Baylor hires Pepperdine's Steve Rodriguez as baseball coach

WACO, Texas (AP) - Steve Rodriguez has been named Baylor's new baseball coach after leading Pepperdine to three NCAA tournament appearances the past four seasons.

Baylor announced the hiring Friday.

Rodriguez spent 12 seasons as the coach of his alma mater. He was an All-American second baseman for Pepperdine's 1992 national championship team.

Rodriguez replaces Steve Smith, fired last month after the Bears went 23-32 for their fewest wins since 1981. It was Baylor's third consecutive losing season since winning Big 12 Conference title in 2012. The Bears went to 13 NCAA regionals and made it to the College World Series in 2005 during Smiths' 21 seasons.

Pepperdine was 32-29 this year and won the West Coast Conference tournament to earn its eighth NCAA tournament bid overall under Rodriguez.

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