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, February 28, 2008

GOFL 2008 draft schedule now available

The first cut at the 2008 GOFL schedule is now available. It's subject to change and a few updates, but this is a pretty good idea of the 90 game league schedule this season.

The umpires' association asked for as many double headers as possible - of the 81 regular games, 24 are played in double headers. Nine of the games will be played at the league Showcase, scheduled for Saturday May 31 in Metcalfe.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Fitzroy Harbour Men's League seeks players

The Fitzroy Harbour Men's Fastball League seeks new players for the 2008 season. This four team fastball league is for ages 16+ and is a recreational league with all games at the Fitzroy Harbour Community Centre once a week from May to September.

For more information or to sign up, contact Geoff MacGowan at 613-623-9310.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Minor Softball Program in the Pontiac

Message from Stewart Adam, Pontiac in Motion

Let me introduce myself, my name is Stewart Adam and I am the Sports and Leisure Coordinator for the Pontiac. I am an employee of the CLD (located in Campbell’s Bay, Quebec), which supports the non-profit organization *Pontiac à Loisir*(Pontiac in Motion).

The Pontiac in Motion committee has a mandate to initiate various activities with our partners towards the need to increase physical participation among youth and adults, as well as create affordable activities for underprivileged families.

With this program, all citizens in the Pontiac are in control of their own activities. We improve the organization and services offered while maintaining quality, diversity, availability and distribution within the territory. We also set up means that will favour healthy living habits and have physical sports in/outdoor activities available to individuals and families of all walks of life. Another requirement of Pontiac in Motion includes utilizing all existing infrastructures in the Pontiac (arena’s, ball diamonds, bowling alley).

This past December it was decided that Pontiac in Motion would create a recreational softball program for youth across the Pontiac ages ranging from 6-17 years.

Currently, we are searching for key members in their community who wish to participate in the creation of this committee to ensure this activity becomes a reality this spring. We are also interested in meeting with possible coaches and volunteers who would be able to donate a few hours of their time throughout the spring and summer months to ensure a safe and successful program. If you are interested, or you know someone who could be an asset to this venture, please do not hesitate to contact me.

If you have any questions please call,

Thank you for taking the time to read this message!

91 Suds Lane, Chichester Que.
J0X 1M0
Tél: Home:819-689-5078
Office:819-648-5689 ext. 132

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

2008 Trend Arlington Men’s Fastball League

from Wynn Fenwick

Welcome to the kick off for 2008 Trend Arlington Men’s Fastball season. We plan to start the season the week of 12 May 2008 for another year.

The league website is at http://tafastball.ca. We also are on Facebook .

Registration information is available online .

League Executive Fans Out

Some changes to our league executive have occurred for 2008. A committee to distribute the volunteer workload and ensure continuity for the league has been established, with the following members stepping forward to contribute:

Darren Brown, Webmaster; Rick Casey, Equipment Manager; Wynn Fenwick, Convenor Committee Chair; Kathleen Levac, Registrar; Jerry Stephen & Andy McAfee, Umpires-in-Chief; Rick Stewart, Contracts Manager & Past Convenor; Ron Wheatley, Treasurer.

We are looking for pitchers, umpires, team representatives, and a replacement as Committee Chair for 2008. Special thanks to Ron Wheatley and Rick Stewart for returning for another year of helping out. It means a lot!

Membership Status

Please e-mail me wfenwick[at]FHLSim.com (or alternately, call me 613-829-1516) to confirm if you are interested to play this year ASAP, and mail in your completed registration ASAP. Please feel free to circulate the registration form to your friends.On behalf of the TAMFL Convenor’s Committee, we welcome new members. If you're not sure if the league is right for you, check us out Monday 12 May and Wednesday 14 May and see what we're all about: Recreation & Fellowship Through Friendly Competition on the Diamond.

