9/13/2017 7:23 AM

Darric is a Temecula native and Class of 2000 TVHS graduate. He was a 2 year letterman in Football under the renowned Coach Bud Kane, and a 4 year letterman for TVHS Baseball under the legendary Coach Rich Emard. His senior year he received the Most Valuable Player honors for his Team, the Sunbelt League and Division 1 CIF-SS. The spring of 2000, the Bears set a state record for most home runs as a team with 75 in a single season and most home runs in a single CIF playoff game with 10 home runs in the first round playoff game vs. Hawthorne HS, as well as going a perfect 15-0 in league.  After graduation he was drafted in the 20th round of the 2000 MLB draft by the New York Yankees. He chose to decline the offer from the Yankees and attend college, honoring a full scholarship to play baseball at Cal State Fullerton along with four of his TVHS teammates. While at Cal State Fullerton he earned Freshman All American Honors,runner up to Freshman Player of the Year, First Team All-Big West Conference Honors along with 2 trips to The College World Series. After his junior year in college he was drafted in the 8th round of the 2003 MLB draft by the Colorado Rockies and spent 4 full seasons in the minor leagues as both a starting pitcher and reliever. When a career ending shoulder injury happened in 2008, he returned home and enrolled back in school. In 2010 he earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Kinesiology, and in 2011 earned his teaching credential in Physical Education from Cal State Fullerton. 

He started his coaching career in 2008 coaching for Blue Wave Baseball out of Irvine coaching ages11-14 over a 7 year span.  While finishing school he also joined Murrieta Mesa Baseball in their first 2 seasons(2010 and 2011) serving as the Varsity Pitching coach under Head Coach, Matt Mosiello. In 2011, after 2 season with Mesa and a tough job market for teachers,he decided to take a position with Merrill Lynch and spent 3 years as a Financial Advisor in Newport Beach where he lived with his wife and 2 children. In 2015 he was happy to get back into coaching, joining the prestigious Canyon of Anaheim baseball program as their Varsity Pitching Coach under Mike Najera. Just last year Coach Merrell made the permanent move back home with his young family, eager to get back into coaching and teaching with an ultimate goal of becoming the Head Coach at TVHS Baseball.  

TVHS and the Bears baseball program has been a home to him and his family since 1996.  Not only was he a graduate of TV but also his wife, 3 of his 4 brothers, his sister, cousins, brother and sister-in-law are all alumni. All of his brothers were baseball players and wore a Bears uniform over the years contributing the rich history and tradition of TVHS Baseball.  A history and tradition of success, in which he has a true passion to restore and continue, to honor all the former players and coaches that built it from the ground up and set the stage for all future players to come through the program.


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