The Cowlitz Black Bears are pleased to announce they will host the 2016 West Coast League All-Star Game on Tuesday, July 19, at David Story Field in Longview, Washington. This showcase event will feature over forty of the WCL’s top players in the league’s annual exhibition.
“It’s a great honor for this community to host our league’s most prestigious event,” Black Bears general manager Jim Appleby said. “We are planning an exciting and memorable event for the players, coaches and our wonderful fans.”
The 2016 WCL All-Star Game will highlight the league’s top talent. Top prospects from each of the 11 teams in the West Coast League will be represented in Longview. The teams are located throughout Washington, Oregon and British Columbia. The North All-Star team is made up of players from the Kelowna Falcons, Victoria HarbourCats, Bellingham Bells, Walla Walla Sweets and Wenatchee AppleSox. The South team is assembled from the Bend Elks, Corvallis Knights, Cowlitz Black Bears, Gresham GreyWolves, Kitsap BlueJackets and Yakima Valley Pippins.
The event marks the ninth All-Star Game in West Coast League history. Last year’s event saw 1,985 fans watch the South beat the North, 3-0, at Joe Martin Field in Bellingham. Kitsap first baseman, Jake Scudder of Kansas State, was named the game’s MVP. Oregon State’s Cadyn Grenier, representing Bend, was named the game’s top prospect by Seattle Mariners director of amateur scouting, Tom McNamara. Prior to the All-Star Game, Kelowna’s Hunter Villanueva of Fresno Pacific won the ASG Home Run Derby as the Falcons’ slugger blasted five homers.
The WCL All-Star Game was established in 2006. Its inaugural host was Wenatchee. In 2007 and 2008, the ASG was held in Bellingham and Moses Lake, respectively, before taking a brief hiatus. The All-Star Game was brought back in 2011, and hosted by Corvallis at Goss Stadium. In 2012, Walla Walla hosted and in 2013, the Victoria HarbourCats set a league single-game attendance record by drawing 4,210 to Royal Athletic Park. Festivities and the Home Run Derby were held in 2014 before rain cancelled the game in Klamath Falls.
Players will be able to take part in a special scouting combine held before the Home Run Derby. “We expect scouts from most, if not all, of the 30 major league teams to be here for the entire day of festivities,” Appleby said. “This gives the players a chance to work out in a combine like setting with scouts on the field and in attendance watching.”
The Home Run Derby features the league’s top power hitters, and will precede the All-Star Game, starting at 6:00 p.m. The first pitch of the 2016 West Coast League All-Star Game will follow at 7:30 p.m.
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