Gents alumnus nabbed as head coach of Mat Su Miners
Monday, October 1, 2012

PALMER, Alaska - Centenary graduate Ben Taylor recently accepted the position of head coach with the Mat Su Miners in the Alaska Baseball League, one of the top two leagues in the country. He has spent the last four seasons coaching the East Texas Pump Jacks where he compiled an official record of 136-76-1 and led the franchise to its first championship this past season.

“They called me out of the blue,” Taylor said. “It was a really hard decision to make because we’ll be leaving good friends we’ve made in Kilgore and leaving Driller Park and the great fans, but this is a chance to manage in one of the most tradition-rich leagues in the country.”

Taylor, named last season’s Texas Collegiate League’s (TCL) Coach of the Year, holds the most wins of any coach in the history of the league. For the 2011 season, the Pump Jacks set team records for wins and winning percentage (.661). During his tenure in East Texas, Taylor’s team produced 11 TCL All-Stars and four All-TCL players. He coached the 2012 National JUCO (Junior College) World Series Player of the Year at Chandler-Gilbert Community College, the first in school history, and over 100 players who have gone on to professional play.

Prior to his stint in East Texas, Taylor coached the San Luis Obispo Blues, who went 135-61. He also spent seven seasons at Scottsdale Community College, six of which were spent as the associate head coach.

Originally hailing from the Pacific Northwest, Taylor was recruited by Oregon State directly after high school. He finished his collegiate career with the Centenary Gents.

The Mat Su Miners are one of six teams that make up the Alaska Baseball League: Anchorage Bucs, Glacier Pilots, Chugiak-Eagle River Chinooks, Fairbanks Goldpanners, and Peninsula Oilers.