out in AA of the MiLB. Since 2011, Tim has been coaching high school and showcase baseball - for First Assembly Christian School (Concord), and the Carolina Royals. Tim and his wife, Kim, reside in Kannapolis, NC with their two sons, Ryan (a player at Campbell University) and Davis.
Andrew Knight - Instructor
Andrew Knight is a Charlotte area native, growing up in Wesley Chapel NC. He attended Weddington High School where he spent 3 years catching for the Warriors. After high school Andrew accepted a scholarship to Catawba College, after his Freshman year he transferred to play baseball at Brunswick Community College. His college years ended at UNCW where he served as the student assistant for the Seahawks under Mark Scalf. Following graduation, Andrew took a coaching position with Brunswick CC where he helped with the recruiting, and working with catchers and hitters. The Brunswick CC hitters put together an explosive year at the plate in 2017, finishing the season ranked 3rd in the NJCAA D2 baseball in home runs, extra base hits and total bases, ranked 5th in hits, doubles, RBI’s, and ranked 6th in runs. Andrew has since moved back to Charlotte and is the recruiting coordinator and an assistant coach to Jack McDowell at Queens University of Charlotte, where he is in charge of recruiting as well as working with the hitters and catchers. Andrew offers private lessons and group clinic instruction at CBC for hitters and catchers.
Kevin Martir - Instructor
Kevin Martir was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. An All-American performer at Maryland, Kevin joined the Terrapin staff as a student assistant in August 2016 up until the end of this past season of 2018. Martir started 158 games over the course of three seasons and was noted for his defensive skill behind the plate and skill in managing his pitchers. He was a central figure in the two most successful seasons in Maryland history, helping the Terps to a combined 82 wins and two NCAA Regional Championships over his last two campains in College Park.
One of the best catchers in Maryland history, Martir was named a third-team All-American in 2015 after leading the Terps in average (.342) and on-base percentage (.441) along with slugging seven home runs and 17 doubles. He notched 45 RBI and scored 45 runs. He was named one of 20 semifinalists for the Johnny Bench Award, given to the nation's top catcher. He was also named to the All-Big Ten Third Team. As a sophomore, Martir started 49 games and had a 13-game hitting streak at the end of the season. He was named to the Columbia All-Regional team after helping Maryland defeat South Carolina to advance to its first ever NCAA Super Regional. He also earned ACC All-Tournament honors. Martir played in 50 games as a reshman and finshed with a .279 average with 25 runs scored and 30 RBI.
After being selected by the Houston Astros in the 18th round of the 2015 MLB Draft, Martir continued his winning ways capturing an Appalachian League title with the Greenville Astros. He also signed as a free agent with the Milwaukee Brewers. He is currently a coach for the Philadelphia Phillies organization.
During the off season, Martir will be an instructor at CBC. He will be offering Catchers Clinics, Private Lesson in catching, hitting and infield.
Robert Taft - Coach
Grew up in Columbus, NC and attended Polk County High School. 3x All Conference, 2x All State and player of the year (Western Highland Conference) senior year. Pitched at Belmont Abbey College in Charlotte, NC. Appeared in 40 games & over 70 innings between starting and relieving, compiling a career 4.35 ear including a 2.4 era senior year. Graduated with a BA in Sports Management. I've been coaching for 6+ years now am looking to continue to grow & learn as a coach as well as pass my knowledge & experience of the game to my players. I currently reside in Charlotte, NC
Ray Torres - Instructor
Ray played in the Caribbean League (Puerto Rico) for two years in 2001-03. Prior to that, he was a 2-time All-America NAI pitcher and center fielder at Lindsey Wilson College. He won over 50 games during his college pitching career, and in 2000 he was 2nd in hitting nationally - with a .502 batting average. In 2005, Ray was inducted into the Lindsey Wilson College Hall of Fame. Prior to joining CBC, Ray was owner of High Heat Kings - a top Northeast youth travel baseball organization (2008-2012). Ray and his wife, Gloria, reside in the Charlotte area with their two children, Ray and Emma.
Andrew Zike - Coach
Andrew is a coach that has been working with USA Baseball NTIS since 2012 and was one of the first team members to play for CBC. He attended Olympic High School where he was a 3-year varsity team starter and earned All-Conference honors 2 years in a row. Andrew is an alumnus of Western Carolina University where he recevied a Bachelor of Science degree in Sport Management along with a Minor in Marketing. Andrew is the Marketing Communications Director of four NTIS regions (North Atlantic, New England, Capital and Southeast), and works with the BIC Showcases organization and is Secretary of the U Deserve A Chance Foundation. Additionally, Andrew runs his own Video Production company which specializes in Recruiting Videos (www.athletesinmotionvp.com).
Mel Zitter - Coach
Mel has been involved in baseball for more than 40 years. During this time he has run a premier youth program in New York, coached teams from 10-20 years old, coached high school teams (Xaverian HS in New York for 10 years, and Mt. Pleasant HS in North Carolina), been a Major League scout for 9 years, and taught all facets of baseball at multiple academies. Mel is an excellent communicator, loves working with youngsters of all ages, and considers himself to be a baseball “lifer”. While running and coaching at Youth Service League in New York, Mel was responsible for sending hundreds of graduates to colleges nationwide, has coached more than 70 drafted players, and 29 Major League players - including Adam Ottavino, Dellin Betances, Pedro Beato, and James Jones, plus past big leaguers including Shawon Dunston, Alex Arias, Manny Ramirez, Julio Lugo, & Nelson Figueroa. Mel scouted for nine years, with the Cleveland Indians and Tampa Bay Rays. In addition, he worked at several indoor facilities in New York, New Jersey, and now at CBC. Mel does not consider himself anywhere near ready for the rocking chair. He loves coaching & instructing, and feels he still has much knowledge to give. Mel and his wife, Rocelle, have two children, Mechelle and Mikey.