New Signings from Fat Cats, Coverage of IBL on Sportsnet?
Well folks, it’s that time of the year again
This evening, the MLB and it’s affiliated leagues start their season. The AAA Lehigh Valley IronPigs – formerly the Ottawa Lynx – host the Scranton WB Yankees. In AA, the Binghamton Mets – who will most likely be moving to Ottawa Stadium for 2013 – will square off versus the Akron Aeros.
The Ottawa Fat Cats and we the fans will have to wait another 43 days for their IBL campaign to start up, but when you think about it, 43 days is only a month and a half. We are definitely coming down the home stretch of the off-season.
An indication of that is that the Fat Cats have begun to announce player signings and re-signings. The FCs front office has already inked the 4 imports they are allowed to have on their roster for 2012. Kevin Dietrich and LaDale Hayes will return to the team this year, along with newcomer imports Jason Coker and Brandon Huffman.
Coker is a utility player whom the Fat Cats currently have down as an Infielder on their website. He boasted 31 HRs and 165 runs scored in 206 career games with UNC Pembroke of the NCAA. His on-base percentage of .391 is very good, and it appears that he fits in well with the Fat Cats. Of course, we’ll have to wait until the season starts to see that.
Huffman is down on the website as a Pitcher, but is also somewhat of a utility player, playing Infield as well (think McGovern). His ERA while pitching in High School was just over 1 and he also had a batting average of .457 which would have led the league had Huffman played in the IBL in 2011. Of course, that was in High School baseball. I don’t know much about American HS Ball, but I’m assuming that the caliber is substantially lower than the IBL.
Nevertheless, it would be outstanding if Huffman could come in to Ottawa and be another McGov for the Cats. A promising stat package suggests that he may be just that.
Some re-signings for the Fat Cats include Josh Soffer, Matt McGovern and just announced today were Kyle Barclay and William Sebastian. The FCs current roster also features others, who I assume will be back as well.
Unfortunately, there are also some others leaving the team, including Rick Howroyd. I don’t know about you guys, but I’ll definitely be missing him this year. He was arguably the most clutch player on the roster, always coming up with a timely hit or pick off from behind the plate. It makes me wonder who will replace him back there. Currently, the only Catcher on the FCs roster is Eitan Maoz. I wonder if Coker will make some appearances back there.
Some thoughts on league media coverage
Watching this Jays-Indians season opener on Sportsnet right now has got me thinking. Sportsnet broadcasts CHL and NHL games on a regular basis and they’re also the sole broadcaster for the Toronto Blue Jays in the summer, with all 162 regular season games, plus playoffs (who am I kidding, the Jays won’t make it).
Surely, since they already broadcast baseball, they could commit to 15-20 IBL games, at least on the Ontario channel.
Adopt a “game of the week” format, like they do with the CHL and go from there. They could hire a broadcast team from a current IBL club to do the PBP and colour commentary – a pair who knows the league well. It would also be awesome to see the championship series to be broadcasted in it’s entirety on the channel.
Food for thought.