A 100 Mile House arm is firing from the mound when Zone 8’s U16 softball team takes the field in Nanaimo for the BC Summer Games July 17-20.
Brandan Moore, 16, is the only player on the squad that’s not from Prince George. It’s Moore’s second time at the Games, having played in Surrey in 2012, when Cariboo-North East finished fourth.
It’s tight competition playing at the level, but he likes the team’s chances this year.
“I’m definitely more excited this time around,” notes Moore, who’s also playing first base in Nanaimo. “I’m older and I can pitch better. The team we’re going with is a lot stronger.”
Prince George is also rostering Moore for the Softball B.C. Western Championships in Cowichan Valley in August.
Moore is one of only a handful of young guys playing in the men’s fastball league in 100 Mile House. He pitches for Exeter Sporting Goods, which is sitting in first place with playoffs starting next week. It’s his second season in the league. He’s got more speed and more control now chucking windmill-style pitches at local hitters.
“I got more junk,” he says in a recent interview, down at the ball fields in Lumberman’s Park. “I got a drop ball, curve ball, knuckle, change up and sometimes I can have a rise.”
Like anything, it takes a lot of work to get good.
“I try to pitch every night at home. [With] my little brother or my mom or sometimes I’ll just be by myself and set up a tire and try to hit the inside of the tire.”
Moore’s been playing ball since he was six and he loves it.
He umpires local games.
He was there to call the bases when Canim Lake and Red Rock faced-off on July 7. Canim Lake was short a man, however, and they asked Moore to fill in. It was a welcome development – he’d rather be playing than calling the game, anyhow.
The home-plate ump told him he wasn’t allowed to throw though, so he settled at first base.
Moore was hanging on the fence when Canim Lake’s lead-off batter stepped to the plate for the opening pitch.
“OK, 35,” he called out. “Start us off in there now.”