Gabe Gross is rejoining the Auburn baseball program as the Volunteer Assistant Coach for the 2013 season. Gross, who will work with the outfielders and direct Auburn's offense, was a student assistant coach in 2012 as he completed his undergraduate degree after spending seven years in Major League Baseball, which included a World Series appearance in 2008 with the Tampa Bay Rays.
Gross was a major contributor to an Auburn offense that finished the year leading the SEC in batting average (.304), on base percentage (.386), triples (19), stolen bases (113) and steal attempts (151) and was ranked among the top 20 nationally in stolen bases (113 - seventh), stolen bases per games (1.92 - tenth) and batting average (.304 - 18th).
Working primarily with the outfielders, Gross helped mentor Ryan Tella, who was voted Second Team All-SEC at the end of the season. Tella led Auburn and was fourth in the SEC with a .360 batting average and also ranked among the conference leaders in slugging percentage (.508, 11th), on base percentage (.448, sixth), hits (85, fourth), triples (four, tied-fifth), total bases (120, seventh), walks (35, tied-eighth) and stolen bases (17, tied-third). At the conclusion of the season, Tella was an 11th Rd. pick of the San Francisco Giants in the MLB Draft, an opportunity her passed up to return to Auburn in 2013.
Gross was a three-year starter in the Auburn outfield from 1999-01. A career .375 hitter, he hit a blistering .430 in his All-America campaign of 2000. He remains in the school's top-10 for career doubles (68, second), extra-base hits (108, third), walks (145, third), RBI (218, fourth), total bases (442, fifth), home runs (35, eighth) and hits (259, ninth). A first round pick of the Toronto Blue Jays in 2001, he enjoyed a seven-year big league career, hitting .239 with 78 doubles, eight triples, 40 home runs and 186 RBI while playing for four different teams.
Gross is married to the former Kelly Gesch, also an Auburn graduate. The couple has two children, Allie (3) and Jake (2).