Now in nearly its 100th year, baseball at Loomis Chaffee is alive and well. From the teams of the early 1900’s coached by the school’s first coach, Chick Sellers, to those of the 1950’s headed by Ralph Erickson, to the championship teams of the 1980’s and 1990’s led by Al Beebe and Duane Estes, baseball on The Island has enjoyed a long and successful history. Jeff Ross, head coach since 1999, has continued that success during his first thirteen years at the helm. Since 2002, the Pelicans have won four championships, finished second four times and compiled a record of 127-57, a .690 winning percentage.
Far and away the most important factor in this success has been the program’s commitment to the development of the baseball fundamentals of every player at every level. Being a baseball player here means becoming a student of the game, someone who realizes that “the only way to get better is to get smarter.” Our coaches are first and foremost teachers of the game of baseball, and our players know that the key to success is not just hard work but “smart hard work.”
Whether you are freshman, a post-graduate with significant high school experience or anyone in between, Loomis Chaffee baseball offers the opportunity to become a smarter, better player. Our week-long trip to Florida each March is open to all players and attracts an average of over 30 participants each spring. While we hold practices and have scrimmages, the focus of that five day trip is individual instruction by former professional players at a baseball school. As a result, our JV team is very much a “feeder” program for the varsity, both in terms of team play and player development.
We are also fully committed to disciplined team play. We believe that baseball is a sport in which the winning team is most often the one that plays better, not the better team. Simply put, we work hard and smart in practice in order to be able to play well in games; we prepare ourselves in for every situation and strive to play every inning of every game with the “savvy” and “relaxed intensity” critical to success in the game of baseball.
Loomis Chaffee plays in the highly competitive Colonial League, a conference consisting of 8 baseball-playing members of the Founders League (Avon, Choate, Hotchkiss, Kent, Loomis Chaffee, Taft, Trinity Pawling and Westminster). We play an 18 game schedule consisting of 14 Colonial League contests and 4 non-league games against such schools as Deerfield, Salisbury, Kingswood Oxford and Hopkins, as well as preseason scrimmages with opponents such as NMH, Suffield and Williston Northampton.
College baseball has been in the future of a large number of Loomis Chaffee players in the last decade, including those who have gone on to play at Yale, Boston College, Wesleyan, Colby, Trinity, Williams, MIT, Kenyon, Skidmore, College of Wooster, Babson, Quinnipiac, UMass and UConn. Pierre LePage ’06 was selected in the 13th round of the 2010 major league draft by the Chicago Cubs, the sixth Loomis Chaffee alum to go on to play professional baseball since 1986.
To learn more about the Loomis Chaffee baseball program contact Head Coach Jeff Ross at firstname.lastname@example.org or 860.687.6323.