The Staunton Braves are excited to announce that Michael Austin will be the team’s head coach for the 2023 Valley Baseball League season.
Austin comes to Staunton after a strong collegiate playing career plus several seasons pitching in professional baseball.
Austin pitched three seasons at Bethune Cookman before transferring to University of Maryland Baltimore county for his final season. Austin pitched on championship winning teams at each stop.
During his freshman season at Bethune-Cookman, Austin pitched in 20 games, mainly in a relief role. He posted a solid 4.04 ERA. As a sophomore, he made 23 appearances as the Wildcats won the MEAC Championship. He turned in his longest outing of the season against Miami in the NCAA tournament. As a junior, he continued to work out of the bullpen, making 26 appearances.
In his one season at UMBC, Austin took the mound 18 times, starting nine games. He finished with a 4-3 record and a team-best 4.75 ERA He helped pitch the Retrievers to the American East title, pitching his best game of the season against Stony Brook in the opening round of the conference tournament when he allowed one run in 5.1 innings pitched. He also pitched in the NCAA tournament against Wake Forest. Austin was a second-team all-conference pick.
Following his college career, Austin was signed as a free agent by the Kansas City Royals. He also played several seasons in independent ball, pitching for the Washington Wild Things, the Southern Illinois Miners and the Quebec Capitals.
Austin has been working as an instructor at The Baseball Factory in Columbia, Md., and is also the owner of Next Pitch Performance.