Ohio State coach named son after friend Todd Helton

February 22nd, 2024

MESA, Ariz. -- According to Ohio State baseball coach Bill Mosiello, one of the greatest signs of respect you can show someone who has positively impacted your life is naming your children after them.

That’s why, upon learning of his third son’s impending arrival, Mosiello had no hesitation in honoring a pivotal player from his early coaching days by naming his youngest son after him.

His youngest son, Helton Mosiello, was born in 2007. He was named after, you guessed it, legendary Rockies first baseman and 2024 National Baseball Hall of Fame inductee Todd Helton. With 90 MLB players -- including 14 first-round Draft picks, 28 All-Stars and two current managers -- having served under his tutelage, Mosiello is among the most experienced minds in college baseball, but his bond with the left-handed-hitting slugger goes beyond that of a player and coach.

During his initial days at the University of Tennessee in 1993, Mosiello was tasked with mentoring Helton, then primarily known as a celebrated college quarterback rather than a future MLB standout. Having previously coached the 1992 No. 1 pick Phil Nevin at Cal State Fullerton, Mosiello recognized Helton’s exceptional hitting prowess early on.

“I was still a young coach, but I'm coming off coaching a great hitter, and I’m like [Helton] is even better,” Mosiello said. “I even called Nevin and said, ‘Phil, I hate to tell you but I got a better one.’ And he was like, ‘Nah, there's no way,’ because Phil's a real confident guy, but proved out that [Helton] was.”

Following Helton's meteoric rise with the Rockies, he approached Mosiello with the proposition of relocating to Denver during the offseason to refine his hitting skills. Naturally, Mosiello embraced the opportunity, and his family uprooted to the Mile High City. Amidst homeschooling the children, Mosiello devoted his time to molding Helton into an even better hitter.

“He paid me really well to help support my family,” Mosiello said. “Coaching in pro ball, you don't make much money. He's done so many things for my family. I haven't had a lot of tough times in my life, but what he's done for me financially, and what he's done for my boys, is amazing.”

Mosiello stopped coaching professional baseball and shifted back to the college ranks when he spent eight seasons at TCU as the associate head coach from 2014-2022. The Horned Frogs flourished under his offensive mind, going to Omaha from ‘14 to ‘17 and becoming the winningest program in the nation during that span.

Even with his impressive resume, it wasn't until Mosiello took over the helm at Ohio State in 2022 that marked his first head coaching job at the Division I level, continuing his legacy of preparing the next generation of professional baseball players.

Helton is just one of the many success stories under Mosiello’s guidance. From mentoring Mike Trout during his Double-A stint (where Mosiello heralded him as baseball’s next Mickey Mantle), to grooming talents like Sean Casey, Aaron Boone and Chase Utley, Mosiello attributes much of his coaching prowess to his early experiences with Helton.

“He wasn't great because of me, I learned way more from him,” Mosiello said. “I had the best seat in the house. I paid great attention to what they did. So I want to say [to his current players], ‘Great hitters do this, these are their characteristics. This is the way they approach; this is their work ethic.’”

Mosiello was glued to his television, tears streaming down his face when Helton was officially announced as a member of the 2024 Baseball Hall of Fame class. Reflecting on his journey from their initial encounter on a field in Tennessee to witnessing Helton's immortalization in Cooperstown, Mosiello's emotions overflowed with pride and gratitude.

“Getting married and having my three boys are my best days,” Mosiello said. “I'll take his accomplishments over mine, like me going to Omaha. I care for him that much.”