Gillespie to coach baseball at UC Irvine

UC Irvine is set to hire former USC coach Mike Gillespie to lead its baseball program, according to sources close to the program.

Gillespie, 67, coached at USC from 1987 to 2006 and took the Trojans to the College World Series four times, including 1998, when they won the national title. He retired -- though some have said he was forced out in favor of son-in-law Chad Kreuter -- with a 763-471-2 record.

He spent last season coaching a Class-A team in the New York Yankees’ organization.

He is replacing Dave Serrano, who in June guided Irvine to its first CWS appearance but left to take over at Cal State Fullerton, his alma mater, after George Horton left Fullerton to head the new program at Oregon.


The same sources said Gillespie’s top assistant at Irvine will be Pat Shine, a former UC Irvine and UCLA assistant under John Savage. Shine is the coach at Division II Cal State L.A., and he is expected to be groomed by Gillespie to eventually take over the reins of the Irvine program.

-- Peter Yoon