Ashley Stephenson

From BR Bullpen

Ashley Jacqueline Stephenson

Biographical Information[edit]

Ashley Stephenson played in the first nine Women's Baseball World Cups then became a minor league coach.

She was All-Canadian in hockey in college and played hockey professionally in the National Women's Hockey League and the Canadian Womens Hockey League from 1999 to 2012. [1] In baseball, she was part of the Canadian squad that won Silver in the 2002 Women's Baseball World Series. [2] She played for Canada in the 2004 Women's Baseball World Cup and 2006 Women's Baseball World Cup, winning Bronze each time. [3] She led the 2008 Women's Baseball World Cup with five steals, had several big hits and closed out Canada's win over Team USA. She was named the All-Star third baseman while Canada won Silver. [4]

Stephenson was with Canada in the 2010 Women's Baseball World Cup. [5] In the 2012 Women's Baseball World Cup, she hit .300/.462/.367 with 12 runs, 8 RBI, 8 walks and four steals in nine games, fielding .909 at third. She had four RBI in the Bronze Medal Game win over Australia. She tied Bronwyn Gell, Becky Hartley and Ayako Rokkaku for 4th in runs, tied Yung-Hsin Cheng for second in walks (behind Shae Lillywhite) and tied for 7th in steals. She lost All-Star honors to Christina Kreppold. She was already Canada's oldest player; Hartley was next, being born three years later, but Stephenson was far from done. [6]

The Mississauga native was 4 for 13 with 4 walks, 3 runs and 4 RBI in the 2014 Women's Baseball World Cup, fielding .917. [7] In the 2015 Pan American Games, she hit .369/.455/.369 with five runs in six games, fielding .833. Only Nicole Luchanski had more runs for Canada, which won Silver. [8] She was only 1-for-22 with two walks, two runs and a RBI, fielding .926 in the 2016 Women's Baseball World Cup while Canada won Silver. She tied Yu-Ying Hsieh for the event lead with 20 assists but she had the lowest average of any qualifier; Michelle Snyder of the US was next at .059. [9]

She rebounded in the 2018 Women's Baseball World Cup, falling a homer shy of a cycle against the Dominicans and producing at a .455/.571/.591 clip with eight RBI in nine games, though she fielded .815. She had two hits and two RBI in the Bronze Medal Game win over the US. She tied for 9th in hits (10, even with Luchanski, Yuki Kawabata and Diamilette Quiles) and tied for third with five errors (behind Isabelle Markies and Famke Gildemacher). [10]

Retiring as a player, she became a coach and then managed the Canadian women's team in a 2022 series against the US, the first woman to manage the Canadian women's team. [11] She switched to coaching men in 2023 while working with the Vancouver Canadians. [12] On May 2nd, the Canadians faced the Hillsboro Hops, managed by Ronnie Gajownik, making it the first time there had been female coaches on both sides of a minor league game.

She was elected to the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame in 2024 in a class with Russell Martin, Jimmy Key, Rod Heisler, Paul Godfrey and Howard Birnie. [13]

Sources[edit]

  1. 2008 Canadian Women's National Team Media Guide
  2. Encyclopedia of Women and Baseball by Leslie Heaphy and Mel Anthony May
  3. 2008 Canadian Women's National Team Media Guide
  4. 2008 Women's Baseball World Cup page
  5. Old IBAF site
  6. 2012 Women's Baseball World Cup
  7. 2014 Women's Baseball World Cup
  8. 2015 Pan American Games site
  9. 2016 Women's Baseball World Cup
  10. 2018 Women's Baseball World Cup
  11. Baseball Canada
  12. CBC Sports
  13. Toronto City News

Further Reading[edit]

  • Stephanie Sheehan: "Two woman coaches face off for first time at High-A", mlb.com, May 3, 2023. [1]

Related Sites[edit]