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Great Falls Voyagers set to defend Pioneer League title

GREAT FALLS — The Great Falls Voyagers are set to open the 2019 season as defending Pioneer League Baseball champions when they host the Missoula Osprey on Friday. The team features 10 new draft picks, 13 international-born players, and six returners from last year’s squad.

Tim Esmay returns as manager for a third season, and though he said there’s certainly talk about repeating as champs, ultimately he wants the team to come together as a family over the course of the season.

“The first week everybody’s still trying to figure each other out,” Esmay said. “Just understanding where we come from and all that is a big part of the process.”

One adjustment for the Voyagers will be the schedule. The Helena Brewers relocated to Colorado Springs after last year, shifting how the team travels. Great Falls will no longer play Orem or Ogden, Utah in the regular season.

“I would have loved to have been able to say at least we played Orem and Ogden a little bit, but I guess we’ll, as anything, we’ll adjust to it and see where it goes,” Esmay said.

First pitch against Missoula is set for 7 p.m. at Centene Stadium.

Isaiah Dunk

Isaiah Dunk

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