The Coastal Plain League has announced Jared Orton of the Savannah Bananas as the 2018 CPL Executive of the Year. This marks Orton's first Executive of the Year award, he serves as the Bananas Team President.
"On behalf of the Coastal Plain League, I want to congratulate Jared on being the recipient of this high honor," said Justin Sellers, COO/Commissioner of the Coastal Plain League. "Jared is a perfect combination of a brilliant mind, full of ideas, energy, and creativity; paired with the level of maturity, professionalism, and leadership you would find in a seasoned veteran. As such, he is highly respected among his peers. This award is well deserved; and it's nice to see Jared recognized for all that he does to not only make the Savannah Bananas what they are, but also to help make the Coastal Plain League better overall."
Orton first started in the CPL as a part-time employee for the Gastonia Grizzlies from 2012-2013, a team owned at the time by Jesse and Emily Cole of Fans First Entertainment who now own the Bananas, while he finished his Sport Management degree at Belmont Abbey College in Charlotte. Upon graduating he accepted a position as the Assistant General Manager for the Burlington Royals, a rookie-level affiliate of the Kansas City Royals. After a few years in Burlington, given his familiarity with the Cole's from his time in Gastonia it was a no-brainer when Orton got the call to join the Bananas in preparation for their inaugural season in 2016.
His nomination and selection as the Executive of the Year came via a process in which teams around the league nominate and thereafter vote on who they feel is most deserving. In addition to Orton the following candidates were nominated: Daniel Mackerty (Savannah Bananas), Barbara Osborne (Florence RedWolves) and Brian Rountree (High Point-Thomasville HiToms.)
Orton handles many of the team's biggest accounts and has helped lead the team to two consecutive seasons of over 100,000 fans and 60 straight sell-outs overall. The Bananas finished the season first in the CPL and second in all of summer collegiate baseball in attendance for the third-consecutive season.
One of Orton's most praised qualities was his ability to lead an ever growing staff of 15 full-time employees, 10 interns, 200 game-day staff, and the coaches and players that come through each season.
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.