Excellent Adventure Day # 98
Short Timers in Southern Ontario
We headed back across the Canada border on a lovely Monday evening in Mid July for another two-park day on the Excellent Adventure…stops #107 and #108.
Both Hamilton, our first stop, and Welland, the second, were not long for the world of affiliated Minor League baseball after our visit. Hamilton moved after the 1992 season and Welland left after 1994. Oddly enough, Hamilton had moved from Erie, PA – our stop of the previous night in 1988 and Erie is where Welland moved when the Erie Sailors themselves moved to Dutchess County, New York.
The two parks were both pretty nice, however, and it was a lovely evening. You will get a look at Bernie Arbour Stadium and the Welland Sports Complex on this Friday’s Week #14 video.
The home teams won both games that Monday night although we did not keep score at either of them because we would be leaving the first early and wouldn’t arrive at the second until well into the game.
Hamilton opened up a big early lead while we were there and went on to win 8-2. Outfielder John Mabry, who played with a number of teams over a 17-year Major League Career was playing right field that night and shows up in our video.
The second game was much more exciting, however. Infielder Tony Womack, who also went on to a long Major League career was on that Pirates team but it was an outfielder, Tony Mitchell, who stole the show. He hit a three-run homer with two outs in the bottom of the 9th to give the Pirates a walk-off come-from-behind 10-8 win over the Oneonta Yankees. Mitchell would get as high as a half season at Triple A in 1996 but never made it to the big leagues.
Hamilton, Ontario had only a Short-Season Class-A baseball team for four years but the city is in the Major Leagues of Canadian football. The Hamilton Tiger Cats made it all the way to the Grey Cup last season but lost to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
If you have never heard of Welland, Ontario, this page on Wikipedia will help explain why there is a giant tanker ship on that Pirates 1991 program.
Just this week two ships apparently collided on the Welland Canal.
Two more virtual stops tomorrow in the area around Buffalo. First, it’s St. Catherines, Ontario and then on to Niagara Falls, New York.