As spring turns to summer, the Hazen Bison become the Hazen Astros, and Nate Leintz transitions from assistant coach to head coach.
“It’s nice to have that relationship where we’re more like co-coaches rather than head and assistant, where we can bounce ideas off each other,” Astros head coach Nate Leintz said.
The man that he switches places with is his father, Scott Leintz. The head coach for the Hazen high school team.
“It’s been really fun,” Astros assistant coach Scott said. “Not too many guys get that opportunity to coach a sport with someone you love, and the game you love.”
Scott has been the head coach of Hazen’s high school team for 15 years. Including the four years that Nate played for the Bison.
“He’s been around my whole life, and he’s been teaching me the game of baseball since I’ve been two years old getting me hitting off a tee and stuff,” Nate said.
Nate then left to play college baseball, where his dad says he developed a better knowledge for the game. Now in their sixth year together in the dugout, they’ve become more like co-coaches, with the younger of the two often taking the reins.
“I fully accept the role in the summertime as he’s the man, and his decision is final,” Scott said. “And basically in the spring season too, I kind of go with what his thinking is because he’s a heck of a lot younger than me and has a little more concept of what’s going on out there.”
Scott knows that one day he will fully pass the baton for more than just the summer, and when that day comes he knows Nate will be ready.
“I think it’s going to be a great transition because he loves the game,” Scott said. “He would never let this program dwindle in this community because of the love of the game, and the time we’ve put into it to this point.”