Ogden Raptors hire Beauchamp as manager; 2022 schedule official
After the first go-round in the newly independent Pioneer Baseball League, the Ogden Raptors are already making preparations for the 2022 season. The Raptors have hired a new manager and the league has released next summer’s schedule.
Kash Beauchamp will manage the Raptors in 2022, team president Dave Baggott told the Standard-Examiner. The move was also announced in a video posted to the team’s Facebook page, in which Baggott said last year’s manager Dean Stiles and assistant coach Jeff Lyle have moved on to other opportunities.
Beauchamp is a former No. 1 overall pick (1982, Toronto Blue Jays) and has extensive minor-league managing experience, especially in independent leagues, since 1994. He has been an independent league scout for the Arizona Diamondbacks since 2017.
Beauchamp reportedly suffered a major injury in Triple-A just before his call to play in the majors, but later became the first-ever player to sign with a major league club out of an independent league when he hit .367 in the Northern League and was signed by the Cincinnati Reds in 1993.
“This is a great pick-up for us and with the connections in baseball Kash has, we should do well filling out our 2022 roster,” Baggott said in the video.
The PBL released the schedule for the 2022 season that features a newly expanded 10-team league, with the Orem Owlz continuing operations after a move to become the Northern Colorado Owlz and an expansion team joining the league in Flathead County, Montana (near Kalispell and Whitefish).
The league will still be split into North and South divisions. The expansion Flathead County team joins Missoula, Billings, Great Falls and Idaho Falls in the North. Northern Colorado joins Boise, Grand Junction, Ogden and Rocky Mountain in the South.
The Raptors open the season Wednesday, May 25, 2022, with a six-game home series against Grand Junction. The 2021 season featured consistent off days every Tuesday; the 2022 schedule is less consistent with off days, though most of the schedule features an off day Monday each week.
The season will remain at 96 games and again be split into two halves. The first half ends on July 17 and the regular season ends Sept. 10. A schedule sent by the Raptors shows home games at Lindquist Field are planned to start at 7 p.m., with Sunday start times at 2 p.m.; as usual, non-Sunday games transition to a 6:30 p.m. start on Monday, Aug. 29, after the beginning of the school year.
The 2022 schedule also seems to correct wild imbalances from the 2021 schedule that saw teams play opponents from the opposite division twice as much as they played teams in their own division.
The Raptors are slated to play 75 games against opponents within its own South division, and 21 against teams from the North. From the South, Ogden plays Northern Colorado the most — 24 times, with an even 12-12 home-road split. The Raptors will play Grand Junction and Rocky Mountain each 18 times and Boise 15.
Against the North, Ogden will play Idaho Falls nine times, Missoula and Billings six each, and is not scheduled to face Great Falls or the expansion Flathead team during the regular season.
The Raptors went 54-42 in the 2021 season, winning the first half with a record of 29-19 and losing to the Boise Hawks in the South divisional playoff game.
The Pioneer League also announced this month postseason awards for the 2021 season. The Raptors had three players named to the All-Star team: outfielders Josh Broughton and Jakob Goldfarb, and designated hitter David Maberry.
Maberry won the league batting title with a .412 hitting average. Missoula catcher Zac Almond was named league MVP and teammate Mark Simon the pitcher of the year.