The veteran St. Luke’s baseball coach notched his 300th win last week when the Wildcats beat St. James 3-2 at Paterson Field in Montgomery.
“Obviously, I’ve had a lot of great kids,” Becker, 49, said. “I’ve been fortunate to have kids – both here and at UMS – who are dedicated to play baseball. I just get a thrill out of helping kids. I think 30 of my players now have gone on to play at the next level. That gives me more satisfaction than anything really.”
Becker is in his 13th year overall as a head coach. He coached eight years at UMS-Wright, winning state titles in 1997 and 1999. He’s in his fifth year at St. Luke’s. The Wildcats won the 1A title a year ago.
“Really, I think it is just a result of the combination of having great opportunities at two great schools, having great kids and players and working with great coaches,” he said. “The coaches I have right now, Josh Eddington and Tyler Minto, do a great job. They are a huge part of every win we have.”
The Wildcats have plenty of wins. After starting the season 0-2, they’ve won nine straight games. They are scheduled to play at Saraland at 4 p.m. Tuesday, then host St. Andrews (Miss.) at 4 p.m. Thursday.
Between stops at UMS and St. Luke’s, Becker served as an assistant coach at Mary G. Montgomery for two years and spent three years out of coaching all together in the flooring business.
“It was a breath of fresh air really,” he said. “I love working with kids. That has never changed. But sometimes it is nice to step away for a little while and re-evaluate things.”
Though Becker said he loves coaching at St. Luke’s and isn’t looking for another job, he also said he has always had a desire to try coaching at another level.
“As I get older, it is dropping off a little bit, but I would still like to give it a try down the road,” he said. “I would like to see what might happen at a junior college or something like that. I think that would be a great accomplishment. But I am certainly happy where I am now.”
Becker is the fourth Coastal Alabama baseball coach to notch a personal milestone in the last few weeks. St. Paul's Andy Robbins (700), Robertsdale's Kevin Raley (500) and Foley's Steve Garrett (300) all hit impressive win totals recently.