The Corner Brook Molson Men’s Fastpitch Softball League needs arms if it’s going to have any legs.
“You’ve got to develop pitching, or else the league is not going to sustain itself any length of time,” said organizer Barry Smith.
The league held its annual general meeting recently and, while it appears the league will once again feature three clubs, there aren’t many players who are comfortable standing on the mound.
“I think it’s a bit of a confidence issue,” Smith said, noting the few who are pitching currently learned to do so at a young age. “Guys are coming in to a men’s league trying to learn to pitch, trying to learn a new skill at 19-20 years old ... it’s a bit scary.”
In order to make the position more appealing, league organizers are hoping teams will engage in a gentleman’s agreement to start new, young pitchers against one another and leave the veterans to pitch against each other.
“We’re looking at a situation where we’re losing more pitchers than we’re gaining,” said Smith.
Another effort to entice new players is to clean up onfield behaviour and stress a more laidback, yet still competitive atmosphere.
“The game of fastpitch is still about having fun,” said Smith.
June 2 will be the likely starting date for the regular season this year, with games taking place three nights a week — two per team — at Fred Basha Memorial Park A Diamond and, possibly, the field at Ambrose O’Reilly Memorial Park.
Umpires are also in demand and there will be a clinic held if enough people step up to take part.
Interested players and umpires can email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.