05/31/2013 7:31 PM -
The Okotoks Dawgs held their annual Media Day yesterday, May 30th, two days before the start of the season. Representatives from the Okotoks Western Wheel, Sun Country, 99.7, the Eagle 100.9, AM 1140, Global Calgary, Shaw TV, the Calgary Sun and the Calgary Herald came out.
John Ircandia, managing director of the Dawgs, said this media day had the largest turnout since the team moved to Okotoks in 2007.
At the press conference, the Dawgs introduced the 2013 roster, coaching staff, front office staff and new home and away jerseys for the season. They also announced about the Blue Jays Honda Super Camp coming July 31st to August 2nd. There will also be the Roberto Alomar and Friends Charity Home Run Derby on August 1st.
Players posed for photos and were interviewed through the hour, while the media had their pick of the story angle. The increased media coverage could result in even more support and higher attendance for the team. Many of the players were sought after for interviews, but a few had unique reasons. Jordan Procyshen, a Dawg last year, will be attending the Kansas City Royals draft camp this weekend. Dominic Poretta, Jamie Wilson, Jerod Bartnik, Zac Asman and Tony DiMartino were also pulled aside for multiple discussions with reporters.
Only having five returning players, the Dawgs 2013 team will look a lot different from the previous year, especially with new coaches, too. AJ Fystro returns to the Dawgs after leading them to championships in 2004, 2008 and 2009. Fystro coached at the University of Calgary for the past seven years.
The Dawgs roster features players from Arizona State University, Gonzaga University, Washington State University, Eastern Michigan University, University of Tennessee and Lewis-Clark State, amongst others.
The team hopes that these high-caliber players from such reputable sports colleges will help lead this program back to the WMBL finals, as the Dawgs haven’t raised the trophy since 2009.
Ircandia, managing director, is happy with the way the WMBL is going and noted the caliber of the game and players is rising.
“Now that the WMBL adopted a pure summer collegiate format, we can expect years of high quality baseball. Like they used to say in the Cape Cod league, you can catch the players “ ‘before they sign the million dollar contracts.’ ”
The Dawgs open their 2013 campaign Saturday, June 2nd in Lethbridge. The home opener is Friday, June 7th against the Edmonton Prospects.