Coming off a 21-2 season and second straight Baltimore County championship this spring, Dulaney baseball coach Ryan Wolfsheimer said he was told by the school’s administration Friday that his contract would not be renewed for the upcoming school year.
Wolfsheimer, who had been with the program since 2009 and posted a 115-37 mark since becoming coach in 2012, will remain at the school as a physical education and weight training teacher.
“I asked [about the decision] and they didn’t really want to give me any concrete thing because I didn’t break any rules.”
Wolfsheimer said the administrators informed him of several isolated incidents. Among them were players leaving class to come to batting practice early before a playoff game; talk of the team playing in a fall league; and complaints the administration received regarding the team’s conduct during games.
Wolfsheimer said as soon as he learned about the players leaving class early that he sent them back. He also said fall league play consisted of some Dulaney players, but did not have coaches or uniforms representing the school. In response to the game conduct complaints, he said the team was enthusiastic and focusing on themselves and was not malicious toward opponents.
The coach has been encouraged by the support, with many of the players writing letters and sending emails to the school’s administration looking for an explanation. The petition has collected over 700 signatures since it was posted Saturday.
In the spring, Dulaney enjoyed a 19-game winning streak and reached No. 1 in The Baltimore Sun’s Top 15 poll, finishing the season at No. 3 after falling to Sherwood, 1-0, in eight innings in the Class 4A North region title game.
“It was out of the blue. We’re all disappointed and didn’t expect it at all,” rising senior Cole McGee said. “We don’t really know why he was asked to leave coaching and we just want to know that and then after try to get Wolf back.
“Besides baseball, he’s helped me mature more and just become a better person. I think without Wolf, I may not even be playing baseball anymore because he really helped me keep going. I know he’s helped others with problems in their life, too. So he’s more of a coach in life as much baseball, but he’s a really good baseball coach.”
An Essex native who has a bachelor’s degree in physical education from Towson University and a master’s degree in athletic coaching education from West Virginia, Wolfsheimer said he switched gears during his college years from pursuing a career in broadcasting to teaching and coaching. He said the outpouring of support he’s received in the past days has been greatly appreciated.
“It’s almost felt like my mission was accomplished the other day when I saw what people were writing and emailing me and texting me and calling me,” he said. “I understand they wanted to get rid of me, so they did and they have every right to — it’s their ball, their game. But I can tell you this, seeing what [all those in support] have done for me, it validates that I made the right decision a long time ago on the path I chose.”