Managers Jason Greenberg and Andrew Slater have announced the 2009 club coaching staff. Three veteran team leaders will work as a unit and in coordination with the team managers to develop the hitting, pitching and conditioning of Herts adult players at every level of the organisation.
2009 Conditioning Coach Dan Kerry joined the club in 2007. A professional physical fitness educator, Kerry brings to the job years of experience helping youth cricketers, ruggers, and footballers to develop their speed and agility. He will draw from a wealth of conditioning exercises and techniques to push the Falcons, Eagles, Hawks and Raptors to speedier Sundays on the base paths and increased endurance and coordination on the diamond. Kerry is a well-respected slugger and outfielder in his own right; in his first ever at-bat in a baseball game, he smashed a towering home run. He is often the flashy centrepiece in Herts Baseball web gems, never afraid to dive flat out for a line drive. No doubt, the on-field respect he's earned from his teammates will aid his efforts as a peer instructor.
Help the club to swing a mightier bat is 2009 Hitting Coach Andy Cornish. Cornish is a local talent and lifetime Herts Baseball Club member, the only among the 2009 instructional and managerial staff. He has played the game in Hemel Hempstead since he was a boy, and no doubt his passion and pride for the home team will fuel his coaching efforts. Cornish's focus will be on effective use of body strength and proper mechanics. He plans to use quick-release, contained-space drills to help batters find a balance between consistency and power, and will emphasize exercises that strengthen eye-hand coordination. Cornish is consistently among the top Herts hitters; he was 2007 Falcons batting champ and runner-up for the 2008 title, leading the team in runs and stolen bases. His patient and positive attitude will serve him well as he addresses the Herts hitting game with a fresh mindset.
While he's no newcomer to the game of baseball, 2009 Pitching Coach Darrin Ward is only in his second season with Herts Baseball Club. A former National Leaguer, hurler for team Great Britain, and onetime season leader in the Milton Keynes programme, Ward sports a lifetime of achievements on the mound. His goals for the upcoming season include motivating the Herts pitching staff to assess their strengths and limitations, correct mechanics, properly condition their arms and lower bodies to the task of consistent throwing, and tackle the nuances of pitching as a mental game. Too many times last season, in Ward's opinion, Herts pitchers were done-in by their own lack of confidence and control. He is already fashioning a structured development programme that will assist first-time pitchers with the basic motions and techniques to get them started on the mound, while also working closely with veteran pitchers to enhance their command and ability to muscle through adversity.
“All our coaches for the coming season are fired-up,” says Greenberg, manager of the National League Falcons. “At our first planning session last week, they all brought fantastic ideas to the table and they'll prove invaluable to Andrew, myself and our Hawks and Eagles managers, helping us to evaluate our strengths, improve on our areas of weakness, and keep our players motivated and in peak condition throughout the entire summer. It's an enormous task, but if anyone is up to it, it's Dan, Darrin and Andy.”
The Herts staff plans to waste no time in making 2009 the most successful year ever for its teams on the diamond. Winter conditioning training gets underway in just one week, and pitching and hitting clinics are scheduled for early December.