Citation: Baldwin-Wallace College Nineteen Hundred & Ninety Eight Souvenir Base Ball Almanac (Berea, OH: Baldwin-Wallace College, 1998), p. 5.
Dr. Robert Fischer, a 1963 cum laude graduate of B-W, has been the head coach at his alma mater since 1968 - missing only the 1980 season to complete course work for his Ph.D. in health education at The Ohio State University.
Coach Fisher took the helm from retiring coach Lars Wagner, who had rebuilt the baseball program following its demise during World War II, and immediately began to put his stamp on the / club. The schedule was expanded and preseason southern trips became an annual event, a junior varsity program was established, and the baseball field was upgraded.
Fisher also introduced a line-drive hitting, base-stealing offense -and an aggressive, fundamentally sound defense. "We like to attack on defense as well as offense," says Fisher. "And that demands smart, heads-up ballplayers who are always looking to take advantage of an opponent's mistakes.” At a Yellow Jacket baseball game you're as likely to see the "hidden-ball trick" as a home run.
After an 8-10 rookie season, Fisher's Jackets won - their first Ohio Athletic Conference Northern Division championship in 1969, and earned two more division titles in 1972 and 1973. B-W has had only four losing conference seasons under Coach Fisher, who has compiled a 270-147-7 (.647) OAC record over his career and was named OAC Coach of the Year for the fourth time in 1996. Overall, Fisher's career record at B-W is 446-416-11 (.517).
Since the OAC was realigned in 1985, B-W is 138-75-5 (.648) in conference-play and has qualified for the postseason championship tournament ten times. As OAC regular season champions, the Jackets' hosted the tournament in 1985, 1986-and 1988. In 1985 the Jackets won their first-ever OAC championship by winning the tournament with a dramatic. final-day tripleheader sweep.
The Jackets also made their first appearance in the NCAA Division III Regional Playoffs in 1985, finishing third in the Midwest Region. B-W returned to the playoffs in 1986, 1988 and 1991.
Under Coach Fisher's tutelage more than 20 B-W ballplayers have signed professional baseball contracts. Fisher, however, takes more pride in the 33 Academic All-Conference and five Academic All-America awards. his ballplayers have earned.
"The exemplary student-athlete is committed to excellence in the classroom, as. well as on the field," he says. "Our players' most important victories are gained through their studies."
Coach Fisher's most important work also takes place in the classroom as a professor of health education and chairman of the Men's Health and Physical Education Department. He is a member of the American School Health Association, the Association for the Advancement of Health Education, the American Baseball Coaches Association, and the Greater Cleveland Baseball Coaches Association. He is also the defensive coordinator of the Yellow Jackets football team, and faculty advisor for B-W's Fellowship of Christian Athletes huddle.
The Varsity B-W Club was responsible for having programs printed and sold at the football games this past season. Interesting information and pictures of the players were included in the booklets. The product which the Club sponsored was a worthy innovation.