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 Missoula PaddleHeads

PaddleHeads Starting Pitcher Alfredo Villa Named Pioneer League Pitcher of the Year

October 2, 2023 - Pioneer League (PL)
Missoula PaddleHeads News Release


Missoula PaddleHeads pitcher Alfredo Villa
Missoula PaddleHeads pitcher Alfredo Villa
(Missoula PaddleHeads)

Missoula, MT. - The Pioneer Baseball League announced their 2023 Award Winners and All-Star Team on Monday and the Missoula PaddleHeads were well represented. PaddleHeads ace Alfredo Villa was named Pioneer League Pitcher of the Year after leading the league in ERA, wins, and strikeouts ...the pitching version of the "Triple Crown". He became the first pitcher to win the Triple Crown in the Pioneer League since Ricardo Rodriguez won it in 2000, over 23 years ago. In addition to being named the top pitcher in the league, Villa, along with fellow starting pitcher Connor Schultz were named to the PBL All-Star Team as the two best starting pitchers in the league.

Missoula PaddleHeads Manager, Michael Schlact had this to say about Villa's honor:

"A true ace like Alfredo doesn't come around very often. He was almost flawless this entire season on the mound for us. Every time he stepped on the mound we knew we had a very good chance to win the game. His list of accomplishments this season was impressive, to say the least, and we couldn't be more proud of what he was able to do for us on and off the field this season."

Villa finished the season with a .282 ERA, 13-1 record, and a league leading 129 strikeouts in 108 2/3 innings pitched, which also led the league. He was named Pioneer League Pitcher of the Week twice. In August, Villa was amazing with a 1.59 ERA in 38 2/3 innings pitched.

Schultz went 7-3 over the regular season with a 3.82 ERA and 91 strikeouts in being named as the 2nd pitcher behind Villa on the All-Star team. The naming of Villa and Schultz gave the PaddleHeads a sweep of the all- star starting pitchers named to the league's team.

Missoula PaddleHeads Manager, Michael Schlact had this to say about Schultz being named an All-Star:

"Connor was extremely reliable for us this season as he battled some adversity and injury along the way. Being named to an all star team is always a big honor and we're proud of him for all he accomplished this season."

Villa becomes the 2nd Pioneer League Pitcher of the Year since the PaddleHeads and the Pioneer League became a MLB Partner League in 2021. Reliever Mark Simon won Pitcher of the Year in 2021. Villa has one year of eligibility left with the PaddleHeads and the expectation is he will be re-signed barring a Major League Club adding him to their minor league system before Opening Day 2024 which is a realistic possibility.

Ogden's Reese Alexiades was named Pioneer League Most Valuable Player ending the PaddleHeads two year streak of winning the award.

Missoula's Zach Almond was league MVP in 2021 and Jayson Newman won it in 2022 after his record breaking homerun season. The Missoula PaddleHeads have won at least one of the Pioneer League's two big awards (MVP and Pitcher of Year) in each of the three seasons as a MLB Partner League.

Missoula's Dondrei Hubbard won this year's official Batting Title by hitting a league leading .395, but was snubbed of an All-Star selection as were SS McClain O'Connor (.302, 18 HRs, 30 SBs) and CF Keaton Greenwalt (.345, 21 HRs, 93 RBI).

The PaddleHeads are busy working on their 2024 roster. Follow the PaddleHeads on their social media platforms or at www.gopaddleheads.com to stay up to date on the latest happenings around the franchise as the off season gets into full swing.





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Missoula PaddleHeads pitcher Alfredo Villa
Missoula PaddleHeads pitcher Alfredo Villa

Missoula PaddleHeads pitcher Alfredo Villa
Missoula PaddleHeads pitcher Alfredo Villa

 

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