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Slayton stepping away from Scrapper baseball program

by Josh Richert | June 11, 2022 at 11:55 p.m.
Ty Gordon and coach Kyle Slayton of Nashville celebrate after defeating Shiloh Christian 4-0 Saturday, May 19, 2018, during the class 4A baseball state championship at Baum Stadium. (NWA Democrat-Gazette/BEN GOFF @NWABENGOFF)

NASHVILLE, Ark. – For the first time in over two decades, Nashville baseball will have a new skipper filling out the lineup cards.

After 20 years in the position, Kyle Slayton has stepped down as the Scrappers' head coach. Prior to coming to coming to Nashville, he was at Fouke for five years as head baseball coach.

"Nashville's program was pretty good when I got here," Slayton said. "They might not have had success at the championship level, but they had good players. The biggest thing we did when we came in was play a full schedule. My first year we played 37 games."

Slayton led Fouke to a baseball state title in 1999, and while at Nashville, his teams made four state finals appearances and four championships: 2007, 2017, 2018 and 2019. He has compiled a career record of 544-228 with 438-177 at Nashville and 106-51 at Fouke.

"We've always had good players," Slayton said. "And that number has increased each year, and we had more and more and more success. We put Nashville on the map as not just a football town – it had always been known for its football. The back-to-back-to-back state championships were really special.

"Even the 2007 state championship, which was the first baseball championship for Nashville, was great; I've been fortunate enough to do that twice in my career after we won the only state championship at Fouke in 1999."

Slayton is still going to work for the school district for three years as a bus driver to reach his full retirement. He is also going to work for the Arkansas Sticks baseball program during the summer and fall ball.

"Nashville is a special place, it's a special town when it comes to sports," Slayton said. "We've had a lot of success and won a lot of games. It seems crazy that I've coached almost 800 games in my career, and they go by so fast. It doesn't seem like it's been 25 years.

"Come March I'm going to miss it, but I'm also going to get to sit down there and watch my son play. Having the extra time for my family and for just me and him to work together is going to be special. It has been a super run, and I'll still be around but it won't be that daily grind like it has been the last 25 years."

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