By Bob Elliott
Canadian Baseball Network
The Whitby Chiefs nearly hit for the cycle at the 100th annual Baseball Ontario banquet iin Hamilton.
The Bantam and up-aged Player Of The Year was C-1B Josh Arce, while Fergie Jenkins Pitcher Of The Year is Jacob Ebbs-Greaves and the Coach Of The Year Derek Brown.
Despite all the hardware handed out Whitby lost to the Tecumseh Thunder in the midget eliminations and the right to play at the nationals in London. The Chiefs did win the OBA title -- Whitby’s first since 2010.
“He’s very good, very impressive, he hit third or fourth for us all year long leading us in RBIs,” said Brown of Arce, who is a Sir Sanford Fleming student.
Arce led his team in doubles (12), batting average (.412), slugging (.497), on base (.552) and RBIs (46). He was second in hits (59) and walks (41). He scored 30 runs and stole 12 bases.
Defensively, he led his team in innings at first base, making only three errors all season. As a catcher he led in throwing out would-be base stealers with a fielding percent at .981. He also led the entire Elite in RBIs, and was second in average, OBP and OPS (1.050).
Arce was selected to play on the EBLO all-star team and was the starting catcher.
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Previously with the Toronto Mets, LHP Ebbs-Greaves is currently pitching for the Brock Badgers.
“Jacob came back looking for something more than just strictly than pitching,” Brown said. “He was a team-first guy willing to do whatever was needed. That is rare for an 18 year old.
Ebbs-Greaves pitched in 19 games, including seven complete games. He lost four games all season, one against a college team, another in which he didn’t allow an earned run, and a third in which his team lost 1-0, despite him throwing a complete game. He won eight of his last nine decisions pitching 92 innings, tying for his team lead. He was Mr. Economical averaging 15.34 pitches per inning.
He finished with a 1.96 ERA, which was second best in the league, and started in the All-Star game. At the OBA championships Ebbs-Greaves started and finished both the first and last games, throwing 12 innings without allowing an earned run. Pitching in a U.S. tournament this season, he had an immaculate inning (needing only nine pitches) to strike out three straight.
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This summer was Brown’s 12th coaching at the midget level. The Chiefs play in the Midget Elite League.
“I’ve been around when they have tried different things in this province ... like the 401 Series,” Brown said. “This is the best idea. I think we have kept more kids.
“This keeps players playing locally. We try to provide similar opportunities for elite programs.
The Chiefs went to Showcase tournaments this year in both Pittsburgh and Ann Arbour, Mich.
One successful Chief grad is CF Evan Webb of the Concord University Mountain Lions.
The Chiefs had a 42-22-1 record, finishing third in the Premier division of the Elite League behind the Etobicoke Rangers and the Brampton Royals. In tournament play, they were the Brampton fall semi-finalists (losing to Humber College), Ajax fall semi-finalists (losing to the Toronto Mets team), Vaughan semi-finalists, University of Michigan All-Prospect Tournament finalists, Midget elimination Silver medalists and OBA Champions (beating the National champ London Badgers).
They scored 436 runs over 65 games, while only allowing 259 and stole 200 bases. Highlights from this season include: A walk-off win over Brampton Royals in the eliminations, a 4-1 victory over London, winning the OBA championship game over Mississauga North Tigers 14-1.
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2017 Award Winners:
Player Of The Year Pee Wee & Down Carson Lumley LDBA
Player Of The Year Bantam & Up Josh Arce EOBA
Fergie Jenkins Pitcher Of The Year Pee Wee & Down Jeryn Shortt SCBA
Fergie Jenkins Pitcher Of The Year Bantam & Up Jacob Ebbs EOBA
Coach Of The Year PeeWee & Down Jason Chee-Aloy TBA
Coach Of The Year Bantam & Up Derek Brown EOBA
Team Of The Year North York Peewee Blues TBA
Dick Willis Junior Umpire Of The Year Trent Wheeler ICBA
Dick Willis Senior Umpire Of The Year Chris Cullum EOBA
Don Gilbert Umpire Of The Year Matthew Tyler SPBA
Jack Middlemass Award Volunteer Of The Year Diane Wakefield LDBA
Barrie Salt Award Director Of The Year Cathy Lamarucciola Maple
President’s Award Warren Philp TBIBA
Association Of The Year EOBA
Management Board Election of Officers
President: David Huctwith
1st Vice President: Ed Quinlan
2nd Vice President: Allan Ebert
Rep Directors: Dirk Drieberg, Annette Hoggarth, Cathy Lamarucciola, Glenn Ostrosser, Brent Peltola, Justin Snively
Select Directors: David Black, Patrick McConnell, Ted Williams
Appointed to the BOM:
Linda Lewis, Treasurer
Ray Merkley, Supervisor of Umpires
Howard Birnie, Registrar
David Black, EBLO Commissioner
Former OBA players of the year:
Year Junior and Senior Players of the Year
1994 Chris Green, Mike Kusiewicz
1995 Paul Brown, Shawn Pearson
1996 Dan Hansen, Doug Vandecaveye
1997 Scott Thorman, Jason Mandryk
1998 Bradley Gould, Patrick Nailer
1999 Chris Emanuele, Tanner Watson
2000 Derek Lowe, BJ Richardson
2001 Dan Zehr, Chris Robinson
2002 Kate Psota, Jamie Romak
2003 Ian Choy, Cherie Piper
2004 Trevor Barton, Davey Wallace
2005 Cain Monaghan, Kevin Long
2006 Tanner Nivins, Greg Densem
2007 McCalla Sturgeon, Robert Cooper
2008 Geoffrey Seto, Larry Balkwill
2009 Nicholas Dimpfel, Ryan Zimmer
2010 Josh Naylor, Jake Lumley
2011 Connor May, Byron Reichstein
2012 Jason Stott, Matt Smith
2013 Noah Naylor, Justin Gideon
2014 Noah Roberts, Zachary Fascia
2015 Colin Mandarich, Jake Brennan
2016 Joe Kuin, Tyrell Schofield-Sam
2017 Carson Lumley, Josh Arce
Bold denotes major leaguer