The 9th best starting pitcher in the 2016 Valley League season is Steve Xirinachs, the second Front Royal Cardinal on this list (but not the last).
Steve, from UMass Lowell, went 5-2, 2.74 in 8 starts for the Cardinals. He finished with a 1.043 WHIP, 3.7 BB/9, and 6.5 K/9 in 46 Valley League innings. Steve was named ATVL’s pitcher of the day three times, including after his best start of the year, which happened to be on June 1st, also known as opening day. Against Woodstock that evening, Steve threw 6 shutout innings while allowing only 3 hits, 3 walks, and striking out 6. He was also named 2nd team All-Valley after the season.
Steve is heading into his senior season for Lowell. Interestingly, he’s gotten better each succeeding college season. In 2014, as a freshman, he went 1-3, 7.54 in 22 2/3 innings. He improved to 1-2, 5.48 in 11 games out of the bullpen in 2015, spanning 23 innings. He was named to the starting rotation in 2016, and went 1-9, 4.28 in 13 starts and 61 innings.
Now let’s see how he performs in his senior season for the River Hawks!