The 2015 North Shore Twins
2015 SEASON OUTLOOK
Though bittersweet, the 2014 season bodes well for the North Shore Twins in 2015. Both the Premier Twins and Junior Twins sat near the top of their respective leagues for the majority of the 2014 regular season, and advanced to the Championship game in the Provincial Playoffs; unfortunately, both lost their final by a single run (the Juniors lost to North Delta and the Premiers, playing their third game of the day, lost to Langley in extra innings).
In addition, the Premier Twins placed five (the most in the PBL) players on the Provincial Selects team and one, Will McAffer (RHP) on the Junior National Team, while the Junior Twins sent several players to the PNCs. Between its returning veterans and the Juniors moving up, the 2015 Twins are looking at another squad deep in talent and driven to challenge for the PBL provincial title.
The Premier Twins will once again be lead by Canadian Baseball Hall-of-Famer John Haar and, with the assistance of Brooks McNiven, Bryon Kennedy, Leo Gauthier, Mike Mitzel and Dave Hole, it will field one of the better coaching staffs in the PBL.
On the field the Twins will rely on the returning seniors to lead the way. Nic Favaro will be tasked to control the defense and manage the pitching staff from behind the plate, as well as hit in the middle of the order and drive in runs. Brandon Currie, Matthew Reyes and MacGregor Sharpe will also see time behind the plate.
Reyes and 12th graders Taylor Wright and Robert Hemer will be expected to solidify the infield. Newcomers Cole Ensing, Ryan Fonseca and Spencer Lindeman should also see significant time on the infield, perhaps providing the Twins with the most infield depth in a number of years. Grade10 Steven Moretto who came up to play shortstop in the Final Four last year will see the majority of his innings at short again this season, and may even step in behind the plate.
The outfield will be anchored by grade 12 Geoff Ehresman who will also be looked to as a run producer. Trevor Fonseca, Ryan Fonseca and newcomer to the Twins, Nick Carusi, all of whom add a lot of speed to the lineup, will see significant time in the outfield with Ehresman.
The Premier Twins will have a very deep pitching staff once again this season, led by Matteo Vincelli, Braeden Toikka, Robert Hemer and Junior National Team member Will McAffer. Stefan Helyar and Evan Lawrence, both new to the Twins this season, will challenge for a starting spots. Moving up from Junior and adding to the pitching depth are Trevor and Ryan Fonseca, James Bradwell, Reece Huntley and Cole Ensing. The Premiers also expect to dip into the Junior ranks and see regular mound appearances from a pair of very talented grade 10s, Jack Decooman and Sam Shoemaker.
Once again it should be a very exciting season for the North Shore Twins senior team with depth throughout the roster. The team will be looking to challenge the top teams in the league and make a push to be in the Final Four come August.
About the North Shore Twins
North Shore Twins has been the top program for elite 16- to 18-year-old baseball players on Vancouver's North Shore since 1990. In more recent years the program has expanded to include teams for younger players as well: North Shore Junior Twins and North Shore Prep Twins. The three teams now comprise the North Shore Twins Baseball Club, which is operated by coaches with professional and/or college baseball credentials and dedicated volunteers. The club is based at Parkgate Park in North Vancouver, BC.
The Premier Twins is a member of the prestigious British Columbia Premier Baseball League ("BCPBL"), recognized as the foremost baseball league in Canada for high-school-age players, which is comprised of twelve teams: North Shore, Abbotsford, Coquitlam, Fraser Valley, Kelowna, Langley, Nanaimo, North Delta, Parksville, Victoria (2), and White Rock. The team plays approximately 90 games per season including league and tournament games throughout British Columbia and the US.
The Premier Twins' roster is primarily made up of North Shore players, with others from across the Lower Mainland choosing to join the program. Players are selected for their ability, commitment and desire to ultimately compete at the college or professional level. The program aims to provide the environment, guidance and skills—physical, mental and emotional included—that will allow these dedicated baseball players to reach for their dreams. Since its inception the North Shore Twins has been highly successful in meeting its goals.
Under a series of Head Coaches including Buff Schemmer, Dave Empey, Canadian-Hall-of-Famer John Haar (he heads up the North Shore Twins Baseball Club and has returned to the Head Coach position after a period with the Prep Twins), Jordan Wilson, Larson Bauck, many of its graduates have been able to play baseball while pursuing their post-secondary academics at US and Canadian colleges and universities thanks to athletic and academic scholarships and other financial assistance. In addition, fourteen Twins have been drafted into professional baseball. The team’s most famous draftee is Gibson’s Ryan Dempster, and the most recent is Lachlan Fontaine, drafted by the Seattle Mariners in 2013.