Former Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs head coach Blake Nation is set to report to Minor League Spring Training with the Milwaukee Brewers Dominican Summer League (DSL) affiliate as the DSL Brewers Blue Development Coach.
Nation led the DiamondDawgs to a 114-75 (.603) record over four seasons and won the PGCBL championship in 2015 & 2017. Additionally, he was named the PGCBL Coach of the Year in 2016. During his time with the Dawgs, Nation coached one PGCBL Pitcher of the Year, eight all-league players, and twenty-two all-star game selections.
“I’m excited to take this next step in my coaching career and am looking forward to working with professional players and coaches in the Brewers organization. They have a great reputation for developing players and coaches at the highest level. Of course, I take lessons learned from all my coaching experiences along the way with me, and I was fortunate to have the opportunity to coach the Diamond Dawgs the year after I retired from playing. I certainly learned a lot throughout those four years, and I’m thankful for Travis Heiser and Coach Steve Luby as they continue to be strong supporters of my career. I look forward to reuniting with some former Dawgs who are currently playing in the professional ranks.”
DiamondDawgs owner Travis Heiser was elated to hear that Nation was hired by the Brewers’ organization. “The purpose of our league is to help young players earn exposure and hopefully realize their ultimate goal of becoming professionals. It is not just our players who deserve a chance in the professional game. Blake is a shining example of how hard work, attention to detail, and tenacity can lead you to achieve your ultimate goal. I could not be happier for him, and I know the Brewers have hired one of the best.”
Nation also served as an assistant coach at the University of Tampa, Florida Southwestern State College, Hofstra University, and Towson University.
Nation spent three years in the Seattle Mariners organization, pitching for the Pulaski Mariners, Clinton Lumberjacks, and High Desert Mavericks. He played three seasons of professional baseball, spending one season each with the Rio Grand Valley White Wings (North American Independent League), the Fort Worth Cats (North American Independent League), and the Southern Illinois Miners (Frontier League). His overall professional record was 29-17 with 11 saves, a 3.21 ERA, and 302 strikeouts.
A collegiate pitcher at Georgia Southern, Nation has coached at multiple levels of the collegiate game. He started his coaching career at East Georgia College, where he served as an assistant from 2011 to 2013.