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Dec 27, 2012 7:52pm
Medium lingzi 1454 posts

Over 30 years after the 1981 Montreal Expos came within one game of heading to
the World Series, that same team reunited in Montreal on Saturday. Steve Young Jersey . As part of the Montreal
Baseball Project, co-founded by former Expo Warren Cromartie, the 1981 team
returned to help raise the profile of baseball in Montreal. Festivities for the
teams return included being honoured at halftime in the Alouettes pre-season
game Thursday and a golf tournament at the Île Perrot Golf and Country Club
Friday. On Saturday, the team gathered at Ballantyne Park in Dorval to meet
fans, perform baseball clinics for youngsters and along with Dorval mayor Edgar
Rouleau, renamed the parks baseball field after the late Gary Carter with a
ceremony. Proceeds raised from this past weekends celebration will benefit The
Gary Carter Foundation and Montreals Cedar Cancer Institute. “We found this was
a great way to commemorate a citizen of our city and resident of Dorval who was
a great example for the sport,” said Rouleau. Carter passed away in February and
Rouleau said the city of Dorval had been looking for a way to honour Gary
Carter. While naming the field after Carter raises its profile, Rouleau, whos
also a co-founder of the Montreal Baseball Project, said it wasnt so much as to
increase baseball interest, as it was to honour Carter. “Sports are very
important to Dorval and the West Island in general,” he said. “The effort to
bring a baseball team back is what will generate interest in the sport again.
Baseball participation has dropped since the Expos left, so I feel getting a
team back will help bring the interest back.” Cromartie was a busy man this past
weekend, but has thoroughly enjoyed his time in Montreal. “Ive been so happy
just being back here,” said Cromartie, whos spent the summer in Montreal. “Its
been 30 years since I spent a summer here. The women are even more beautiful
today.” With over 700 people showing up at Ballantyne Park and many youngsters
participating in the baseball clinics run by the former Expos in attendance,
Cromartie was encouraged by the turnout. “This is where we have to start all
over,” he said. “It starts from the grassroots, because the young ones here have
never seen a baseball game. I mean this is a part of our history since 1969. Its
part of our legacy in Montreal, its part of who we are. We had a team before
Toronto did. Weve got to continue this legacy. ” This is just a small step in
possibly getting a baseball team back in Montreal, but its a start nonetheless.
Cromartie said the reunion may be a first-time thing, but wont be the last.
“Were going to be doing this for quite a while,” he said. “Well mix it up with
different guys, but we want to do this over and over.” The day didnt end in
Dorval though, as the team headed to a similar event at Parc Hébert in St.
Léonard. Fan interest didnt wane, as more than 500 showed up to meet the team
and more kids participated in the clinics. Among those from the 1981 team
included Hall of Famer Andre Dawson, Tim Raines, Larry Parrish, even manager Jim
Fanning. Coming back for the weekend felt a lot like a homecoming for the team.
“When I first got back here in Montreal this week, I didnt recognize a lot of
things. For a second I wondered, where am I at?” said Parrish. “When I got
downtown though, it felt like nothing changed, I felt right at home again.”
Former outfielder and fan favourite Tim Raines felt like he was coming back
home. “Its like I never left,” he said. “To get such a warm welcome after all
these years is just awesome, I may have to come back more often.” The
festivities concluded Saturday evening, with the players attending a gala at the
Sheraton Hotel, with both live and silent charity auctions. This whole weekend
was just a first step for the Montreal Baseball Project to achieve its ultimate
goal, and thats to bring a baseball team back to Montreal. The participation
from young kids who didnt even grow up with a baseball team, still decked out in
Expos gear was an encouraging sign. Thats just one step in what will be a long
and difficult process. “I think for baseball to come back here, youd have to
start with a minor league team,” said Parrish. “You have to show that its
sustainable here and of course location of the ballpark will be important too.”
“Its going to be one small step at a time,” said Raines. “This is a good start
and hopefully this leads to getting a team back.” Cromartie is well aware that
baseball interest alone wont get a team back in Montreal. Theres one other
factor Cromartie highlighted in what it would take for Major League Baseball to
return. “Deep pockets,” he said bluntly. “And I need a champion, I need a
winner. I dont need the talk; I need the walk. Maybe someone from the Cirque du
Soleil can help or something.” To keep track of the Montreal Baseball Project,
visit http://mbp2012.com/ Patrick Willis 49ers Jersey . The Bengals
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Kevin Bieksa scored on a power play, Aaron Rome and Steve Bernier added goals
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revolutionary thinking, because I am a big geography guy. I enjoy the tradition
of East vs. West and all that goes with it. But, I would like to see the
conversation generated, the interest out there of having no divisions.TORONTO 
The Flyers were so rich with talent down the middle that the services of
James Van Riemsdyk were never required in such a capacity. In Toronto, the
prospects are considerably different. The Leafs have been chasing a top-flight
centre since Mats Sundin left town and are open to the idea of moving their most
recent trade acquisition back to the position he played for two seasons at the
University of New Hampshire. Meeting the media for the first time in Toronto as
a Leaf on Wednesday morning, Van Riemsdyk was receptive to the thought. “Its
something that would be a good opportunity for me I think,” said Vans Riemsdyk,
appearing at a hockey clinic at the MasterCard Centre in Etobicoke. “Ive played
a little bit in the past and when you can be a little bit more versatile as a
player I think its always a good thing.  ”In Philly, we had an abundance of
centres there so we didnt really ever need me to do that ever, but obviously
this is a new opportunity for me and that would be a great thing for me to try.”
Mike Richards, Jeff Carter, Claude Giroux, and Danny Briere were just a few of
the names looming ahead of Van Riemsdyk down the middle during a three-year
stint in Philadelphia, circumstances which drove a seemingly permanent move to
the wing. A late June trade to Toronto (for Luke Scheenn) altered the
possibility of those fortunes with head coach Randy Carlyle openly opining on
the prospect in recent comments to the Toronto Sun. Steve Young Authentic Jersey. The second
overall pick in the 07 draft, the six-foot-three, 200 pound Van Riemsdyk has
already reached out to his new head coach for video, hoping to gain an
understanding of expectations heading into training camp. “I asked him for some
stuff that he would like to see out of his centreman,” said Van Riemsdyk, “just
so its a little bit easier of a transition when I get here for camp.”  Van
Riemsdyks receptiveness to such a move provides at the very least a welcome
option for Carlyle. Searching for ideas himself while behind the bench in
Toronto, Ron Wilson theorized on a similar notion with Phil Kessel, only to be
rebuffed on most occasions by the budding winger. While heavy in numbers at
centre 
Tyler Bozak, Tim Connolly, Matthew Lombardi, Mikhail Grabovski,
David Steckel and Jay McClement among them - the Leafs are still short that
first-class pivot to pair with Kessel and Joffrey Lupul on the first line. With
speed, size and skill, Van Riemsdyk has the credentials to potentially fill such
a void. Call it a low-risk, high reward gamble in strategy, one that Van
Riemsdyk, Carlyle and the Leafs appear willin