For some time, Adam Balutis has been considered a Mr. Baseball of sorts in Arlington because of his variety of involvements in the sport. Now, add one more big duty to his Mr. Baseball list.
Balutis recently was named the new head varsity coach at Wakefield High School. He has been an assistant coach in different capacities the past 20 years at Arlington rival Washington-Liberty High School. He was the varsity assistant under current W-L head coach Kevin Healy.
Prior to that, he was the Generals’ junior varsity head coach for 11 seasons under then varsity head coach Doug Grove.
Healy said Balutis knows the game and is well prepared to be a high-school head coach.
Balutis also is the longtime and current president of Arlington Little League and has coached various youth teams over different age groups.
He graduated from what then was Washington-Lee High School in 2000, where he was a junior varsity and varsity player, and grew up playing in Arlington Little League.
“I am excited about the opportunity and I’m prepared to do this,” Balutis said about taking over and coaching the Warriors. “I have wanted to be a head high school coach forever.”
Balutis admits it will be a little strange coaching an Arlington rival of Washington-Liberty, especially when the Warriors play the Generals a couple of times each season, and being in the opposing dugout for those contests.
“I have to be honest: I’m sad to leave. I loved it at Washington-Liberty and the players and families there,” Balutis said.
The new coach already has met with the players and their parents at Wakefield and is set to begin offseason training. He knows many of the current Wakefield players because he previously coached them in Little League or on other youth teams, or coached against them on some level.
“We are ready to jump right into coaching and preparing the team,” Balutis said. “The players here already have a good sense of what works for them.”
Wakefield will return some key players from last spring’s team that finished 12-11 and nearly upset the state-champion Madison Warhawks in a 6D North Region tournament extra-inning game. Wakefield lost 7-6 in 10 innings, after leading a couple of times in that game.
Mason Bull, Beau Branch, Malachy Meryweather and Peter Boerstling are four key players expected to return for Wakefield for the 2024 season. Branch hit a two-run homer against Madison.
Balutis said the Warriors Liberty District schedule is set for the upcoming season, but a site for a spring-break tournament has not been decided.