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7th Inning Stretch: Will Langford

Towering right-handed pitcher Will Langford has established himself as the ace of the Fort McMurray Giants rotation this season.

Through eight appearances – seven of them starts – Langford is the team leader in strikeouts (36), innings pitched (42.1) and ERA (1.91). 

The 6-foot-5 hurler also sports a 3-1 record and is helping the Giants make a push for their first ever playoff appearance in the Western Canadian Baseball League (WCBL). 

Langford is the subject of our latest 7th Inning Stretch profile.

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Making An Impact

You can’t spell “baseball” without “A … L … B … E …” … well, you get the picture.

Baseball Canada’s 2019 Women’s Invitational Championships – which pitted rivals from four provinces and a national prospects team against one another – have come and gone from Okotoks and Alberta turned in another impressive performance.

In addition to capturing their second straight bronze medal finish at the event, Alberta saw eight players chosen to participate in the national team’s three-day selection camp that followed the July 4-8 tournament at Tourmaline Field and Seaman Stadium. Of those eight players, five earned spots on this year’s Women’s National Team, including Spruce Grove sisters Carrie and Ellie Jespersen, Red Deer’s Kelsey Lalor, Edmontonian Madison Willan, and Kaitlyn Ross of Redcliff.

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7th Inning Stretch: Austin Sojka

After a sluggish start to the 2019 season, the defending Western Canadian Baseball League (WCBL) champion Medicine Hat Mavericks needed a spark.

At the plate, that has come in the form of infielder Austin Sojka, who leads the Mavs in home runs (5), RBI (25), and batting average (.368) through his 30 games of play for the red and white. 

With the Californian pacing the offence, the Mavericks are now in the thick of the playoff chase and looking to defend their championship crown. Sojka is the subject of our latest 7th Inning Stretch feature …

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Q&A with Matt Stairs

He was the guy you wanted at the plate with the game on the line in the late innings.

In the playoffs. 

He was coming in cold and the ice in his veins helped him maintain a cool demeanor in pressure-packed situations. 

Canadian Matt Stairs is the quintessential pinch hitter. He has a World Series ring that was earned, in part, from his postseason heroics for the Philadelphia Phillies in 2008. The Fredericton, New Brunswick product is also in the record books for his 23 regular season, pinch-hit home runs. 

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The Pioneers: Calgary Cardinals

If Russ Parker’s middle name isn’t “Persistent”, maybe he should look at changing it.

After having been in discussions about bringing an affiliated team to Calgary for half a decade, he finally succeeded in 1977 with the Cardinals.

In our final installment of “The Pioneers”, we look back at Calgary’s involvement with the league and what it took for Parker to bring future stars through Foothills Stadium.

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