Ready for our next matchup? Here we go, a choice between two guys with pro experience:
- Matthew Tindall had not pitched for at least a season when he came to Aldie in 2013 from Trinity. All he did for the Senators is go 2-0, 1.00, with five saves, a 0.778 WHIP, 2.5 BB/9, and 9.0 K/9 in 18 innings pitched… and for good measure, he had a .145 batting average against. Believe it or not, with those numbers, he was not ATVL’s top reliever, but he was second on the list. After his senior year at Trinity in 2015, Tindall was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Anaheim Angels. He spent about a season and a half in the Angels’ system, and then a half season with the Washington Nationals. He was released after the 2016 season. In his pro career, he went 5-6, 5.44, with a 1.604 WHIP, 3.9 BB/9, and 9.2 K/9 in 48 innings.
- Randy Dobnak is by far the most “famous” person in this competition. A nondrafted free agent sign of the Minnesota Twins in 2017, Dobnak made a meteoric rise to the major leagues- making his debut in August of 2019. Famously, he and his fiancee planned their wedding for that September, conservatively assuming that Randy would be free after the minor league season concluded at the end of August. But he had been called up to the majors (which came as a surprise), the season wasn’t over, and the Twins needed him. They had set the wedding date two years earlier! The Twins allowed him to miss some time so he didn’t miss his own wedding. So now let’s back up. Dobnak came to Front Royal in 2015, after his sophomore season at Alderson-Broaddus. He went 1-3, 2.45 for the Cardinals, with a 1.212 WHIP, 3.8 BB/9, and 9.8 K/9 in 33 innings pitched. He signed with the United Shore Professional Baseball League, an independent league, and signed with Minnesota from there. His minor league stats? In three seasons in the system, he went 24-9, 2.57, with a 1.100 WHIP, 1.8 BB/9, and 6.5 K/9 in 297 1/3 total innings. Not too shabby, eh? Now hopefully in the majors to stay, Dobnak has gone 8-5, 3.12, with a 1.267 WHIP, 2.2 BB/9, and 6.0 K/9 in 75 innings at the game’s highest level.
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And by the way, if you want to read a ton about either the 2015 or 2019 VBL season, be sure to check out this post on the 2019 Valley League Annual.
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