|Ballpark||Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton Park|
|League championships||1: (2016)|
|Colours||Blue, red, white|
|Media||Ottawa Citizen, Le Droit, CKDJ-FM, CJFO-FM|
The Ottawa Champions Baseball Club (French: Les Champions d'Ottawa) is a professional baseball team based in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. The Champions made their debut as a member of the Canadian American Association of Professional Baseball (Can-Am League) in 2015. They won their first league championship in 2016 defeating the Rockland Boulders 3-2 after being down 2-0 in the series, winning game 5, 3-1 with a complete game win by Austin Chrismon. They play their home games at Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton Park. The Champions mascot is Champ. They are currently league-less with the Can-Am League and the Frontier League merging. The Frontier League's schedule does not include the Champions for the 2020 season.
The City of Ottawa granted a 10-year lease of the Ottawa Baseball Stadium to establish a Can-Am Baseball League team for the 2015 season in September 2013.
In June 2014, the Ottawa Champions team name was announced followed by the unveiling of the team logo that August.
The Champions announced the signing of Hal Lanier as the team’s first on-field manager on 18 November 2014.Lanier is a former Major League Baseball player who began his MLB career in 1964 as a member of the San Francisco Giants; he also spent time as a New York Yankee at the end of his playing career. He worked as a coach for the St. Louis Cardinals and won a World Series with them in 1982. He was the manager of the Houston Astros from 1986-1988 and was named the NL Manager of the Year in 1986. He has managed numerous independent league teams before including the Winnipeg Goldeyes and Can-Am team the Sussex Skyhawks. Along with Lanier, the Champions also announced the signing of their first player, Gatineau native OF Sebastien Boucher. Boucher was drafted 213th in the 2004 MLB Draft and was selected to play for Canada in the World Baseball Classic in 2006. The team's founding president is David Gourlay.
The Champions played their first game in franchise history on 22 May 2015 at Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton Park against the Sussex Country Miners.
In the 2016 season, the Champions qualified for the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. In the opening round, the Champions defeated the New Jersey Jackals 3 games to 1 and advanced to Can-Am League Championship Round for the very first time in franchise history. In the championship round, the Champions defeated the Rockland Boulders 3 games to 2 to capture their first championship.
On June 28th, 2017, Phillipe Aumont threw the first no-hitter in Ottawa Champions history against the Dominican Republic national baseball team.
After the 2019 season, The Can-Am League merged with the Frontier League. However the Champions were left off the 2020 Schedule.
Shortly after the Champions were left off the 2020 schedule. Winnipeg Goldeyes owner attempted to bring either a Atlantic League or a Frontier League franchise to Ottawa. However the plan fell through.
The Ottawa Champions play their home games at RCGT Park, a 10,000-seat baseball stadium just east of downtown Ottawa. As part of the plans to revitalize baseball in Ottawa, the city and the team invested more than $2 million worth of renovations into the stadium. These renovations included a brand-new video scoreboard.
Along with the stadium renovations, the city built a new pedestrian bridge to help make it easier to get to the ballpark using public transit. The pedestrian bridge crosses over Highway 417 to connect the ballpark to the Transit Way and is named in honour of the late Max Keeping.
|Ottawa Champions (2015–present)|
|2015 (6 Teams)||46-50 (5)||.479||Did not qualify|
|2016 (6 Teams)||51-49 (4)||.510||Won Opening Round over New Jersey Jackals 3-1 |
Won Championship over Rockland Boulders 3-2
|2017 (6 Teams)||42-56 (5)||.429||Did not qualify|
|2018 (8 Teams)||41-60 (6)||.406||Did not qualify|
|2019 (9 Teams)||41-54 (5)||.432||Did not qualify|
|Regular Season Totals||221-269||.451|
The baseball cap logo is a detailed representation of Ottawa’s traditional landscape with the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill as the focal centrepiece. The Peace Tower is surrounded by a red ‘O’ representing the Ottawa name. The background is filled with a maple leaf, which will proudly display the Champions’ Canadian pedigree as they travel all over North America for regular season games.
The brand logo displays the Champions name in bold and clear lettering allowing for easy recognition throughout the community and the CanAm League. The bottom distinguishes the baseball identity with home plate and white lines indicating the first and third base sides.
The Northern League was an independent minor professional baseball league. It was not affiliated with Major League Baseball or the organized minor leagues. The league was founded in 1993 and folded after its 2010 season when financial stability became a problem. The three teams remaining in the league when it folded joined with the remaining teams in United League Baseball and the Golden Baseball League to form a new independent organization called the North American League.
The Canadian American Association of Professional Baseball, commonly known as the Can-Am League, was a professional, independent baseball league with teams in the Northeast United States and Eastern Canada, founded in 2005 as a reorganization of its predecessor, the Northeast League. The Can-Am League operated in cities not directly served by Major or Minor League teams and was not affiliated with either. The league office was in Dayton, Ohio. Though a separate entity, the league shared a commissioner, president, and director of umpires with the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball. On October 16, 2019, it was announced that the Can-Am league would merge with the independent Frontier League.
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Harold Clifton Lanier is a former infielder, coach and manager in Major League Baseball. From November 2014 through the end of his 2018 contract, Lanier, served as the first manager of the Ottawa Champions of the independent Can-Am League. From 1964 through 1973, Lanier played for the San Francisco Giants (1964–71) and New York Yankees (1972–73). He is the son of Max Lanier, a former MLB All-Star pitcher.
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