SAN LUIS OBISPO — After three successful seasons with the San Luis Obispo Blues, manager Dan Marple has stepped down and the Blues have hired Clay Cederquist to take his position. Cederquist worked as an assistant for the Blues in 2016 and was promoted to interim head coach when the manager at the time, Jaime Clark, stepped down halfway through the season
The Blues, who are a collegiate summer team that plays in a wood-bat league at Sinshiemer Park in SLO, went 83-60 during their time under Marple and 50-48 in the California Collegiate League (CCL).
“It was time,” Marple said in an interview on Monday. “I was tired and the wife and I wanted to do more things and take more trips.”
When Marple originally took the job with the Blues he said he asked General Manager Adam Stowe for a three-year contract and the two instead decided upon a year-to-year deal which, in the end, lasted three years. Marple has been a big part of the baseball community in the North County over the years assistant coaching on some of Templeton’s championship teams with Tim Alvord and coached the start-up North County Indians, another collegiate wood-bat league where Marple went 88-25-2, and continued his legacy with the Blues bringing in high school players for the early part of their summer run each of the three years he was manager.
While the Blues might not have ever won the CCL because they play in the same league as 2018 National Champion Santa Barbara Forresters, their attendance did improve steadily over Marple’s tenure that was noticeable just from the naked eye. In 2017, his first season, the Blues averaged around 900 people per game in attendance with the only games surpassing the 1,000 patron threshold were the three firework games each year. This past summer the Blues averaged 1,000 per game.
Embracing the local community will be what makes up Marple’s legacy with the Blues who not only brought high school kids on to the team but also gave boosts to several Cal Poly and Cuesta players during his tenure. Two years ago the Blues featured Myles Emmerson behind the plate and Brooks Lee at shortstop both of which should be huge players for the Mustangs coming up. Following their seasons with the Blues, Emerson hit .322 for Poly up from .200 his previous year and Brooks Lee passed on being a high draft pick to join his father at Cal Poly and should be one of the premier middle infielders and switcher hitter in the division.
Even in retirement, Marple could not stop going on about the local guys at Cuesta this season or playing in the minors because even though he is technically retired from coaching baseball it is still his first love. When asked what is next for the skipper he simply smiled and said it was time to spend more time with his beautiful wife Susan who has stayed supportive through the everyday baseball grind.
Cederquist, the new manager, worked as an assistant for the Blues in 2016 and was promoted to interim head coach when the manager at the time, Jaime Clark, stepped down halfway through the season.