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Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Jayson Best believed as a coach in practicing; Practiced as a pro for seven seasons, made AA, not bigs

Originally published Oct. 11, 2014
Jayson Best looked for guys that went hard between the lines. He also looked for guys who could do the fundamentals soundly, according to The Elkhart Truth.

Best made the comments in a press release issued to announce his appointment as head baseball coach at Goshen College in Indiana.

"I'm a firm believer that you can't get better without practicing like you play," Best said, according to The Truth, "and I aspire to continue to have a team that displays those traits."

Best became head coach at Goshen after a stint as an assistant coach there. Before that, he spent seven season as a pro player. He made it to AA, but he didn't make it higher.

Best's career began in 1989, signed by the Twins as an undrafted free agent out of Milligan College.

Best started with the Twins at rookie Elizabethton. The hurler went 7-1, with a 2.36 ERA in 12 outings, nine starts.

He played 1990 between single-A Kenosha and high-A Visalia. He went 9-7 between them, with a 3.88 ERA. His time with Kenosha resulted in a Midwest League All-Star nod.

Best again split his time between Kenosha and Visalia in 1991. He also turned reliever, getting 38 outings, six starts.

In 1992, Best got his first look at AA, getting 11 relief outings at Orlando. He turned in a sterling 0.79 ERA and saved four, one in a late-August game.

Earlier that year, Best struck out the side in a relief inning of a Fort Myers win. He then picked up a two-inning save in a June game.

Best returned to AA in 1993 at Nashville. He got into only three games, an elbow injury ending his affiliated career.

Best is later credited as returning to the field in independent ball. He's listed as playing parts of 1996 and 1997 for independent Lafayette of the Heartland League, ending his playing career.

By 1999, Best was at Goshen. He spent five seasons as assistant coach before being named head coach in 2004. His time as head coach was brief, but successful. He ended with a 20-14 career record at the school.

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