Kieran Pook - Ontario Youth Team Alumni
Congrats on the silver medal !! 🏅
My sincere thanks for everything on and off the field you did for the boys this past week especially Kieran as he was experiencing the Cup alone. He had nothing but glowing remarks each time I spoke to him about the how quickly the team bonded and how much he learned under your leadership. A truly amazing experience and opportunity to continue to develop their game and learn about themselves as a player.
Stephen Phillips - Ontario Youth Team Alumni
First of all, I would like to sincerely thank you, Coach Rich, Coach Pat, Coach Geoff, Frank Fascia and Don for choosing me to represent Ontario for the Canada Cup.
I cannot find words that can express the emotions I felt being part of this team. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity that I will never forget. This has been one of the most memorable moments of my young baseball career. To win the championship "gold" and bring back the trophy to Ontario (where it belongs), will live on in memories within my heart forever. I will cherish the opportunity that I have been given and fondly remember all my teammates and coaches as you all have a special place in my heart.
Thank you again!!
Eric Martin - Ontario Youth Team Alumni
Thank you for selecting Eric to be on the Ontario team. This was his best baseball experience to date. We appreciated that you let him play outfield and pitch. We also appreciated that you let him know before the game that he was going to pitch. It helps him prepare mentally as well.
Eric really enjoyed the boys on the team and enjoyed getting to know players from other teams. It was such a great experience to have them stay together, travel together and eat together. Not a small task to keep these big boys fed! Lol
We are also grateful to Baseball Canada. They did a great job organizing the tournament. Our family especially enjoyed the games being streamed. They made an event of it!
We were fortunate to go watch some games and were impressed with the boys attitude and their ability to not give up and keep working.
Thank you again for an amazing experience that will always be remembered.
Greg and Teresa Martin
Noah Hull - Ontario Youth Team Alumni
Hi Coach Q
Thank you for Noah having the opportunity this past week. For our family it was a great experience being involved in s event like this with this team. All of the players and coaches represented Ontario very well.
Thanks to you and the rest of the coaching staff.
The Hull family
Thomas Mienkowski - McGill University
Coach Q has played the biggest role in my development as a baseball player. He led the winter workouts for me when I was still playing minor bantam and bantam, always bringing a positive attitude while demanding the most from his players.
When I moved up to play for his West Toronto 18U team, we didn’t have the best crop to choose from. With only 2 starters returning from the 2015 Eliminations Finalists team we had to add 7 players who had been playing below AAA the previous year. With this adversity, we were put to work in the off season with the intention of being one of the top teams in Ontario. We were taught to use our strengths as a team, which this year were: speed, base running, pitching and defense. Coach Q taught us how to do the little things to succeed as a team, a team with player abilities dispersed on a spectrum. He knew how to bring out the best in us. Slowing everything down and visualizing success before every at bat, how to have an approach at the plate and stick to it, when to steal a base and how to develop a routine were some of the many subtleties that he ingrained in us. These little things often go overlooked, but are the necessary things that separate average teams from good teams, and good teams from great teams. He taught us how to win. We stuck to our game plan and won well over 60% of our games, while finishing 3rd in the MEL. All the while we came together and had a lot of fun.
I will take these lessons with me as I take the next step to play collegiate baseball at McGill University. I would like to thank the West Toronto Baseball organization for my years here, as well as thank Coach Q, the best coach I’ve ever had.
Wendy and Steve Bishop - 2016 West Toronto Basbeall
We really appreciated your reflection of the West Toronto Elimination quest in your email yesterday. Coincidently, on our way home we also took time to reflect. We talked about the great things the team had accomplished through the season and the importance of the journey and growth of individuals and the team as a whole. This does not happen on its own. Young men need to be guided and in a team environment they look to their coach for this guidance.
What is a coach? A coach is task oriented focusing on the development of skills for an athlete. A coach works with an athlete short term lasting as long as needed to improve skills or helps the athlete acquire new skills. A coach can conduct a program without the need for design or a long lead-time to implement.
On the other hand a mentor seeks to provide a safe environment for the athlete and uses specific learning goals or competencies as a basis for creating a relationship with the athlete. Its focus goes beyond these areas to include things, such as sport/life balance, self-confidence, self-perception, and how their personal choices influence the sport. A mentor commits longer term knowing that to be successful, it requires time in which both partners can learn about one another and build a climate of trust that creates an environment in which the athlete can feel secure in sharing the real issues that impact their success. A mentor is development driven focusing on shaping the athlete not just for the current team but also for the athlete’s future. A mentor initiates a design phase for the athlete focusing on specific skills and knowledge.
With the right knowledge anyone can be a coach but it takes a truly passionate and gifted individual to be a mentor. As we reflected on the season it quickly became apparent that you are not just a coach for these boys you are an important mentor that has helped shape them both individually and as a team. We are extremely proud of Brad, as an athlete, as a teammate but most importantly as an individual. He continues to develop into a very driven, passionate and responsible young man. As they say it takes a village to raise a child.
