New baseball coach: We are here to win right away

Chris Ramirez was formally announced as the head coach for Lenoir-Rhyne baseball on Thursday during a press conference.

The new baseball coach at Lenoir-Rhyne University says he is here to compete for championships.

Chris Ramirez was introduced during a press conference on Thursday where Lenoir-Rhyne formally announced him as the baseball team’s new head coach.

Ramirez comes to Lenoir-Rhyne from the University of Illinois Springfield where he led the team to a 29-game winning streak in 2018 and a record of 121-47-1 in his last three years with the team, according to a press release from Lenoir-Rhyne.

“ He made a profound impact on the athletic department, the campus and the community [at University of Illinois Springfield],” Kim Pate, director of intercollegiate athletics at Lenoir-Rhyne, said.

Ramirez said he wasn’t sure about Lenoir-Rhyne when he was first invited to the campus but once arriving everything felt right. “The energy, the life, the momentum, it was clear as day and completely undeniable the very first time I stepped on campus here at LR,” Ramirez said. “Now I’m excited to join this coaching staff.”

Ramirez said he was asked about his four-year plan and six-year plan but he doesn’t want to wait a few years before the team sees a championship. “We are here to win and we are here to win right away,” Ramirez said. “We’ve got a group of seniors who don’t have four years to wait.”

Ramirez has previously been recognized as the National Coach of the Year and awarded Conference and Regional Coach of the Year honors.

“ We’re going to set high standards. It’s going to be blue-collar work ethic,” Ramirez said.

Ramirez said his plan as the Lenoir-Rhyne baseball coach isn’t just to lead the team to success on the field, but also to success in education and in life.

“ My mission as a coach is to prepare our players for life after Lenoir-Rhyne, and that’s number one.”

Ramirez said the team will be involved in the local community.

“ It’s not going to be a one-way street. We’re not just going to ask you to come to the games. I’m going to be here to ask the community ‘how can we help?”

Ramirez played at the Division I level, spending two seasons as an outfielder at High Point University and earning a spot on the Big South All-Academic Team in 2005, the release said. Ramirez graduated from High Point in 2005 with a degree in business administration.

Ramirez is the team’s 20th head coach in 90 years of Lenoir-Rhyne baseball history, according to Pate.

“ Not only did we hit a home run, I think we landed a grand slam with Chris Ramirez,” Pate said.

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