Patrick Weir will be King Philip’s new baseball coach in the spring, succeeding Gary Lombard and Ed Moran who guided the Warriors’ nine for a 42-year period.
“I played for coach Moran as a freshman and for coach Lombard during my three years on the varsity,’’ said the 37-year-old Weir, who last year coached the North Attleboro jayvees to a 13-7 record. “Ed Moran prepared me to play at a higher level and Gary Lombard was a motivator who developed my passion for baseball. Gary coached at KP for 26 years and Ed took over for the next 16.’’
Now it’s Weir’s turn.
And, the Plainville native is intent on maintaining the program’s solid tradition in spite of last year’s 1-19 season.
“Three years ago, coach Moran guided KP to a Hockomock League title,’’ Weir noted. “Last year was one of those seasons when injuries take a toll and things don’t work out. I’ll stress to our players that we’re going to scratch and claw our way to as many victories as possible.’’
Weir was a centerfielder at KP in the early 1990s but was moved to second base to fill a vacancy his last two seasons. He hit close to .300 and was fortunate to play in the tourney twice.
“I was what you’d call a dirt dog,’’ Weir said. “I was a fiery competitor. I tell people I played with fire. And, the letters that spell fire stand for fierce, intense, relentless and energetic. When I meet with the team next March, I’ll let them know every Hockomock League team is in first place. Then, I’ll talk about a delicate balance. That includes being on time, following the rules, learning the skills and striving for perfection. Perfection isn’t attainable but if you seek it, you get excellence along the way.’’
When Weir, who works as a corrections officer at the Norfolk County Sheriff’s Office in Dedham, applied to succeed Moran, he was in a mix with 15 candidates. He was called back for a second interview with KP’s principal (Dr. Lisa Oliveira) and notified he was the top choice. The first interview was with Steve Schairer, the KP athletic director, two vice principals, two coaches and one student.
“When I got the job, I walked onto the field where I played, looked up to the sky and said to my late father that I’m coming home,’’ Weir said. “I’m back with baseball and I’m back with KP.’’
Weir met his two captains early — centerfielder Michael Murray and Eric Cote, who plays first base and the outfield and also pitches. Weir was immediately impressed.
“Michael and Eric are two fine young men who’ll be great leaders,’’ Weir emphasized. “I liked their composure and their passion for baseball. During the summer, I got to see most of the boys who’ll be returning in their summer league games. I liked what I saw.’’
Weir, who majored in criminal justice at Massasoit Community College where he earned an associate’s degree, has every intention to bounce back from last year’s down season. He believes he’s got the right formula.
“We’ll blend out team into one competitive unit and we’ll make sure we’re all enjoying the game and having fun,’’ he said. “If we’re having fun, then the kids will want to win. We’ll do the little things right and the bigger things will fall into place. Teams that make the least mistakes are the ones that succeed. If it takes, bunting, stealing and small ball to win, we’ll do it. If it takes power, we’ll work in that direction. I’m a big believer in pitching and defense. Running the baselines properly also is important.’’
Weir and his wife Lisa have three children and have lived in North Attleboro for the last 10 years. A youth baseball coach for eight years, Weir no doubt will face many of the players he coached against at the jayvee level last year in North Attleboro.
“The varsity coach at North is Paul Tobin and he was so supportive of me when I was applying for the KP job,’’ Weir said. “Now, I’ll be coaching against some of the kids I had on the jayvees.’’
Weir labels the Hockomock League as “the best conference in the state.’’
“All the competition is top quality and you face the iron just about every day,’’ Weir said. “But, I’ll be working relentlessly to get ready.’’
Patrick Weir has the right mindset to be a rousing success at KP