By Gaige Winchester
When Mr. Devin Wilburn took the baseball head coaching job at Delta High School in July, he’s had one thing on his mind ever since.
The 2021 baseball season at Delta was subpar, producing only six wins, 18 losses, zero conference wins, and a first-round loss in sectionals while graduating seven seniors.
Coach Wilburn plans to come in and turn around the program.
“Short term you’re just trying to get to know your guys over a limited time over fall,” Wilburn said. “It’s important for me to get to know these guys on a personal level.”
He says these personal relationships with his players play a big role in team success.
He says one of his long-term goals for the Delta Baseball program is just to compete. The Eagles play in the competitive Hoosier Heritage Conference and in the recent past haven’t had as much success as they’d like. But Wilburn believes with a team of good competitors they can make some noise in the conference.
He graduated from Wapahani High School in 2010 and played college baseball at Ball State University. After graduating in 2015, he has had his life in baseball ever since. He coached in assistant roles at Ball State University and Taylor University before taking his job here.
He and his wife, a nurse, have a 4-week-old baby girl named Tatum.
Wilburn’s excited to put his spin on the program and make a change. He’s also excited to be teaching Physical Education and not just laser focusing on baseball.
He says his favorite memory playing baseball was during his senior year at Ball State.
“We had a really good team, and we were playing in the Mid-American Conference championship. We had a game where we were up seven runs and ended up giving up eight runs and losing,” Wilburn said. “We had to turn around and play the same team again, and the winner made it to the championship. We were down three runs with nobody on and two outs in the last inning, and we ended up scoring four runs and winning to make it to the finals. So we made it to the championship and I pitched in the championship and had a good outing, so it was a fun way to end my career that way.”
Coming in with college playing and coaching experience, he has hired one of his teammates from his Ball State playing days. The new pitching coach is Scott Baker.
Baker was a Mid-American Conference pitcher of the year during his time at Ball State. Being a star pitcher at Ball State, he should be able to bring that valuable experience to the Eagles’ coaching staff.
Looking ahead to this season, Coach Wilburn will look to put his spin on Delta Baseball and make a big impact.