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Pasadena welcomes Deer Lake to the minor baseball fold as its numbers experience steady growth

Keegan Deering of the Pasadena Pirates competes in the 2017 mosquito AA baseball championship in this Western Star file photo.
Keegan Deering of the Pasadena Pirates competes in the 2017 mosquito AA baseball championship in this Western Star file photo. - Star file photo

Greg Whelan has enjoyed watching the numbers grow in the Pasadena minor baseball system, but he’s excited about having Deer Lake join the list of communities offering the game to boys and girls interested in spending the summer on the diamond.

Whelan, the technical director of the Pasadena program, said their numbers have been rising steadily over the past few years and he believes a lot of it has to do with the excitement of the Toronto Blue Jays making a playoff push a few years ago.

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But, he’s quick to point out there is also one other important factor in the growth.

“Pasadena has a lot of young families moving in, so our numbers seem like they’re going up and it don’t seem like they’re going to be going down anytime soon,” Whelan said Monday afternoon.

Deer Lake is poised to offer a minor baseball program this summer and that’s going to mean Pasadena will lose some players, but he figures both communities have enough young boys and girls to run successful programs and work together to make baseball a great experience for those who want to play the game.

He has no idea what the numbers will be like for either program, but he’s thinking Deer Lake will still attract some of the older players from Deer Lake because getting older youth on the diamond may be a tough task, but regardless of what happens he’s excited about Deer Lake joining the mix.

“The more communities playing baseball the better because there’s more teams to play and more competition. That’s the way I look at it,” he said.

He said there have been a number of good players from Deer Lake who came up through the Pasadena minor baseball system who he understands will take on coaching duties in Deer Lake so that’s something he views as positive for the development of the Deer Lake program.

“So, I’m thinking they should be in good hands in Deer Lake,” he said.

Pasadena will be holding some indoor training sessions in the next few weeks and when the weather warms up the plan is to get the players on the field.

Until that happens, the Pasadena minor baseball program will be looking to fill the vacant president’s role on the executive after long-time baseball supporter Paul Briffett made it known last year that he wouldn’t be running this year.

The Pasadena minor baseball program will fill some of the other vacant executive positions at its annual general meeting tonight 7 p.m. at the Pasadena fire hall.

Anybody looking for more information on the Pasadena minor baseball program can contact Whelan at gregory_whelan@hotmail.com

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