June 21, 2021

Erie Tigers High School Baseball Head Coach Mike Newton was fired today.

The reason cited by the Principal and Athletic Director was that Coach Newton was not the right guy to lead Erie Baseball to become a 5A program.

Since taking over the program in March of 2019, Coach Newton has led the Tigers to a 25 and 16 record (.610 for the baseball folks), has led the Tigers to appearances in every post season (two out of three teams made it to the playoffs with the 2020 season being canceled due to COVID-19), finished in the top 8 in 2019 and top 24 in 2021 of state-wide 4A baseball.

 

During the COVID shutdown, Coach Newton provided opportunities for Erie Tiger Baseball players to continue developing by establishing a Summer/Fall/Pre-season club baseball program that competed in weekly tournaments in Colorado and Wyoming.

 

These facts and this record are impressive for any coach, but considering that the 2021 season was in all actuality Coach Newton’s first full year with a team it’s even more impressive. Adding to that in 2020, Coach Newton’s Erie Tigers saw 14 Seniors graduate - the 2021 Erie Tigers Varsity Baseball roster had only four players who had ever so much as put on a varsity uniform:

  • 2 Seniors, one of whom played with Coach Newton in the 2019 State run, one who made the 2020 roster but saw no field time in the one game that was played;
  • 1 Junior who was with Coach Newton in the 2019 run and played one game in 2020;
  • and 1 Sophomore from the 2020 team whose contribution consisted of one pinch hit at bat.

Let’s state this another way: A coach - with a winning record since taking over the program provided opportunities for players through COVID and took a Varsity Team with negligible Varsity experience to regionals - was FIRED because he “is not the guy that can take them to 5A.”

Now, to address our young men in the program. The coaching staff told you countless times this year “This is not OUR team, it’s YOUR team.” Let me say that again, YOU are this team. This year, you have shown tenacity, perseverance, a competitive spirit, and above all, that you are not just a group of baseball players, you are A TEAM. A team of amazing young men. You will move this program forward, you will write the next chapter as a 5A team, and you WILL continue to show up every day ready to battle. Got it? Good.