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WCL Alumni Shane Bieber Wins AL Cy Young Award

Wednesday, former Cowlitz Black Bears pitcher Shane Bieber was named the winner of the 2020 American League Cy Young Award after a dominating season for the Cleveland Indians. Bieber is the first WCL alumni to win a Cy Young Award. “We couldn’t be more thrilled for Shane Bieber, the Cowlitz Black Bears, and the entire …

Black Bears Hire Van Tol as Next Head Coach

Monday, the West Coast League’s Cowlitz Black Bears unveiled their new Head Coach: Gary Van Tol, who’s been teaching and coaching young players in the Pacific Northwest for three decades. “Gary is the ideal fit for the Black Bears and our community,” Cowlitz GM Gus Farah said. “Coach Van Tol will recruit, organize, and compete …

42 WCL Alumni Appeared in MLB During 2020 Season

During the pandemic-shortened 2020 Major League Baseball season, 42 alumni of West Coast League teams played in the major leagues. A number of alumni posted outstanding seasons, such as Cleveland’s Cy Young Award candidate Shane Bieber (Cowlitz, 2014) and Seattle Mariners ace Marco Gonzales (Wenatchee, 2010). Other notable WCL alumni include pitchers Detroit’s Matt Boyd …

West Coast League Expands to Edmonton

Western North America’s premier summer collegiate baseball league continues to grow with Tuesday’s announcement from Baseball Edmonton introducing the Edmonton Riverhawks as the West Coast League’s 15th member team. The Riverhawks now join the Nanaimo NightOwls and Kamloops NorthPaws among three WCL expansion teams, all in Canada, set to begin play next June. The newest …

Kamloops NorthPaws Newest WCL Expansion Team

Wednesday, the West Coast League welcomed the Kamloops NorthPaws to western North America’s premier summer collegiate baseball league. “As Canada’s ‘Tournament Capital,’ Kamloops is obviously a hotbed for amateur sports in British Columbia, so collegiate summer ball is a perfect fit,” said WCL commissioner Rob Neyer. “As a new team, the NorthPaws face a stiff …

Nanaimo NightOwls to Take Flight in 2021

The lights, the history, the proud First Nations lore. And the world-famous dessert that helped make the City of Nanaimo a household name, all combined. The ownership group of the expansion team for the 2021 season, set to call historic Serauxmen Stadium home in the West Coast League, along with the team’s Founding Sponsor, Island …

WCL Announces New Merchandise Partnership with Teambrown Apparel

Today the West Coast League, one of North America’s premier summer collegiate baseball leagues, announced a new partnership with Teambrown Apparel to produce WCL-branded merchandise for the league’s fans around the Pacific Northwest and the rest of the baseball world, with items available immediately. “We initially became aware of the WCL because of their unique …

Former WCL Players Sign as Non-Drafted Free Agents

*Updated as of August 16, 2020 More West Coast League alums are gearing up to start their professional careers, signing as free agents with Major League organizations since the conclusion of MLB’s 2020 amateur draft. In addition to the five WCLers selected in this year’s five-round draft, 16 more players have now agreed to terms …

Five WCL Alums Selected in 2020 MLB Draft

Five alums of West Coast League teams were taken in MLB’s 2020 amateur draft, conducted June 10 and 11. With the Milwaukee Brewers’ selection of Garrett Mitchell with the 20th overall pick, 2020 marks the fourth straight year with a WCL standout drafted in the first round. Mitchell, a UCLA outfielder, played for the WCL’s …

WCL Cancels 2020 Season

This week the West Coast League’s board of directors voted to cancel its 2020 summer collegiate season, due to pandemic-related safety guidelines and travel restrictions across Washington and Oregon. Concurrently, league members Cowlitz, Port Angeles, Ridgefield, Walla Walla, and Yakima Valley are cancelling their respective seasons. Also this week, the League set June 4 as …

WCL Alums Named 2020 Collegiate Baseball All-Americans

Seven West Coast League alums were named to Collegiate Baseball’s All-America teams released yesterday including first-team All-Americans Zach Pettway of UCLA, A.J. Lewis of Eastern Kentucky and Kenyon Yovan of Oregon. The teams were selected based on games played prior to the stoppage of the college baseball season due to Covid-19. Pettway shined during his summer …

An Update Regarding COVID-19 and the WCL

On Friday, May 8, the West Coast League and its member teams released the following statement regarding their 2020 season… The West Coast League is closely monitoring the Covid-19 policies and announcements issued by federal, state, provincial, and local authorities in Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia. Considering the latest information at hand, the WCL has …

WCL Urges Fans to #StayHome4Baseball

Wednesday morning, all twelve West Coast League teams launched the #StayHome4Baseball campaign, encouraging fans to stay home and flatten the coronavirus curve. The #StayHome4Baseball campaign challenges not only fans, but also baseball teams everywhere, at all levels, to help limit and ultimately stop the spread of COVID-19. “It’s not often,” WCL Commissioner Rob Neyer said, …

An Update Regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the WCL

About the West Coast League: The West Coast League (WCL) is the premier summer collegiate baseball league west of the Mississippi. Situated in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, the fifteen-year-old, twelve-team, professionally operated wood-bat league showcases pro prospects from major conferences around the nation. Every summer, the league features unparalleled fan and player experiences, with the best …

