Tag Archives: Kiel Holmes

Kiel Holmes Resigns as Burroughs Baseball Coach

By Dick Dornan
MyBurbank Sports Editor

In what he described as a “tough” and “difficult” decision, Kiel Holmes resigned as head baseball coach at Burroughs after meeting with administrators and the team Thursday morning in order to pursue other opportunities in his young life.

Kiel Holmes (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Kiel Holmes (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Holmes, 28, said he took the first week of the high school dead period to decide what was best for him and his family. Ultimately, the decision was made to walk away from a program that he has overseen the last two years.

“I’ve only been at Burroughs for two years but I’ve been coaching baseball as a walk-on coach for the last nine years. It finally caught up with me,” Holmes said. “I used the dead period to take some time and self-reflect and see what was best for me.

“I left because this point in my life coaching at Burroughs was becoming very difficult for me with the time commitment that I thought was necessary to run a program the way it should be run. It had everything to do with outside of baseball. Being a walk-on coach is difficult. This is the decision that had to be made.”

Holmes led the Indians to a 29-27 overall record in his two seasons including a 17-12 mark this past spring. Both his teams reached the CIF playoffs after posting records of 9-5 (2012) and 10-4 (2013) in the Pacific League (fourth and third place, respectively).

“It’s meant a lot being the head coach there. I’ve learned a ton not only about the game of baseball but about myself and these kids,” Holmes said. “I hope I have taught them half as much as they’ve taught me. It’s been a great opportunity for me to grow as a man and as a coach.”

After choosing to step away from the high school game, Holmes said he will wait patiently for the right opportunity to present itself before making his next career move.

“I’m looking forward to see where my career path takes me. I plan on exploring a lot of different options within baseball over the next week and also exploring a couple options outside of baseball as well,” said Holmes, who was recently married in the early part of the summer. “See what’s available and make the best move possible for myself and for my family.”

With Holmes sudden departure, Burroughs will be searching for its fourth head coach since Tom Crowther resigned in 2009. Dale Legaspi, one of Holmes’ top assistants, also left to become an assistant coach at Cal State Los Angeles.

As a graduate of JBHS in 2003 who played for Crowther for three years and one year under current Burroughs Athletic Director Jose Valle, leaving his beloved Indians was not an easy choice. Holmes wishes the best for the program and the school.

“I will be around as little or as much as the administration wants me to be involved in the transition process. I’m very proud of what we (coaching staff) have accomplished in such a short amount of time. I fully expect this program to continue to head in a very positive direction,” Holmes said. “I loved the opportunity that I was given. It’s been an incredible experience in my life and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”

Burroughs Baseball Striving to be King of the Hill in 2013

 

 

Coach Kiel Holmes (Photos by Ross A. Benson)

Coach Kiel Holmes (Photos by Ross A. Benson)

 

By Rick Assad
Special to BurbankNBeyond

You know that baseball is right around the corner when the weather begins to warm, the birds are chirping, and the days become longer.

Daniel Barraza

Daniel Barraza

And so it is for Burroughs High, which finished 2012 with a 12-15 overall record, 9-5 in Pacific League play for fourth place, and lost to Ventura, 4-1, in the opening round of the CIF Southern Section playoffs.

What does 2013 have in store for the Tribe?

Second-year Head Coach Kiel Holmes expects more wins than losses, and will rely upon a deep and talented pitching staff, along with several players leading the way.

“We’re returning key pieces from last season,” Holmes said. “We’ve built something good, and I think we’re going to be one of the last teams standing for the league title.”

Most successful baseball teams are built around pitching, and the Indians have an ace in senior Daniel Barraza, who throws in the low-to-mid 80s, and is coming off a season in which he struck out 23 batters in 20 innings, and had a 3.64 earned-run average.

“He’s really worked on his location,” said Holmes of the 6-foot-4 left-hander. “He’s focused in on throwing strikes.”

Luis Pereyra

Luis Pereyra

Barraza is backed by senior Luis Pereyra, who is the No. 2 hurler, and was named all-league second-team after posting a 1.10 ERA in 17 innings. When not on the mound, Pereyra will play third base.

“Luis has struggled some with his location,” Holmes explained. “He’s able to throw several pitches effectively, and he threw a two-hit, complete-game shutout against Burbank to end the season and send us to the playoffs.”

Senior Brandon Ortega is the closer and has adopted a “submarine-style” motion this past summer, and according to Holmes, has retired some of the better hitters in Southern California.

 “He has the potential to be all-league,” Holmes said.

Additionally, Ortega will make some starts and be in center field when not pitching.

Cameron Rodriguez warms up in the bullpen (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Cameron Rodriguez warms up in the bullpen (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The rest of the staff includes sophomore Thomas Wilson, a 6-4 right-hander who will eat up innings, senior Miles Haddad, who throws slightly below side-arm, and junior Cameron Rodriguez, a lefty who pounds the strike zone and has a good breaking ball.

Senior Patrick Christopher will spend the majority of time at first base and hit as the designated hitter as well.

“Patrick played on the junior varsity last season, but he’s going to be an important bat in the middle of the order,” Holmes said.

Sophomore Noah Hoed will also play first base and the outfield.

“Noah’s a big kid at 6-6 and is just coming into his own,” said Holmes. “He’s starting to develop and has natural power. He has good speed and huge power potential. This is a player with an incredibly high ceiling.”

Haddad, who batted .263 and had seven runs batted in, will play second base.

“In my opinion, Miles is the best defensive second baseman in the league,” Holmes said. “He has great hands and footwork.”

Haddad is backed by junior Anthony Robles, who can also play third base, and is the “most improved” player according to Holmes.

Rodriguez transferred from Notre Dame in Sherman Oaks, and will also see action in right field.

“He’s very strong and still developing, and will be a solid hitter who can hit to all fields,” said Holmes.

Brian Pozos

Brian Pozos

Senior Brian Pozos will start at shortstop, and is coming off a campaign in which he was an all-league, first-team performer after hitting .353 in league, with 12 runs scored, 10 stolen bases and eight RBIs.

Senior Chris Davies is the primary catcher and will lead off at the top of the order. Davies made honorable mention after batting .323 with 10 stolen bases, 11 runs tallied and eight RBIs.

“He has a strong throwing arm and was among the team leaders in average, on-base percentage, runs and stolen bases,” said Holmes.

Senior Jimmy Cramer will patrol left field after leading the junior varsity in hits.

“Jimmy’s bat really blossomed in the summer,” Holmes said.

Senior Akira Abderrahman will see time in right field and is ready to break out.

“He batted .500 in the summer, but didn’t play winter ball,” said Holmes.

Every team can use sophomore Aidan Anding’s skill set because he’s capable of playing in the infield and outfield, and is among the best utility players in the league according to Holmes.

Junior Tyler Renta is the reserve catcher, and will also play in the outfield and be the DH.

Burroughs will participate in the Easton Tournament as well as the “Best in the West” Tournament in Phoenix, Arizona.

Pacific League action begins March 15 at home against Arcadia at 3:30 p.m.