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Close But No Soroka

Watching Calgary’s Mike Soroka succeed at the Major League Baseball level is somewhat bittersweet for Greg Morrison.

The Medicine Hat Mavericks owner and general manager might find himself asking “what if” when he thinks back on the summer of 2015.

Morrison had managed to convince Soroka to play for the Mavericks that summer, but it wasn’t meant to be as he was drafted in the first round of that summer’s MLB Draft by the Atlanta Braves.

And the rest, as they say, is history.

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Opening It Up

The last time we saw Calgarian Mike Soroka take the mound for the Atlanta Braves, he was breaking new ground.

It was Game 3 of the National League Division Series (NLDS) against the St. Louis Cardinals – an exciting 3-1 victory for Atlanta – and Soroka struck out seven batters through seven innings while surrendering no walks, just two hits and one earned run. 

It’s been a long time since that game at Busch Stadium on Oct. 6, 2019, and it feels even longer with the COVID-19 pandemic that has cancelled and postponed baseball games at all levels this year. 

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In The Cards: 1986 Edmonton Trappers

As a team, the Edmonton Trappers didn’t accomplish a great deal in 1986.

The Triple-A Pacific Coast League (PCL) squad went 68-73 in front of 229,682 fans at John Ducey Park that season, falling short of a postseason berth.

That said, the primary purpose of minor-league baseball teams has never been about winning championships. Player development and converting young athletes into Major League Baseball (MLB) talent has always been the underlying goal of these feeder squads. In that regard, this Trappers team had plenty of success stories. 

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Hill of Tara

“I really still feel that baseball is just such a huge part of my heart and my life.”

Fort Saskatchewan’s Tara Sliwkanich might not be playing baseball right now, but she still feels it has shaped who she is.

The former Baseball Alberta and Baseball Canada star pitcher joined us in a recent episode of Alberta Dugout Stories: The Podcast to talk about her days of playing and the lessons she has taken to her new career.

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Short Stop in Saskatchewan

You could call it glove at first sight.

Western Canadian baseball fans may not have realized it at the time, but they were watching the best defensive shortstop since Ozzie Smith take the field.

That summer of 2009, a scrawny 19-year-old kid from the Dutch Caribbean island of Curacao made his way to the city of 15,000 people in Saskatchewan to suit up for the Yorkton Cardinals at Jubilee Park. 

Majestic moonshots were not his calling card, and if you skipped batting practice you could still witness something special from Andrelton Simmons.

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