Sports News

Willie Glen Nabs Second NL Pitcher of the Year Award (September 20, 2010)

Gary SouthShore RailCats BaseballGARY, IN. 9-20-2010 – For the second time in as many seasons with the Gary SouthShore RailCats veteran right-hander Willie Glen has been named the Northern League’s Pitcher of the Year by a vote of the league’s top executives, managers, media members and fellow players.

The first two-time winner of the league’s most prestigious pitching award, Glen returned to the RailCats this summer after spending two years in the Florida Marlins organization and picked up right where he left off, going 11-2 with a 2.39 ERA in 20 regular season starts, leading the league in wins and pacing all starters in ERA.  The 32-year-old was the 2007 Northern League Pitcher of the Year after going 12-1 that season and his 2010 commendation marks the third time in the last four years that a RailCats pitcher has won the award (Jeremy Plexico, 2008).

Glen, 32, may have felt a step behind his dominant 2007 self – when the right-hander struck out a Northern League record 162 batters in 139.2 IP – but his 2010 numbers were as good as any of his four seasons in a RailCats uniform.  Glen’s ERA was the lowest of any of his RailCats years (and the second-lowest in team history), his 110 strikeouts mark the fifth-most ever by a RailCats pitcher and the Indianapolis native finished the year going 10-0 over his final 15 regular season starts, an undefeated stretch that dated all the way back to June 11.

Glen started slowly in 2010 but sewed up the award with a phenomenal second half of the season, going 7-0 with a 1.70 ERA after July 1, allowing just 69 hits 84.2 innings over that span with an impressive 73 strikeouts.  Glen’s July (3-0, 1.69 ERA) was good enough to earn Pitcher of the Month honors from the league and the right-hander was a two-time Northern League Pitcher of the Week honoree (June 27, July 25).  Glen’s signature performance came June 26 at Newman Outdoor Field against the eventual league champion Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks when he tossed a complete-game, five-hit shutout, just the second shutout of his 10-year professional career.

The RailCats career leader in nearly every measurable pitching category, Glen was the ace of the RailCats staff from 2005-07 (winning a pair of league titles) and is an amazing 43-11 with a 3.03 ERA in 88 career RailCats games.  Fifth in Northern League history with 494 strikeouts in his four seasons, Glen has allowed only 467 Northern League hits in nearly 550 innings.  Undrafted out of the University of Evansville, Glen signed with the Toronto Blue Jays in 2000 and is 74-45 as a professional in more than 1,100 career innings.  Glen has spent time in five different affiliated organizations, including at the Triple-A level in 2004, 2008 and 2009.

The Most Valuable Player of the 2007 Northern League Championship Series, Glen has racked up accolades in a RailCats uniform, earning three All-Star Game selections (2006, 2007, 2010), three Pitcher of the Month honors, three Pitcher of the Week awards and a spot on the Northern League and Baseball America All-Independent Leagues Post-Season All-Star teams in 2007.  Those two teams have not yet been announced for the 2010 season.

Glen and the RailCats made their sixth straight Northern League Playoff appearance in 2010, dropping a first round series to the eventual champion RedHawks.  The RailCats 2011 season will begin in May and fans can stay up-to-date with the ‘Cats all winter by visiting www.railcatsbaseball.com.