The Coastal Plain League announced today, August 22, that the Morehead City Marlins Jesse Lancaster (picture courtesy Jim Arend) was named the league's 2018 Coach of the Year after guiding the Marlins to the CPL Petitt Cup Championship.
"It is a true honor to be recognized as a small piece of the success the 2018 Marlins achieved," said Lancaster. "Being awarded Coach of the Year was never a goal of my own, or our team. From the start of the summer this has always been about the players and their experience playing in Morehead City. The Marlins ownership, front office, assistant coaches, and our loyal fans contributed so much to this team and that must be recognized."
In his second year as the head coach of the Marlins, Lancaster guided the team to the second-best overall regular season record in the league at 34-14 (.708) and a First and Second-Half East Division Championship. This guaranteed them home field advantage for at least the first two rounds of the playoffs as they went on to win the East Division Championship in round one and the NorthEast Region Championship in round two. From there they moved on to the Championship Series where they faced off against the SouthWest Region Champions, the HP-Thomasville Hitoms, in a best-of-three series. The Marlins won Game One 9-4 and followed that up with a 7-4 victory in Game Two to clinch the 2018 CPL Championship, the first in Marlins franchise history.
Lancaster was named the head coach of the 2018 All-Star Show held in Lexington, S.C. in July, where he saw six of his players named to the team as well: Danton Hyman, Joe Mason, Will Johnson, Kenny Wells, Octavio Mirabal and Zach Keenan. Furthermore, Lancaster earned a spot as an assistant coach for the CPL Select Team that took on the USA Collegiate National Team in June, with Keenan and Wells joinng him as players. The CPL Select led for much of the game but lost a close one late 3-2.
On the field Lancaster helped coach the Marlins to the number one pitching staff in the league with a 2.47 ERA, the next closest team sat at 3.10. His staff led in hits allowed (106), walks allowed (124) and earned runs (111.) While the offensive side was less prolific during the regular season, the team certainly broke out the bats when necessary finishing the postseason tied for the most runs scored of all playoff teams with 29 across four games.
"To say the least, this has been a true team effort," acknowledged Lancaster. "I am proud of the culture the 2018 Marlins established and these players will always be remembered in Morehead City. We appreciatie all the recognition the Marlins organization has earned in 2018."
About Coastal Plain League:
The Coastal Plain League is the nation's premier summer collegiate baseball league. Heading into its 22nd season in 2018, the CPL features 16 franchises playing in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. To date, the CPL has had over 1,450 alumni drafted and 116 alums – including 2017 ALCS MVP, 2017 World Series champion, 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young award winner Justin Verlander, as well as 2017 NLCS MVP Chris Taylor – make their Major League debut. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at www.coastalplain.com, and be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat @CPLBaseball.