Ryan Roberts, former MLB “Fan Favorite”, who most notably played for the Arizona Diamondbacks, whom helped lead them from “worst to first”, now spends his time investing into the next generation as a dynamic school teacher and Baseball/Softball Instructor. From All American titles and Major League playoff grand-slams to elementary PE and late nights teaching technique at the batting cage/indoor private field, Ryan’s capacity to empower young people with his vast experience in the study of teamwork is invaluable. He is passionate about building character and confidence in the individuals and teams that he works with so that on or off the field, they have endurance and heart to offer the world in front of them.
As a child, Ryan Roberts (Texas-born-and-raised) displayed an athleticism that made him stand out among his peers. He played Shortstop for the entirety of his youth. In high school Ryan was awarded as an All American in 1999, had the 7th highest batting average in Texas baseball history (.580), played in the Texas High School All-Star Game at Texas Rangers Stadium, and lettered as a sophomore through his senior year at a 6-5A Division High School.
During his college years, Ryan played Shortstop, 2nd base, and got drafted as a 3rd baseman after only playing the position for only a short time. Ryan led in all three categories for Division 1 Texas JuCo hitters in Fall 2000 and in all three triple crown categories (batting, HR’s, RBI’s) with 17 homers in 21 games. In 2001 Ryan’s team won the NJCAA National Championship. In 2002 he was named SLC Newcomer of the Year, Player of the Year, and Hitter of the Year. He is a two-time All-SLC (Southern League Conference), and ABCA 2003 NCAA Div. I South Central All-Region First Team. He led SLC in batting (.422) and home runs (16) and his 69 RBI were two shy of giving him the SLC Triple Crown, although his 97 base hits were also the most in the league. Tabbed SLC All-Tournament team after ending his University of Texas Arlington career batting .500. He currently owns or tied for 7 single-season UTA records. His name appears in a total of 19 single-season or career top-10 school record books. As he progressed through his high school and college career, it was clear that his God-given talent wasn’t the only thing that would catch the eye of MLB recruiters. It was his tenacity, work ethic, and mental attitude that would set him apart from his competition, ultimately leading to him being drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in 2003.
Professional Career Highlights
As a young player making his way through the farm system, and even with the majority of his college career spent as a shortstop, Ryan played every position including catching and pitching. From the Grapefruit League to the Cactus League, he played at every level in the farm system and into the Majors, on both National and American Leagues. His versatility and experience earned him a reputation as an invaluable player, making him an asset to each team he played on.
Ryan quickly learned that in order to compete at the highest level, he would need to do more than the required practice hours. While many rested, Ryan continued to work. He hired the best trainers, learned proven techniques, spent intentional time with mentors, and developed an even greater hunger for the game. The mindset Ryan carried allowed him to not just be enthralled with setting and reaching his goals, but also to fall in love with his training. This, he discovered, is the key to success. It’s the common denominator with elite athletes—they’re exceedingly devoted to the process.
Ryan’s first major league hit was a homerun off the late Cory Lidle in 2006 in Yankee Stadium. Outside of growing up in Texas, Arizona was home. This is where Diamondbacks’ amazing fans lovingly gave him the nickname “Tatman” in 2011.
In Spring Training of 2011 after a methodical off-season regimen, he came away with the top batting average out of 1000 players who were invited to the camp. The Diamondbacks went from being the “worst to first”, eventually beating out the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants in the National League West. Ryan hit a walk-off grand slam against the Dodgers with the Diamondbacks down by three runs in the 10th inning to clinch the NL West making him the fourth player in MLB history to hit a walk-off grand slam in extra innings with the team down three runs. That title was previously held by Jason Giambi NYY in 2002, Roger Freed STL in 1997, and Babe Ruth NYY in 1925. It was the second walk-off grand slam in team history. Ryan also won the Heart and Hustle Award that season and humbly received the Fan Favorite Award, as well as being named as a member of the 2011 MLB All-Star team that went to the far East taking on the Chinese Taipei National team in the Taiwan All-Star Series. In addition to these accolades, Ryan learned an immense amount about his ability to rally a team together, the intricacies of team dynamic and the humility needed to not only be a good teammate but to be a leader for his team.
Now, retired from MLB, Ryan, his wife (Kim), and four children (Hudsyn, Lyric, Beckham, and Kazmyn) live in Nashville, TN, where Ryan works at a Private Christian School with their budding Athletic Program and teaching in various areas. He is involved in several sports, working individually with the kids to help them develop their skills and more importantly—something Ryan knows a great deal about—a great mental attitude that will help them overcome the many obstacles life has to offer.
In addition to his job as a teacher and private instructor, he is the Chief Advancement Officer for a start-up Soccer Club, gives private cooking lessons, and speaks at various Coaching Seminars.