California community college coaching legend and ABCA Hall of Fame member Jerry Weinstein is the distinguished recipient of the 2021 ABCA/Wilson Lefty Gomez Award.
Named after the great Lefty Gomez, this annual award is presented to an individual who has contributed significantly to the game of baseball locally, nationally and internationally. Presented by Wilson Sporting Goods, the Lefty Gomez Award presentation takes place each year during the Hall of Fame Banquet at the ABCA Convention.
Due to the impact of COVID-19 and the 2021 ABCA Convention transitioning to a virtual platform, the 2021 Lefty Gomez Award will be presented during the Hall of Fame Banquet at the 2022 Convention in Chicago, Illinois, on Friday, January 7, 2022. Both the 2021 and 2022 Lefty Gomez Award recipients will be honored at the ceremony.
Weinstein, who may be best known for building one of the most dominant junior college programs in history at Sacramento City College (Calif.), is considered one of the greatest minds in all of baseball. Having coached at nearly every level, Weinstein’s 50-plus years of experience ranges from coaching high school baseball in his home state of California to coaching some of the top players in the college and professional ranks, both in the U.S. and internationally.
In 23 seasons as head coach at Sacramento City College, Weinstein led his teams to 17 league championships and two California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) state titles. In total, his Panthers appeared in nine CCCAA state championship games, capturing state titles in 1988 and 1998.
With a career CCCAA record of 830-209-12 (.790), Weinstein is the winningest coach in Sac City history and ranks second all-time in CCCAA wins behind 2021 ABCA Hall of Fame inductee Don Sneddon. Under Weinstein, Sac City produced 28 Major League players and had 213 players drafted.
For their success, Baseball America named Sacramento City College their “90’s Team of the Decade.”
Following the 1998 season, Weinstein left Sacramento City College to pursue opportunities within professional baseball, most notably with the Colorado Rockies. Since 2007, Weinstein has held various managerial and coordinator positions within the Rockies organization. He has also been on staff for the Brewers, Expos, Cubs and Dodgers.
Weinstein, who has spoken at several clinics throughout Europe, has been active in International baseball as both a clinician and coach. He managed Team Israel at the 2017 World Baseball Classic qualifier, leading them to a perfect 3-0 record, qualifying Israel for their first World Baseball Classic appearance. He returned as the head coach in the main tournament, managing Team Israel at the 2017 World Baseball Classic in South Korea and Japan in March 2017, where the team was 4-2 overall in the tournament.
In addition, Weinstein served as head coach of the USA representative in the 1970 University Games and led the USA Baseball Team to a gold medal at the 2005 Maccabiah Games. As an assistant, he helped guide the U.S. team to a silver medal at the 1987 Pan Am Games and a bronze medal at the 1996 Olympics. He was also on the U.S. team staff at the 1992 Olympics.
Along with his work for the Rockies, Weinstein continues to speak at coaching clinics across the U.S., including the ABCA Convention where he’s given numerous presentations. He also manages the Wareham Gatemen of the Cape Cod Baseball League, the summer destination for college baseball’s top talent.
Weinstein, who was inducted to the ABCA Hall of Fame in 2009, is also a member of the Sacramento City College Athletics Hall of Fame, the California Community College Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame, and the Sacramento Baseball Hall of Fame. In 2018, Baseball America honored Weinstein with their Tony Gwynn Lifetime Achievement Award which honors those who have made lasting contributions to the game of baseball.
Weinstein is a graduate of UCLA where he played for ABCA Hall of Fame coach Art Reichle. He received his BA/MS and teaching credential at UCLA, where he also spent two years coaching the freshman team.
See Also: List of ABCA/Wilson Lefty Gomez Award Winners