Valley Blue Sox name alum Hezekiah Randolph manager

  • The Valley Blue Sox will have a new manager for 2021. The team announced alum Hezekiah Randolph will take over this summer. FILE PHOTO

  • Hezekiah Randolph will take over as manager for the Valley Blue Sox this summer. COURTESY VALLEY BLUE SOX—

Staff Writer
Published: 2/12/2021 6:30:37 PM

A familiar face will helm the Valley Blue Sox dugout this summer.

The team announced Friday that alum Hezekiah Randolph will be the team’s new manager for the 2021 season. He previously played for the New England Collegiate Baseball League organization in 2016 and has been the team’s hitting coach since 2018.

“I think everyone’s goal is to one day fill the position of head coach, so I am first thrilled to take on this role. Secondly, to be the head coach for the Blue Sox, an organization that holds a special place in my heart,” Randolph said in a release. 

Randolph, 25, played collegiately at the University of New Orleans. He was a NECBL All-Star in 2016 and was named to the league’s second team.

“I’m a southern kid, and I started playing unorganized baseball when I was two years old with my parents,” Randolph said. “I was hitting balls across the room, and that's when my dad decided that baseball was something that he should start investing in for me.”

Randolph takes over for John Raiola, the team’s manager for the past six seasons. The Blue sox won NECBL championships in 2017 and 2018. Raiola, also Elms College’s head baseball coach, remains the team’s director of baseball operations.

“John has been an amazing mentor for me. I never really experienced a coach who put in the time to develop the person and not just the athlete,” Randolph said. “The mental part of it is always going to play a part in a player’s performance, and John definitely got me to understand that.” 

The NECBL canceled its 2020 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic and expects to release a 2021 schedule this month. The Blue Sox already have their roster in place. It includes Rhode Island senior Jonathan Morrison, a Hopkins Academy graduate.

“At the end of the day, developing players is what this is all about,” Randolph said.

Kyle Grabowski can be reached at kgrabowski@gazettenet.com. Follow him on Twtitter @kylegrbwsk.


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