Ottawa Blitz Strengthen Roster

from Derick Bulley

The Ottawa Blitz are pleased to announce the addition of three players for the 2008 season. Joining the Blitz for league and tournament play are catcher Anthony Searle, formerly of the RA’s Team 6, and infielder Russ Mitchell, formerly of Carp I4C Victory. Tony and Russ will help fill the void left by the departure of Tyler Cox. Their solid fielding, contact hitting, and excellent speed will be great additions to the young Blitz club. Matt Bowman will also be joining the Blitz for tournament play. His catching skills and big bat will definitely make the Blitz a more competitive weekend team.

Discussions with a few other players are ongoing and the team hopes to add one or two more players and announce the final roster in the near future.

Fastball article on the UOVMFL - Now with story

Wilbur McLean, the Pontiac Equity's ace sports reporter, has a story on the revival ("90% revived") of the UOVMFL.

Quotes included from Big Joe McLeary, Ronnie Laronde and a toe-tappin' lefty from Chapeau.

Text provided courtesy of Wilbur McLean:

Wilbur McLean
Equity Editor
After a one-year hiatus it appears competitive fastpitch will return to the Ottawa Valley this year.

Discussions for the revitalization of the Upper Ottawa Valley Men’s Fastball league are in the advanced stages and a team from Shawville will definitely be included and one representing Fort Coulonge is likely.

“Hopefully we can get it off the ground with just a small schedule,” said Ron Laronde, a catalyst in the league’s revival. Laronde said the league is “90 per cent a go” and other teams will likely include Micksburg men, Micksburg juniors, McNab/Braeside and Fitzroy Harbour.

The league’s framework was discussed at a meeting early last week in Cobden. Shawville’s team will be led by Quyon Flyers pitcher Matt Greer while the proposed Fort Coulonge team is being organized by experienced Allumette Island hurler, Len Burger.

“I’m certainly looking for a team in the Pontiac area,” explained Burger, 44, who said he hoped to attract a pitcher by the name of Drew Hathaway to the team. Hathaway was a top pitcher in a southwestern Ontario fastball loop for years but Burger said he recently moved to Fort Coulonge.

“If I can get him out we’d be a competitive team for sure.”

The Shawville team would be the Snappers, a former junior champion side who have been active for a few years.

“The wheels are turning for sure,” said Joe McCleary, player/coach for the Snappers in 2007.

After a decades-long run the Valley league did not get started last year because of a lack of interested teams. The league had dwindled to an all-time low of three teams in 2006, with only sides from Micksburg, Campbell’s Bay and Shawville participating.

Laronde said organization was a problem with the league for the last few years and one he hoped to correct.

“In the past they always left the (organizational) meeting too late and it couldn’t get off the ground.”

Already a second meeting is planned for March 24 in Cobden to further discuss details. Laronde said the league intends to limit itself to a maximum 12-game schedule plus playoffs with the season concluding by Sept. 1 so student players could return to their post-secondary studies.

Burger encouraged interested fastpitch players in Pontiac to contact him at 819-689-2905. “I’m looking for help,” he said.

Will it be competitive? One issue Laronde said was discussed at the first league meeting was that of competition and the possible disparity between the best and worst teams in the proposed league.

The Micksburg men’s team were semi-finalists in the 2006 North American fastpitch championships and their primary pitcher, Corey Costello, is one of the best on the continent. He set the strikeout record at the 2006 championships and routinely throws no-hitters.

Some of the other proposed teams have only ever competed in junior leagues where the maximum age is 23 and the level of skills is significantly lower.

At first glance, that’s what everybody would probably say about it,” said McCleary. However, he said that situation was very similar to the former Campbell’s Bay Royals team of a few years ago and that bunch quickly improved to be sharply competitive with Micksburg.

“That’s the only way to get better and facing guys like Corey you’re going to get better a lot faster.”

Laronde said he had no intention of placing an innings limit on pitchers but added Costello may not be interested in throwing very often.

“He’s into his 30s now and he’s got other commitments too,” he said.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Fitzroy Harbour Ladies Softball League

Probably not too many reading this blog will be interested in this league - but who knows. "Mrs. Fitzroy Fastball" plays in this league. (She doesn't have to know I referred to her by that - this means you Don.)

