Steve’s professional career spanned 13 years and included numerous leagues and countries. Former teammates include Ken Griffey, Edgar Martinez, Alex Rodriguez, Roger Clemens, Tony Fernandez and Dave Stieb among others. He was the 10th Canadian-born player to play for the Toronto Blue Jays.
Steve grew up in Victoria BC where he started his baseball career at Fireman’s Park. He then went on to play at Carnarvon Park, Henderson Park and Lambrick Park. During his minor league days, Steve played on several All Star and select teams (including Team BC.) In 1990/91 he was selected to play for the National Baseball Institute (NBI) as one of the top players from across Canada. This team was coached by John Harr, both a Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and BC Sports Hall of Fame inductee.
His breakthrough year came in 1991 when he was drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 28th round of the Major League draft. His career started in the Pioneer League in Medicine Hat, Alberta. During his career, Steve also had stops in the Gulf Coast League (Florida), South Atlantic League (Hagerstown, Maryland), Florida State League (Dunedin, Florida) and the International League (AAA Ball) at Syracuse, New York.
Steve briefly retired from baseball in 1996 after pitching for the Dunedin Blue Jays. While playing Senior Men’s League in Victoria at Lambrick Park, Steve got the itch to play professionally again and contacted the Blue Jays for another opportunity to make the team. He pitched well during spring training and once again returned to Dunedin. After experiencing a substantial increase in velocity almost overnight, he moved into the closer role for the team.
In early August, Steve was promoted to AAA Syracuse to finish the season. That winter, Steve went to Mexico City to pitch for Canada in the Olympic qualifier. That year, he also travelled to Venezuela where he ended up playing four seasons from 1997-2000. Steve played a key role in winning the Championship in 1997/98 as a player with Lara Cardenales. Steve currently holds the record for saves as a left-handed reliever with 15 saves in the 1997/98 season. It was during that winter ball season at the Caribbean World Series that he was added to the 40-man roster and invited to major league spring training.
Steve made his major league debut pitching for the Toronto Blue Jays against the Chicago White Sox on April 25, 1998. That season, he posted his best result with a 3.60 ERA in 15 innings as a situational left-handed reliever. In 1999, Steve had his best minor league season posting a 3-2 record with a 2.18 ERA and 18 saves. That year he was chosen to play in the AAA All-star game in New Orleans, LA. He also played for the Chicago White Sox and Chicago Cubs in the minor leagues. Steve was traded to the Seattle Mariners on July 28, 1999. Unfortunately he injured his elbow in the first game and was unable to recover from the injury.
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Sandy was born in Edmonton in 1934. From a young age he was a competitor and he was the Alberta junior cycling road racing champion from 1949 to 1952. He later competed in the Canadian cycling team trials for the 1954 Empire Games in Vancouver, and the 1958 BC Centenary 100 mile bicycle race from Qualicum to Victoria. Sandy played basketball and football while a young man in the Canadian Navy until a knee injury in 1960 sent him on the path to what would become his lifelong sport: full bore target shooting.
Sandy enjoyed success as a marksman, representing the Royal Canadian Navy in the Canadian service rifle championships in the early '60s, representing British Columbia at the Canadian national championships 26 times, and qualifying and participating 19 times as a member of the Canadian national team to Bisley, England. Sandy won the Lt. Governor's Prize at the British Columbia Rifle Association's annual meeting three times, and, amongst many other Canadian shooting achievements, was Canadian Champion in 1981 and winner of ten Governor General of Canada medals.
On the international stage, Sandy represented Canada in full bore shooting at the Commonwealth Games in Brisbane, Australia in 1982 and in Auckland, New Zealand in 1990. He was a shooter or coach in ten World Champion team events. Sandy served for seven years as a volunteer for the XV Commonwealth Games Society on the sports committee and lobbying committee, and finally acted as chairman of all shooting sports during the XV Commonwealth Games in Victoria.
Sandy has also contributed to the organization of shooting over the past almost 50 years. He is a life governor of the British Columbia Rifle Association, which is the oldest sporting association in British Columbia, having an inception date of 1874. He is also a life governor of the Dominion of Canada Rifle Association, and a Vice-president of the National Rifle Association of Great Britain. He was elected to the DCRA hall of fame in 2000 and the Honour Roll of Canadian Forces Hall of Fame.
Sandy's real contribution to the sport of full bore target rifle shooting has been as a coach, where his achievements are many and illustrious. Sandy coached the Canadian full bore rifle team in the 1986, 1998 and 2010 Commonwealth Games, and the Malaysian team at the 2006 Games. He has been coach to many Canadian rifle teams at shooting competitions worldwide. He was the chief coach of the Canadian Army Cadet full bore rifle team to Bisley in 1981 and '82. For many years, he coached the 676 Air Cadets in Sidney, BC winning two national championships and runner-up twice. Sandy's shooters have won many Commonwealth Games medals, world championship medals, and provincial and national awards.
He has enjoyed the unconditional support of his wife, Margaret and family throughout the years of his shooting career.
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