Langley Junior Blaze player Russell Young fires the ball back into the infield during game two of a 2017 doubleheader against the Victoria Junior Mariners at Langley’s City Park. (Langley Advance Times file)

A delayed West Coast League debut for Langley player

Russell Young will play for the Victoria franchise next year

Former Langley Blaze standout Russell Young will make his debut with the Victoria HarbourCats of the West Coast league next year.

Young played on the Canadian Junior National Team last spring before heading off to Gonzaga University in Spokane, where he had been signed by the Bulldogs.

Gonzaga baseball head coach Mark Machtolf has described the 5’11” Young as a “very athletic catcher” who also has the ability to play the outfield.

During his 2019 season with the Langley Blaze program in the BC Premier Baseball League, Young led the team with a .398 average.

READ ALSO: Langley Blaze display depth despite temporary loss of pitchers

HarbourCats announced the Young signing on Oct. 2, at the same time as they announced the re-signing of three players who were supposed to play this year, but couldn’t because of the COVID-19 pandemic that forced a shutdown of the WCL season.

Cole Posey (New Mexico), Willie Lajoie (Chico State) and Mason Eng (UC Santa Barbara) have re-upped to join the HarbourCats next summer.

“We are excited to announce these players,” said HarbourCats hitting coach and director of player development Curtis Pelletier.

“Eng and Young give us strength behind the dish and at the plate, Posey provides defensive strength up the middle and Lajoie is a hard-hitting first baseman who we know will love the hitting friendly dimensions of Wilson’s Group Stadium.”

READ ALSO: VIDEO: A double win at Mother’s Day doubleheader for Langley Blaze

Now in its 15th season, the West Coast League (WCL) includes 12 teams in the U.S. and Canada, among them the Kelowna Falcons, Bellingham Bells and Wenatchee AppleSox.

A number of pro players have come out of the WCL, including some who played in the majors.

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