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UMass athletic director Ryan Bamford expects a new baseball coach to be hired soon

  • UMass Head Coach Mike Stone coaches his team Tuesday at Lorden Field. They defeated Fairfield College, making it his 750th win. He is finishing his 30th year at UMass.

  • UMass Head Coach Mike Stone, front, coaches his team Tuesday at Lorden Field. They defeated Fairfield College, making it his 750th win. He is finishing his 30th year at UMass. He is sitting beside Nate Cole, an assistant coach.



@MattVautourDHG
Thursday, May 18, 2017

The past and the future of the UMass baseball program have both been on athletic director Ryan Bamford’s agenda this week.

Retiring coach Mike Stone has coached the final week of his career after a 30-year stint leading the program, culminating in Friday’s noon season finale with Davidson.

Bamford has helped plan a farewell ceremony while at the same time interviewing candidates to replace him.

“It’s bittersweet for us. I have a lot of respect for Mike and the things that he’s done,” Bamford said. “He understands in his last 15-17 years the resources have changed in our department and baseball hasn’t been a priority per se. Mike has done really well to grind and keep the program at a level to compete.

“We’re going to miss him. He’s given 30 years to the university as our head baseball coach,” Bamford said. “With that comes a lot of institutional knowledge.”

UMass has limited resources and scholarships for its program. Bamford is hoping Stone’s replacement has some creative approaches to dealing with that.

“We want to make sure we have somebody that can come in, eyes wide open and make some big or small tweaks to make us better,” he said.

He thought the process could wrap up next week.

“We’ll hopefully have something out to a candidate next week and make an announcement toward the middle or the end of next week,” Bamford said.

Matt Vautour can be reached at mvautour@gazettenet.com. Get UMass coverage delivered in your Facebook news feed at www.facebook.com/GazetteUMassCoverage