Speaking of Excitable Canadians

While Brett Lawrie’s intense romp around the bases keeps most of the Maple Boners at attention these days, it seems another great Canadian hope is on his way to the big leagues.

John Sickels of Minor League Ball selected Phillippe Aumont from the Phillies organization as his prospect of the day. Aumont is best known among Canadian baseball fans for his dramatic turn in the 2009 World Baseball Classic, pitching himself into and then directly out of a jam when the game was tight.

Aumont then went from Seattle to Philly as part of the Cliff Lee trade but struggled when first arriving in the Philly system. After a few failed bids in the starting rotation, the Phils moved the 6’7″ Quebecker into the bullpen were the good times began.

However, in short stints he’s able to maintain his mechanics more easily, giving him better command when used in the bullpen. There’s nothing wrong with his arm: his fastball hits 95-97 MPH and has strong sanction action. He mixes it with a hard curveball, and the combination is devastating.

Aumont’s famous strikeouts of Youkilis and Curtis Granderson will forever live in my memory as that WBC game was one of the finest I ever attended. Here’s hoping Aumont can throw enough strikes to stick in the bigs for a long time yet. The world needs more Gordie Dougies and Quebec needs a legit MLB player to rally behind.

Comments (6)

  1. You guys shit on people for liking Lawrie for being Canadian, but are now saying the world needs more Dougies and Gordies. Please confirm once and for all whether it’s cool to cheer for someone because they’re Canadian. Thanks.

    • Just because people do doesn’t make it right. If Phillippe Aumont gets people in Quebec into the Jays, that’s good. Sad that it takes that and sad that Lawrie will get more rope than more fiery/athletic guys born in different parts of the world.

  2. Agreed with Darnell above that you and Stoets are consistently inconsistent on this point

  3. Drew has a maple boner.

    I get that it really doesn’t matter where a guy is from… but cheering for Canadians in MLB is relevant because it’s a less traveled path than an American/Dominican/Puerto Rican. Also Canadians in MLB automatically represent the country by being on the sports highest stage.

    I would never make personnel decisions based on nationality but there’s no harm in rooting a little extra for a Canadian who has made it to The Show.

  4. As a parent in Ontario, I’m finding it amazing more and more each year that Canadians do as well as they do, considering the lack of coaching and organization in the province. Sticking with the point for this blog, any time a Canadian does well, he should feel his country behind him because he is a leader for our youth to follow.

    Getting back to my side note, especially in the Southern Ontario area, it has been my experience to see kids being pawns in a disorganized, sad soap opera we call baseball. Many of the coaches are either just parents helping out in the house leagues (not really knowing what they are doing or how to help) and the travel teams tend to get their back hairs up any time someone wants to have some type of central authority. I’ve seen umpires and travel coaches asking parents what the rules of baseball are or total confusion about calls. Often times, because of this, a Canadian has to shop his wares in the US to get looked at and hopefully can escape the Ontario abyss by getting to a Division I school that can mold him into something. It doesn’t sound like the same is happening in BC where other players and parents speak well of their organizations. All I have heard from parents in Southern Ontario are complaints.

    Not to sound like sour grapes, but even though my son’s Pee Wee team is undefeated in a house league, they have had to put up with teams getting umpires to throw games or change players in their batting order, hoping our team wouldn’t notice, and many other questionable conduct from multiple teams. This is house league. The travel ball is just as bad. I hope my son goes far in baseball, but I’m more interested in him loving the game for its own merits and if he ends his career doing other things I will still be happy for him. For parents and coaches in this province to try to cheat and live vicariously through their kids to win are not only setting poor examples, they are destroying hope that other young ball players will get their shot like Brett Lawrie and Larry Walker got.

    The Americans are lightyears ahead of us in Ontario when it comes to baseball and it is because they start them at the early age with not just competent coaches, but the best coaches. They are organized and do not shy away from fixing issues when they come up. Southern Ontario baseball (from sources I have) from mosquito to 18 years and up is so crooked and unorganized.

    If anyone thinks otherwise, I would invite you to Southern Ontario ball and take a look and the things I’ve seen and heard.

  5. @Brando

    It certainly is interesting that the majority of Canadians in the MLB – and certainly the best ones (outside Votto) – are all from BC. Canadians would be so quick to dismiss any of these claims as something Amercians would do. Seems we’re no better than our southerly neighbours, as The Wrestler proved on episode 1 of Bachelor Pad.

    /hangs head in shame

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