Trail Youth Baseball (TYB) is on the lookout for coaches for the 2017-18 baseball season.
TYB is seeking independent coaches with a passion for sport to take the helm of the West Kootenay single-A, and double-A Orioles teams that play in the Washington State American Legion Baseball League (WSALB).
“Up to the ‘A’ and ‘AA’ level, we really like to get away from parent-coaches if possible,” said TYB executive member Scott Calvin. “It just makes things a lot better … and I know from experience, I was a parent-coach.”
Trail baseball was without a ‘AA’ team last season, but with Trail Little League numbers on the rise, Calvin hopes the increase and interest carries over to the Orioles and re-establishes the ‘AA’ team.
“We’re trying to build this program up,” said Calvin. “Regrettably, we didn’t have a ‘AA’ team last year. We lost the ‘AAA’ team four seasons ago now, and that’s what we want to get back to.”
The addition of the 13U team last season that competed in the Spokane Indians Youth League was a big first step in helping Little League players transition to single-A baseball and/or the TYB’s Junior house league, which saw the number of teams increase from two to three this summer.
Trail Youth Baseball is in the process of working with the City of Trail to transform a local park into one with the 13U youth baseball dimensions of a 54-foot pitcher’s mound and 70-foot base paths, compared to the 60-90 that’s played at the ‘A’ and ‘AA’ level, and the 46-60 of Little League.
“Instead of jumping right to 60-foot pitching and 90-foot bases we have that bridge in between, which really helps.”
The more players that develop and advance beyond Little League and up the ranks also bodes well for the future of elite Trail baseball players to continue into the college ranks and beyond. More players also bolsters the Trail AM Ford Senior Men’s Orioles, who passed on the provincials this season due to a dearth of available players.
“The goal is that there is an opportunity here for kids to move on. Our goal is to promote kids to college, and we have had successes over the years.”
Last year the West Kootenay ‘A’ Orioles won their division in the regular season but lost out in the regional playoffs, just missing a berth to the State Championships. The 13Us also had a competitive season, finishing above .500 in their first year in the Spokane League.
“We want to get it going back the other way, and I believe part of that is getting strong committed coaches in place that are able to do their job with a good structure for dealing with concerns and all that kind of stuff,” said Calvin.
Interested coaches must commit to a mid-May to end-of-July schedule and be able to travel to the U.S. for most games. There is some urgency to the process, as the WSALB begins its meeting in December and plans its schedule early, so TYB is seeking a Nov. 15 deadline for resumes.
A willingness to coach and commitment to the team and its players are the two most important qualifications for those applying.
“We think we’ll have the numbers to have three teams next year, and wouldn’t it be great if a year or two from now we talk about having a ‘AAA’ team in our area again,” said Calvin.
Applicants can mail resumes to Trail Youth Baseball: 3673 Cottonwood Drive, Trail, BC, V1R 2S4. Or contact Scott at 250-231-7077.