UWS Baseball Team Begins Season with New Head Coach
Coach Oakes reminds his players that life is bigger than baseball.
SUPERIOR, Wisc. — Following the 2021 season the UW Superior baseball team began its search for a new head coach. They landed someone with plenty of experience between the white lines.
TJ Oakes is now leading the Yellowjackets into this upcoming season. A native of Jordan, Minnesota, Oakes played his college career with the Golden Gophers. After a 16-21 overall record last season the team hopes this will give them what they need to turn things around.
Senior pitcher Ryan Rodriguez says, “I feel like we’re more focused and we know what our goal have to be, and just looking forward to competing under a new coach and everything too.”
Oakes emphasizes the importance of the mental aspect of the game.
“He’s taught us a lot about the mental side of baseball,” says junior catcher Isaac Fugere, “He really talks a lot about being better people as well as better baseball players, so it’s a lot about us as a baseball team but us in our careers and lives too.”
Coach Oakes brings plenty of experience to UWS having coached at both the high school and collegiate levels.
“I was a high school head coach at Legacy Christian Academy in Andover, Minn., for two years and then I was at St. Mary’s University in Winona, Minn. where I was an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator for the last six years,” says Oakes, “My younger brother is at New Prague high school, my dad was a coach for twenty-eight years for the San Francisco Giants and Minnesota Gophers, so we come from a coaching background and it’s kind of in the blood.”
Oakes was drafted back in 2012 by the Colorado Rockies where he spent two years in their system before becoming a coach.
The Yellowjackets finished up their non-conference schedule with a split against Augsburg earlier this morning. They will open conference play Tuesday at home against Northland College.