Jacob Cox, a 6-foot-5, 225-pound right-hander who set a league record with 26 saves for the Sonoma Stompers during the 2018 season, was named as the Reliever of the Year, the Pacific Association of Professional Baseball Clubs announced last week.
The Napa Silverados are an expansion team in the league.
Cox went 4-0 with a 2.62 earned run average. He broke Sammy Gervacio’s record of 18 saves, set during the 2017 season for the Vallejo Admirals.
League awards are voted on by front office personnel, managers, coaches and broadcasters, the league said in a press release.
“This award means a lot. It shows what a long season of consistent hard work can achieve,” Cox said in a press release. “However, I definitely couldn’t have gotten it without my team. They’re the ones who always gave me the opportunity to come in and do my job.”
Cox has pitched for Sonoma for the last three years. During that time, he has an 11-4 record and 2.70 ERA in 68 appearances, with 31 saves.
“The past three years, playing for Sonoma, have prepared me for the next level by showing me the difference between professional baseball and collegiate ball,” said Cox, who pitched for Cal State Monterey Bay and is from Madera. “The level of competition is much higher and the margin for error is almost non-existent.”
Cox was promoted to the Lake Erie Crushers of the Frontier League following the 2018 Pacific Association of Professional Baseball Clubs season, the league said.
The Lake Erie Crushers, who are based in Avon, Ohio, ended the season in early September.
There are 12 teams in the Frontier League, an independent league in the Midwest.
Last week, pitcher Billy Felo and first baseman Josh Montelongo of the Silverados, were named as winners of the league’s Gilded Glove Awards. The Gilded Glove recognizes players’ defensive prowess at their position, the league said in a press release.
The Pacific Association of Professional Baseball Clubs, a Northern California-based summer independent league that was founded in 2013, consists of six teams. San Rafael, Vallejo, Pittsburg and Martinez are also in the league.
The Pacific Association of Professional Baseball Clubs is scheduled to announce four more awards this week: Manager of the Year, Pitcher of the Year, Executive of the Year, and Most Valuable Player.
Natuzzi at Willamette University
Brendan Natuzzi, a Justin-Siena High School graduate, is coming off a junior season for Willamette University (Salem, Oregon) in which he batted .280 in 45 games, with 14 RBIs, 25 runs scored and nine stolen bases as a utility player.
Willamette went 31-19 and won the Northwest Conference Tournament.
The Bearcats lost to Texas Lutheran University in the NCAA Spokane Regional championship game.
Willamette is No. 18 out of 30 teams in the final 2018 NCAA Division III Baseball Rankings by HERO Sports.