Barbara Hudlin, niece of the late Doug Hudlin, a longtime baseball umpire from Victoria and a member of the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame, stands on the field at Royal Athletic Park. She’s co-ordinating the first Step Up to the Plate charity ballgame there June 8, as part of the marking of Doug Hudlin Day in the city on June 11.

New charity ballgame to mark Doug Hudlin Day in Victoria

Late, beloved longtime umpire to be honoured with Hudlins vs. Fernwood game, June 8 at RAP

Through the decades he spent umpiring on youth baseball diamonds around Greater Victoria and beyond, Doug Hudlin became a beloved figure for his knowledge of the game, his fairness and the patience he exhibited while helping teach young players the intricacies of the game.

The City of Victoria declared June 11 to be Doug Hudlin Day that year. His family hopes a new charity ball game called Step Up to the Plate, scheduled for noon on June 8 at Royal Athletic Park, will continue to honour him and also help break down barriers and allow more young people to enjoy sport.

The longtime umpire and active community member died in 2014 at the age of 91, but his memory lives on in his family and the many players who encountered him over the years, as well as through his induction into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame in 2017.

ALSO READ: Bat speed, exit velocity and spin rates, how the HarbourCats swing big on technology

“He was called the ‘gentleman umpire,’” says Hudlin’s niece and game co-ordinator, Barbara Hudlin, referring to how generations of players, coaches and parents characterized this friendly, outgoing man. “There’s all those emotions around Doug Hudlin and that day for his family, too, so it’s going to be fun.”

Step Up to the Plate, supported by the Victoria HarbourCats and the City, will see The Hudlins – a team comprised of family members and others who knew Doug well – play the Fernwood Ballgetters. Admission is by donation at the gate, with all proceeds going toward the promotion of sports for children and youth with disabilities, a cause for which Hudlin was passionate.

Asked whether the game will become an annual family reunion of sorts, Barbara expect it quite possibly could, as some family members are coming from out of town to attend.

“Some of them haven’t played ball for a while, but I think it’ll be a great day,” she says. “I’m hoping that it eventually gets bigger, that’s the goal.”

Banners recording Doug Hudlin’s accomplishments and honouring his memory hang on the backstop at Jerry Hale Field, the National Little League park at Cook Street and Hillside Avenue where Hudlin got his umpiring start in 1953, and at RAP during the HarbourCats season.

*****

If you’re keen to watch HarbourCats baseball, check out the first annual Peninsula Co-Op Alumni Game, June 1 at RAP. Past stars of the team, including slugger Gabe Clark, Hayden Jaco, Riley Guntrip, Island products Austin and Connor Russell and former HarbourCats coach and Victoria Seals player Charlie Strandlund, will take on the team being assembled for the 2019 season.

Game time is 6:35 p.m., find tickets online at ticketrocket.co or at the gate.



editor@mondaymag.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

BaseballcharityVictoria HarbourCats

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Volunteers sought to remove weeds from Port Renfrew’s Parkinson Road

Road has no sidewalks, forcing pedestrians to walk on pavement

Falling oak tree causes minor damage to Langford home

Tree damages garden and gutters of home on Lindsay Place

Residents to start moving into first of 100 new affordable homes in Langford

Construction underway on second phase of affordable Indigenous housing project in Langford

New space secured for Sooke homeless

The shelter will be ready for residents on July 20

The pandemic is widening Canada’s workplace gender gap

Gender pay gap is incentivizing fathers to work while mothers watch children, a new B.C. study has found

Ex-Okanagan Mountie forfeits 20 days’ pay after sexual misconduct review

A former Vernon RCMP constable made sexual comments, grabbed genitals of male officer in two incidents 10 years ago

Man found dead on Okanagan trail identified as Hollywood actor

GoFundMe campaign launched for man found dead at summit of Spion Kop

3 people dead in Prince George motel fire

Fire personnel believe the blaze was suspicious although investigation in early stages

B.C. sets terms to review police, mental health, race relations

MLAs to recommend Police Act changes by May 2021

POLL: Would you get a vaccine for COVID-19 when it is available?

With the number of positive COVID-19 tests skyrocketing across much of the… Continue reading

Feds announce $8.3M to deal with ‘ghost’ fishing gear in B.C. waters

Ghost gear accounts for up to 70 per cent of all macro-plastics in the ocean by weight

Almost 99% less land in B.C. burned this year compared to 2018

2018 was the worst year on record for wildfires

Most Read