COLUMBIA, Mo. — After a challenging year on the diamond, Missouri baseball coach Steve Bieser has made an assistant coaching change, parting ways with Fred Corral and hiring Brian DeLunas as the Tigers' pitching coach.
Bieser, who became the program's second-fastest head coach to 100 wins in 2019, doing so in 161 games, saw the program struggle to produce results in a challenging season, finishing the 2021 schedule 15-36 and 8-22 in Southeastern Conference play.
D1baseball's Kendall Rogers was first to report DeLunas' hire.
DeLunas, an Oakville, Mo., native, played collegiately at Missouri Baptist and was on Missouri's staff from 2006-09. He coached at C.B.C. High School in St. Louis for two years, then co-founded Premier Pitching Performance, a St. Louis-based baseball training and instruction facility. He worked in the Seattle Mariners' organization from 2018-20 and for the New York Mets before he was hired earlier this week by Bieser.
Pitching was the glaring issue for Missouri in 2021. The staff's 7.24 earned run average in 437 innings was the program's highest in a single season in program history, surpassing the previous mark of 7.11 set in 2002. The Tigers walked 6.5 batters per nine innings in 2021, and their 319 walks issued led the nation this season and was also a new program record, breaking the record of 273 walks in 491 innings in 1976.
Corral, who has been a college assistant coach since 2003 with stops at Tennessee, Oklahoma, Memphis and Georgia, coached Missouri's pitchers to a 3.75 ERA in 2018, a 3.24 ERA in 2019 — the program's best since a 3.17 ERA in 2005 — and a 4.25 ERA in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season.