Fitzroy Harbour Ladies Softball (Recreational) league is looking for players. Anyone 19 years and older is welcome and experience is not necessary. The six team league plays every Thursday night in Fitzroy starting in May and play through until the end of August. Please call Wendy 613-623-0673 or Kelly 613-623-0836 for more information. http://www.geocities.com/fhladiesball/

Milestone reached....

Stats update for the blog: I started tracking "page impressions" on the blog in June of 2006. The odometer just rolled over 100,000 this week.

Totals since June 2006: 100,162
Daily Avg. all time including offseason: 174
Daily Avg. 2007 ball season (May-Sep): 274.

GCMFL Registration Details

from Eric Rosenquist

Registration for the 2008 season of the Glen Cairn Men’s Fastball League will be held at the following dates and times:

· Sunday Feb 24, 6-8PM @ the Kanata Sports Club.
· Thursday Feb 28, 7-9PM @ the Kanata Sports Club (Sens @ Flyers PPV)
· Sunday Mar 9, 7-9PM @ Local Heroes Kanata

The Kanata Sports Club is upstairs at the Jack Charron Arena; 10 McKitrick Drive in Kanata.
Local Heroes Kanata is located at 4049 Carling Avenue just east of the Carling Ave / March Rd. intersection.

The $150 fee may be paid in cash or by cheque. Cheques should be made out to “GCMFL” and may NOT be post-dated. Players who wish to register in advance can visit the league web site and download a form from the “Handouts” section, and then either print it out or send the data automatically via e-mail.

Please visit the league web site (www.gcmfl.com) for further details.

BMFL Registration Information

from www.bmfl.ca

The registration dates for the Blackburn Men's Fastball League have been set for the 2008 season:

Tuesday, March 4th, 2008 - Blackburn Arms - 7:00PM - 9:00PM
Wednesday, March 5th, 2008 - Wally's Bistro - 7:00PM - 9:00PM

The registration cost is likely to increase this season due to the increase in diamond and umpire fees. At this point, it is unknown how much the league fees will be, check back later for an update. Cheques can be post dated to April 1, 2008 and made out to the BMFL. All new players are welcome to register at this time as well.

All returning players must be registered with money paid by the monthly league meeting on April 7, 2008. After that, all returning players will be placed in the draft.

The league evaluation camp at which all new players will be evaluated for the draft also takes place in April. Those dates are as follows:

Saturday, April 19th, 2008 @ Blackburn Arena diamond from 1:00PM - 3:00PM
Rain Date: Sunday, April 20th (same location and time)
The league draft will then take place on April 21st.

If you cannot make one of the two registration dates, you may still register by mailing a cheque to:
Steve Bovey
27 Woodhill Cres.
Ottawa, Ontario
K1B 3B7

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

UOVMFL revived for 2008 - with an update

Good news from up the Valley. The Upper Ottawa Valley Men's Fastball League, is back for 2008 after a year hiatus. The UOVMFL had operated continously since the 60's but took a year 0ff last year when there weren't enough interested teams.

Five teams have confirmed, with a potential sixth interested. They are willing to take more if there are any other squads out there that want a league to play in.

Here are the five teams that confirmed at the meeting this week:

McNab Juniors
Shawville Snappers
Fort Coulonge (** see note below)
Micksburg Twins
Valley / Micksburg Juniors

Plans are for a 12 game schedule with a start in mid-May. Playoffs are to be over by Sept 1st.

Next league meeting is March 24th at the Cobden Legion 7:00.

If any other teams interested, call Ron Laronde 613-646-2273 day or 613-646-2237 night.

** An update re: Fort Coulonge from Len Burger: Fort Coulonge is not yet a fully confirmed team for the newly revived UOVMFL, but they are working on it. If there are any players interested in forming a team from the Pontiac please contact Len Burger at 1-819-689-2905.

