Elliott: Whitby wins 15U, heads down to road to host Oshawa

The Whitby Chiefs, coached by Clare Osborne, won the Baseball Ontario 15U championships at Clarkson Park in Mississauga and now head to Kinsmen Stadium where the host Oshawa Legionaires await.

The Whitby Chiefs, coached by Clare Osborne, won the Baseball Ontario 15U championships at Clarkson Park in Mississauga and now head to Kinsmen Stadium where the host Oshawa Legionaires await.

By Bob Elliott

Canadian Baseball Network

Beyoncé and Jay-Z entertained Yankee Stadium fans a few post-seasons ago with their new release “Empire State of Mind.”

We recall Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star writing on what an excellent song Beyoncé and Jay-Zed had collaborated upon.

Coach Clare Osborne has Little Zee and Big Zee much like Toronto Argos kicker Zenon Andrusyshyn. The pair helped the Whitby Chiefs capture the 15U Ontario championship with a win over Windsor Riverside 8-2 at Mississauga’s Clarkson Park in the Ontario Baseball final.

Big Zee, otherwise known as Zak Szabo, pitched a complete-game victory in the final striking out four. He threw first-pitch strikes to 14 hitters. Hitting third, Szabo singled knocking in a pair of runs.

Little Zee, otherwise known Zach Kourous, bats second and drove in a run with a single in the gold-medal game.

Griffin Catto and Cody Hagerman each had three hits, with Catto hitting a double and driving in a pair of runs. Jackson Hutchison was 2-for-2 for the Chiefs.

All of which means Whitby is off to the Ray Carter Cup 15U Nationals and the Chiefs will travel all the way to historic Kinsmen Stadium in Oshawa, where the host Oshawa Legionaires await.

* * *

In the opener, Griffin Catto and Noah Avis each had a pair of hits in a 2-1 win over the Etobicoke Rangers. Catto doubled and knocked in a run, while Avis doubled as well.

Hagerman pitched four scoreless, needing only 63 pitches, as he allowed one hit and fanned eight. Nick King took over and found himself with the bases loaded and none out after an error, a single and a hit batter. Greg LaChance turned a double play ball at second as Whitby gave up a run for two outs.

After a hit batter, King retired the final out on a fly ball to right. King allowed an unearned run in three innings as he gave up one hit and walked one, while striking out a pair.

Whitby scored all the runs it needed in the fourth as LaChance led off with a single to left. LaChance stole second and third, scoring on the throw to first after strike three. Nick King singled to centre and scored on Catto’s double to left.

* * *

The Oakville A’s scored twice in the first and went on to a 3-2 win over Whitby. Catto led the way for Whitby with two hits, including a double. LaChance also doubled, while Kourous and Hagerman singled for the other hits.

Kourous started and took the loss allowing three runs on eight hits and a walk. Parker Bailey pitched five hitless and scoreless innings striking out a pair.

* * *

Six runs in the first two innings had the Chiefs off and running on their way to an 11-5 win over the Scarborough Stingers.

LaChance tripled, singled and drove in a run, while Kourous doubled, singled and knocked in two runs. Avis singled in two runs, while Catto and King each singled in a run each. Hagerman added a single.

Jackson Hutchison started, pitching 3 2/3 innings as he allowed four runs -- two earned -- on six hits and a walk. He struck out six in his 68 pitch outing. Next was Owen McMulkin who worked 3 1/3 allowing one unearned run on four hits and a walk. He also struck out six in his 59-pitch relief appearance.

* * *

The Chiefs moved to 3-1 when a six-run third inning led Whitby to an 8-1 win over the London Badgers.

After Hutchison opened the inning with a walk, LaChance singled and Kourous reached when his bunt was mishandled. Catto reached on an error bringing in a second run. King singled to centre knocking in a run, another error brought in a run and Avis hit a two-run triple to left. Liam Conway hit a scoring fly ball to complete the six-run inning.

Szabo pitched six inning giving up one run on four hits and a walk, while fanning 10. LaChance put a zero up to close it out. He threw 74.4% strike in his 90-pitch effort.

LaChance and Avis each had a pair of hits, while Catto, King, Szabo and Conway had one hit apiece. Conway knocked in two runs, as did Avis. Conway and Szabo had a double apiece.

* * *

Conway and Bailey combined on a four-hit shut out as the Chiefs whipped the Vaughn Vikings 8-0. Conway threw 63 pitches in five innings allowing two hits as he fanned three. Bailey threw 28 pitches in two innings with two whiffs.

Kourous tripled, singled and drove in three runs, while Hagerman also tripled. LaChance doubled and drove in a run. The other hits went to Kayden Chung and Avis, while Szabo, Catto and Avis drove in runs.

* * *

Hagerman helped the Chiefs to an 11-5 victory against West Toronto. Hagerman pitched three innings, throwing 67 pitches, allowing one hit and two runs -- one earned -- as he fanned three. Hagerman also tripled.

Bailey was 3-for-3 with a double and an RBI to lead the way at the plate. LaChance, King and Avis each singled and drove in a run, while Kourous, Conway and Hutchison each had a base hit. Szabo knocked in a run.

