Charlottetown preparing to host Canadian senior men's fastball tournament in 2014
Chris Craig, right, celebrates a home run with Peter Mersereau.
The season just ended, but the Charlottetown Gahan House Fawcetts are already laying the groundwork for next season.
The Fawcetts will host the Canadian senior fastball championship in late August.
“We’re building a team to win,” said first baseman Mark Arsenault. “It’s all about winning the ring this time. It’s all about the gold medal.
“We’ve been there, we’ve played in a final, but there’s no mistake about it, we’re building this team to win nationals.”
The team has commitments from O’Leary Summerside Chrysler Dodge Eagles pitcher Mitch Hardy and outfielder Jeff Ellsworth.
They recently added Ontario residents Brandon Horn, a middle infielder, and Mark Johnson, an outfielder, to the team for nationals. Both have played on the national team and bring a wealth of experience.
“Both guys are just class guys,” Arsenault said. “Outstanding, top of the lineup hitters, as good as anybody in the country and just great individuals.”
Johnson played with the Fawcetts at the nationals in 2011 and Horn has played with Ellsworth on Team Canada.
Senior teams are allowed to pick up three imports, including one pitcher for nationals. Atlantic Canadian teams are allowed to pick up three additional players from within the region.
We think we’ve started to build a team that will definitely contend on Sunday next year Mark Arsenault, Charlottetown Gahan House Fawcetts first baseman
The Fawcetts have also added longtime New Brunswick middle infielder Rene Goguen to the team for the full season.
“We think we’ve started to build a team that will definitely contend on Sunday next year,” said Arsenault, noting they are done yet. “We’re talking to a number of pitchers right now. . . We want a frontline guy.”
The team finished sixth at nationals this season in what was a developmental season.
“It was a pretty successful season,” Arsenault said. “We achieved most of our goals. We’re really happy about the future. A lot of young guys got to play a lot of innings this year.”
The team lost in the semifinal of the Maritime Fastball League playoffs Sunday in Nova Scotia to complete the season.
“Now the work starts,” Arsenault said. “There is basically no off-season. You just can’t show up next year at nationals and expect to be a top contender.”