Thank you for your commitment this season!
Wendy and Steve Bishop
Luke Mello - Patrick Henry Community College
“Coach Q is the best instructor of the game I’ve ever been around. I’ve had the opportunity to play in both the United States and Canada and have learned from countless coaches along the way. Simply put, the fundamentals I was taught by Coach Q have made me the player I am today. Across the board from hitting, fielding, pitching and catching, the basics he teaches are the same of any high-level collegiate coach out there. If you want to raise your game, a lesson from Coach Q is the place to start.”
Patrick Henry Community College
Kengo Saeki - York University
Coach Q is the coach that got me in the right path. As a player that was cut for numerous teams, Coach Q picked me up and taught me a simplified approach that led me to play the game with passion and success. With his help, I became a player that got a chance to play in Championship games and winning individual awards. Along with his coaching skills, Coach Q is the person that gave me the influence to pursue my career in the sports world.
Kengo Saeki York University
Jason Te - Ryerson University
Coach Q is one of if not the most knowledgable baseball instrustors that i have met. His impecable technique and "teach by example" mindset is not only helpful but very easy to follow. His passion for the game can not be matched. An extremely knowledgeable man in all aspects of the game. Quickest bat and hands i've ever seen! Coached OBA champions 2013.
Alan Perkins - Genesis Community College
My experience during my first semester here at GCC was extremely helpful for my development as a pitcher and a person. My time with West Toronto and coach Q did wonders preparing me for college baseball. The intensity and style of the program and coaching is very similar to the college level. That was one of the reasons I was confident and relaxed this fall. During the fall season I was able to prove my effectiveness and versatility as a relief pitcher, which led to me leading the team in appearances. College baseball (and college in general) isn't all easy, we practiced every day and played 2-5 games on the weekend, no matter the weather. We are always working on getting better, in the weight room, on the diamond, and in the classroom, so there is no room for laziness. College is about growing up, and this past fall has helped me mature both on and off the field.
Ryan Grippo - DePauw University
My name is Ryan Grippo. I am currently a sophomore on the Men’s Baseball team at DePauw University (NCAA D3, Indiana). As a freshman, I hit .324 in 102 AB’s with 25 RBI’s and only 5 Strikeouts. I also lead the infield with a .962 fielding percentage as the starting second baseman. I would not be the baseball player or person I am today without Coach Q.
I’ve had the pleasure of being a student of Coach Q since 2009. He coached me on multiple West Toronto teams, on one Toronto All-Star team, and in the 2010 Ontario Summer Games. He was my only hitting instructor as I progressed through high school baseball, and I still do not trust anyone more with my swing. He was not only a coach, but also a mentor who taught me the sport of baseball, and what it means to be a true athlete.
From the moment I met Coach Q I was amazed at his immense amount of baseball knowledge. Q knows more about the game than anyone in the city. His two best attributes are his ability to teach, and his willingness to learn more himself. There is no harder working coach out there. Q helped me evolve as a player by emphasizing my personal strengths and revamping my mechanics. When I first walked into his clinic, I was a weak hitter with above average defensive ability. Q changed me into a player that could not only hold his weight at the plate, but also become a serious offensive threat. His hitting philosophies are unparalleled, and they are the reason I was able to earn playing time as a freshman at DePauw. I continue to receive compliments on the mechanics Q taught me, even from my coaches in college. There are times where I am pointed out as an example for someone with a mechanically sound swing, and all of that can be credited to Coach Q. Dave is also a defensive wizard. He improved my footwork, and helped improve a very weak arm to one that I could play with in college. Furthermore, Q enhanced my defensive ability by making my hands faster, allowing me to turn double plays in a more fluid manner. If I were to ever run into a slump, Q would be the first person I would talk to. I would not have earned a scholarship without Dave’s support and knowledge.
Coach Q’s value as an instructor does not end on the surface level. While he is a phenomenal trainer, he teaches his players more than just skills. While under Q’s instruction, I learned the value of hard work, and what it really means to have a passion for baseball. Dave spent hours and hours of extra time with me tweaking every aspect of my game, until we both were satisfied with the outcome. He pushed me to become the best that I could be, something I will be forever grateful for. He allowed me to realize my true potential as an athlete and a person, and accomplish the one thing I wanted to do: earn a scholarship at the NCAA level. I have been able to apply Q’s life lessons to all aspects of life: At school, in my job, and in baseball. Coach Q would be the best choice for your game, and nothing short of the best asset to your program. Dave’s influence on me was so strong that I wear number three at DePauw, because he also wore number three in college.
If you are thinking of hiring Coach Q for yourself or your child, I highly recommend you to do so. It was the best decision I made for my baseball career.