MONTREAL – The Montreal Expos today announced the return of the Pearson Cup after a 17-year absence, beginning this Friday when the Blue Jays visit Olympic Stadium. It will be the first time the Cup is awarded based on the results of regular season games. Tony Tavares, Expos' President, made the announcement.

The Pearson Cup, named after former Canadian Prime Minister and ardent baseball fan Lester B. Pearson, was established in 1978 as a fund-raiser for amateur baseball in Canada. Pearson also served as Expos' Honorary Club President from 1969-72. A mid-season exhibition game between the two clubs was played until 1986 to decide the Cup's winner.

Both Montreal and Toronto are in the pennant race of their respective leagues. The Expos, at 39-30, sit in second place in the NL East and are second in the Wild Card race. The Jays are in third place in the AL East with a record of 39-31 and are also in third place in the Wild Card standings. The Pearson Cup will be awarded to the winner of the six games between the two clubs, with the Expos hosting the Blue Jays for three games June 20-22 before heading down the 401 for a weekend series in Toronto June 27-29. If the two teams split the season series, the Cup will be shared between the clubs. A quick look at the Trophy's history:

1978 - Montreal 5-4 (Canadian Bill Atkinson picked up the win)
1979 - 4-4 tie
1980 - Montreal 3-1
1981 - No game - Player's Strike
1982 - Montreal 7-3
1983 - Toronto 7-5 (Current Expos' pitching coach Randy St. Claire took the loss)
1984 - Toronto 2-1
1985 - 2-2 tie
1986 - Toronto 5-2

The series stands tied at 3-3-2

MONTREAL EXPOS – 18 June 2003

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