King pitched 2 1/3 innings giving up three runs on four hits and two walks while fanning three. Bailey was next with a scoreless inning and then LaChance recorded the final two outs.

* * *

The semi-final was fast and nasty: five Whitby runs in the first and four more in the second on the way to an 18-2 win against Newmarket.

The Chiefs were led by King -- 4-for-4 with an RBI double -- Hutchison -- 3-for-4 with a double with an RBI -- and Conway -- four RBIs -- and Bailey -- three hits.

Hagerman singled in two runs, Kourous had a pair of hits, driving in a run, while Avis tripled in a run. LaChance and Chung each singled, as Szabo, Catto each knocked in runs

The Chiefs will represent Ontario at the in Oshawa Aug. 22-25 after winning the eliminations tournament. Whitby played eight games over four days in the double knock out tournament and were the last team standing after an exciting weekend in Mississauga.

Sunday’s game was Riverside’s seventh of the weekend, but Whitby’s eighth. The winner would be crowned Team Ontario.

This is coach Osborne’s third trip to the nationals, although he came close in 1979 pitching for the Ottawa-Nepean Canadians one of the final three teams left at the eliminations in Sudbury.

In 2010 his Whitby bantams with RHP Cal Quantrill, now of the San Diego Padres, Clare Osborne’s son C J.D. Osborne of the Miami Marlins system, LHP Travis Seabrooke, formerly with the Baltimore Orioles, plus successful college players LHP Brodie Harkness and CF Toby Handley lost in the semi-final to the Vaughn Vikings as catcher turned RHP Owen Spiwak beat Whitby 10-8.

Four years later helping Dwain Ervin’s Mississauga North Tigers they beat Etobicoke in the final to win the eliminations. Rains hit in the first inning of Monday’s final, Ricardo Alvarez started the next night and pitched a 6-1 win. Etobicoke had knocked off Mississauga North 6-4 in Game 3.

With the Tigers that year were OF Cooper Davis, now at Vanderbilt, RHP-1B Jake Ervin, 2B Tyler Small, C Mitch Osborne and minor bantam pick-up SS Noah Naylor beat BC to win the nationals.

Assisting Osborne this season are Gerry Prendergast, Ryan Verrydt and Jake Ross.

Schedule/Results

Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019 Visitors Home

1. 8:30 AM Kinsmen Stadium New Brunswick vs. Manitoba

2. 8:30 AM Clarington SW Newfoundland and Labrador vs. Prince Edward Island

3. 8:30 AM Ritson Field Alberta vs. Nova Scotia

4. 11:30 AM Kinsmen Stadium British Columbia vs. Ontario

5. 11:30 AM Clarington SW Québec vs. Saskatchewan

6. 2:30 PM Kinsmen Stadium Nova Scotia vs. Newfoundland and Labrador

7. 2:30 PM Clarington SW Manitoba vs. Prince Edward Island

8. 2:30 PM Ritson Field Alberta vs. New Brunswick

6 PM Kinsmen Stadium Opening Ceremonies Results/Live Action

9 7:00 PM Kinsmen Stadium Québec vs. Oshawa

10. 7:30 PM Clarington SW Saskatchewan vs. British Columbia

Friday

11. 10 AM Kinsmen Stadium Prince Edward Island vs. Alberta

12. 10 AM Clarington SW Nova Scotia vs. New Brunswick

13. 10 AM Ritson Field Newfoundland and Labrador vs. Manitoba

14. 1 PM Kinsmen Stadium Ontario vs. Oshawa

15. 1 PM Clarington SW British Columbia vs. Québec

16. 4 PM Kinsmen Stadium Prince Edward Island vs. Nova Scotia

17. 4 PM Clarington SW New Brunswick vs. Newfoundland and Labrador

18. 7 PM Kinsmen Stadium Oshawa vs. Saskatchewan

19. 7 PM Clarington SW Manitoba vs. Alberta

Saturday

20. 8:30 AM Kinsmen Stadium Oshawa vs. British Columbia

21. 8:30 AM Clarington SW Ontario vs. Québec

22. 11:30 AM Kinsmen Stadium Newfoundland and Labrador vs. Alberta

23. 11:30 AM Clarington SW Manitoba vs. Nova Scotia

24. 2:30 PM Kinsmen Stadium Prince Edward Island vs. New Brunswick

25. 2:30 PM Clarington SW Saskatchewan vs. Ontario

26. 7 PM Kinsmen Stadium QF 3A vs. 2B

Sunday

27. 8:30 AM Kinsmen Stadium Placement game 9/10 4B vs. 5B

28. 8:30 AM Clarington SW Placement game 7/8 5A vs. 3B

29. 11:30 AM Kinsmen Stadium SF 1B vs. 1A

30. 11:30 AM Clarington SW SF Winner Game #26 vs. 2A

31.. 2:30 PM Clarington SW Placement game 5/6 Loser Game #26 vs. 4A

32. 3:30 PM Kinsmen Stadium Bronze Medal Game

33. 6:30 PM Kinsmen Stadium Gold Medal Game

9 PM Kinsmen Stadium Closing Ceremonies