Greg Clayborne Has More Than 525 Wins in 27-Year Coaching Career, Including State Championship
By Space Coast Daily // July 22, 2022
2019 SPACE COAST SPORTS HALL OF FAME INDUCTEE
ROCKLEDGE RAIDER COACH GREG CLAYBORNE reached his 500th career victory during the 2017 season, and in 27 years as a baseball manager, now has more than 525 career victories. Clayborne is a walking baseball mind filled with the right way to teach and play America’s pastime.
LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT RECOGNITION
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA (Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame) – If you want to know what a great baseball manager looks like, look no further than Rockledge Raiders skipper, Greg Clayborne.
Clayborne is a walking baseball mind filled with the right way to teach and play America’s pastime.
Coach Clayborne grew up a military brat as his father spent 30-years in the Navy. He never remembers a time when he didn’t have a bat and a ball in his hand.
No matter how demanding Clayborne father’s military career was, he made sure he was there for his son and coached Greg throughout his youth.
When asked where his love of the game comes from, without hesitation the answer is his dad and when you ask him about where he learned the game, he says Florida State coach Mike Martin.
Clayborne walked on to play college baseball with the Seminoles and Martin became the all-time winningest coach in college baseball history in 2018 with more than 2,000 wins.
“Just about everything we do here at Rockledge is directly from the program of Mike Martin,” said Clayborne.
“Coach Martin is without a doubt one of the all-time greatest baseball minds.”
Clayborne walked onto a pretty good FSU baseball team in 1986 hat included Paul Sorrento, Luis Alicea and Deon Sanders.
Clayborne was a good college player where he hit eight home runs and drove in 53 runs from 1986 until he graduated in 1988, but the major leagues weren’t in his future.
Instead, Clayborne would take what he learned from Coach Martin and build state champions in high school.
Clayborne’s first coaching stop would be in Tallahassee as a graduate assistant for coach Martin and the Seminoles. He would then move into high school where he was on the staff of the 1991 Class A State Champion Maclay Marauders.
Clayborne would become a manager in 1992 at Shanks High School in Quincy, Florida and averaged 17 wins per season until moving onto Rockledge High School in 2001.
He took over a program loaded with young players and won 26 games the first season and 21 the second season.
In 2004, the Raiders would scratch out three one-run games in the FHSAA state tournament before defeating Winterhaven 20-8 to capture the Class 4A state title.
Clayborne would reach his 500th career victory during the 2017 season, and in 27 years as a baseball manager, now has more than 525 career victories.
His teams have won 20 or more games 18 times, and since the 2008-2009 season, the Claybourne-led Raiders have won 25 or more games five times.
“I still coach because I love the relationships I’ve been able to build with the players and their families,” said Clayborne.
“I also still coach because I’m able to sit next to one of the best coaches in baseball and a man I admire very much in Tom Mendillo.”
Clayborne said he could have never attained the success he has enjoyed in baseball without the support of his wife Yvonne.
“I could never do what I do without her – she’s my Rock,” Clayborne said, and yes, the pun is intended.
The other reason Clayborne still coaches is he has a loving and patient coaches wife in Yvonne Clayborne, who has to know that communicating in passing is what happens from January until May.
Yvonne is CPA and it’s no secret those months are just as busy for her so working as a team is always on the mind of the Clayborne’s “I could never do what I do without her, she is my rock,” Clayborne said and yes the pun is intended.
Clayborne has also had the pleasure of coaching both of his sons on the diamond, Colby and Tyler with whom enjoys a great relationship with.
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