© Chuck Duboff
Pitching, pitching and pitching…if you’ve got it, there’s a great chance to win, while without it, good luck. Manager Rick Forney got another important contributor to last year’s championship team, Edwin Carl, to return for another season. Piecing together a pitching staff is never easy, but when you get starting pitchers like Edwin Carl and Kevin McGovern to return, you’re already in a great position.
I got a chance to interview Edwin and find out his thoughts about last season’s playoffs, his off season and much more. Enjoy the read.
1. What do you remember about the Goldeyes championship run last season? What was it like the night you guys won the championship?
The moment that stands out most to me in the championship run would have to be the last 3 games against St. Paul in the first round of playoffs. After splitting the series at home, both teams had to drive to St. Paul and play the following night because the rain cost us the off day. In game 3 we had a tough loss coming from a walk off homerun and we were on the verge of elimination. The next night added even more excitement as we won in the 9th off a walked in run from the best closer in the league. That tied up the series once more and we rode our momentum right through St. Paul to head to the championship series. After those couple of games we knew that nobody could stand in our way. We were playing against the wall and everyone came together and laid it all on the line. It was a pretty special moment.
The night that we won was amazing. I threw the night before and we were able to tie up the series so I knew I did my job and it was now time to be the best cheerleader of all time. The game went exactly as planned and it was electric in the celebration. We didn’t have much turnover with the roster during the year so it was great to celebrate with guys that grinding with you the entire season.
2. Why have you decided to come back to Winnipeg to play for another season?
I chose to come back because the environment in Winnipeg is a very rare find. From the way the front office runs everything to the supportive fans that come to every game, I think its harder to not come back to Winnipeg. There is a certain vibe around the city and ballpark when we are there and it makes players very comfortable and excited to play everyday.
3. Can you share with the fans about your baseball background…from a little guy through your pro career?
I started playing baseball probably around 5. I played many other sports and was super active but by the time I was in middle school, baseball took over and began traveling all over the place to play. Fast forward through high school, I played at Eastern Arizona College for 2 years before going D1 and playing at the University of New Mexico. After 2 more years there I signed with the Kansas City Royals and played with them for 4 years. I also played with the Los Angeles Dodgers for a year. I had to take a year off due to illness, but was fortunate to play again for the Schaumburg Boomers before coming to Winnipeg in 2015. After the 2015 season I had a short stint with the Lancaster Barnstormers in their playoff run before heading to Australia for the winter to play for the Perth Heat.
4. Favourite MLB player growing up? Why him?
My favourite player growing up was Cal Ripken Jr. The biggest draw to him was probably because his middle name is Edwin and I didn’t know any Edwins back then. He was also a stud player and enjoyable to watch.
5. Where are you living during the offseason? Do you do offseason training?
This off season I spent a couple months in Ottawa before heading back to New Mexico. I train year around but it was nice to have some time off from winter ball and rest the arm.
6. Your thoughts on the city of Winnipeg and the fans of the Goldeyes?
I actually like the city very much. Ive probably been able to explore a little more than most of the guys so Ive had a pretty good experience the last couple years. The fans are nothing short of phenomenal and we wouldn’t be as successful as we are without the support of everyone.
7. Favourite restaurant here in Winnipeg?
My favorite place to eat would definitely be Pineridge Hollow. I do have many other spots that I enjoy as well.
8. Any interesting baseball stories that you could share with the fans? Any “wow” moments?
My first day with the Dodgers I went to their advanced A team in Rancho Cucamonga where many of the big leaguers rehab with its close proximity to LA. As I’m dressing out I hear that Brian Wilson will be starting our game on a rehab assignment. Watching him the previous years with the Giants made me a huge fan. It was pretty cool to hang out with him and see him pitch in person, and I actually ended up closing the game he started.
A wow moment would probably be my second year in the Royals organization when I struck out 71 batters in 33 innings and was rewarded with milb reliever of the year.
9. Any message you’d like to send to the Winnipeg Goldeyes fans?
I am excited to come back and defend our championship. It will also be great to see all the familiar faces.
10. Hows that championship ring looking?
It looks amazing! Definitely worth the wait and hope to add to the collection.