Aug. 3, 2007
Head Coach Ray Tanner | Assistant Coach Monte Lee
COLUMBIA, S.C. - The University of South Carolina has announced the promotion of Monte Lee to Assistant Coach and Recruiting Coordinator for the baseball team. Now entering his sixth season on Ray Tanner's coaching staff, Lee has worked as the hitting instructor and outfield coach along with first base coaching duties. He has also served as Camp Coordinator for the Ray Tanner baseball camps.
"For the past five years, Coach Lee has been an integral part of our coaching staff while gaining a vast amount of knowledge and experience in recruiting," said head coach Ray Tanner. "He is deserving and well prepared to assume a more vital role in the success of South Carolina Baseball."
"Since being activated to recruit on July 1st, he has made a tremendous impact in the '08 and '09 signing classes," added Tanner. "I'm grateful for Coach Lee's effort in our program the past five years and I'm honored to give him this promotion."
Since joining South Carolina in the fall of 2002, Lee has served on five NCAA Regional qualifying teams (2003-07) as well as four NCAA Super Regional squads (2003-04, 2006-07) and two College World Series teams (2003, 2004). Under Lee's tutelage, the Gamecocks were the nation's leader in home runs this past season with 113 round trippers in addition to an SEC-leading .508 slugging percentage and a team batting average of .301. Several of Lee's pupils at Carolina have gone on to receive All-America recognition with five hitters earning that distinction since the 2003 season: Brian Buscher (2003), Landon Powell (2004), Steve Pearce (2005), Phil Disher (2007) Justin Smoak (2007). Along with the five All-Americans coached, Lee has also worked with 12 All-SEC honorees: Brian Buscher (2003), Landon Powell (2003-04), Brendan Winn (2004), Steven Tolleson (2005), Steve Pearce (2005), Michael Campbell (2006), Robbie Grinestaff (2006), Reese Havens (2006), James Darnell (2006), Phil Disher (2007), Travis Jones (2007) and Justin Smoak (2007).
"I am extremely excited about my new position on our baseball staff," said Monte Lee. "Coach Tanner and Coach (Mark) Calvi are great coaches and great people and I feel very honored to be a part of this staff and to be able to work with two of our profession's best. I have been here for five years and look forward to many more as we continue to build upon the success that our program has accomplished. I am grateful to Coach Tanner and our administration for giving me this opportunity and look forward to assisting in our annual goal of reaching the College World Series and winning a national title."
Monte Lee played in 206 games during his career at College of Charleston from 1996 to 1999 before being the first position player drafted in school history by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 39th round of the 1999 MLB Draft. He earned all-district academic honors in 1999 and tallied 240 career hits, scored 156 runs, added 50 doubles, six triples, 22 homers, 150 RBI with 66 walks and 66 stolen bases. Lee ranks third on the school's all-time list for RBIs as well as fifth in doubles and total bases, sixth in at bats, seventh in runs scored and sixth in games played. He finished his career with a .333 batting average. In the fall of 2004, Lee was inducted as an inaugural member of the College of Charleston Wall of Fame at Patriots Point.
Lee was no stranger to Sarge Frye Field when he joined the South Carolina staff in the fall of 2002. Lee played against the Gamecocks several times during his career as a four-year starting outfielder at the College of Charleston. He experienced one of his best offensive games of his career on Feb. 6, 1999, when he drove in all of the College of Charleston runs with three home runs in a 5-4 loss to South Carolina.
After being drafted by the Cardinals in 1999 Lee played that summer with the New Jersey Cardinals in the New York-Penn League. He signed as a free agent with the Texas Rangers the following year (2000) and played at Savannah of the South Atlantic League where he was a teammate of former Gamecock outfielder Adam Poe.
A graduate of the College of Charleston, Lee began his coaching career as an assistant for two seasons, 2001-02, at Spartanburg Methodist Junior College. The 2001 Spartanburg Methodist club reached the NJCAA College World Series and the 2002 team finished with 51 wins. During summers of those two years he worked with the South Carolina Diamond Devils AAU team, as an assistant in 2001 and as head coach in 2002.
Born Feb. 9, 1977, in Spartanburg, Monte Wesley Lee II graduated from Lugoff-Elgin High School in 1995. He was a four-year baseball letterman in high school and also played football for two seasons.
Lee and his wife, Kelly, have two daughters, Madeline, born Feb. 15, 1996, and Shelby, born April 29, 1999.