2016 Arizona Winter League Player Updates

Earlier this season, we took a look at how players from the California Winter League were doing during the regular season.

Now, we have updates provided by the Arizona Winter League on their players as well.

AWL2-large

Drafted out of AWL:

Chris Allen – Signed by the Lake Erie Crushers, played with the Old Orchard Beach Surge (Empire), Empire League All Star Selection, Empire League Home Run Derby Champion, currently with the East Side Diamond Hoppers (USPBL)

Manny Arciniega –  Signed by the Gary Southshore Railcats (AA), played 11 games with a 4.67 ERA in 17.1 innings. Now with the Lake Erie Crushers (Frontier), 11 games with a 3.55 ERA in 25.1 innings.

Shawn Blackwell – Signed by the Sioux Falls Canaries (AA), currently on the roster with 25 appearances and a 7.18 ERA in 89 innings

Gus Constantino – Signed with the Eastside Diamond Hoppers (USPBL), released

Jordan Etier – Signed by the Lake Erie Crushers, did not make the team out of spring training

Frank Fantino – Signed with the Vallejo Admirals (Pacific), currently with the White Sands Pupfish (Pecos)

Boone Farrington – Signed with the Schaumburg Boomers (Frontier), did not make team out of spring training

Josh Ferrell – Signed by the Sioux Falls Canaries (AA), currently on the roster with 36 appearances and a 4.05 ERA in 53.1 innings

Sam Forkert – Signed by the Sioux Falls Canaries (AA), didn’t make the team out of spring training

Eric Gutierrez – Signed with the Eastside Diamond Hoppers (USPBL), released

Jesse Holiday – Signed by the Lake Erie Crushers, played with the Sonoma Stompers (Pacific), released on 7/26/16

Trevor Keele – Signed with the Eastside Diamond Hoppers (USPBL), released

Todd Looney – drafted by the Eastside Diamond Hoppers (USPBL), currently playing with the San Diego Force

Joshua Martinez – Signed by the Florence Freedom (Frontier), played with the Old Orchard Beach Surge (Empire), Empire League All Star Selection

Aaron Owen – Signed by the Sioux Falls Canaries (AA), currently on the roster with 146 ABs, .205 BA, 2 doubles, 2 triples, 2 HRs, 12 RBI, and 8 SBs

Chris Power – Signed by the Normal Cornbelters (Frontier), currently with the East Side Diamond Hoppers (USPBL), 29 games, 107 ABs, .346 BA

Bobby Romano – Signed by the Normal Cornbelters on 4/5/16, released on 5/9/16

Marc Rutledge – Signed by the Ottawa Champions (Can-Am), currently with the Joliet Slammers (Frontier), 26 appearances with a 6.07 ERA in 46 innings

Robert Shiroky – Signed by the Normal Cornbelters (Frontier), retired from baseball

Michael Skoller – Signed by the Normal Cornbelters (Frontier), played in 29 games with 91 ABs, hitting .209, released on 7/22/16, currently with the East Side Diamond Hoppers (USPBL)

Colin Willis – Signed by the Lake Erie Crushers, played in 15 games with the East Side Diamond Hoppers (USPBL), on roster as of 8/16

James Wong – Signed with the Eastside Diamond Hoppers (USPBL), played with the Old Orchard Beach Surge (Empire)

Randy Wynne – Signed by the Lake Erie Crushers, currently with the Birmingham Beavers (USPBL), 4-3 with a 3.63 ERA through 47 innings

 

Undrafted out of AWL, but were later signed:

Benny Collesano – played with the Old Orchard Beach Surge (Empire)

Shaun Cooper – played with the Old Orchard Beach Surge (Empire), Empire League All Star Selection, currently with the Florence Freedom (Frontier)

Jacob Fabry – played with the Old Orchard Beach Surge (Empire), Empire League All Star Selection

Cody Frank – played with the Old Orchard Beach Surge (Empire)

RJ Fuhr – played with the London Majors (Intercounty Baseball League)

Todd Leavitt – played with the London Majors (Intercounty Baseball League)

Evander Ledward – played with the Sullivan Explorers (Empire), selected to Empire League Travel Team

Ryo Sanogawa – played with the New Hampshire Wild (Empire)

(All information courtesy of the Arizona Winter League)

Normal Cornbelters Hire Justine Siegal

The Normal Cornbelters have made history by hiring the first female coach in the Frontier League. Justine Siegal has taken a permanent coaching position with the Cornbelters as they make a run for the playoffs.

siegal
(Photo Credit: Lori Ann Cook-Neisler, The Pantagraph)

Siegal, founder of Baseball For All – a nonprofit organization that works towards meaningful opportunities, instruction and gender equality in youth baseball, has been making history in professional baseball for the last 7 years.

In 2009, she became the first female coach of a men’s professional baseball team when she coached first base for the Brockton Rox, who were then a part of the Can-Am league.

Siegal was also the first woman to ever throw batting practice to an MLB team when she threw to the Cleveland Indians in 2011 during spring training. In addition to the Indians, she has thrown BP to the Oakland Athletics, Tampa Bay Rays, St. Louis Cardinals, Houston Astros, and New York Mets.

In 2015, she made even more history as the first female to coach for a major league team when the Oakland A’s hired her to coach during their fall instructional league.

Siegal is more than qualified for the job on paper as well. She holds a B.A. from St. Olaf College with a concentration in “Leadership: Religion, Military, and Baseball” –  a major that she designed herself, an M.A. in Sport Studies from Kent State University, and a Ph.D. in Sport and Exercise Psychology from Springfield College.

Manager Brooks Carey told the Pantagraph that they haven’t given her a set role with the team for the remainder of the season:

“I’m not going to invent a role for her to play. The next couple days we’ll let her get her feet on the ground and let the guys get to know her.,” Carey said. “She will be just another coach. I hope that happens as quickly as possible, and I have a really good feeling that it will.”

Yesterday (Aug 14), she tweeted that she coached first base while “following the team’s rhythm. Seeing where I can help. Learning as fast as I can.”

She was also given the game ball by first baseman Aaron Dudley to mark her first win as a member of the coaching staff.

first win
(Photo credit: Twitter)

In 2015, Siegal told ESPN W what her coaching means for women in baseball:

Someone said, “To be it, you have to see it.” And now girls can grow up seeing that this is possible, to be a coach, whether that’s local, college and maybe professional. I think the significance is being able to see what you can be. I consider it a huge honor to be a role model to girls in baseball. I love this game.

She is definitely giving girls someone to look up to in the baseball world.

Writing and sharing stories about Independent Baseball.

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