Craig Rainey '89 is entering his 26th season as the head baseball coach at Adrian College in 2019. Under Rainey’s leadership, Adrian’s baseball program has risen to national prominence and has become a perennial contender for the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association championship.
The 2018 campaign saw Adrian extend its MIAA record of 10 conference championships in a row with a 24-4 record in MIAA play and the Bulldogs won the MIAA Tournament for the sixth time since it was introduced in 2012. The Bulldogs finished 35-12 overall and No. 29 in the final American Baseball Coaches Association/Collegiate Baseball Newspaper national rankings. Adrian played host to the NCAA Division III Mideast Regional for the second time since 2009, going 2-2 in a field that included seven teams receiving votes in the national rankings. Senior right-hander Tommy Parsons was chosen an All-American (ABCA First Team, D3baseball.com All-America Second Team), the Mideast Pitcher of the Year by both the ABCA and D3baseball, and Google Cloud Academic All-America® Third Team by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). Senior first baseman Hunter Hayes was D3baseball Honorable Mention All-America.
In 2017, Adrian returned to the top of the MIAA pinnacle and received the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Baseball Championship by going 34-13 overall and 23-5 in the MIAA. A school-record three Bulldogs--Ian Mikowski (First Team), Ryan Dorow (Third Team) and Parsons (Third Team)--were named to the D3baseball.com All-America team and Mikowski and Parsons also landed on the ABCA All-America second- and third-teams, respectively. Mikowski (.580 on-base percentage) and Parsons (12 victories and a 14.43 strikeout-to-walk ratio) also won NCAA statistical titles.
The 2016 Bulldogs wound up 30-12 overall and 24-4 in conference play--winning the league by six games. Adrian swept the individual player awards as All-American Dorow earned the MIAA Position Player of the Year for the second time in three years and Parsons was named the Pitcher of the Year as a sophomore. Led by all-region standouts Mikowski, Dorow and Parsons, Adrian set school records with a NCAA Division III-topping .438 on-base percentage, 228 walks and 366 runs scored among other team/individual benchmarks.
- Compiled a career record of 654-413 for a .613 winning percentage--all at the school. He is the winningest coach in MIAA history.
- MIAA record is 451-169 (.727).
- Bulldogs had eight straight appearances in the NCAA Division III Championship from 2008 to 2015, going 265-100 and winning 72.6 percent of their games during that stretch.
- Have won 10 consecutive MIAA championships to break the conference record set by Alma College from 1951 to 1958. The Bulldogs have won or shared 12 of the last 14 MIAA championships.
- Won 12 conference championships overall, including regular-season titles in 2005 and '06.
- Captured the first four MIAA tournament crowns (2012-15) and six overall.
- Has guided program to 11 consecutive 30-win seasons, including a school-record 37 wins in 2012. The team has also had 15 winning seasons in a row under Rainey.
- All 12 NCAA tournament appearances (2005-06, 2008-15-17-18) in school history have occurred with Rainey at the helm. Twenty NCAA wins (against 25 losses) and 12 berths are conference benchmarks.
- Became first MIAA team to reach NCAA World Series in 2008 when the Bulldogs finished fourth in the nation with a 36-13 overall mark.
- Coached nine student-athletes to 19 All-America citations since 2008.
- In 2009, Adrian set an MIAA record by winning the league with a 25-3 record. Also hosted the NCAA Mideast Regional at Nicolay Field for the first time in school history (3rd place).
- Most of the team records have been established under Rainey's watch.
MIAA INDIVIDUAL ACCOLADES UNDER COACH RAINEY
- Mentored 45 all-region performers and 78 first-team All-MIAA players.
- Produced 14 conference players of the year and 10 league most valuable pitchers.
- Current assistant and third base coach Aaron Klotz was first Bulldog to earn MIAA Player of the Year honors in 1997.
- Seven-straight conference players of the year: Bobby Rickstad, dh/ut (2008); Todd Meyers and Alex Cowart, of (2009); Alex Cowart, of (2010); Brian Bilius, 3b (2011); Kyle Strawn, of (2012); Dan Heatherly, dh/ut (2013); Ryan Dorow, ss (2014).
- MIAA Pitcher of the Year awarded to the Bulldogs three times in a row in two different spans: 2009-11 with Ryan Domschot, Josh Lancaster and David Partyka; and 2014-18 with Holden Branch, Eric Schmidt and Tommy Parsons (3x).
- 2008 American Baseball Coaches Association Mideast Region Coach of the Year.
- 2016 NCAA D-III statistical champion with a .438 on-base percentage, a school record.
OTHER RECENT ADRIAN BASEBALL INDIVIDUAL ACCOLADES
- Ryan Dorow was the 2014 D3baseball.com National Rookie of the Year.
- Todd Meyers earned the ABCA National Gold Glove Award at shortstop in 2009.
- Alex Cowart (2009-10), Dorow (2014, '16-17) and Tommy Parsons (2017-18) are the only Bulldogs chosen All-American in multiple years.
- Ryan Domschot (D3Baseball.com, 2009), Cowart (ABCA, 2009), Ian Mikowski (D3Baseball.com, 2017) and Parsons (ABCA, 2018) are the only first-team All-Americans in team history.
- Dorow was a Major League Baseball draft pick (Texas Rangers, 30th Round) in 2017, while Parsons was an Appalachian League All-Star at Johnson City (St. Louis Cardinals) as undrafted free agent in 2018.
PRIOR TO CURRENT POSITION
- Assistant baseball coach under former athletic director and Bulldog Hall of Fame member Henry Mensing. In 1993, Rainey helped AC to its first MIAA baseball championship.
- Rainey started for three years at catcher for the Bulldogs and won the MIAA batting crown as a senior, hitting .467 in league games.
- Earned a master’s degree in sports administration from the United States Sports Academy.
- Hometown is Owosso, Mich.
- Resides in Adrian with his two children, Gunner and Kia.
The Rainey Career Record at Adrian