While Clemson hasn’t reached the College World Series since 2010, they are certainly headed in the right direction. With recently upgraded facilities, quality on-field performances, impressive MLB draft results, and an experienced coaching staff, Clemson baseball has everything they need to further drive their recruiting efforts.
The program is supported by a large fan base comprised of students, family members, alumni, and local fans. 2019 marked the 26th consecutive season where they earned a top 20 national ranking for total attendance.
With large turnouts for games, a state of the art stadium, and an exciting baseball team, it is no surprise that Clemson has been recognized for providing one of the best fan experiences in all of division 1 baseball.
Playing in the ACC, the Clemson Tigers compete against some of the top baseball programs in the country like Louisville, NC State, and Florida State for in conference play. The exciting experience that their home games provide also attracts a variety of other programs to travel to upstate South Carolina.
The Clemson Tigers are led by Monte Lee, who has been the head coach for five years. Posting an impressive record of 182-86, Lee has coached the Tigers to four consecutive NCAA tournament appearances.
During his tenure at Clemson, the program has also earned a top 25 ranking in 65 of 82 total polls. Based off of the trajectory we’ve seen with the program in the past few years, we should expect a College World Series appearance from Clemson in the near future.
There have also been several impressive individual player achievements over the past few years, including eight All-Americans and a National Player of The Year.
The Clemson baseball program’s recruiting and player development efforts have also translated into success with the MLB draft. 26 total players have been selected in the first year player draft under Lee’s leadership at Clemson. A few players were drafted multiple times, bringing the total to 29 draft picks, which places them 11th in the nation during the 2016 – 2020 span.
Similar to their on-field performance, the Clemson baseball team has also excelled in the classroom. Over the past four years, the baseball program has been in the top 10 percent in regards to eligibility, player retention, and graduation rates.
Monte Lee started his college coaching career a few years after completing a standout playing career at the College of Charleston. His first college coaching role was an assistant at Spartanburg Methodist College, which is in the NJCAA.
After spending two years at SMC and helping coach the team to an NJCAA College World Series, Lee transitioned to the University of South Carolina. There, he served as a volunteer assistant coach for five years, before being promoted to the recruiting coordinator in 2008.
The Gamecocks went on a pretty impressive run during this time, where Lee played an important role. With a record of 266-130, the Gamecocks made six NCAA tournament appearances, and two College World Series appearances.
Lee’s first college head coaching position came in 2009, when he became the head coach of his alma matter, the College of Charleston. Regularly posting impressive offensive statistics, his program finished top 5 in the nation in homeruns four years in a row.
During his time at the College of Charlestown, Lee coached two conference freshman of the year, two conference pitchers of the year, and four conference players of the year. Lee was also the fastest to get to 200 wins in program history.
In his successful first campaign as a college head coach, Lee was named as a top 10 head coach in the nation under the age of 40 by Baseball America.
As a head coach at the collegiate level, Lee is 458-231, and could reach the 500 win milestone with a solid performance this upcoming season.
Clemson Baseball Facilities
Doug Kingsmore Stadium has been the home of the Clemson Tigers for the past 50 years. The stadium’s rich baseball history is displayed through their ‘lobby of legacy’ which contains the awards and trophies the program has won over the years.
In its current state, the stadium has just over 4,500 permanent seats. It can hold another 2,000 fans due to standing room only areas, like the hill past the left field fence.
These standing room designated sections are popular with the student body, so it provides a rowdy fan experience. The stadium is also located in the middle of Clemson’s athletic facilities, making it a prime location for every fan.
Clemson University is committed to providing their players, student body, alumni, and other fans with the best experience possible. The baseball facilities have benefitted from several meaningful renovations, additions, and upgrades throughout the years.
Some of the improvements to Doug Kingsmore Stadium include:
- A press box that contains four large booths and a separate media center that can host up to 18 writers
- Patio areas on the first and third base line for receptions and other events
- Two ticket booths, concession stands, and large restrooms.
- A hitting facility, pitching lab, and practice turf field that are equipped with state of the art technology
- Spacious dugouts that were nearly doubled in size with a recent renovation
- New field lighting and videoboard
In 2015, Clemson’s locker room was replaced with a 20,000 square foot facility. The $9 million dollar addition to Doug Kingsmore Stadium includes:
- Museum style “Lobby of Legacy”, which displays the rich history of the Clemson baseball program
- Player lounge outfitted with flat screen TVs, modern couches, and a kitchen area for pre and post game meals.
- Fully equipped training room with hot and cold tubs
- Laundry and equipment rooms
- Staff locker room, with eight lockers, which also houses Monte Lee’s gameday office.
- Alumni locker room, for the former Tigers who train at the facility in the offseason
- State of the art current player locker room, containing 44 dark wooden lockers with outlets, safes, and footwear storage.
There are two additional floors in the new facility, which house additional kitchens for events, team meeting rooms, and offices for the coaching staff.
The Clemson baseball program’s recruiting efforts benefit greatly from these upgraded facilities, which are very appealing to prospective players.
Clemson Baseball Alumni
As of 2020, there are 6 Clemson alumni in the MLB, including Brad Miller, Dominic Leone, and Mike Freeman. While these certainly aren’t the superstars of today’s game, getting to the MLB alone is an extremely impressive accomplishment.
Another 24 Clemson alumni are playing at the minor league level, ranging from rookie ball to Triple A.
In recent years, the Clemson Tigers have had quality performances in the MLB draft. In the 2017 and 2018 first round player drafts, Clemson had a combined 16 selections. We may see this list of MLB and minor league players grow in the coming years.
Get free access to the full Clemson baseball program evaluation through the TeamFacts tool, which contains a variety of recruiting metrics for every NCAA baseball program. Some of the metrics include transfers, redshirts, player retention, academic majors, and many more.