All baseball, all the time for talented pitcher
It promises to be a busy summer for Carter Krawchuk.
The 15-year-old St. Francis Secondary School student left earlier this week for a month of touring the southern United States with the Ontario Blue Jays U16 squad.
Krawchuk and the Jays will play in the Perfect Game Tournament in Atlanta and then drive to Houston before wrapping things up in Louisiana. If that wasn’t enough, the talented right-handed pitcher also received an invitation from PBR (Prep Baseball Report) to participate with a Futures Canada Team in a tournament in Georgia later this summer.
Krawchuk seems unfazed by it all.
“Its just fun. I have no stress,” he said. “I like it.”
The PBR tournament generally attracts a good deal of interest from schools — about 250 scouts are expected at some of the games — although Krawchuk can’t be officially contacted until he turns 16 in September.
And if that wasn’t enough, Krawchuk recently learned he had made the final 20-man roster for the Team Ontario U17 squad that will participate in the national championships in Regina in August. Krawchuk was one of only two players born in 2003 to make the final cut.
“I went to first tryout and only pitched a couple of innings and they told me automatically you will be on the 40-man roster right away,” Krawchuk said.
From there it was on to the next set of tryouts where he was placed on one of four 17-man squads.
“They put all the good players on my team. Out of the 20-man roster they only cut three from that team,” he said. “They stacked my team.”
Krawchuk, who already has two national titles with the Brampton Royals and two provincial championships to his credit, is excited for the opportunity to play in Saskatchewan.
“For my two nationals before I haven’t gone anywhere, it was just in Ontario. It’s going to be fun and cool. It’s going to be a lot more exposure than when I was younger,” he said.
Krawchuk is one of six pitchers on the roster.
“It’s going to test my skills but I think I’m going to do well against them.”
Krawchuk has left his bat behind for now and is strictly focusing on pitching.
“It’s easier because I can focus on it more rather than focusing on my tools and just perfecting one,” he said.
He said a tweak in his mechanics this year has made a big difference.
“It’s really helped my fastball. I went from 84 (miles-per-hour) to 88 in two months,” said Krawchuk, who also throws a curve, slider and change-up.
Krawchuk is pleased with his progress as he works toward a possible spot on the junior national program.
“Every year I’m trying to get better and better and throw harder and harder and perfect my pitches,” he said. “I feel the progress. Last year I didn’t evolve as much as I did this year with the miles-per-hour.”
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