1966 C-joys Senior Baseball Club
The Guelph C-joys had a tremendous season in the lntercounty Baseball League in 1966. They posted a record of 21 wins and seven losses to win the regular season pennant, which meant an automatic trip to the Ontario Baseball Association Senior play downs. But first they had to make a run at the lntercounty championship; a trophy Guelph hadn’t won since 1932 when the Guelph Maple Leafs brought the title to the Royal City.
It was a confident bunch that started their semi-final series against the London Pontiacs, a team they had handled fairly easily during the regular season. However, London ace Al Greenberg would win three times for the Pontiacs as London shocked the C-joys eliminating them in six games.
“We were a little overconfident and pretty down after the loss so after that the boys wanted some redemption,” said C-joys player/manager Ron Gumbley.
Paul Giroux, Chris Ritter and John Skinner, who had been among their leading hitters during the regular season, were unavailable for the OBAs, but Jim Baker and Gary Jeffries, both of whom hit over .300 that year, and several others filled the void. They would meet Chatham in the first round of the OBA playoffs and after losing the first game at home, roared back to win the next two on the road to advance. They eliminated St. Catharines two straight before meeting Orillia in the final. Guelph won the opener at home then cruised to the championship winning game two in Orillia 6-0. The final game saw nasty ace Harry Barber earn the win with a brilliant four-hit shutout (his regular season ERA of 1.66 was second best in the league that year). Walt Jeffries, David E. (Ted) Hastings and Tom Holmwood all drilled home runs in the six-run fourth inning.
“We had really good pitching that season,” said Gumbley, “and while our hitting was a little sporadic we seemed to get the hits when they mattered the most.”
Giroux led the lntercounty league that season with a .404 average while Baker led the league with 10 doubles and 28 RBI.
Five players from that team are already enshrined in the Guelph Sports Hall of Fame: Gumbley, Jeffries, Mike Mahoney, Nick DiCarlo, and Hastings.
Inducted into the Guelph Sports Hall of Fame – Team category – on May 17, 2017