Wednesday, West Coast League Commissioner Rob Neyer announced the winners of three more 2023 League awards: Executive of the Year, Official Scorer of the Year, and the inaugural Broadcaster of the Year Award.
“I am incredibly pleased,” said Neyer, “to present our first Broadcaster of the Year Award to Mike Parker, one of the Pacific Northwest’s few living legends.”
Parker, who’s been calling Corvallis Knights games since their first season (2007), stepped away in 2012 and for most of 2013 and ’14, but has been on the microphone for each of the Knights’ 10 championship runs, and has been a mainstay on the air since 2015.
Before joining the Knights, Parker called professional baseball games with the Class A Eugene Emeralds (1983-1986) and the Triple-A Portland Beavers (1987-1992), but he’s best known in the Northwest as the Voice of the Oregon State Beavers – baseball, football, and men’s basketball – for nearly 25 years, and he’s been honored six times as Oregon Sportscaster of the Year.
“I understand,” Parker said, upon being notified of this award, “that the WCL is a young person’s league and that I am a true outlier. But to go from Beaver baseball in the spring to the Knights in the summer and call such excellent baseball has been one of the great professional pleasures of my life.”
“I am encouraged not only by the high quality of play around the WCL,” Parker continued, “but also by what I hear from the young broadcasters around our league. I have so much to learn from them, especially in their ability to seamlessly weave analytics-driven numbers into their calls.”
This year’s West Coast League Executive of the Year is Gus Farah, who oversees both the Cowlitz Black Bears and Ridgefield Raptors. This summer, both teams not only reached the playoffs, but also drew significantly more fans than a year ago. As general manager of both teams, Farah oversees the day-to-day operations of both teams.
“Gus has been a huge asset for the entire league since he and the Raptors joined the league,” said Commissioner Neyer, “as every day he sets an example for not one, but now two first-class organizations. And when you run two teams, you never get a day off.”
The WCL’s 2023 Official Scorer of the Year is Bob Rose, who scored 28 of the Cowlitz Black Bears’ 29 home game this summer. This was Bob’s and the Black Bears’ first playoff season, but this was hardly Bob’s first go-around, as he’s served as Cowlitz’s official scorer for more than a decade.
“Bob has been an ultra-consistent presence for Cowlitz since the franchise’s origins in 2010,” said Stephen Gall, the League’s Pointstreak (scoring) administrator. “The greatest compliment I can pay to a scorekeeper? I don’t see anything out of the ordinary. No calls or complaints from teams, players, parents, or anyone else; the book is always good, has all the required information. That’s Bob Rose, one of the best in league history.”
West Coast League teams rely on their trained Pointstreak operators to ensure that the league’s players – along with their families, coaches, and fans – have quick and easy access to their accurate statistics, which are featured at Baseball-Reference.com.
About the West Coast League: The West Coast League is the West’s premier summer collegiate baseball league. Encompassing Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, and now Alberta, the WCL showcases pro prospects from major collegiate conferences around the nation. Every summer, the League features unparalleled fan and player experiences, with North America’s best baseball weather and a mix of classic and modern ballparks, all backdropped by the sport’s most stunning scenery. The 2019 MLB amateur draft began with former Corvallis Knight Adley Rutschman selected with the overall No. 1 pick by the Baltimore Orioles, and the 2022 draft featured two West Coast League alumni, Brooks Lee and Gabriel Hughes, among the first 10 picks.