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Matt Colbourne in the mix for spot on Team Atlantic


Matt Colbourne knew he had a small window of opportunity to impress  the coaching staff so he put it all on the line in Moncton when he got the call to throw.

Matt Colbourne is shown delivering a pitch to a member of the St. John’s Capitals during a 5-4 round-robin win at the provincial junior A baseball tournament in Mount Pearl earlier this month.

Colbourne, 18-year-old son of Darren and Lisa Colbourne, was one of five budding baseball players from this province who participated in the Toronto Blue Jays T12 Team Atlantic Identification Tournament in Moncton, N.B., last weekend.

T12, a tournament organized and founded by the Toronto Blue Jays Baseball Academy and Hall-of-Famer Roberto Alomar, showcases the best Canadian amateur players with college eligibility. It provides a grooming ground for college and university baseball programs in both Canada and United States with scouts and recruiters sitting in the stands with hopes of landing a gem in the mix.

Colbourne, who stands at six-foot-two, was invited as one of the southpaws in Atlantic Canada looking to crack the 20-man roster. He knew before he went to Moncton that the coaching staff was going to give him 2-3 innings of work to show what he got.

He suited for the Team Atlantic all-star squad in a four-team tournament that also featured 17U provincial teams from New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island who will travel to Saskatoon in late August for the Baseball Canada 17U national baseball championship.

Team Atlantic posted a 2-1 record with Colbourne tossing two innings in a tournament that saw all teams lose a game because Sunday’s slate was wiped out because of inclement weather.

“I figured this  might be the only chance I get to show anything  so I might as well give it my all and I did pretty well,” Colbourne said of his exposure in Moncton. “I felt like I  showcased what I could do in two innings.”

Being invited to the camp was really an honour for him. He enjoyed being immersed in an environment where the calibre of baseball was a notch above anything he’s seen and most importantly he absorbed every bit of information provided by some pretty knowledgeable baseball minds.

“It’s really cool to have different coaches because when you’re stuck in a place like Newfoundland there’s a limited number of coaches you’re going to get and after all they’ve kind of spent their knowledge on you,” he said.

Before the camp opened, five roster spots on the 20-man roster were already filled by personnel the coaching staff figured were elite players in the mix who had a wealth of experience behind them.

That leaves 15 open spots to filled and eight of those will be announced Aug. 17 and the remaining seven will be notified Aug. 28. With some 80 players hoping to wear the Team Atlantic jersey Colbourne knows he may be in tough to crack the roster.

“It’s certainly not going to be an easy task. It will be really cool to make the team, but you never know really. It will be awesome, but if I don’t make the team I obviously won’t be depressed.”

Twitter: @WS_SportsDesk

By the Numbers

Matt’s moment

Newfoundland beat Nova Scotia 3-1

Innings pitched — 2

Runs — 0

Hits — 0

Walks — 1

Strikeouts — 4

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