With the baseball season coming to an end here in Alberta, we thought we’d switch things up on this episode to bring on someone we’ve wanted to chat with for a while. Willie Steele is the author of “Going the Distance: The Life and Works of W.P. Kinsella". Released in 2019, it’s the biography of the Alberta-born scribe most famous for the novel “Shoeless Joe.” Kinsella was born and raised in the Edmonton area and also spent time at the University of Calgary among his many travels. Steele has been a big supporter of us, sharing our stories and even writing one of his own for us on his experience at the Field of Dreams game this season.
Much like our last few podcast guests, Carson Hindmarsh has had himself a busy summer. Aside from starring with the Okotoks Dawgs Black during the WCBL season, the 17-year-old Saskatoon native found himself playing with Baseball Canada's Junior National Team at the 18U Friendship Series in Florida. His season isn't over either as he's planning on another trip with the national team soon, and big things are on the horizon for the 6'3", 180-pound southpaw as he's committed to the University of Tennessee. We talked about all of that and so much more earlier this week.
Matt Grabmann has become a world traveler in his short baseball career. Just this summer, he went from Dawgs Black in the Western Canadian Baseball League to Baseball Canada's Junior National Team to the Baseball Factory All-America Game, where he drew plenty of praise and was touching 95 miles per hour on the radar gun. The right-hander from Nova Scotia is a Dawgs Academy product who has also committed to joining the NCAA Division I University of Oregon to continue his baseball journey. We caught up with him earlier this week to talk about all of his travels and his future plans.
Boston Warkentin was among a handful of Okotoks Dawgs players recently named to Baseball Canada's Junior National Team which took on the US in a best-of-seven Friendship Series. He pitched in ten games for Dawgs Black this summer before being summoned to the national team, where he impressed every time he stepped on the bump. Originally from Delta, BC, the 18-year-old righthander came through Dawgs Academy, where he’s elevated his game to being listed by the Canadian Baseball Network as the 11th best Canadian prospect for the 2022 MLB Draft. He’s also committed to the University of Washington, another Division 1 powerhouse. We talked about it all with Boston in a phone chat last week.
Many athletes dream of the day they are able to represent their country on the world stage. St. Albert's Max Hartman was able to do that recently when he was named to Baseball Canada's Junior National Team that was heading to Florida for the 18U Friendship Series against the United States. The Washington State University commit joins us this week to talk about his baseball journey, which includes Dawgs Academy, Tournament-12 in Toronto and this past summer with Okotoks Dawgs Black.
Cody Hendriks has certainly seen his share of baseball stadiums, airports, and quarantines over the past year. But traveling is nothing new for the 17-year-old, who is originally from the Netherlands. His family moved to Coquitlam, BC when he was 10, then a few years later, he came west to Dawgs Academy in Okotoks. Being from Netherlands meant he was eligible for their U18 team at the European Championship in early-July, where he helped his country take home the gold medal. He then came back to his home away from home to play with Okotoks Dawgs Black, and is now at school with the NCAA Division I California State University-Bakersfield.
Fresh off their trip to Quebec for the Baseball Canada Women's National Team showcase, Helaina Appleyard and Hayley Lalor join us on this week's episode of the podcast. They were among four Albertans named to the roster (Madison Willan and Ellie Jespersen were the others), taking part in everything from fitness and baseball drills to practices and intrasquad games. Appleyard has been on Baseball Canada's roster for a while, turning many heads during the 2019 national tournament in Okotoks, while Lalor was also a key piece to Alberta's success in that event. And as we hear in this episode, both have strong family ties to the game.
For the first time since 2015, the Lethbridge Bulls have captured the Western Canadian Baseball League title. It was quite the ride for the Bulls, who finished the regular season on a six-game losing streak, including the final four to the Sylvan Lake Gulls, who they met in the semi-finals. They would go on to sweep the Gulls and the Edmonton Prospects. We recap the run and are joined by WCBL Playoff MVP Bryce Oriold-Fraser and catcher Noah Or in our latest episode of the podcast. Big thanks to @YQLSports for the team photo we're using as our cover art for this episode.
You couldn’t have asked for a better day of baseball on Saturday in Okotoks, as the Western Canadian Baseball League held “Baseball Day in Canada.” Not only did it feature two games between the Dawgs Black and the Edmonton Prospects, but also a full-day broadcast with interviews and panel discussions. Ian Wilson, who co-hosted the event along with Joe, stops by to talk about the event. We also listen into our conversation with Baseball Canada CEO Jason Dickson, who gave us a state of the game and talked about where we'll go from here, as part of the broadcast of "Baseball Day in Canada."
Kyle Froehlich has been as consistent as they come for the Sylvan Lake Gulls this summer, and he’s doing it as a two-way threat. At the plate, the Nipawin, Saskatchewan native is hitting .330 with six home runs and 29 RBIs in 29 games. On the mound, he’s made 11 appearances, mostly in relief, sporting a 1-3 record with five saves and a 2.40 ERA. He put up similar numbers this past spring with Colby Community College, drawing interest from the WCBL’s Moose Jaw Miller Express. When they weren’t able to take part this season, Froehlich looked elsewhere and found a home in Sylvan Lake with a few of his Trojan teammates. Last week, we caught up to talk about his experience, his baseball journey and much more.