Curve Balls, Heaters and Change ups

Tales from the Doug Out: July 11th, 2017

The Blue Jays… what can I say?!! They need to be a little more consistent to make the post season. Some days they look like they could be World Series Champions, and other days they look like a peewee team could beat them.
As for our minor ball, these guys will be playing in the big show in less than a month. The summer long pursuit for the provincial gold medal in minor baseball has entered its final month.  In the month of July, the provincial teams are seeded in the tier they are most likely to play in the provincial final at the end of the month. Unless, of course, they have a really terrific last two weekend series or a disastrous one, in which case the team could move up or down; but usually by now the games are very close.
The Lakeland Peewee Northstar’s are made up of peewee players from our Lakeland area, Bonnyville, Cold Lake , St Paul and four players from Elk Point. Including, “Mic Jager” Fontaine, Kobe “the Cobra” Warawa, Andon “Ace” Ballas and Jaden “Jet Stream” Van Maarion.
After playing in the month of May and getting re-tiered to the bottom half; they had a great month of June and  have been moved up into tier two. Which is very good and where many teams strive to be, playing in the top two tiers in the provincial final. When you finally make it to tier one, you have a chance to go to Westerns if you win the gold.
To become a better ball club you need to be challenged. Tier two is still challenging enough as the Northstars found out playing in Leduc this past weekend, winning one out of three. They played well and were absolutely not a push over.
The first game against Drayton Valley, the boys played one of the best games that they have all year. Back and forth with the score, with some great hitting and defense. Down two runs going into the seventh inning, they rallied to tie the game and sent it to extra innings, the Northstars losing by two runs in the end.
Their second game was against Camrose, a team they had defeated earlier in the season, but now Camrose has beefed up their line up with three AAA players that had been sent down to play AA. The Northstars losing this one by four runs.
Their final game against the host Leduc the boys were down early once again, but the bats starting pounding the ball in the 4th inning taking the lead coming up with a 17 to 10 win in the end. Tonight at Wilson Field the Northstars are playing an exhibition game against the Lloydminster AA team.
The Babe in Fort McMurray

Up in Fort Mac this past weekend, the Bonnyville Braves Midget AA provincial team, with three Elk Point players, won all three of their games. Affiliated player from the Bantam Sox, Coby “The Babe” Fairbairn getting the call from the farm team to play up this weekend batting as the designated hitter. He hit a few singles and a double off the wall. Relief pitcher Kaiden “K Rock” Evans Anderson was called in to close out an inning, pitching in a tight game with two outs, a runner on and the clean up batter at the plate; he forced him to ground out to end the inning. K Rock also hitting well this weekend with some singles and a big triple. Brayden “Magnet” Fairbairn is known for his speed and gets on base lots of times just by running it out . He also is famous for getting hit by pitches to get on base, just like a ” Magnet’ he takes one for the team as he did three times this past weekend.

Down in Red Deer, this past weekend, another one of our local Elk Point midget players Austin “Captain Obvious” Stafford pitched a 110 pitches, maximum allowed in midget baseball. When he left the game they were winning 8 to 4, the final score 10 to 8. Named the player of the game, he was credited with the win.  His team the Marwayne Huskies also won all three of their games.
And its not all about the boys you know. One of the best ball players around is a girl named “Taylor Made” Pankiw who played with our peewee and bantam boys, as well as, softball the last few years. This past weekend she helped the Vermilion Shadows midget fastball team win the provincial gold medal… way to go girl !!!
This coming weekend the bantam Sox will be hosting a provincial round robin playing on Saturday at noon against Barrhead, then Saturday night at 6:00 pm. Then taking on High Prairie and Sunday against Stettler at 4:00 pm. All the games will be on Wilson Field.
There’s also the slow pitch league finals going on all weekend, so come down to the ball park and get yourself a hot dog and enjoy some baseball.
And now for the K.A. Campbell quote of the week. “Scold him, find fault with him and he could not pitch at all. Praise him and he was unbeatable.” -Former Chicago manager Cap Anson on Hall of Fame pitcher ‘ Sensitive John’ Clarkson