Greenville, S.C. – Furman head baseball coach Ron Smith has announced the hiring of Taylor Harbin as the Paladins’ new assistant coach.
Harbin, who spent the 2015 season as a student assistant at Clemson University, succeeds Jeff Whitfield, who accepted the assistant coach position at College of Charleston earlier this month.
“We are delighted that Taylor Harbin is joining our staff,” said Smith. “Through his professional and college baseball experiences, he brings a wealth of knowledge that will benefit our players.”
Harbin earned multiple awards and honors during his career at nearby Travelers Rest High School, including All-Region, Western 3A Player of the Year, All- County, All-State and Most Valuable Player. He holds the South Carolina state record for career home runs with 52 and was named Mr. Baseball for the state of South Carolina in 2004. Following high school, Harbin was a standout infielder on three Clemson teams (2005-07) before playing eight seasons in the minor leagues.
The Travelers Rest, S.C. native showed good power at the plate during his three seasons as a Tiger. He was a career .320 hitter with 67 doubles, 30 home runs, 172 RBIs and 31 steals in 194 games (193 starts).
As a freshman in 2005, Harbin burst onto the scene as a second-team All-American, becoming the first freshman to be named to an All-America first, second or third team in Clemson history. He was also a first-team freshman All-American and First-Team All-ACC selection who batted .343 with 28 doubles, four triples, 10 homers and 63 RBIs.
After hitting .319 with 20 doubles, nine homers and 47 RBIs as a sophomore in 2006 in leading Clemson to the College World Series, Harbin earned All-ACC honors for the second time in 2007. He hit .296 with 19 doubles, 11 homers and 62 RBIs as a team co-captain, then was drafted in the eighth round by the Arizona Diamondbacks after the season.
Harbin played almost his entire minor league career in the Diamondbacks’ organization, reaching as high as Triple-A. He also played for Sugar Land (Texas) in the Atlantic (Independent) League in 2014. In 890 career games over eight seasons in the minors, he batted .267 with 891 hits, 206 doubles, 22 triples, 62 homers, 427 RBIs and 38 steals.
Harbin, 29, received his degree in parks, recreation & tourism management from Clemson in 2015 and is married to the former Jennifer Mullinnix of Greenville, S.C. The couple has a son, Landon, born in the fall of 2014.