Baseball: ThunderBolts’ Recchia honored as Frontier League’s top pitcher
By Steve Millar For Sun-Times Media August 30, 2012 8:32PM
Updated: October 1, 2012 5:37PM
It’s been quite a week for Windy City ThunderBolts pitchers.
Two days after Tyson Corley threw the second no-hitter in team history, Crestwood native Mike Recchia became the first T-Bolt to win the Brian Tollberg Award as the Frontier League’s top pitcher.
Recchia was honored Thursday as the league named its postseason All-Star teams and award winners.
Recchia entered Thursday with an 11-3 record (tied for the league lead in wins), a 2.64 ERA and a league-record 167 strikeouts.
“Any personal achievement like that is a great honor,” Recchia said. “But this is a team game. I have nine other guys every game either playing great defense behind me or scoring runs for me. It’s an award for the whole team.”
Recchia struck out 11 in Saturday’s win over Southern Illinois to break the strikeout record of 157, set by Windy City teammate Dustin Williams last season.
“It’s a great accomplishment, but now’s the fun time,” Recchia said. “That was in the back of my mind, now it’s over and it’s all about trying to get into the playoffs.”
The T-Bolts’ Chad Cregar, who has set franchise highs for home runs (28) and RBI (86) was named the league’s top designated hitter while Windy City general manager Mike Lucas was honored as Executive of the Year.
Traverse City’s Jose Vargas was named Most Valuable Player. The SouthtownStar was selected as the league’s Newspaper of the Year.
The strong week for pitchers extended to ThunderBolts alums as well.
For the first time, two former T-Bolts played in a major league game in the same week.
Andrew Werner allowed two runs in six innings for the San Diego Padres in a hard-luck loss Tuesday while Dylan Axelrod allowed one run in 71/3 innings Wednesday night in a win for the White Sox.
Werner, who went 10-4 for the T-Bolts in 2010, won his major league debut Aug. 22, allowing two runs in six-plus innings in a victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates.
“I couldn’t be more proud and happy for Werner,” said the T-Bolts’ Zach Aakhus, who caught Werner in 2010. “He’s a hard worker and it pumps you up to know one of your buddies made it to the show.”