March 29, 2011

Opening Day Eve - final preseason predictions

I made the first set of preseason predictions 2 months ago before spring training games started.  Since then there have been several injuries, player roles have been redefined and teams have finalized opening day rosters.   The season starts this weekend, so time for an updated set of projections, by division:

No major events in spring training, so I still expect the Red Sox to win.  Tampa and New York will fight for a wildcard spot.  Toronto and Baltimore, while both greatly improved, are still impaired by having to play more than 1/3 of their games against the above teams.
Twins are still the class of this division.  The Tigers and White Sox could contend but will be looking up most of the season, and KC and Cleveland will be out of the race by Victoria Day (or Memorial Day for those  readers South of the 49th).

March 25, 2011

Blue Jays Super Camp coming to Calgary!

The Toronto Blue Jays have announced they will conduct  Super Camps across seven cities this summer, and Calgary is included in the schedule.  This is part of their commitment to amateur baseball across Canada and is geared towards players aged 8 to 14.  Their Alberta stop will be on August 8th to 10th at Foothills Stadium and the Absolute Sports Academy, and will feature Mark Eichhorn, Rance Mulliniks and Duane Ward.  Full details and registration at the the Blue Jays website.

March 24, 2011

Team Alberta Canada Cup ID Camp

The 2011 Canada Cup Team Alberta ID Camp dates have been announced.  This is for 16 and 17 year old players (born in 1994/95) and those selected from the ID Camps will have the opportunity to compete as Team Alberta at the Canada Cup in Moncton, New Brunswick.

Below are the scheduled dates and locations:

April 17Medicine Hat11:00amAthletic ParkLovell McDonell
April 18Lethbridge5:30pmSpitz StadiumAaron Lavorato
May 6Calgary6:00pmOptimist ParkMiki Kawahara
May 9Calgary5:30pmInland ParkMatt McLane
May 10Okotoks5:30pmSeaman StadiumBrett Thomas
May 16Sherwood Park5:30pmSherwood Heights ParkCurtis Denney
May 17Red Deer5:30pmEdgar ParkTerry Letkeman
May 24Edmonton5:30pmCallingwood ParkDan Rude
May 31St. Albert5:30pmLegion Memorial ParkEd Ewasiuk
June 2Grande Prairie5:30pmEvergreen ParkMona Turner
June 6Ft. McMurray5:30pmRon Morgan ParkReggie Rivard
June 7Elk Point6:30pmBassett FieldLorn Berg

Registration form and more details available here

March 23, 2011

Strathmore to field Midget AAA team in NorWest league

Zane Anderson will be leading this team that has been a tournament only team in for the past two years.  The Strathmore Reds will play in the Baseball Alberta Performance category.

Full story

March 15, 2011

Edmonton to host 2012 World Cup of Women's Baseball

aThe Women's 2012 World Baseball Cup in Edmonton, originally announced over a year ago will go ahead as government funding has come through. Both the federal and provincial government are each chipping in $100,000, to go with the $160,000 already committed by the City of Edmonton.  8 countries will be participating in this event in August of 2012.   More information on the funding here.

Read here for the International Baseball Federation article

March 12, 2011

MLB Power Rankings - March edition

This is my last preseason power rankings.  I will update these near the beginning of each month throughout the season.  I will also update my preseason predictions before the season starts.

Numbers in brackets are movement from last month, and their high/low rank for the season.  Look at previous rankings(here for the initial January ones, and here for February) for explanations of how the team got to where they were - any explanation here just reflects recent changes.

#1 - Boston ( --, 1/1) They haven't done anything to drop from the top of the rankings.
#2 - Philadelphia (--, 2/2)  Some injuries may make them less formidable, but along with Boston they are still the only other team likely to win 95 games.
#3 - Minnesota (--, 3/5) Beating up on weak division opponents will help their win total.

March 11, 2011

Many Albertans projected to be among first Canadians drafted

The Canadian Baseball Network has an updated Canadian draft list.  12 young players from Alberta are on the list, including 5 of the first 17.
Those 5 are:
#8 - Ryan Thompson - a right handed pitcher from Fort McMurray, playing at Franklin Pierce University

#10 - Adam Paulencu - also a RHP, from Spruce Grove and playing at the Vancouver Island Baseball Institute

March 06, 2011

2 Albertans pitch in JNT finale

In the Junior National Team's last game in St. Petersburg, the bats were quiet as the Netherlands team shut them out 8-0.   Jake Hansen got into the game relieving the starter in the 2nd inning and getting out of a jam, and Logan Seifrit pitched 2 innings, striking out 4 batters.

Along with Hansen of Fort MacLeod and Seifrit from Spruce Grove, the JNT also featured the following Albertans:
Pitcher Ethan Elias (Entwistle)
Infielder Brendan Hendriks (Cochrane)
Catcher Jordan Procyshen (Calgary)
Outfielder Cory Scammell (Edmonton)
Coach Chris Reitsma (Calgary)
Coach Mike Johnson (Sherwood Park)

March 04, 2011

Junior National Team plays Blue Jays

The Canada Junior National Team had an opportunity to face MLB hopefuls in a Spring Training exhibition game against the Blue Jays.  Albertans Cory Scammell and Brendan Hendriks got into the game, Hendriks enjoying some success getting the first hit of the game.  The Juniors only managed 2 hits as they were shutout 9-0.

Former Red Sox Bruce Hurst at Vauxhall

Pitcher Bruce Hurst, will be at the Vauxhall Academy Awards Scholarship Fundraising Dinner on Saturday evening at the Vauxhall Community Hall.  Tickets are still available, and this is a great opportunity to listen to and meet a former Red Sox great.

More details and ticket info here.