Returning for his 39th season as the senior member of the Florida State baseball staff, Chip Baker is one of the most popular figures in the Seminole program. Baker is in his 21st year as Florida State’s Director of Baseball Operations, a multi-faceted position for the man who spent 18 years as a Seminole assistant coach.
In 2022, Baker was a part of his 2,000th career win in a career that spans stops at Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech and – since 1985 – Florida State.
Baker supervises all facility enhancement projects, the game day experience at Dick Howser Stadium, manages the program’s budget, oversees team travel logistics and serves as the liaison to alumni, former players and other VIPs.
During his tenure with the Seminoles, Baker has participated in 37 NCAA postseason tournaments and 16 College World Series appearances, including 11 in 18 years on the field. He was a member of the coaching staff for the 1986 and 1999 teams that reached the CWS championship game. Baker’s duties as an assistant included coaching third base, tutoring FSU’s catchers, scouting opponents and directing the Seminoles’ defensive alignments.
Baker is known as one of college baseball’s premier catching instructors. During his tenure, Baker coached seven All-American receivers, including Ed Fulton, Barry Blackwell, major-leaguer Marc Ronan, current Kansas City Royals coach Pedro Grifol, Mike Martin Jr., Jeremy Salazar and Tony Richie. As an administrator, he mentored current Seattle Mariner Cal Raleigh and the 2021 Perfect Game Player of the Year, Mat Nelson.
Baker also served as the long-time director of the Mike Martin and Seminole Advanced Baseball Schools. Over 130 former campers have gone on to wear the Garnet and Gold and several have advanced to the major leagues. Past camps have produced over 30 first round draft picks including Sean Gilmartin, John-Ford Griffin, Nick Stocks, Jonathan Johnson, J.D. Drew, Chipper Jones, Alex Rodriguez and brothers Justin and Melvin Upton. Baker has also been on the staff of national and regional clinics and continues to work with local youth organizations putting together clinics.
The North Carolina native has written articles for Scholastic Coach and Collegiate Baseball magazines on the subjects of catching, third base coaching and bunting, and has published a Collegiate Level Strength & Speed book. In 2001, Baker put together a record-selling catching video with Championship Videos entitled, ‘Expanding the Strike Zone.’ A popular speaker with no shortage of stories, Baker continues to address Seminole Booster clubs and civic organizations around the state.
A 1980 graduate of High Point University in North Carolina, Baker was part of four Carolina Conference championship teams, including the 1979 team that was the NAIA World Series runner-up.
After completing his bachelor’s degree in physical education, Baker earned a Master of Science degree in movement science at Virginia Tech, where he began his collegiate coaching career.
Baker is the proud father of Katie, a 2018 graduate of Florida State and a former student manager with the FSU softball team during the team’s run to the 2018 National Championship.
In 2001, Baker and former head coach Mike Martin were presented with the university’s prestigious Westcott Award for their bravery in saving the lives of players and staff during the Seminoles’ road trip to Stanford. Leaving the San Francisco airport, the two coaches gained control of the team’s charter bus after the driver suffered a fatal heart attack, safely guiding the bus to the side of a busy highway.
A voter for the National College Baseball Hall of Fame, Baker was recognized in 2006 by the American Baseball Coaches Association ‘For a Quarter Century of Leadership & Devotion to Baseball.’
In April of 2014, Baker entered Florida State’s Circle of Gold, an honor acknowledging a worthy individual who, through their service and achievements, personify the university’s tradition of excellence. For years, Baker also served as a TV analyst for FSU home games on the ACC Network Extra.