Les Diamants de Québec is now managed by Raphaël Prémont, whom fans know well.
• Also read: Course with the San Diego Padres: the beautiful Christmas present from Miguel Cienfuegos
The 26-year-old played as a receiver for the Quebec Junior Elite Baseball League (LBJEQ) for just over two seasons, including winning the 2019 playoff championship. Last year he was also one of the assistants of head coach Karl Gélinas.
When he decided to leave his duties with the Diamonds to join the Baseball Academy of Canada full-time, General Manager Dominik Walsh knew who he wanted to replace.
“It was the logical continuation of things,” said the DG in a telephone interview on Wednesday.
“We knew Karl would eventually leave. We have been preparing for the successor for around a year. We knew Raph was the candidate, although we didn’t know when the move would take place.”
“Raph meets all our criteria!”
For several years, Prémont has worked full-time in baseball. Until recently, he worked as the head coach of the D2 formation of the Canonniers de Québec in the U17 AAA. He also has a bachelor’s degree in sports intervention.
“He’s still a bit young and will need some experience, but I’m sure he’ll do a wonderful job,” Walsh said.
How does the newcomer see the challenge of having to lead athletes who are only a few years younger?
“It doesn’t stress me at all,” said Prémont. One of the challenges of a coach is to navigate well and be close to his players while still practicing discipline.
“I believe that my age and the experience I have gained will allow me to recognize the moments when I can be happier with my players and the moments when I need to tighten the screw. It’s a matter of balance and a challenge that excites me.
Prémont is aware of the way the Diamonds operate and wants the young people he will have under his supervision to have the same experience he had when he was in their shoes.
“I’ve enjoyed my time as a player with the Diamonds so much. There was a winning culture and everyone helped each other to go in the same direction. As a coach, I want to continue that.
Prémont wants to focus on the human aspect.
“The main goal of a coach is to enable each individual to become a better baseball player, but it’s very important not to forget the human side,” he said. I also want to shape the people of tomorrow and get the best out of them.”