VICTORIA, B.C. – Summer finally arrived in Victoria, just in time for the recent Victoria Day Long Weekend. Accordingly, the HarbourCats are pleased to announce pre-season events to kick off summer as the club makes its final preparations for its fifth season of West Coast League baseball.
After such a long winter, the HarbourCats can’t wait to step onto the grass at Royal Athletic Park. With this in mind, Head Coach Brian McRae has scheduled a 12-inning game on Tuesday, May 23. First pitch will be thrown at 6:35pm at RAP.
The game will be an exhibition contest against the top men’s baseball players in the Victoria area. The opposition squad will feature players who will compete in the Baseball Canada Men’s Championship presented by Yates Street Taphouse, in Victoria this August. A collection of former HarbourCats players will also suit up.
HarbourCats managing partner Jim Swanson said this is a great chance to get a first look at both the HarbourCats and the host team potential players for the nationals, Aug. 23-27 at RAP.
“It’s been a long time since we had a game at our park, so we want to celebrate by having extra baseball our first time out, and giving people their first chance to get to know Brian and what he brings to the organization,” said Swanson.
The game will be the first game action for coach McRae’s team prior to their season opener in Port Angeles on Thursday, June 1. The 12-inning format of the exhibition game will allow the entire team to see game action.
With just nine days remaining until the HarbourCats open the 2017 West Coast League season in Port Angeles next Thursday, and less than two weeks until Opening Night in Victoria on June 5, head coach Brian McRae has signed three local players to 10-day contracts.
RHP Ethan Skuija, University of British Columbia, Freshman, Victoria, BC, 6-3/200
C Tyson Abbott, Prairie Baseball Academy, Victoria, BC, 6-2/195
Ethan Skuija is a Victoria right-hander who made six appearances for the HarbourCats last season. In eight innings pitched, he allowed eight hits and five walks while recording 11 strikeouts.
Tyson Abbott is another Victoria product who backstopped the Prairie Baseball Academy to their seventh consecutive CCBC Championship this spring as a freshman. Abbott batted .309 with two doubles, a triple and two home runs while driving in 18 runs.
Both players will provide depth in the early going for the HarbourCats while a number of full-season players are still competing in playoffs off their collegiate seasons.