Kern Watts (Mississauga, ON) has played a lot of high level baseball, including time at the University of Arkansas and the University of Evansville. It is evident that baseball runs in the Watts family; His brother Derran was drafted by the New York Mets in the 12th round out of the NAIA powerhouse University of British Columbia in 2001.
Watts debuted for the Toronto Maple Leafs in the Intercounty Baseball League in 2010. In his two seasons with the Leafs, Watts batted .315 with 23 stolen bases and 8 homeruns. Eventually, Watts made his way to the FMBA, home of premier Senior Men's baseball in Calgary, in 2013. From 2013 to 2017, Watts was a force on the Calgary Giants, totaling a .345 batting average with a 1.081 OPS and 8 homeruns.
Finally, Watts made his way to the Sunburst and hit the ground running. He made an immediate impact, hitting 7 homeruns in 2018 for the A's and was named to the Sunburst League all-star team. His A's would go on to win the 2018 Sunburst League and represented Alberta in Miramichi, NB at the 2019 Senior Men's nationals.
We were super excited to chat with Kern, as he is a guy who has spent time in the IBL, FMBA and now Sunburst. We asked Kern about his thoughts on the upcoming season, and we picked his brain on what similarities and differences he saw in the different men's leagues, and what league initiatives he would like to see:
"I was born in Mississauga Ontario, and grew up and played in Brampton. Later, I played for the Ontario Blue Jays and was a Junior National Team invitee. I played at the University of Arkansas in my freshman year and went to the College World Series with that team. I later transferred to the University of Evansville and played the remainder of my collegiate ball there."
"To stay in shape, I have been lucky enough to have a home gym and I work out 5 days a week, also biking and still training/practicing for baseball."
"Yes, I lived in Calgary for 8 years and played in the FMBA before moving to Edmonton and playing in the Sunburst. In Calgary, I played for the Calgary Giants for 5 years. Similarities are both leagues are made of ex-pros, university players and senior baseball players who all love the game of baseball. This is heart of both of the leagues is that we all enjoy the game and being part of a team working towards a common goal."
"I really and truly believe there should be a tournament and/or all star series between the leagues. Enough players know others from the opposing city and this could actually bring more people into the league and the game of baseball. This would also create another battle of Alberta people would come to see. An option could be one weekend in Calgary and another in Edmonton. Just to generate attention in each city and bring together the leagues."