Heaton Duo Tabbed as New Snowcaps' Coaches
September 20, 2015
LYNNWOOD – The Northwest Collegiate League is excited to announce the new coaching staff for the Rainier Snowcaps. Rich Heaton and his son, J.T. Heaton, will combine to lead the ‘Caps in 2016.
Rich Heaton was an assistant coach at Green River Community College from 2002-2009 and helped many hitters advance to four-year schools and the professional ranks. He is no stranger to the summer collegiate setting, having served as head coach in that capacity in the past. Green River broke the NWAC record for home runs in a season (45) under Heaton's tutelage.
“You will never know when the last time you will be on a baseball field is, so why not go all out every time you are between the white lines and make something amazing happen,” Heaton said.
J.T. finished his playing career at Missouri Valley College, earning NAIA and All-American honors in 2007 as the team’s closer. J.T., a Northwest native, played at four schools in his collegiate career, starting at Columbia Basin College as a corner infielder. He transferred to Pierce College and became a two-way player, focused solely on pitching at Midland Junior College in Texas, and flourished under NWCBL Vice President Scott Kelly at Missouri Valley. He started helping the Green River CC summer program in 2003, and later served as an assistant coach for the Gators in 2008. In 2010 he was the pitching coach for the Triple Play Hornets, who won the USABF World Series Championship that summer.
“I feel like it is the right time and place to come back (to coaching). I’m looking forward to next season," J.T. Heaton said.
J.T. will serve as head coach for the Snowcaps and will coach third base. He will also be the pitching coach. Rich will be the signal caller while working with hitters.
“Ask anyone who has played for Rich Heaton and you’ll get the same answer: He can teach hitting, he expects you to give your best, and you’ll have a great time,” said league president Spencer Stark. “It will be fun to watch the Heaton boys in action next summer. It’s a very good thing for our league, and we are thrilled to have them join us.”
The Rainier Snowcaps will play a majority of their home games at Puyallup’s Heritage Field. The team holds the record for most regular season wins in a summer with 21 in 2014.