Heisler, Clapp, Robinson contributed most for Canada internationally

LHP Rod Heisler (Moose Jaw, Sask) appeared in more international competitions than any Canadian. Photo: Jane Shury, Saskatchewan Baseball Hall of Fame.

LHP Rod Heisler (Moose Jaw, Sask) appeared in more international competitions than any Canadian. Photo: Jane Shury, Saskatchewan Baseball Hall of Fame.

By Bob Elliott
Canadian Baseball Network

Lefty Rod Heisler wore a Canada uniform to more international competitions than anyone else.

Heisler (Moose Jaw, Sask.) was 0-1 with a 2.63 ERA in the 1978 World Amateur Series in Parma, Emilia-Romagna, Bologna, Emilia-Romagna and Rimini Emilia-Romagna, Italy as a 23-year-old. Canada finished with ninth C Mike Teahen (St. Marys, Ont.) who .250, two homers, nine RBIs and father of Kansas City Royals, Chicago White Sox and Toronto Blue Jay Mark Teahen. Scott Bailey had a 0.64 ERA but walked 17 in 14 innings.

Heisler pitched in 

_ Two World Amateur Series ... in 1980 in Japan as Canada finished fifth and in 1982 at Souel, South Korea as Canada finished fifth and Heilser earned All-Star honors along with Dong-yol Son of gold-medal winning Korea, who also earned MVP honors. The other Canucks to make the all-star team were C Larry Downes (Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ont.) and OF Doug McPhail (Two Hills, Alta.).

_ Two Olympics ... 1984 in Los Angeles where Canada lost 4-3 Nicaragua in 12 innings and South Korea 3-1 before beating Japan 6-4 and in the 1988 Olympics in South Korea, lost 7-6 to Australia, beat Team USA, who started by Jim Abbott 8-7 and lost 5-3 to South Korea.

_ Three Pan American Games ... at San Juan, Puerto Rico in 1979, in Caracus, Venz. in 1983 as Tom Nelson IWindsor, Ont.) had 12 hits, the most in the tourney and in Indianapolis in 1987. 

_ Three Intercontinental Cups ... in 1981 in Edmonton where Canada beat Cuba 2-1 as Perry Lychak (Edmonton, Alta.) led the event with a 0.66 ERA, in 1983 at Brussels, Belgium; 1985 in Edmonton as Canada finished fifth and at Havana, Cuba in 1987 as Canada went 4-9 overall, was outscored 121-55 but beat South Korea to finish fifth. Rheal Cormier (Cap-Pele, N.B.) was 3-0 with a 0.57 ERA to tie for the win lead as the main bright spot.  

_ One Pacific Cup ... in Kindersley, Sask. in 1986. 

_ His last big event was the 1988 World Cup in Italy, when the veteran allowed 10 hits and six runs in 5 1/3 innings. Canada matched its best finish at the time just missing the playoffs. 2B Greg Roth (Pincher Creek, Alta.) hit .359 with four homers and 10 RBIs, while SS Matt Stairs (Fredericton, NB) batted .362, nine RBIs, 3B Warren Sawkiw (Etobicoke, Ont.) .405, 11 RBIs, 1B Greg Duce (Lethbridge, Alta.) .359 and OF James Kotkas (Lethbridge, Alta.) .357, three triples, 11 RBIs). Frank Humber (Corner Brook, Nfld.) 3-0, 3.60 and Barry Parisotto (Trail, BC) 2-0, 1.10 pitched well. Dave Wainhouse (Scarborough, Ont.) 6.91 ERA lost twice, while Cormier (1-1, 5.71) whiffed 22 in 17 1/3 but also walked 10 and allowed 19 hits.

Most international appearances by Canadian players
LHP Rod Heisler, Moose Jaw, Sask. 14
2B Stubby Clapp, Windsor, Ont. 13
C Chris Robinson, Dorchester, Ont. 13 
OF Jim Kotkas, Lethbridge, Alta. 12
INF Tom Nelson, Windsor, Ont. 10

C Larry Downes, Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ont. 9
RHP Chris Begg, Uxbridge, Ont. 9.
OF Rick Johnston, Peterborough, Ont. 9
RHP Mike Ross, Calgary, Alta. 9
C Dave Rypien, Calgary, Alta. 9

OF Doug Simon, Regina, Sask. 9
OF Adam Stern, London, Ont. 9
RHP Fred Cardwell, Red Deer, Alta. 8
LHP Rheal Cormier, Cap-Pele, N.B. 8
OF  Rob Butler, East York, Ont. 7

INF Joe Heeney, Etobicoke, Ont. 7
INF Pete Orr, Richmond Hill, Ont. 7

Bob ElliottComment