Former Tiger makes his way into the World Series

October 25, 2017 - Those pesky injuries that plagued former Memphis Tigers baseball player Trey Wiedman didn't keep him from his lifelong goal of making the World Series—it only altered his path to baseball's grand event.

Wiedman, who starred for the Tigers from 2006-2010, finds himself in the thick of the Houston Astros-Los Angeles Dodgers World Series tussle as the Astros' assistant strength and conditioning coach. Turn on the TV the next few days and there's a good chance you might just catch a glimpse of him in the dugout.

"Injuries definitely hindered my career—they motivated me early on to know exactly what I wanted to do after baseball, which was to be a strength and conditioning coach," says Wiedman, who led Memphis in batting average (.302), hits (60) and home runs (8) in 2008. "I knew I wanted to do everything I could do to help steer athletes in the right direction where they don't have the same thing happen to them.

"You can't prevent injuries, but you can prepare athletes the best way you can and hopefully lower their risks."

Wiedman says being at the World Series is a dream come true, and he says his time at Memphis paved the way. "I am fortunate to be where I am right now. My playing experience and the excellent education I got from our kinesiology department and from the UofM helped me get my foot in the door."

As a strength and conditioning coach for the Astros, Wiedman's job is to prepare players for the rigors of a 162-game schedule plus any postseason games: "That includes the players' weight room workouts, monitoring their hydration levels, ensuring they have proper supplement intake all the way to how they recover," he says.

Wiedman's path to the majors oddly enough resembled that of a minor league player. After interning for the Astros in 2011 the year after he graduated, he worked for Houston's Single-A team at the time, Lexington, and later for the Astros' Double-A affiliate, Corpus Christi, before being promoted to the Astros.

"It happened almost the same way a player moves up through the minor leagues—you go through the process of grinding it out through the lower levels.

"You almost feel like a player because you are coming up with the players. The Houston players we now have in the majors, I was with them five years ago in the lower leagues. You form some incredible relationships with them."

Wiedman says he also gained experience as the strength coach for Houston High School (his alma mater) "especially that first year after I graduated. There were some incredible athletes at that school."

Wiedman is intent on staying on the cutting edge of his sport. "Right now I am studying to become a registered dietitian because I believe the nutrition aspect is so underrated and can have such a big effect on a player. That is something that can help me be a better strength and conditioning coach. I feel like strength and conditioning coach plus dietician is going to be a big thing."

Gabrielle Maxey