Burgmann’s a bulldog for Vauxhall, Canada
By Matt Betts
It’s hard to miss Canadian right hander Josh Burgmann when he steps on the mound and stares down the hitter 60 feet six inches away.
The Nanaimo, BC grew up playing for the Nanaimo Pirates from mosquito all the way until the Premier Baseball League team until he left for the well known Vauxhall Academy of Baseball two years ago. Through the years he has been someone to keep an eye on as he matured both physical and with his baseball skill.
Burgmann has been able to keep a level head throughout his very successful baseball career thus far. He has been all over the world playing the game he loves.
While playing for Canada in Osaka, Japan at the 18U World Cup is a dream come true, Burgmann is not losing sight of how important it is to represent British Columbia at this years T12 event.
“It’s an honor to be selected to team BC and represent my province in front of some of the greatest players to put on a Blue Jays uniform,” Burgmann said. “I’m really excited.”
Burgmann was one of the top five selections for his BC team this year. He has also participated in the event in the past but was just as excited this time around to get the call.
“My mom texted me saying that I had made the first five players selected. I was very excited when I found out, the first two were unreal experiences and I expect the exact same this year.” Burgmann said. “I told a few guys from my Vauxhall Academy team because a few of them were named to the top five of there provinces as well “
So what can people expect who have never seen the big right hander before? Vauxhall Academy coach Les McTavish thinks there is a lot to like about the up and coming Canadian.
“He is a real big, strong kid,” McTavish said. “He has a very competitive nature, no matter what he is doing. He is a pretty good athlete.”
It would have been hard for Burgmann to get to this point in his career without that competitive nature. Combine that with his maturity and advanced pitching repertoire and it makes for a tough combination for a hitter to beat.
“He is pretty advanced for a high school pitcher,” McTavish said. “He doesn’t use a lot of effort and he has three pitches he can use at any given time.”
Aside from playing at Rogers Centre in a big showcase setting, playing for Team Canada has been one of the biggest honours yet.
“Getting the call last fall from Greg Hamilton,” Burgmann said when asked what the highlight of his baseball career has been up until this point. “It is an absolute honour to represent my country. It’s always a blessing when you get to put on the Canadian jersey on represent this best country on earth.”
Being named to Team Canada for the 18U World Cup has benefitted Burgmann more than just his on field development.
“I’ve never seen anything quite like the atmosphere at the World Cup, every single country is all in to win a world championship,” Burgmann said. “It raises the intensity level and it makes the game faster but it also makes the game a lot more fun and exciting.”
McTavish is describes Burgmann how many young Canadian baseball players would love to be seen.
“He is your good old Canadian boy,” McTavish said when asked if there was anything unique about his pitcher. “He is talented, passionate and makes everyone around him better.”
As good as Burgmann is on the field, his demeanour and personality has not gone unnoticed off of it as well. He is already carrying himself as a true professional.
“He is a pleasure to coach and a pleasure to be around,” McTavish said. “He has his whole career ahead of him and the sky truly is the limit for him.”
Do not expect this Canadian to be intimidated by the bright lights, big stadium or numerous scouts in attendance at this year’s tournament either. Whether it be with the Nanaimo Pirates, Vauxhall Academy Jets or Greg Hamilton’s Canadian Junior National Team, Burgmann always seems to rise to the occasion and put his best effort forward when the stakes are the highest.
“The bigger the game, the better he usually pitches,” McTavish said. “All three of his pitches can dominate at any given point in time.
Burgmann will look to bring his dominance to Toronto for this year’s Tournament 12.