In a league where high turnover rates are typical among coaching staffs, Kenosha has kept three coaches in the fold for at least five seasons. Many Kingfish fans know manager Duffy Dyer and hitting coach Brian Dyer, but not as many know Jeremy Jakubowski, who is in the midst of his fifth summer with the Kenosha Kingfish as a volunteer assistant coach.
After playing his college baseball at University of Findlay and Shawnee State University, Jakubowski earned his masters degree in business leadership while serving as a graduate assistant at William Penn University in 2014 and 2015. Still, he was looking to accrue more coaching experience heading into the summer of 2015, which was when he reached out to Duffy Dyer.
“I was just looking for somewhere to help out and just came across Kenosha. I actually emailed all of the teams in the Northwoods League and heard back from Duffy, and things kind of snowballed from there,” Jakubowski said.
Four years later, Jakubowski still spends his summers in the first base coach’s box at Simmons Field.
The experience Jakubowski has gained in Kenosha has been valuable to him, as it helped him land an assistant coaching position with Kent State, an NCAA Division I program in Ohio, where he currently works. He also offers assistance to a number of local high schools coaches near Toledo, where he lives.
The position has benefitted him in more aspects of life than baseball, though.
“As a person, I’m able to get to know other people outside of Ohio; I’m able to branch out and make some more connections,” Jakubowski said. “I am able to get to know guys, not only during the season, but during the offseason as well. I have relationships with guys that have been on the Kingfish dating back four years ago. It’s not just a summer relationship; it’s a lifelong lasting relationship.”
Jakubowski is an unpaid volunteer assistant in Kenosha, so he works as a cashier at Meijer when he is not with the team to support himself during the summers.
“I’m thankful for the opportunity. Their store manager, Mike Everett, has adopted his schedule around mine, so I’m able to go work there when we’re home,” Jakubowski said.
Jakubowski has a passion for baseball, but his favorite part about his time in Kenosha has been interacting with the people in and around the program.
“I wouldn’t want to work for anyone besides (Duffy and Brian Dyer),” Jakubowski said. “I enjoy interacting with the fans on a daily basis. The people in Kenosha are very, very good people.”
When he is not coaching at Kent State or in Kenosha, the he enjoys spending time with his five siblings and his nieces and nephews.