Sean McGrath is in his 2nd season with the University of Iowa baseball program.
Iowa won 44 games – tied for the most wins in a single season in program history – in 2023. The Hawkeyes finished third in the regular season with a 15-8 record, while advancing to the Big Ten Tournament final. The Hawkeyes qualified for their eighth Big Ten Tournament under head coach Rick Heller. Iowa made its first NCAA tournament appearance since 2017, winning two games at the Terre Haute Regional.
Iowa’s pitching staff was among the best in the nation in 2023. The Hawkeyes ranked second nationally in hits allowed per nine innings (6.74), fifth in strikeouts per nine innings (10.9), 11th in earned run average (4.19), and 12th in shutouts (6). Brody Brecht finished the season with 109 strikeouts, the second-most in program history, while leading the country with 4.32 hits allowed per nine innings. Marcus Morgan ranked third national with 5.23 hits per nine. As a staff, the Hawkeyes led the conference in nearly every category, including ERA (4.19), strikeouts (630), shutouts (6), and batting average against (.208). The 630 strikeouts set a program record.
The Hawkeyes had two players drafted in the Major League Baseball draft. Pitcher Jared Simpson was the first Hawkeye taken off the board, getting drafted by the Washington Nationals in the eighth round. Pitcher Ty Langenburg was selected by the Minnesota Twins in the 11th round. Relief pitcher Will Christopherson signed with the Los Angeles Angels and outfield Keaton Anthony penned a deal with the Philadelphia Phillies.
In 2022, McGrath was the pitching coach for the Seattle Mariners Double-A affiliate the Arkansas Travelers. The Travers put together an ERA of 4.27, ranking second in the Texas League. The staff led the league in three categories: totaling 11 shutouts, a 1.30 WHIP and a .229 batting average against.
McGrath spent a season as the pitching coach for the High-A Everett AquaSox and was named as the pitching coach for the Single-A Modesto Nuts in 2020 prior to the cancellation of the season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Prior to joining the Mariners system McGrath served as the pitching coach at Elon University from 2018-2019. In his first season working with the Phoenix staff, Elon pitchers amassed a program record 575 strikeouts
Prior to his stop at Elon, McGrath was the pitching coach at UMass Lowell, where McGrath tutored a pair of River Hawk pitchers to all-conference honors. In 2017, the squad’s top two starters combined for 10 victories, 128 strikeouts and a 2.83 ERA over 143.1 innings of work.
McGrath moved to UMass Lowell after one year as the scouting director for the Prep Baseball Report in New Jersey.
McGrath served two seasons as the pitching coach and recruiting coordinator at Iona College, handling the day-to-day operations of the pitching staff and leading recruiting efforts. During his time, the pitching staff improved its win total each season. McGrath coached and developed 2015 fourth-round MLB Draft pick Mariano Rivera into the 2015 MAAC Player of the Year.
McGrath played four years of varsity baseball at Lafayette College. Over his collegiate career, McGrath made 70 appearances totaling 111.1 innings. He finished his career with five wins, five saves, 108 strikeouts, and a .296 batting average against. During his senior campaign, McGrath pitched 32.1 innings and set career bests; in appearances (26), saves (3), strikeouts (43) and batting average against (.230).
He graduated from Lafayette College in 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in government & law.