Cirillo Ready to Lead Sweets

By Rob Neyer Sure, you already know Jeff Cirillo as an outstanding Major League Baseball player: fourteen seasons in the majors, twice an All-Star, .296 career batting average, Gold Glove-quality defense (even if the voters somehow never quite noticed). You might not know what Cirillo’s been doing since 2007, because he’s kept a relatively low …

WCL Announces Pitch Smart Implementation

A new pact further solidifies the West Coast League’s commitment to safe pitching practices. The WCL has been approved at full compliance level by Pitch Smart for the 2020 season. The Pitch Smart program is a joint initiative between Major League Baseball and USA Baseball that provides guidelines and best pitching practices to help reduce …

Victoria Skipper Reflects on Baseball Journey

By Rob Neyer Todd Haney, the ex-major leaguer who just signed a multi-year extension as the Victoria HabourCats’ Head Coach, wasn’t really supposed to play on baseball’s biggest stage. Coming out of high school in Waco, Texas, he was barely recruited and wound up at tiny Panola College. While Haney did finish his college career …

Exploring Baseball History of WCL South Cities

By Rob Neyer In part one of this two-part series, we looked at the rich baseball history of the West Coast League’s six North Division cities. Here in part two, we’ll look at the South’s similarly fascinating baseball legacy… Obviously, the history of summer baseball in Portland, Oregon—now home to the internationally famous Pickles—is far …

Exploring Baseball History of WCL North Cities

By Rob Neyer Baseball abhors a vacuum. Or perhaps it’s baseball fans who abhor a vacuum. Because I’ve noticed over the years that even when “baseball” leaves a town or city, for whatever reasons, “baseball” usually returns before long. And there is perhaps no better example than today’s West Coast League, now playing in a …

Former MLB All-Star Jeff Cirillo to Manage the Sweets

Two-time Major League All-Star Jeff Cirillo has been announced as the new manager for the Walla Walla Sweets. Cirillo, currently a scout for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, had a 14-year playing career in the Major Leagues that included the Milwaukee Brewers, Colorado Rockies, San Diego Padres, Minnesota Twins, Arizona Diamondbacks and Seattle Mariners. …

AppleSox to Host 2020 WCL All-Star Game

For the second time in franchise history, the Wenatchee AppleSox will host the West Coast League All-Star Game. The AppleSox hosted the inaugural WCL All-Star Game in 2006 and will become the league’s second team to host multiple All-Star Games when they welcome the 13th mid-summer classic in WCL history to Wenatchee. “I am very …

WCL Announces 2020 Schedule

The West Coast League released its official 2020 schedule today, as announced by Commissioner Rob Neyer. “Because of the tremendous geographical scope of our league,” Neyer said, “putting together a schedule is more art than science, and there will always be travel challenges. But we’re confident that our 2020 schedule will showcase our league’s great …

Perfect Game Unveils WCL Top 25 Prospects List

Perfect Game announced on Tuesday their list of the top prospects in the WCL this summer. The list, which was compiled by former Wenatchee AppleSox player Connor Spencer, named Brooks Lee of the Corvallis Knights as the top prospect. Lee was ranked by MLB.com as the No. 37 overall prospect going into this year’s MLB …

Corvallis Named Perfect Game Summer Collegiate Team of the Year

It was announced this morning that the West Coast League champion Corvallis Knights were selected by Perfect Game USA as the Summer Collegiate Team of the Year. The Knights are the first team in WCL history to be honored by Perfect Game as their Summer College Baseball Team of the Year. Perfect Game is the …

John Jensen

The West Coast League’s Moss Adams Player of the Week and Pitcher of the Week, as announced by league commissioner Rob Neyer, are UC Irvine outfielder John Jensen of the Portland Pickles and Mt. Hood Community College pitcher Hayden Minich of the Ridgefield Raptors for the week of August 5-August 11. Jensen went 13-for-25 this …

Brock Ephan

The West Coast League’s Moss Adams Player of the Week and Pitcher of the Week, as announced by league commissioner Rob Neyer, are Lewis-Clark State infielder Brock Ephan of the Walla Walla Sweets and Baylor pitcher Branson Wilson of the Victoria HarbourCats for the week of July 29-August 4. Ephan went 10-for-25 with 11 RBIs …

WCL All-Star Game Rosters Announced

West Coast League Commissioner Rob Neyer announced the league’s all-star selections for its 2019 All-Star Game this morning. This year’s mid-summer classic is being held Tuesday, July 23 in Bend at Vince Genna Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 pm. “Overseeing the West Coast League’s All-Star selection process is both a blessing and a …

Gil Luna

The West Coast League’s Moss Adams Player of the Week and Pitcher of the Week, as announced by league commissioner Rob Neyer, are University of Utah outfielder/catcher Briley Knight of the Corvallis Knights and University of Arizona pitcher Gil Luna of the Bend Elks for the week of July 8-14. Knight went 9-for-22 with 8 …

Brooks Lee

The West Coast League’s Moss Adams Player of the Week and Pitcher of the Week, as announced by league commissioner Rob Neyer, are Cal Poly San Luis Obispo infielder Brooks Lee of the Corvallis Knights and Incarnate Word pitcher Aaron Celestino of the Victoria HarbourCats for the week of July 1-7. Both honorees represent the …

Joe Magrisi

The West Coast League’s Moss Adams Player of the Week and Pitcher of the Week, as announced by league commissioner Rob Neyer, are Baylor infielder Chase Wehsener of the Victoria HarbourCats and Cal State Fullerton pitcher Joe Magrisi of the Yakima Valley Pippins for the week of June 17-23. Wehsener went 12-for-28 with two home …