He’s patrolled the football sidelines for Perryville the last two seasons. Now he will also man the dugout in the spring. Blane Boss will coach Perryville varsity baseball next season, taking over for Dustin Wengert, who stepped down earlier this summer.
Boss has been in the Perryville baseball program the last two seasons as an assistant and ready to take the next step.
“I’ve been with the players and in the program for a few years now and the position came open and it just felt like the next step for me to give this a shot,” Boss said.
Boss has a background with baseball having played two seasons at St. Charles Community College, after graduating high school. Boss then parlayed success there into a scholarship at Northwestern State in Louisiana, where he played outfield.
Boss has also coached at different levels at other schools and doesn’t see the jump up to coaching the varsity level to be much of a problem.
“I’ve been around baseball a long time,” Boss said. “I think being around these guys and seeing what most of them can do last season will really help me.”
Boss will continue to be the head football coach for the Pirates and does not see too much of a problem juggling the responsibility of both sports.
“I think it will work out pretty nicely,” Boss said. “Once football is over, the preseason for baseball begins. Both sports will be in the weight room and then baseball will start the pitching and hitting programs in December and January. Then once spring comes around, we go into baseball mode and my football assistants will keep up with the offseason stuff, like they have in years past.”
The Pirates have seen some success in Boss’ two-years as an assistant going 14-10 and winning the JCAA Conference championship in 2017 and going 11-9-1 last season falling to Notre Dame in the Class 4, District 1 semifinal.
“I just want to make baseball fun and for the kids to come out and play,” Boss said. “I don’t know if baseball has ever really been a big thing in Perryville. I know when I played that Perryville had some solid teams, but that it wasn’t there number one sport. That’s what I want the program to become one day.”
For that to happen, Boss believes there has been be more players in the program and he has already began the process of trying to make baseball a viable option for prospective athletes.
“If kids have a good experience with baseball they will tell their buddies and we can grow the sport by word of mouth,” Boss said. “I have been talking to as many kids as I can to try to get them to come out and grow the popularity of the sport here. Obviously, if we can be competitive and win some baseball games that will help too.”
For the Pirates to be competitive and win those games like Boss desires, he will have to straighten out the pitching staff.
Four of Perryville’s top pitchers graduated in May and Boss is in search of others to fill that role.
“Pitching will be one of our weaknesses this year looking at it,” Boss said. “That’s my number one concern right now is how we are going to pitch. Offensively, I think we will be able to score runs and defensively we will be solid there too. We will really don’t have a clear number one and they are just kind of throwers right now. They will have to just go out and compete.”