Pollard Leading Baseball Renaissance
This was a wet, gray spring in North Carolina, with rain falling virtually every day for more than a month. So when the clouds broke shortly after noon on the last Monday in May, and Durham Bulls Athletic Park was bathed in sunlight, it seemed tellingly appropriate to the moment. Read More
Stroman Prepped for Fourth MLB Season
Former Duke baseball standout and current Toronto Blue Jay starting pitcher Marcus Stroman begins his fourth Major League Baseball campaign as the right-hander takes the mound for the Blue Jays tonight against the Tampa Bay Rays at 7:10 p.m. Read More
Stroman Named World Baseball Championship MVP
Former Duke standout Marcus Stroman was named the 2017 World Baseball Classic MVP after pitching Team USA to its first WBC title Wednesday evening. Read More
Chris Pollard became Duke University’s 25th head baseball coach in June of 2012, taking over the reins of the Blue Devil program after successful stints at Pfeiffer University and Appalachian State University.
Pollard led Duke to an at-large bid to the 2016 NCAA Tournament, ending the program’s drought of 55 years without making the postseason event. After beginning the season 10-13 (1-7 ACC), the Blue Devils went 23-9 over their final 32 regular season games, including a 13-8 ACC record. During that span, Duke went 9-7 against Top 20 RPI teams, collected series victories over Georgia Tech, Clemson, Virginia Tech, Florida State and Pitt, and posted a perfect 10-0 mark in non-conference play.
With 33 wins this past season, Duke reached the 30-win mark for the third straight year, marking the program’s first stretch of three-straight 30-win seasons since the Blue Devils compiled a run of seven consecutive 30-win seasons from 1992-98.
Associate Head Coach
Josh Jordan joined the Duke baseball program in June of 2012 and was promoted to Associate Head Coach in July of 2015. He begins his fifth season with the Blue Devils in 2016-17.
Jordan serves as the program’s recruiting coordinator while also working with the Blue Devil catchers and outfielders. In addition, he teaches both hitting and base running.
As the program’s recruiting coordinator, Jordan has helped bring in top-level talent during his first four years in Durham. Duke reaped the benefits of Jordan’s efforts in 2016, earning an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament while relying heavily on a corps of talented underclassmen.
Assistant coach Pete Maki joined the Duke baseball staff in July of 2015 and enters his second season with the Blue Devils in 2016-17, serving as the team’s pitching coach.
Maki’s influence was felt immediately in 2016 as Duke earned an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament, ending a 55-year drought. Duke’s pitching staff ranked fourth in the ACC with a 3.79 ERA, while three Blue Devil pitchers — Bailey Clark, James Ziemba and Brian McAfee — were selected in the 2016 MLB Draft.
In 2016, Duke was the only program with two pitchers ranked among the ACC’s top five in fewest walks allowed per nine innings in McAfee and Kellen Urbon. In addition, McAfee earned ACC Pitcher of the Week accolades following a 94-pitch shutout versus then-No. 14 Virginia.
Volunteer Assistant Coach
Jason Stein joined the Duke baseball staff in August of 2015. In addition to serving as the team’s hitting coach, Stein works with the Blue Devil infielders, coaches third base during games, coordinates the team’s community service efforts and manages the program’s on-campus facilities.
In Stein’s first season with the program, Duke earned an at-large bid to the 2016 NCAA Tournament, ending a drought of 55 years without making the postseason event. After beginning the season 10-13 (1-7 ACC), the Blue Devils went 23-9 over their final 32 regular season games, including a 13-8 record in the ACC.
The Blue Devils did not start an upperclassmen position player for most of the season, relying heavily on a talented group of sophomores and freshmen. Under Stein’s guidance, freshman Jimmy Herron and sophomore Jack Labosky collected second team All-ACC honors.