Eastern Ontario Fastball Blog

A blog dedicated to news about the Greater Ottawa Fastball League and other happenings in the world of fastball / fastpitch softball in eastern Ontario and western Quebec, with occasional stories featuring Mrs Fitzroy Fastball, Fitzroy Fastball Junior and the Caveman. If you have info to send on, send me an email at fastball[at]fitzroyharbour.com. Follow @fitzroyfastball on Twitter.

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Thursday, November 29, 2007

Masters B new for 2008

from Dave Birnie

The OASA announced at their AGM the addition of a brand new Masters "B" Division for 2008. The OASA will be working on eligibility rules for the Masters "A" Division as well as this new Masters "B" division in the coming months, further details will be posted on the Ontario Masters Fastball web http://eteamz.active.com/omf/

Sunday, November 18, 2007

New GOFL Team for 2008?

TC has some buzz that another team might be interested in joining the Greater Ottawa Fastball League for 2008.

We'll keep you posted.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

ISC Announces Qualifiers

The ISC has announced their various qualifiers for 2008. Here are the two local qualifiers for Eastern Ontario / West Quebec:

Date: June 20-22
Eastern Ontario ISC II Qualifier
Location: McNab/Braeside, Ontario
Format: Double knockout
Local Contacts: Harold MacMillan, jh.mac@gozoom.ca
ISC Contact: Blair Setford, ISC Canada East VP, blairjs@rogers.com
Berth Available: 1 for 2008 ISC II ToC to winner, regardless of region
Entry Fee: $350 Cdn, payable to ISC Canada East
Entry Deadline: May 15, 2008

Date: September 19-21
Eastern Ontario Challenge Cup ISC II Qualifier
Location: Fitzroy Harbour, Ontario
Format: Double knockout
Local Contact: Adam Brown, fastball@fitzroyharbour.com
ISC Contact: Blair Setford, ISC Canada East VP, blairjs@rogers.com
UIC: Sal Gara, sal.gara@sympatico.ca
Berth Available: 1 berth to 2009 ISC II ToC to winner, Canada East teams only
Entry Fee: $225 Cdn, payable to ISC Canada East
Entry Deadline: August 15, 2008

Note: the 2008 ToC will be played in Appleton, Wisconsin and the 2009 ToC will be played in Quad City, Iowa.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Art Cameron turns 60

This story is about an Arnprior-area fastball legend, Art Cameron. Note that Hanna Electric is now West Carleton Electric and continues to sponsor fastball to this day!

Bringing the ball park to the birthday party
by Terry Boland, West Carleton Review

On Saturday night Art Cameron from Braeside-McNab celebrated his 60th birthday. What he didn’t know was his over 40 years of softball would be celebrating with him.

For months Viola Cameron had been planning to invite all of her husband’s past and present softball teammates to the party and keeping it all a secret was almost tougher than tracking down the dozens and dozens of players to issue the invitations.

The event attracted over 200 member of Cameron’s softball family to St. John’s Chrysostom Parish Hall.

“For years Art played ball and we just decided, my family and myself, to throw a reunion,” said Viola Cameron, Art’s wife. “It has never been done and he played on 18 teams, most of them the same guys, so we thought - what’s better than a good memory?

“I had a few phone calls where I had to say, don’t call Art, don’t tell him. We had a lot of help and everybody was very good at not calling the house, they called our daughter, and we even had our kids lying.” Viola Cameron said his life has been softball for their 40 years of marriage - seven days a week for the last 10 years at a ball diamond. Cameron played for 18 different teams over his 40-year career, starting with Clay Valley when he was just 18 years old.

Talking about Clay Valley, Cameron said the team started off playing in a cow pasture, “We practiced for almost a year before we even got into a league and only played one game against Glasgow Station.

“The next year we got into a league, the McNab League, with only four teams. The first year we just practiced in the cow pasture three times a week.”

Former right fielder Blake Smith said all the little communities had their ball team. Art was Clay Valley’s first ace pitcher.

Smith said Cameron was quickly identified as a superior ball player and he started to play with lots and lots of ball teams, before long he was playing all over the province.

He pointed to the bottom line on the night, one man, Ritchie Pilgrim, who had played for the team came to the reunion after being away for 40 years.

Former teammate Dwight Mick said, “We would hay all day and then go out and practice. Only two guys had their license and they would go around and pick everybody up.”

Cameron would’t pick out a single occasion which stood out during his career, “I enjoyed the whole thing, right from the get-go, I tell ya.”

He did recall the fun he had during the Eastern Ontario playdowns but, he noted, “We didn’t get too far because they would put us up against teams from much higher divisions.”

For Mick the highlight of his career was being part of the softball community, “It’s difficult for people to understand. When we were growing up we enjoyed going to the ball park and playing, with and against friends, and enjoyed the eighth inning too. I can remember Hanna Electric beating South March in a championship game and they invited the South March team down to the cottage.

Still, said Mick, no matter how late the ball tournament went he would still have to get up in the morning to milk the cows.

Another pitcher, who worked with Cameron over the years, is Larry Lavalee and he had high praise for the ace on the mound. “He is an excellent pitcher, team leader, and sportsmanship was above all,” said Lavalee as he talked about the era. “We had a lot of fun, not selfish at all, when one of us was in trouble we knew it, so we pulled ourselves.”

Some of the teams Cameron played on were Clay Valley, Madawaska Chiefs, Pitts, Braeside Buchaneers and Hanna Electric, not including the old-timer teams.

Cameron said there was a lot of good sportsmanship and the competition was very intense but, as he looked as his former opponent Dwight Mick, after the game you would have a beer and move on. He feels luck and happy with his baseball activities and found the support at home with his wife Viola, “my wife came to almost every game I played, she very seldom missed a game.”

Cameron’s sister Linda addressed the crowd reading from letters received from those that couldn’t attend the event, many admiring the pitchers skills, suggesting he may be one of the best pitches to come out of the area.

For Cameron it was all about ball but throughout his career he played many of the 1,500 games to help out charities - the community helping the community.

Cameron still heads to the ball park to play ball with his friends and while the speed of the pitches have slowed his enthusiasm for the game and the baseball community he loves has never wavered.