If he has some reservations about the report released earlier this month to improve the development of hockey in Quebec, sports commentator Rodger Brulotte believes that the situation surrounding baseball in the Belle Province must also go through major changes.
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“In baseball, we currently have a problem, a major problem: we send our young people to play in the United States and the majority of them come back without a diploma, criticized Brulotte, vehemently, during his visit to the podcast Les buts completed, Wednesday. I find that disgusting. If we send them to the United States, for me, it is a major failure which means that we have not been able to establish a strong program in Quebec. It is not acceptable that we have to send our players outside because at home, we have not developed such a program.
Assuming that his remarks were not going to please Baseball Quebec, Brulotte continued on his position, he who also acts as commissioner of the Quebec Junior Elite Baseball League (LBJÉQ).
“We have players who went to play for McGill University after their stay with us and they have McGill degrees, he served as an example. The progress is there, but we have to develop a league in Quebec that brings players to the junior level. In other words, your midget AAA must become a serious development league for our young people.
Brulotte sees tennis as a model to follow, with a major training site for the best players in the discipline.
"You just have to look at the number of tennis players who are excelling on the world stage and who come from our country...Why don't we have a major training site [for baseball] at the Quebec? We don't have one in hockey, we don't have one in football, we have one in tennis... Where is the problem?
Collaborator for the podcast "Les buts filled", Karl Gélinas has tempered things a little, he who is head coach at the Diamonds of Quebec, in the LBJÉQ, but also with the program of the Baseball Academy of Canada, which brings together the elite of Quebec players.
“I believe that the path [leading] to the United States is still very important for the players, he mentioned. Before having programs in Canada as good as some in the United States, it will take a lot of work and a lot of time. There are some players, I think, who go to the United States for the sake of going to the United States. They could potentially get a better education here and play just as good a level of baseball. On the other hand, for the more talented players who attend very good programs, we cannot compete with that in Canada. It's 100% sure!"
"Playing in the United States during the summer also allows some players here to gain visibility with recruiters, but sometimes also the opportunity to transfer from a weaker college to a higher program. ... It is sure that, in the future, it would be good to offer such a good caliber here, that we are so good that it attracts people to come and see our players in Quebec.
Pending possible changes, the 76th season of the LBJEQ should take off this Saturday with games in Montreal, Repentigny, Trois-Rivières, Quebec and Coaticook.