By Joel Wittnebel/The Oshawa Express
It’s that time of year again as Oshawa’s elite baseball players are piling into a bus and making the trek to warmer climates in order to prepare for the up-and-coming Elite Baseball League of Ontario (EBLO) season.
Heading out on March 9, Oshawa’s 16U and 17U elite Oshawa Legionaires teams will be heading to Cocoa Beach Florida to the Cocoa Expo Baseball Complex for 10 straight days of baseball training and development.
The clubs will take part in training, practice, workouts and play a series of exhibition games at the former training grounds of the Houston Astros and Miami Marlins.
For Ken Babcock, head coach of the 17U club, the trip is part of what Oshawa is doing to take its baseball programs to the next level.
“Providing this type of training experience as part of a top level overall program is important in the development of players both on and off the diamond,” he states in a new release. “This is all part of what we are trying to do to elevate the game of baseball in this area.”
The EBLO season, set to get underway in May, will see players take part in approximately 60 games, 20 of them against EBLO opponents and the rest coming in the form of special games against teams from the United States and tournaments throughout the USA.
The 16U Legionaires team led by head coach Jamie May will see the following players take part: Ryan Laird, Jacob Rienstra, Dawson Sarginson, Jake Lockyer, Bryce Manley, Jason Kauffeldt, Davis McMillan, Daniel Schultz, Matt Johnson, Cooper Quinn, Lucas Fasullo, Carter Arbuthnot and Josh Bickle; along with assistant coaches Ryan Norris, Connor May, Kirk McMillan, and general manager Scott Arbuthnot.
While on the Oshawa 17U team led by Babcock, the following players will be making the trek south: Matthew Robinson, Braden Babcock, Connor Cavanagh, Easton Currie, Keiven Frost, Ethan Duggan, Bryant Polanco, Mitchell Haywood, Ty Cymbalista, Blake Cherwaty, Evan Love, Aaron Muravski, Conner Allen, Nathan Long, and Matthew Walker, along with assistant coaches Scott Cherwaty, Aaron McQuillen, and Steven Crawford.