COACHING STAFF - 

RALPH GRAJEDA

Varsity Head Coach

Coach Grajeda, begins his 4th year as the skipper of the Thunderbirds and 23rd year coaching baseball in California. Under Coach Grajeda , Yucaipa has continued the legacy left by Hall of Fame Coach, Jeff Stout. In Grajeda's first season, Yucaipa won a 2018 CIF-SS D2 Title and set the school's most wins mark for a single-season w/a 28-5 overall record. For the programs efforts, he was named "COACH OF THE YEAR" in 2018 by the San Bernardino County Sun, Inland Empire Baseball Coaches Association and by CIF-SS as the "D2 Coach of the Year". In 3 years under Coach Grajeda, Yucaipa is 60-16, w/2 Citrus Belt League Titles (2020 season cancelled due to COVID), ranked as high as #8 nationally, placed 3rd in the prestigious Boras Classic Tournament in 2019, led the 2019 CIF-SS D1 ranks in Hitting w/a  .347 BA (MaxPreps) and produced the 2018 CIF-SS D2 "PLAYER OF THE YEAR" in current BYU Cougar Tyson Heaton.

One of Coach Grajeda's goals is to help promote and place players on to colleges...currently the Yucaipa Baseball Program has seen 23 student-athletes move on to college baseball rosters; 16 of those players have been D1 commits. "I'm a firm believer in rewarding student-athletes that create a body of work on the field and in the classroom. We feel it's this program's main focus to 'develop character and instill a skillset that will translate at the four-year level and in life'. We want our players to become successful leaders, husbands, fathers and men."

Coach Grajeda lives in the City of Yucaipa and is a member of the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA), National High School Baseball Coaches Association (NHSBCA), California Baseball Coach Association (CBCA) and the Inland Empire Baseball Coaches Association (IECBA).

Varsity Pitching Coach

CHRIS WALTERS

Varsity Infield Coach

KENNARD KAPONO

Varsity Outfield Coach

KYLE KELLY

JV Head Coach

KEVIN HALAMICEK

Coach Halamicek joined the Thunderbirds coaching staff in the fall of 2017, and has served in many positions, including helping with pitchers, fielders, throwing countless hours of batting practice, coaching the fall West Coach Yankee teams, field maintenance and palm tree landscaping, to name a few. In the short time with Yucaipa, being part of the 2018 CIF championship team takes the cake!

 

  1. Coach Halamicek played high school baseball in Big Bear, California, where he was a member of the team’s one and only CIF Championship in 1993. 

  2.  He earned All State honors along with Division V CIF Player of the Year for the 1993 and 1994 baseball seasons. 

  3.  From high school he took an unconventional route as a baseball pitcher, first walking on to play at Iowa State University in the Fall of 1994, then moving back to California where he played at Victor Valley College in 1999 before receiving a scholarship and finishing out his college baseball career at Cal State Dominguez Hills until 2001.  

  4. While at Cal State Dominguez Hills, in February of 2000, he threw a complete game nine inning no-hitter against Cal Baptist University.  He received second team all-league and all-region honors, as well as a scholar athlete award. 

  5.  At the age of 24, In June of 2001, he was selected in the 36th round of the Major League Baseball draft by the Florida Marlins.  

  6. In a short stint in the minor leagues, he played for the Utica Blue Sox and the Kane County Cougars, where he was a member of the Midwest League Kane County Cougars Champion team of 2001.  During his short stint in the minor leagues, Coach Halamicek was fortunate enough to get to play alongside future hall of famer Miguel Cabrera and Dodger favorite Adrian Gonzalez.

 

  • Coach Halamicek lives in Yucaipa. He has been teaching special education for the past 17 years. 

  • He has been a special education teacher in the Yucaipa district since 2016 at Ridgeview Elementary. 

  • His wife, Julie, is also a special education teacher in the district at WildWood Elementary.  

  • They have three children, Ryan, Ava and Alexis.

 

Education:

B.A. CSUDH 2001

M.A.  Azusa Pacific University 2005

JV Assistant Coach

GEORGE STEVENS

JV Assistant Coach

Freshmen Head Coach

ALEX RODRIGUEZ

Freshman Pitching Coach

CODY WESTPHAL

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