On July 3, 2019, Baseball Ontario announced their Youth Team that will compete at the 2019 Baseball Canada Cup (17U Nationals) in Regina, Saskatchewan from August 7th to the 11th. Baseball Ontario Youth Team Field Manager David Quattrociocchi announced the team on his blog and on Twitter.
For those of you unfamiliar with recent developments in high school level baseball in Ontario, the word that best describes it until recently, in my opinion, is “fragmented”. Since approximately 2010, and even before, there has been a proliferation of “Elite” baseball organizations in Ontario and many of those were/are not associated with Baseball Ontario. Since Baseball Ontario is the governing body for the sport in the province and selects players for national championship teams from affiliated organizations, many of the top high school players in the province had been unavailable to the Baseball Ontario Youth Team for several years.
Not surprisingly given its population, Ontario has traditionally been a powerhouse in 17U National Baseball championship history. That said, at the 2013 Canada Games, when the fragmentation I mentioned above was really taking off, Ontario’s two-year streak of 17U Gold medals ended. The total 17U medal haul for Ontario from 2014 through 2017 was one Bronze in those 4 years. Baseball Ontario needed to do something to reverse this disturbing trend.
In late July of 2017, Baseball Ontario announced “a new policy for the recognition and inclusion of alternative programs in the Province of Ontario.” In November of 2017, Baseball Ontario and the CPBL, home to the powerhouse Ontario Blue Jays, Toronto Mets, Great Lake Canadians and others, announced that the CPBL member teams would be applying for Recognition under the new Recognition Policy. As a result of this change, last summer the 2018 Baseball Ontario Youth Team included 9 of 20 players from the CPBL. In that tournament Ontario got back to their winning ways, taking home 17U Gold for the first time since 2012.
For 2019, the Ontario Youth Team included “recognized” organizations again and 13 of 20 players on the team have been selected from the CPBL. The members of the 2019 Baseball Ontario Youth Team are listed below:
|First Name||Last Name||Team||League|
|Ben||Adams||Ottawa Nepean Canadians||PBLO|
|Carter||Krawchuk||Ontario Blue Jays||CPBL|
|Patrick||Mulligan||Ottawa Nepean Canadians||PBLO|
|Josh||Niles||Great Lake Canadians||CPBL|
|Kieran||Pook||Great Lake Canadians||CPBL|
|Ben||Roberts||Great Lake Canadians||CPBL|
|Calvin||Ziegler||Tri City Giants||CPBL|