Monday, February 11, 2008

New Junior Team for Fitzroy Possible

My sources tell me (OK, it was my neighbour at the Community Centre bar at the Winter Carnival this weekend) that a bunch of young lads in Fitzroy are thinking about putting together a Junior (23 and under) fastball team out of the Harbour this season. The team would compete in the OASA Junior B provincials, which are conveniently being hosted in Smiths Falls this summer. They're looking to put a league team together too potentially.

If you are Junior aged, or know someone that is, and are looking for a competitive team, send me an email at fastball[at]fitzroyharbour.com and I'll put you in touch with them.

East End Ottawa Bantam Boys Competitive Fastball Team - Looking for a league

NOTICE: Bantam Boys team looking for a league

Our team is looking for a league to play in for the upcoming spring and summer. We are hoping to find games within 1 hour from Ottawa. We would also like to host some games if possible. Although our boys are Bantam age we would consider playing older aged teams (e.g. Midget). We are posting this ad at this time because we trying to determine our spring/summer plans and as well to give potential leagues a chance to plan. Please email us if there are any possibilities or to discuss options.
email: rgroddca@yahoo.ca
email: susan.barber@sympatico.ca

Third Annual Mickey Brennan Memeorial Fastpitch Tournament

July 11, 12, 13, 2008
Lackawanna, NY
8 teams committed, looking to add 8 more
$275 entry fee US
ISC II level teams & lower
ASA rules
ASA certified umpires
top 4 teams recieve payouts (based on 16 team tournament)
Lackawanna, NY is located just outside of Buffalo, NY & is only 10 minutes away from the Peace Bridge into Canada
for more info
website: www.mickthequick.org
e-mail: mickeybrennantournament@yahoo.com
or call Jr. Rodriguez @ 716-903-9519

Saturday, February 09, 2008

New girls team: Ottawa Valley Attack

From the Pembroke Daily Observer:

Ottawa Valley Attack girls' bantam softball team starting tryouts

The Ottawa Valley Attack will have a girls' tournament team for its second straight season as part of the Provincial Women's Softball Association (PWSA), this year at the Bantam Tier II level.

The team, based in Pembroke, (formerly the Pembroke Pirates) will represent area communities at a competitive level in approximately six tournaments in southern Ontario, Quebec and the U.S., including the Ontario provincial qualifiers.

The new team name is to better represent the area that the players are drawn from. Pre-season softball tryouts will be held each Tuesday and Thursday evening starting Feb. 12 at Pembroke's Champlain Discovery School.

All interested players are welcome. A tryout fee of $25 per player will be charged. A location in the Arnprior area for a possible one-night per week practice is being sought out. The final team will be picked in mid-March and will consist of approximately 12 girls with birth years 1992, 1993 and 1994.

Interested players can contact Bob O'Connor at 613-735-1734 or Shelley O'Connor at 613-624-5525. The team is planning to run three one-day outdoor softball clinics early in the spring. Rob Cameron, provincial fastball gold medalist and national fastball silver medalist, will head up pitching and catching, Shawn O'Connor, national baseball team pitcher, will run infield and overhand throwing drills and head coach Bob O'Connor, with 11 years girls and boys competitive coaching expertise, will lead outfield and hitting skills.

The girls that make this year's team will also be helping with drills and demonstrations. The clinics will be suited to nine to 13-year-old boys and girls. Clinics will be offered in McNab, West Carleton and in Pembroke one of the first three Saturday's in May (rain dates will be set for each).

Specific dates will be communicated to those that sign up. If interested, please contact Bob O'Connor at 613-735-1734 or Shelley O'Connor at 613-624-5525.

The coaching staff is currently preparing for the financial needs of the team. OK Tire of Pembroke is the corporate sponsor with additional sponsors and team fundraising initiatives being explored. These, along with player fees, will make up the budget for the upcoming season. As this team does not fall under a regular league, all required funds must be self-initiated. In 2007, the Pembroke Pirates competed successfully as a first-time team with an 'A' and 'B' championship at two separate tournaments.

They also advanced in the Kingston Novice Tier II Qualifiers to compete in the Provincial Championship. There were 34 teams entered in three separate qualifiers in Ontario. At the provincials, the team placed seventh out of the 13 teams.

