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Tuesday, February 20 2024 / Published in News


Baseball Network ranks Ircandia 14th Most Influential

Okotoks, AB – The Okotoks Dawgs Baseball Club and the Dawgs Baseball Academy (the “Dawgs”) are proud to announce that founding and managing director, John Ircandia, has been ranked as Canada’s 14th Most Influential Person in Baseball by the prestigious Canadian Baseball Network (“CBN”). The annual rankings are a “Who’s Who” in the sport and include current and former Major League owners, executives, players, coaches, scouts, and broadcasters. The 2023 rankings were led by Alex Anthopoulous, who as president and general manager of the Atlanta Braves has built a perennial powerhouse in Major League Baseball. Other notables included Robbie Thomson, manager of the Philadelphia Phillies, Edward Rogers of Rogers Communication, owners of the Toronto Blue Jays at #4, Cooperstown Hall of Famers, Larry Walker and Fergie Jenkins who were ranked 5th, outstanding Canadian broadcaster, Dan Shulman who was recognized as the 10th Most Influential, Greg Hamilton, manager of Canada’s National Teams, at #11, and Blue Jays slugger, Vladimar Guererro who came in at #12.

In ranking Ircandia as the 14th Most Influential, the CBN recognized the phenomenal success of Ircandia’s Dawgs both on and off the field. With crowds exceeding 4500 fans per game, 150,000 per summer season, the Dawgs were the 3rd top draw in all of summer college baseball according to the U.S. online resource, Ballpark Digest. Further, based on a poll conducted by the same U.S. resource, Seaman Stadium, home of the Dawgs, was recognized as the “Best Ballpark in Summer College Baseball in North America”! On the field, the college Dawgs captured back-to-back championships in the Western Canadian Baseball League, Canada’s premier summer collegiate circuit. Dawgs players also garnered success in the professional ranks with Kody Funderburk making his Major League debut with the Minnesota Twins, MLB All Star, Andrew Kittredge moving from the Tampa Bay Rays to the St. Louis Cardinals, Alejo Lopez seeing action with the Cincinnati Reds. Meanwhile former Dawg, Jacob Melton, a second-round pick of the Houston Astros has been ranked among the club’s top prospects and Academy grads, Gavin Logan, Tristan Peters, Matt Wilkinson and Matt Lloyd are rising in the ranks with the Arizona Diamondbacks, Tampa Bay Rays, Cleveland Guardians and St. Louis Cardinals, respectively. Meanwhile in MLB’s coaching ranks, original Dawg, Calgary’s own, Jim Henderson, who enjoyed success as a relief pitcher with the New York Mets and Milwaukee Brewers, was named Assistant Pitching Coach for MLB’s Brewers. Further, not resting on past successes, the Dawgs also added a number of fan-friendly upgrades to their extraordinary $25 Million, state of the art, complex including the popular Kore 4 (+14) Corner, the Dawgs Beach Bar and the Golden Sombrero Cantina. In the current offseason under Ircandia’s guidance the Dawgs are adding a new 80-foot ribbon videoboard and to address swelling crowds, an all-new seating section, expanded patios and field level suites.

The CBN also noted the extraordinary success of the Dawgs Baseball Academy now training over 125 youth players under the tutelage of former Giants minor leaguer, general manager, Tyler Hollick and head coaches, former Can-Am Pitcher of the Year, Jeff Duda, Lou Pote, who won a World Series ring as a pitcher with the Anaheim Angels, and Tyler Milton. This off season the Dawgs have invested in state-of-the-art technology to offer further development opportunities to their young athletes. With a challenging schedule that includes extensive competition against leading U.S. travel teams, the 18U Dawgs have been ranked as the 3rd top youth team in North America by prestigious U.S. scouting service, Perfect Game. In addition, the Dawgs Academy has enjoyed phenomenal success in attracting scholarships for graduating players to such elite U.S. baseball programs as Oregon State University, University of Oregon, Washington State University, University of Washington, University of Tennessee, University of Miami, Arizona State University, University of Utah, University of Michigan, Missouri State University and St. John’s University. In fact, this past fall, nationally ranked Oregon State spent two weeks training with the Dawgs at Seaman Stadium.

For further information about the Dawgs contact:

Okotoks Dawgs Baseball Club

Attention: Tyler Hollick, General Manager Phone: 403.262.3294
Email: office@dawgsbaseball.ca


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Seaman Stadium
Okotoks Dawgs Baseball Club
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Okotoks, AB T1S 1A5