*This article was originally published on Win Column Sports on October 15, 2018. You can read the original story here.
By Spencer Love
Win Column Sports
The Edmonton Prospects have announced Jordan Blundell as their new head coach and director of baseball operations, replacing former bench boss Ray Brown and director of baseball operations Orv Franchuk after the two resigned earlier this offseason.
“I’m excited,” stated Blundell in his first interview as head coach. “For me, this represents part of a dream in my career to get the opportunity to coach at home, in a ballpark I spent time in as a teenager dreaming about playing professional baseball.”
Blundell takes over a Prospects franchise that has experience playoff success over the past number of years. Last season, the Prospects fell in five games to Medicine Hat, preventing the organization from reaching their third straight WMBL Finals. Under the direction of Brown and Franchuk, the Prospects have established themselves as one of the WCBL’s premier franchises. A large portion of Blundell’s job will be not only to develop the organization for future success but build on the strong foundation set by his predecessors.
“If you study what (Jordan’s) been able to accomplish wherever he’s coached, he’s been able to take average players in some cases and by the end of the season, they have a quality club. It tells me that he’s very good at focussing people and providing the leadership and what’s needed for this team to do what’s necessary to win games,” said Prospects managing partner Patrick Cassidy.
A major reason for Blundell’s hiring is his exceptional track record both coaching and recruiting in the Edmonton area. In 2008, Blundell was named the WMBL Coach of the Year with the Sherwood Park Dukes. He’s additionally been the Head Coach of the 2010 CCBC Championship winning VIU Mariners and was named CCBC Coach of the Year.
His track record with recruiting also speaks for itself, as he recruited both the 2008 and 2009 WMBL – now WCBL – MVP’s.
“The (WCBL) is important to me, having played and coached in the league. It’s an important stepping stone for some (players) in their baseball career. It’s my job to find as many of those players as possible so they have a chance to experience Edmonton before getting an opportunity further down the line. It’s about helping them in their career path and development,” said Blundell.
Added Cassidy, “He’s got a great coaching resume when it comes to being able to lead men on the field and make decisions, but just as important he has a great recruitment strategy with the right connections”.
The team also confirmed their annual Prospects Gala will be held on February 16, 2019, with Buck Martinez, John Short and Kent Morrison confirmed as attendees for this year’s function.
Stay tuned to Win Column Sports for the duration of the WCBL offseason for more updates on the Edmonton Prospects.