Kyle Crookes is in his second season as head coach of Mules Baseball and his fourth season overall with the program after serving the previous two seasons as the team’s top assistant.
In his first season at the helm, he led the Mules a 30-22 record and a third place finish in the MIAA regular season standings at 23-13. The Mules advanced to the semifinals of the MIAA Tournament. Ten players were named to the All-MIAA team, including Trevor Jones earning First Team honors, he went on to earn multiple All-Region honors as well.
As UCM’s top assistant in 2014, the Mule offense combined to hit .322, second best in the MIAA and 16th in NCAA Division II. The Mules ranked in the top 30 in the country averaging seven runs per game. The were in the top 50 in slugging percentage and one player was in the top 15 in runs scored.
In his first season as an assistant at UCM in 2013, the Mules’ offense was eighth in NCAA-II averaging over eight runs per game and they were in the top 20 in the nation in six offensive categories.
In his three seasons with the Mules, Crookes has coached three All-Americans, 32 All-MIAA performers, six All-Region players and a Rawlings/ABCA Gold Glove award winner. Three players have gone on to the affiliated professional ranks either through the Major League Baseball Draft or free agent signings.
Prior to coming to Warrensburg, Crookes spent the previous eight seasons as the head coach at Hutchinson Community College in Hutchinson, Kan.
He compiled a 292-164 overall record in eight seasons leading the Blue Dragons. His teams won or shared three Jayhawk West championships, won two Region VI crowns, and made two trips to the NJCAA World Series, including a third place finish at the 2010 World Series.
He is second on the career wins list at HCC and his .640 winning percentage ranks third among 10 HCC coaches and his 456 games coached are second all-time at the school.
During his tenure he coached four NJCAA All-Americans, 46 All-Conference players, 11 All-Region VI selections, a Jayhawk West MVP, Conference Freshman of the Year, and Region VI Defensive Player of the Year. Nine of his players were drafted and four players have reached the major leagues. Crookes will be inducted in to the Hutchinson Community College Hall of Fame in the spring of 2016.
Before taking over as the head man at Hutchinson Community College, Crookes served four seasons as an assistant coach for the Blue Dragons, helping the squad to a 159-70-1 record during that span.
He played collegiately, first at San Jose Junior College, and then at Centenary where he earned his bachelor’s degree in history in 1999.
Crookes and his wife, Delayna, have two children; a daughter, Kennedy and a son, Kannon.