Bluejay & Lady Jay Athletics
Coach Hostikka and the Bluejay Baseball team are optimistic about the upcoming 2017 season. We have been working hard to change the culture of this program with recruits, facilities, and coaches. SACRIFICE the ME for WE... focuses on taking the talent that we know we have and developing a complete team that plays for each other instead of playing for themselves.
We continue to pour resources into our indoor facility and baseball fields with training equipment that will prepare our program to succeed throughout the year. We have worked hard in recruiting and continue to sign players from all over the country.
We are coming off a record year in 2016 setting a record for wins in a season. We finished in the top ten in two offensive categories: #1 in the Nation in Stolen Bases and #8 in the Nation in team Batting Average. We had a National Player of the Week for the first time in school history and multiple Division Pitchers and Position Players of the Week. We also placed three players in Summer Collegiate Leagues on the East Coast during the summer of 2016.
We continue to work on the things necessary for the development of this program, this team, and these young men. We are focused on improvement and competing in the ever-tough MCAC Southern Division.
Letter from Coach Hostikka:
Minnesota West and I place a great deal of emphasis on the "student" part of student-athlete. Last season, ten players were on the Academic All-Conference team and five players were on the Dean's List. Four out of our six sophomores graduated and are completing their degrees at a four-year institution. One is getting a second technical degree, and the other has remained at Minnesota West to complete his education. In my three seasons, we have graduated thirteen of eighteen sophomores (72%), and twelve of them (92%) are in four-year colleges on schedule to graduate.
The Seasons Fall and Spring
Fall practice starts September 1 and runs to October 6. All players are in competitive scrimmages.
Off-season workouts, sprint workouts, weight lifting and throwing programs start October 17. Our coaching staff, athletic trainer, and exercise science coach will develop the program.
We are scheduled to play 14 games during Spring Break in Illinois and at the Russ Matt Invitational Tournament in Florida March 4-11. We will travel to Creston, Iowa to play a DII junior college program, and we will host a six team classic in the Inaugural John Spiegelhoff Memorial Classic April 1-2, 2017. These tournaments are strategic in getting our team good competition and great exposure to higher levels of baseball. Forty-eight games will be played prior to the Southern Division MCAC playoffs this spring as we aim to earn a berth in the Regional tournament.
Minnesota West has two baseball fields: one lighted for night games and one that does not have lights. We also have an indoor baseball facility which has a full college turf infield, two-80ft. batting cages, six portable pitching mounds, and a full weight room with machines, free weights, and cardio equipment. Players will have access to the indoor facility 24/7 with their own key card. Our Health and Wellness Center is connected to the YMCA and both are less than four years old.
As the Minnesota West baseball coach, I promise the opportunity from day one on our campus, to earn a starting position and play every day. If you work hard in the classroom and on the field, you can compete for a starting position. We will help you become a better player, a better teammate, a man of character, and will give you an opportunity to earn a college degree. In return, you will help us become a better program.
I welcome the opportunity to talk to you. You can call or text me at any time.
Coach T. D. Hostikka, M.S.