Missouri Sports Hall of Fame to induct Assistant Baseball Coach Ric Lessmann
The Missouri Sports Hall of Fame is proud to announce that University of Missouri–St. Louis assistant baseball coach Ric Lessmann will be inducted with the Class of 2015 in enshrinement ceremonies Jan. 25 in Springfield, Mo.
Known as one of the state’s most renowned baseball instructors, Lessmann was a head baseball coach for 46 years, including 17 at Washington University in St. Louis and 27 seasons at Meramec Community College. He is currently in his fourth season as the pitching coach on Jim Brady‘s staff.
Lessmann, who signed a professional contract with the New York Yankees in 1955, managed to recruit talent that led his teams to construct a career record of 1,365-556 (.711).
He was 963-318 (.752) at Meramec from 1967 to 1994, and 396-231 at Washington University from 1994 to 2010. He guided Meramec to the National Junior College World Series nine times, winning the championship in 1974, and is one of the winningest junior college coaches of all time.
Lessmann joins an enshrinement Class of 2015 that includes former St. Louis Cardinals ace Chris Carpenter, former Kansas City Chiefs kicker Nick Lowery and recent Kansas City Royals designated hitter Billy Butler.
The ceremonies are scheduled Jan. 25, with an 11 a.m. reception at the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame in southeast Springfield and a 4 p.m. reception at University Plaza Hotel and Convention Center. The induction ceremony begins immediately afterward.
Tickets are $150 each, and reserved tables of 10 are $1,500. All proceeds benefit the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame. To reserve your seat today, call Coleman Swierc at 417-889-3100 or at mosportshalloffame.com. Ceremonies are being presented by Killian Construction, now in its 20th year as the presenting sponsor. Associate sponsors include Advertising Plus, Hillyard, Inc., Hiland Dairy and White River Valley Electric COOP.
A graduate of St. Louis Southwest High School, Lessmann pitched six seasons in the minor leagues and threw a no-hitter in the Midwest League in 1955.
Along the way, he studied and later earned a bachelor’s degree in 1960 from Harris Stowe Teachers College. He earned a master’s from Washington University three years later and completed 36 postgraduate hours at St. Louis University in educational administration.
At Meramec, more than 250 of Lessmann’s players earned scholarships to four-year schools and 40 signed professional contracts. Eight of his players went on to play in the major leagues.
At Washington University, 11 of his 17 teams won 20 or more games, including a program-best 34-7 record in 2006. He also coached youth-league summer teams for 17 years. He is a member of the NJCAA Baseball Coaches Hall of Fame as well as the St. Louis Amateur Baseball Hall of Fame.
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