Baseball team sees ‘Angel in the Outfield’


Kelly Brinkley

Coach Kinney greets senior Scout Cox as they finish the inning. Kinney always brought a smile to his players faces with kind words as they ran off the field.

Sean Raines, Online Editor

In the popular 1990s baseball movie, “Angels in the Outfield,” the baseball team can feel the presence of a friend, mentor, coach and companion looking over them. From family man to baseball coach, assistant baseball coach Mark Kinney was a man who always brought a smile to his family, friends and players he coached on the ball field. Coach Kinney coached the Titan squad for three years and unexpectedly passed away Dec. 21 at the age of 41.

“He meant everything to us. Coach Kinney had the ability to change the whole mood of the dugout. He just knew exactly what to say and when to say it,” junior baseball player Caden Parry said.

Coach Kinney coached the first basemen on the JV team as an assistant coach along with other infielders.

“My favorite memories are always catching up for him while he hit ground balls to the infielders,” senior baseball player Brendan Cuthrell said.

Coach Kinney was a son, brother and an uncle; however, his family extended far greater to around 18 kids on the JV baseball team each season. His “family first” personality was extremely apparent to the kids, as he really cared for his players and hoped they would be successful. With a caring and passionate personality, coach Kinney was not only a coach but a true friend who just wanted the best for his players. The impact he had on his players and peers is evident based on the amount of players that showed up to celebrate his life.

“He was a players’ coach. The players loved playing for him. He would always be the first one to applaud them or praise them. He always remained calm, cool and collected and played the ‘good cop’ role. I can truly say I never saw him in a bad mood unless Duke basketball lost,” head varsity baseball coach Brad Bullard said.

Coach Kinney was not only somebody who could cheer you up; he was someone you could count on and would walk a thousand miles out of his way for his players.

“My favorite memory of coach Kinney was when he brought me my glove when I forgot it at West and we had a game at East. He showed up right on time, gave me a hug and said, ‘I got you,’” senior baseball player Peyton Idol said.

Although we lost a Titan, the baseball team and West Forsyth community gained an angel. From the baseball team, all of West Forsyth and the Forsyth County community, we thank you coach Kinney for all of the lives you have impacted within this school and in this community. May your soul rest in peace.