Entering his nineteenth season with St. Mary’s Baseball and eighteenth as head coach, Lew Jenkins, #25, reached his 300th collegiate baseball win in the College’s first of two games against Albertus Magnus College on March 13, marking the second time Jenkins has achieved 300 wins (the first being at the high school level at Surrattsville High School in Clinton, MD). With a 303-313-3 record at the College, Jenkins hopes to continue coaching for St. Mary’s College for longer than this milestone, and is proud of his current baseball players.
TPN: What did this win mean for you, Coach Jenkins?
Lew: It’s a milestone, I guess. It’s a great feeling, when you do it at the high school or college level, or anywhere else. The game of baseball has changed so much over the years… Now, we use helmets.
TPN: How else has baseball changed since your time at St. Mary’s?
Lew: For one thing, the gloves are better. The bats have also changed to aluminum, which really helps. We used to play where the old scoreboard is on campus, but the field we’re on now is about 11 years old. Personally, I like the view more here and it has better fencing, though we do lose a lot of baseballs… If we only lose a dozen or so during a practice, it’s been a good day. Baseball has certainly changed, though. It’s not what it used to be in the state of Maryland, and lacrosse and soccer are much bigger now.
TPN: How long have you been involved in baseball?
Lew: Well, I had three sons that went through little league, and all three went to play for Division One schools. They kinda wore my arm out. I coached for three years at Georgetown and George Washington, both great Division One schools. Here, I’ve worked for three directors and three College presidents, and they’ve all seemed like nice people, been nice to the program.
TPN: How was coaching at a Division One school different from Division Three?
Lew: Recruiting is one of the toughest things I have to do here. We used to pull a lot of kids from out of state, but with tuition increases at the school, we’ve had to look more in-state. It’s harder for us to recruit guys here than at a Division One school. We’re not going to get pro-level, 6’2’’ guys, since we don’t offer scholarships for our guys to play. But, the players here are giving 100 percent to the game, and are really academically driven. Every one of my kids have graduated, and not many coaches can say that.
TPN: How do you think the teams have been doing this year? And anything you’d like to say to the team?
Lew: They’re doing very well, I’m proud of them this season. I get along with all of them. But, the team took a big loss when 12 of our top guys graduated last season. We’ll lose 10 more this year, and even though we’ll have about 20 coming in, it makes it tough. As a team, they always help me out with setup and things like that. I’m proud of all of them.