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Joe Loftus joining the Minnesota Blizzard full time

05/13/2015, 3:30pm CDT
By Thomas Ann, Blizzard Staff

Loftus, a 2008 graduate of the Blizzard program, played at Vanderbilt and was drafted by Twins and Diamondbacks

Loftus, a 2008 Blizzard Alum, joining Blizzard staff

Joe Loftus, a 2008 Blizzard alumni, is joining the Minnesota Blizzard baseball program.

Loftus, who went to Holy Angels High School, surpassed Joe Mauer's home run record (14) when he finished his high school career with 27 home runs, an all-time Minnesota record.  After being drafted in 28th round by the Minnesota Twins, Loftus opted to attend Vanderbilt where he helped the Commodores to a World Series appearance in 2011 before being drafted again in the 46th round by the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Loftus played for the Blizzard starting in 2003, the Blizzard's first year, through 2008 and played with some of the Blizzard's top prep stars including Miami Marlin's LHP Brad Hand (Chaska), Houston Astros OF Justin Gominsky (Mahtomedi) and Minnesota Twin's Madison Boer (Eden Prairie).  The Blizzard's Top Hitter Award is named for Joe - "Joe Loftus" Top Hitter Award.

Adam Barta, Blizzard's owner, said that having Loftus back gives the younger players a chance to look up to  someone who played for the Blizzard, played in college and played pro baseball.

"Having Lofty back brings everything full circle," Barta said.  "He's been a part of the Blizzard since it started.  He knows our vision and values and how we do things.  He played at a high level in high school, played at the best Division I in the country and played pro ball.  He has a lot to offer."

Loftus said the history, competitiveness and values of the program are just a few reasons he came back.

"The family culture is what brought me back to the Blizzard," Loftus said.  "The Blizzard program is where I made life long friends, built lasting relationships and competed at the highest level. It is like a second home to me so I don't think I'm coming back to the Blizzard because I never left.  I am very grateful I have the opportunity to work with Adam again and coach some great players. #BlueLove!"

On instructing players at the Academy ...

My goal as an instructor is to help my players get into a position to be successful mechanically, mentally and physically.  I have noticed a trend that many of my players learn much faster seeing their mechanics visually so I use a lot of video so they can see the adjustments they need to make to be successful.

On coaching a Blizzard team this year ...

I want these boys to feel like the Blizzard Academy is a second home to them like it was for me. The Blizzard program produces some of the best baseball players around but this program is much more than just baseball. Once you wear a Blizzard jersey you are a part of a family.

What he is looking forward to most coaching with the Blizzard ...

I am looking forward to the van rides with the players. I remember sitting in the back seat making memories with my teammates and coaches. The only difference now is that I will be driving the van now. My favorite moment is when John Anderson hit a curb and popped our vans tire. We had to get out and walk a mile to play our next game. 

Loftus graduated from Vanderbilt University with a Business degree and will put both his smarts and baseball skills to work at the Academy.  His role will include coaching a Blizzard Elite team, giving individual instruction, help manage ScoutStop events and working at offsite locations.

"Joe is an incredibly bright and very forward thinking," Barta said.  "He is going to make us better in every aspect of what we do starting with instruction and coaching.  But what is really exciting is that he is very motivated to help grow the brand and continuing to attract the best players in the state of Minnesota."

And Loftus is excited about coaching and instructing again, too.

"I am looking forward to helping players become successful in all aspects of their lives," Loftus said.  "I will teach them to take pride in everything that they do.  I want to instill a mindset of winning in the classroom and on the field and they will learn to not take any shortcuts and to do things the right way.  I want to prepare these boys to be ready for college and professional life."

Barta also explained that having Blizzard alumni come back always makes things more seamless and the transition into 'work' much easier.

"Loftus is a phenomenal instructor and leader," Barta said.  "He's a great communicator who is able to work with a baseball beginner and the advanced senior in high school."

Kids will be able to get to know Joe immediately at our Summer Training at Century College, our ScoutStop Midwest Showcase and Blizzard tryouts starting June 22nd.  Joe will also be giving lessons at the Blizzard Academy in Vadnais Heights starting immediately.

Welcome back, Joe !

 


About the Blizzard / Tryouts

About the Blizzard
 
The Minnesota Blizzard is the most successful traveling and club baseball program in Minnesota and among the top select teams in the Midwest winning 49 national tournaments and placing in the top four 122 times since 2003. 
 
The Blizzard draws players ages 10u-18u from all around Minnesota including Albert Lea to Duluth and also has had several players from the Dakotas, Iowa, Wisconsin and even Canada. 

Our coaches, led by owner, Adam Barta, features former 87/91 World Series winner, Al Newman, Mike Loberg (SF Giants), Lonnie Robinson (SP Saints), Jesse Tollefson (Assoc. Scout, Blue Jays), Derrick Peoples (LA Dodgers) and many other top-tier instructors and coaches.
 
Over 200 players have committed to play college baseball and another 30 have been drafted in the last ten years.  It is one of the most well-respected programs in the Midwest and has garnered attention from Kare 11, Fox9, Channel 6, the Star Tribune and the Upper Deck Report among others.

Our vision and values of the Blizzard Big Ten drive our core values, guide players through their youth years, into high school and onto both college and professional baseball.
 
Play with the best in the state against the best in the country.  Blizzard Baseball.

Holy Angels HS


Vanderbilt University


Arizona Diamondbacks

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