The Pembroke Pirates 2007 provincial record was two wins and two losses. The losses were to the gold and silver provincial medalists. The team's overall record for the summer was 31 wins and 15 losses. There has not been competitive girls' softball in the Upper Ottawa Valley in five years.

The fact that last year's team of girls performed so well in their first year has brought a renewed interest to girls' softball in the area. The reintroduction of softball last year not only provided the female athletes that enjoy the sport an opportunity to play, but it gave the community the opportunity to be a part of it.

ISC II Pitching pickups

See Al's Page for information on special rules for ISC II pitching pick ups for the ToC in 2008.

OASA Eliminations in Cobourg

OASA Eliminations for Senior and Intermediate teams will be held on the Civic Holiday long weekend in Cobourg this year.

KJ in the Stittsville News

The Stittsville News recently ran a 50th Anniversary edition with top stories from the area since 1958.

Check out this item on TC's Blog from the sports section of the anniversary edition.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Gil Read Tournament confirms a location

This just in from Al Read - the Gil Read tournament on July 4-6 has been confirmed for Carlington Park in Ottawa.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Ottawa Blitz Fastball Club Launch Website

Ottawa Blitz Fastball Club Launch Website -- http://www.ottawablitz.ca/

The Ottawa Blitz Fastball Club are now online. Today, the ball club launch their new website www.ottawablitz.ca. The club is also unveiling its new logos, which are available on the website.

"We're really happy with how the new website turned out," said Blitz captain Derick Bulley. "It showcases our ball club and promotes our tournament."

The website, which was built by Andrew Bruce, features the fastball club's roster, statistics, tournament information and links to other fastball websites.

"I'm happy with how it turned it out," said webmaster Andrew Bruce. "Hopefully the new website energizes the ball club and translates into more Blitz wins on the ball field."

The Ottawa Blitz Men's Fastball Club competes in the Greater Ottawa Fastball League. The Ottawa Blitz Fastball Club has hosted an annual tournament at Ottawa's Carlington Park since 2006. For more information about the Blitz tournament or the ball club, visit http://www.ottawablitz.ca/.

* Ottawa Blitz Captain Derick Bulley (613- 292-3424 or dbulley@hotmail.com)
* Ottawa Blitz Webmaster Andrew Bruce (babruce@rogers.com)
* Tournament Chairperson Scott Dumouchel (613-558-3532 or blitzfastball@hotmail.com)
* Ottawa Blitz Website: http://www.ottawablitz.ca/

Information on the ISC "bat rule"

from Al's Fastball

Approved Bats for ISC Competition

Because of the number of International teams competing in the ISC World Tournament the ISC will continue to use the certified bat list provided by the International Softball Federation (ISF). This list can be viewed on the ISF web site www.internationalsoftball.com. Click on Rules and Standards and then on certified bats.

The ISF have determined and published notice that August 31, 2008 will mark the end of the period during which bats that complied with the previous ISF Bat Performance Factor (BPF 1.20) shall be permitted to be used in ISF play and the new BBS (Batted Ball Speed) will be the only standard that is official.

The ISF requires manufacturers who wish to have their bat listed to supply test result that show that their bats meet the standards set.

The ISF has a certified bat list, not a "banned bat" list.

We mention this now so anyone considering a new bat purchase for the 2008 season may want to check their choice with the ISF lists first to eliminate the possibility of a bat purchased for 2008 may be non-approved for 2009.

As a related reminder, by book rule, any player found to be using an altered bat will be ejected from the game and the balance of the tournament.

Greely new team in the GOFL

The Greater Ottawa Fastball League is pleased to add a new team which will play out of Greely, bringing the league up to 9 teams.

Shannon Borho and Anil Hayne will be the team representatives, confirmed this week that they will be joining the league, bringing several new players to the GOFL.

The team will play Monday nights at 8:30, and will be composed of several members of the Blackburn Bombers tournament team.

The new Greely squad will also host the GOFL Showcase 2008, tentatively schedule for Saturday June 1st, at the McKendry Park diamonds in Metcalfe.