Second Stouffville hurler making pitch for Pan Am team

May 7, 2015

Stoufville, ON


ORIGINAL STORY by Michael Hayakawa Stoufville Sun Tribune

Second Stouffville hurler making pitch for Pan Am team


Stouffville Sun-Tribune

Andy Skelton is on a personal mission.

For the Stouffville resident it’s one that is straightforward – to be on Team Canada’s men’s softball team playing the top players from Mexico, Argentina, the United States, Dominican Republic and Venezuela at the Pan American Games at the President’s Choice Pan Am ballpark in Ajax.

With the team gearing up for the upcoming competition since September, a pool of 20 players are in camp. Fifteen will be named to the squad in June.

Lefthanded pitcher and former Stouffville resident Paul Koert is one of the core seven players guaranteed a spot.

No stranger to the national team having been a part of it for four campaigns, Skelton, who also competes this season with the Scarborough Force, was invited to the Pan Am camp last November.

While elated to be given consideration with an opportunity to represent Canada in an event returning to the Pan American Games for the first time since 2003, the good tidings did not come as a surprise.  

“I always felt confident I would get invited based on past performance with the national team,” he said. “But it’s always an honour to be named to the national team.”

Logging time as a pitcher, first baseman and designated hitter since the camp reconvened outdoors last month, Skelton felt he’s done his part to earn a coveted spot on the squad.

As proficient as he’s been in swinging the bat, striking out batters and with the glove, Skelton knows his fate ultimately rests in the hands of the coaching staff.

They will be given the task of selecting the team that will try to keep Canada’s gold medal winning streak intact as they’ve won all seven championships in the sport’s history at the games.

“I would like to think my chances are pretty good,” he said. “But at the end of the day, the coaches will choose whoever best fits the requirements of the team.”

Canada is scheduled to open play against Mexico July 12 at 7 p.m.