Keith Bilodeau is in his first season as an assistant coach for the Bourne Braves, but he’s not new to the Cape Cod Baseball League. He grew up in Bourne, attended Bourne High School and pitched three seasons in the Cape League. The Maine Black Bear spent summers in 2009 and 2010 with the Wareham Gatemen and played for the Chatham Anglers in 2011.

Bilodeau spent two seasons in the San Francisco Giants organization, then played three years in independent leagues and now coaches for Bourne and owns his business, “Pitch Like a Pro.”

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Did you host players prior to playing and coaching in the Cape League?

We hosted players back in the 90s and we did that for quite a few years. Hosted some big-league players, Bobby Higginson being one of them. That's how it all started. I fell in love with the game just being involved with the Cape at a young age being one of those young host brothers to a player for the summer. It was awesome for me to be able to learn from the guys and just fall in love with the game at a young age.

Did you ever anticipate you'd play in the Cape League?

I always knew that I had a pretty decent arm. The Cape League players always told me at a young age if I were to complain about how hard they would throw that they wouldn't let me play with them. Sticking with it and falling in love with it just through hanging out with them every day. I've always had good mentors in the game that have kind of helped me along the way. This league definitely had a big part of my success and baseball, there's no doubt about it. The opportunity that this league can give players is incredible and my job here this summer is to try to help these kids out with mentoring them and what they've got coming their way between the draft and just being able to go out there and continue to have fun even though they're in the spotlight.

As a Bourne native, how did you end up playing for Chatham and Wareham instead of Bourne?

Sometimes coaches are really tight with certain schools and I know that Maine, at the time, had a contact which we worked with Wareham. Also, we sent guys down to Chatham every summer. So I happened to earn that spot as a freshman. It was definitely a great opportunity for me to be able to come in as somebody who was from a smaller Division I school.

Were your parents rooting for Bourne, or for Chatham and Wareham?

My parents have been huge in my success in baseball. There's no doubt they were rooting for me. It's funny because Bourne manager Harvey Shapiro actually coached my mom back in the day in women's basketball and he actually coached my uncle in college. So, we actually have past history with Harvey. It was also a good sense of feeling being able to step on the mound going against your hometown team. I'm not going to lie, it was a great feeling being able to get up on the mound and see familiar faces all in the stands. And it was pretty cool because they were all cheering for me and it was just a great feeling every time I pitched in Bourne, for sure.

How was your experience with the San Francisco Giants?

There's no doubt it was a great experience being able to learn from a professional, top-notch organization. The scout that drafted me, Glenn Tufts, has been a great baseball mentor for me. My time with the Giants was great. Just being able to play with some great, top-notch players in a professional organization, learning the ropes from all different coaches and just kind of using that now, being able to give back to these kids and just kind of help them on what they've got coming their way.

How did you end up on the Bourne Braves coaching staff?

I own my business out of here. It's called "Pitch Like a Pro." I work with a lot of Division I, II, II prospects in college all the way through high school and the youth levels. I work through Boston, the South Shore, Rhode Island. Harvey knew that I was a pitching coach and that I've had guys that have had good success going on to college and some even having the opportunities to play in the pros. I’m very fortunate that Harvey called me and gave me an opportunity to work with these guys.