Friday, October 09, 2009

Andrew Tinnish and the CIS influence on the Blue Jays

One of the interesting aspects of the personnel shakeup new Blue Jays' general manager Alex Anthopolous conducted today is the role it gave to a CIS alumnus. Andrew Tinnish was named as the director of amateur scouting. He'd previously been in the pro scouting department. As reported over at fellow Sports Federation site Mop Up Duty, Tinnish was a rather legendary CIS baseball player and coach with the Brock Badgers.

Tinnish played with the team from 1995 to 1999. During that span, he was named team MVP three times, and also holds team records for single season batting average (.500), at bats (146), hits (73), doubles (22) and RBIs (65). He's also the team leader in career at-bats (633), hits (239), doubles (47), home runs (25) and RBIs (210). The more sabermetric stats are not presented on the Brock baseball website, but I'd imagine he'd be up there in those as well. That's a very impressive career. The Badgers probably wish he was still with them; they lost 9-2 to Western yesterday, finishing their season with a 9-9 record and missing the playoffs for the first time in school history.

CIS baseball probably isn't going to have many players make it to the majors any time soon, but it still isn't a bad sport or league. It's nice to see one of its most famous lights gain a more prominent role with the Blue Jays. Of course, he isn't the only Canadian university alumnus involved with the organization: new general manager Alex Anthopolous has an economics degree from McMaster (no word on if he ever worked with the baseball team, but he's said he wasn't much of an athlete) and new professional scout and former director of professional scouting Jon Lalonde graduated from Laurentian University with a Bachelor of Commerce specializing in Sports Administration. In an industry where the front office roles are often dominated by Americans from marquee schools, it's cool to see some CIS connections.

Update: As pointed out in the comments over at The CIS Blog, there technically isn't a CIS baseball league. Brock, McMaster and five other teams play in the OUA's baseball league. They are CIS members and the OUA is a CIS regional association, but it also has other sports like baseball that do not have national competition under the CIS banner. To complicate matters further, there's also the Canadian Intercollegiate Baseball Association, which does host national championships and features many CIS institutions such as Dalhousie, McGill, Queen's and Concordia. To my knowledge, it is not affiliated with CIS.

[Cross-posted to The CIS Blog]

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