Long Beach lost a legendary baseball coach last week with the passing of John Herbold at the age of 88.
Herbold was one of the most accomplished baseball coaches in a city with a long tradition of great managers, and his honors include membership in the Long Beach Baseball, Long Beach Century Club, Cal State Los Angeles, American Baseball Coaches, and Hollywood High halls of fame.
Herbold graduated from Hollywood High and Stanford, then served in the Korean War, making his way to Long Beach in 1955 for his first baseball coaching job, at Long Beach Poly. Herbold was an English teacher and head baseball coach at Poly and Lakewood from 1955 until 1983, when he moved to Cal State Los Angeles.
With the Jackrabbits from 1955 to 1968, Herbold won five Moore League titles and the 1963 CIF championship. At Lakewood, he succeeded Artie Boyd and led the Lancers from 1969 until 1983, winning 13 Moore League titles in 15 years and CIF championships in 1970 and 74.
All told while coaching in the Moore League, Herbold won 18 league titles and three CIF championships, compiling a 483-176 record over 28 seasons.
At Cal State Los Angeles, Herbold continued his stellar career, winning 455 games while coaching the Golden Eagles from 1984 until 2004, retiring as the school’s all-time wins leader. Herbold’s CSULA teams were among the best in the history of the school, including the 1997 and ’98 teams, which made the NCAA Tournament.
When he retired in 2004, he had a lifetime record of 938-841-4 over 49 years as a head coach.
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