High School Baseball

Station hires former UK star

Eddie Brooks, who had a standout career as a baseball player at Lafayette and the University of Kentucky, is the new coach at Bryan Station.

Brooks, who has run the Eddie Brooks Baseball Academy for the last decade, said it was a "spur-of-the-moment thing" to apply for the Defenders' job after Larry Poynter left last month to become coach at Paul Dunbar.

"I've worked with some of the kids at Bryan Station and have gotten to know some of their parents, and they thought enough of me as a coach and person to ask me to apply," Brooks said.

"I feel lucky to have this opportunity in my hometown. I hope we can pick up where Coach Poynter left off and turn Bryan Station into the kind of powerhouse program that Lafayette was when I was there."

Brooks was a star on Lafayette's 1989 state championship team. He went on to play at UK and was an infield starter for two years. He still holds UK career records for slugging percentage (.719) and on-base percentage (.489).

After his junior year he was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the fifth round. He played in the minors for the Pirates' and New York Mets' organizations.

As an instructor at his baseball academy, Brooks has tutored such stars as Austin Kearns and Chaz Roe. He has tried to get into coaching before. He said he accepted the job of head coach at Kentucky State a couple years ago, but the school president eventually nixed his hire.

Brooks, 35, thinks his best asset as a high school coach will be having the respect of his players. "They know I played college and professional ball, so I'll have the respect factor automatically built in."