Baseball

Former Columbia Basin and WSU baseball coach critically injured in Nevada car accident

Steve Farrington, center, a longtime coach in a number of sports in the Tri-Cities and one-time baseball coach at both Columbia Basin College and Washington State University, is shown here with sons Tyler, left, and Brady.
Steve Farrington, center, a longtime coach in a number of sports in the Tri-Cities and one-time baseball coach at both Columbia Basin College and Washington State University, is shown here with sons Tyler, left, and Brady. Family photo

Steve Farrington is very well known around the Northwest, and especially the Tri-Cities.

Over the years, he’s been a baseball coach for countless numbers of athletes around here.

He’s been the head coach for Lower Columbia Community College in Longview, was the head baseball coach at Washington State University, and the head coach at Columbia Basin College.

He’s coached football for local high schools, and was at one time the defensive backs coach for the Tri-Cities Fever indoor football team at one time.

He’s even coached girls softball.

The above is just a small part of his resume.

The number of people he’s touched in this region since the late 1970s number deep into the thousands.

Farrington (1)2a.jpg
Steve Farrington Cal State University Bakersfield

I played for him back in 1978, when the Kennewick Dusters were at one time a senior American Legion baseball program. He always introduced me to someone in later years as the first shortstop he ever had.

I’ve always told anyone who would listen that the two short months I spent with this man I learned more about playing baseball, teamwork and life in those two months than all of the previous 10 years combined.

Whenever I’ve seen him, he always makes me smile, and we have a great conversation.

I know I’m not alone. A lot of people feel that way about him.

And now Steve Farrington is in trouble.

The 67-year-old Farrington was involved in a high-speed car accident near Las Vegas on Monday afternoon.

The saving grace was that a retired doctor/paramedic was behind the accident, and a sheriff’s officer was coming the other way.

CPR was performed on Farrington, he was able to be stabilized enough to be helicoptered out to the UMC Trauma Center in Las Vegas.

Farrington is listed in critical condition.

His sons, Tyler and Brady, have created a GoFundMe page for him.

They say he has Diffuse Axonal injury, a serious brain injury. He is currently unconscious and breathing through a ventilator. But he can move his extremities.

I was wondering how he ended up down south from the Tri-Cities. He’s an assistant baseball coach for Cal State Bakersfield. The tie-in is that the head coach there is Jeremy Beard, who was Farrington’s assistant when the two were at CBC.

Beard was always an intelligent man, and he knew Farrington would help him get more out of his players.

Farrington has a long road ahead of him, but like his sons say, he’s a fighter.

That’s what he taught all of us to do when we played for him – even us old-timers from the 1970s.

And everyone believes in him.

The sons – who both plan on being with their dad when he wakes up — started the GoFundMe page a few days ago, shooting for $10,000 to help with the pending medical bills.

But as of Thursday evening, that number is just over $20,000 and growing.

That alone tells you how much Steve Farrington is loved.

Roundup

• Found out Thursday that Richland senior Cole Northrop has signed a letter of intent to play college basketball next year at Simon Fraser University. This past season’s leading scorer in the Mid-Columbia Conference is a great pickup for the Canadian school that plays in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference.

• Walla Walla senior Jared McAlvey, who has a good shot at being the Mid-Columbia Conference male track athlete of the year, signed last week with Washington State University. McAlvey is one of the top hurdlers in the state.

• Wa-Hi grad Mikayla Ferenz finished her college basketball career this spring at the University of Idaho. But she says she’s not done playing basketball. She’s looking for a professional opportunity and will know soon what she’s going to do.

• Heads up to all Tri-Cities Alliance soccer fans: All Evergreen Premier League home games this season have been moved to Edgar Brown Stadium in Pasco. The team, which tied the Yakima United 2-2 last weekend in the season opener, plays host to the Spokane Shadow at 2 p.m. Sunday in its home opener.

• Hanford High senior Jared DeVine has committed to play both football and baseball next year at Linfield College. “Jared is a fine dual-sport athlete and we are excited to have him,” said Linfield head football coach Joseph Smith. DeVine isn’t the only Tri-Citian headed to Linfield. Southridge offensive lineman Nick Christman has also signed with the Wildcats, as did Columbia-Burbank senior Hayden McEachen – who was co-Defensive Player of the Year in the Eastern Washington Athletic Conference.

• Reminder that the Tri-Cities Fire, after being off for almost a month, resumes American West Football Conference indoor football play on Saturday with a 5 p.m. road game against the Idaho Horsemen. It’ll be the final time the Fire plays the Horsemen in the regular season. The Fire then plays at Reno on May 19, before having another home game – May 23 vs. Reno.

• Here’s a reminder that if you want to see live horse racing at Sun Downs Race Track in Kennewick, Saturday and Sunday are your last chances. There are three big races as the highlights: On Saturday it will be the $37,000 Adequan Derby Challenge. Sunday, there is the $27,000 Pot O’Gold Futurity and the $21,000 AQHA Distaff Challenge Finals. First post each day is 1 p.m.

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