Spring training at Springwood

Parksville’s Quality Foods Royals on the weekend as the local boys of summer showed plenty of jump up at Springwood Park

Parksville’s T.R. Doty

Parksville’s T.R. Doty

Spring is in the air, the clocks sprung forward, and Parksville’s Quality Foods Royals were in great spirits on the weekend as the local boys of summer showed plenty of jump up at Springwood Park for their first outdoor practices on home field.

“I was really impressed with the practices,” Royals’ assistant coach Wes Dieleman said, adding “the energy was really good. They’ve been cooped up indoors for the last two months and it was evident they were really excited about playing outside. It was great to get out there, and for the two hours both days it was complete focus. They had so much energy. They were having fun.”

Dieleman is in his third season helping coach the local BCPBL club and was filling in for Royals’ skipper Dave Wallace who is in Phoenix for his annual MLB spring training pilgrimage.

“It’s nice to be dry and warm,” he said of practicing indoors at Arbutus Meadows, adding “it’s great to have such a nice facility — you’re not going to find a team in the league with a better indoor practice facility — but there’s nothing like getting outdoors. It’s why they play the game, and on a nice sunny day like Saturday I was glad to be outdoors too.”

They worked on arm conditioning, agility drills and plenty of ground ball drills along with some live hitting.

“They’ve been hitting whiffle balls the last two months, so they were very happy about that (facing live ball).”

Dieleman said it looks like the Royals will have about 18 players on the roster this year — up slightly from last season.

About a dozen players showed up for the weekend at Springwood, which he said is what they expected, adding the Royals have four players — two returnees and two new — that are in Arizona working out with Protrain Baseball Academy headed by longtime MLB scout, B.C.’s Jim Chapman.

Tuning up south of the border were returning seniors Calvin Sandau and Clarke Ohman from Vancouver, along with newcomers Cameron Forbes from White Rock and Alex Hendra-Brown from Victoria.

“I think that bodes well for the organization,” Dieleman said. “It’s no coincidence that players want to come here. Everyone thinks that the program (Dave) Wallace and (pitching coach) Jim Seredick run here is top notch, and it’s well respected round the league.”

The Royals were one of the youngest squads in the BCPBL last year, but are not  this season as more than half are Grade 12’s, “so I don’t think inexperience is going to be a factor, and from what I’ve seen, the arm strength and power of the bats has improved dramatically. I’m looking forward to a good season,” he said, adding “I don’t know about wins and losses, but in terms of development you can see quite an improvement over last year.

“That one year,” he said, “makes a huge difference.”

The Royals are back at it up at Springwood Wednesday evening for another practice.

GAME ON: The Royals open their regular season against the Mariners in Victoria April 13 and return home the next day to host the Victoria Eagles in a double header starting at  12:30 p.m.

Just Posted

The proposed running track upgrade at Ballenas Secondary is now on course. (PQB News file photo)
RDN: Parksville track upgrade project gains some traction

Staff recommends board approve $204,000 funding

The total earnings of Town of Qualicum Beach council and mayor amounted to $186,649 in 2020, including expenses. (Town of Qualicum Beach photo)
Nine Qualicum Beach town employees earned more than $100K in 2020

Mayor and council received earnings totalling $186,649

(PQB News file photo)
Fireworks report highlights enforcement challenges for Regional District of Nanaimo

Director: ‘I just think it’s wasting everybody’s time’

Terry Mazzei next to a truck after it was struck by lightning, with him inside, on Wednesday afternoon, June 9. He walked away from the incident without injury and the truck sustained only mild damage; a blown front tire and newly broken gas gauge. (Wendy Mazzei photo)
Nanoose Bay man walks away unscathed after lightning strike

VIDEO: ‘We like to think that his dad was watching over him’

Douglas Holmes, current Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District chief administrative officer, is set to take on that position at the Regional District of Nanaimo come late August. (Submitted photo)
Regional District of Nanaimo’s next CAO keen to work on building partnerships

Douglas Holmes to take over top administrator role with RDN this summer

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Premier John Horgan speaks as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, right, and health minister Adrian Dix look on during a press conference to update on the province’s fall pandemic preparedness plan during a press conference from the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. officials to provide details on Step 2 of COVID reopening plan Monday

Step 2 could allow for larger gatherings and a resumption of recreational travel

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Most Read