Frontier Greys’ catcher Julio Rodriguez and Evansville Otters starting pitcher Will Oliver have been awarded the Frontier League Player and Pitcher of the Week, respectively, as chosen by Pointstreak, the official statistical provider of the Frontier League and the Independent Professional Baseball Federation.
Rodriguez came into the week riding high on a 3-game hitting streak, and continued that trend by hitting safely for four more consecutive games to up his overall streak to 7. During his hitting streak, Rodriguez managed to have a multi-hit game in all but two of the contests. Over the 6 games his team played from July 20th-26th, Rodriguez amassed 13 hits in 28 at bats to go along with 1 double, 6 RBI and 2 runs scored. For the season, the 25-year-old catcher holds a .279 average to go along with 1 home run, 19 RBI, and 5 stolen bases. Rodriguez is in his first season in the Frontier League after spending 7 seasons in affiliated baseball with the Detroit Tigers and the Kansas City Royals. Originally signed as a catcher by Detroit at the age of 17, Rodriguez was converted to a pitcher by Kansas City in 2012 for a brief time before ultimately being released. He then took the 2014 season off before being signed by Greys’ manager Vinny Ganz to be the full-time catcher for the team in 2015.
Oliver wins this weeks’ Frontier League Pitcher of the Week award after back-to-back dominating starts for the first-place Evansville Otters. In his first outing on Tuesday July 21st, Oliver shut out the Traverse City Beach Bums over 9 innings, allowing just 4 hits while striking out 9 and walking 4. Then, on Saturday, Oliver followed up his performance with one that may have been even better, tossing his second consecutive complete game shut out against the Washington Wild Things. In the second start, Oliver again baffled the opposing hitters over 9 innings, allowing 5 hits while only walking 1 and striking out 9 for the second start in a row. The two performances padded the 2015 Frontier League All Star’s already stellar statistics, bumping his record to 8-2 and his ERA to 1.39. He has also struck out 78 hitters thus far in his 12 starts, while walking only 23. To date, Oliver is tied for the Frontier League lead in wins with 8, is third in strikeouts, and is also second in ERA, behind fellow Otter Trevor Walch. The 25-year-old right-hander originally hails from New Port Beach, CA and attended Palomar College in San Marcos, CA. Oliver was drafted in the 35th round of the 2010 MLB Amateur Draft by the New York Yankees and spent 3 seasons in their organization, all in the single A. He is in his second season in the Frontier League, both coming with the Otters.
Pointstreak provides the league with its statistical software and in game scoring applications. They aim to deliver “fast scores and cool stats to players, parents, fans, scouts and media.” For more information on Pointstreak products visit them at www.poinstreaksolutions.com or www.pointstreak.com. The Frontier League is entering its 23rd season in 2015 and features 14 teams stretching from Pennsylvania to Missouri and from Kentucky to northern Michigan. The Frontier League annually advances the most players to MLB organizations of any of the independent leagues, and 27 former Frontier League players have played in the Major Leagues.