Tag Archives: Chico Heat

GWL Ceases Operations

By Chandler Guadagnin

Three years after it began, it has come to an end. On Thursday morning, Great West League officials announced that the league will suspend operations, effective immediately. The GWL, a collegiate wood bat summer league, began in 2016.

In it’s short life span, the league consisted of 10 teams (6 a year); namely the Chico Heat, Lincoln Potters, Medford Rogues, Yuba-Sutter Gold Sox, San Francisco Seals, Klamath Falls Gems, Lodi Crushers, Sacramento Stealth, Yuba City Bears and Portland Pickles. Only the Heat, Rogues and Gold Sox remained in the league for the entirety of it’s tenure.

In addition to a revolving door of teams, a fluid number of regular season games and an inconsistent playoff format, sources close to KPAY Sports cited a number of issues that, ultimately led to the GWL’s downfall. Reportedly sources stated that both Klamath Falls and San Francisco failed to meet any of their financial obligations for 2018. In addition, the Lincoln Potters, allegedly refused to pay for the umpires used for the 2018 season.

According to the Heat front office, the team searched for other options, to continue play in Summer of 2019. However, the several alternatives they researched were implausible for several different reasons.

It was great to have baseball back in Chico; however short it was. Thank you to the Chico Heat for bringing back baseball. Thank you to the many players who decided to call Chico home for their summer. Most of all, thank you to the loyal fans who cheered so hard from home and in the stands.

Official Press Release

Fred Ludwig Steps Down

By Chandler Guadagnin

According to the Chico Enterprise Record, Chico Heat skipper, Fred Ludwig has announced via Facebook, that he has decided to step down as manager of the Heat.

“What an amazing three seasons coaching/managing the Chico Heat,” Ludwig wrote. “Two Great West League Championships, gameday memories that will never be forgotten, and bonds that will never be broken. To the Chico Heat ownership, management, host families, boosters, sponsors, the greatest fans in the Great West League, City of Chico, and of course our radio guys, Thank You. Thank you for your all your support. To all the coaches and players, thank you for your dedication to the team and grinding it out together. I will never forget you guys. I look forward to watching many more games and championships from the stands.”

Ludwig spent three seasons at the helm of the Chico Heat. Over that span, the Heat went 115-59 (.661), including a record-setting 43-14, 2018 campaign.

Statistics courtesy of www.pointstreak.com

GWL MOY, POY, and Pitcher of Year Named

By Chandler Guadagnin

On Tuesday, Great West League Commissioner, Ken Wilson, announced the GWL Manager of the Year, Player of the Year and Pitcher of the Year.

Manager of the Year

Fred Ludwig, manager of the Chico Heat, earned GWL Manager of the Year as he led the Heat to an all-time league record for wins, going 43-14. Ultimately, Chico would claim the 2018 Great West League Title, sweeping the Lincoln Potters in the best of 3 Championship Series.

Player of the Year

Cole Carder of the Medford Rogues claimed Player of the Year honors. In 44 games, Carder hit for a .349 average, with 34 RBIs and 6 long balls.

Pitcher of the Year

Chico Heat Pitcher, Justin Sterner, captured Pitcher of the Year honors. The BYU product, primarily started for the Heat. He went 7-0 with a 3.02 ERA and 75 punchouts in 38.2 innings pitched.

Statistics courtesy of www.pointstreak.com

2018 All-GWL Teams Announced

By Chandler Guadagnin

On Monday, the Great West League announced the All-GWL teams of 2018. The committee of voters consisted of the team managers. Thirteen players received votes from all six managers in the GWL. The Chico Heat led the way with 13 players selected to either the first or second team. The Lincoln Potters ranked second with 7 honored players. Medford rounded out the top 3 with six honorees; while, the San Francisco Seals, Yuba-Sutter and the Gems each had two.

All-GWL First Team

All-GWL First Team

Honorable Mentions

Chico Heat: Alex Crouch (Consumnes River), Tim Frith (Texas A&M-Arkana), Cole Galvagno (Folsom Lake), Matt Kimura (Chico State), Dalton Smith (Chico State)

Klamath Falls Gems: Kyle Yamada (Hawaii-Hilo)

Lincoln Potters: Austen Swift (William Jessup)

Medford Rogues: Tommy Ahlstrom (Simpson), Blake Baumgartner (UC-San Diego), Kolby Button (Shasta College), Cole Elvis (Cal Berkeley), Gabe Smith (Everett CC)

San Francisco Seals: Jake Vincent (University of Pikeville)

The Great West League will announce the Player of the Year, Pitcher of the Year and the Manager of the Year on Tuesday.

Heat Scorch In GWL Championship Game 1

By Chandler Guadagnin

Game 1 of the 2018 Great West League Championship Series is in the books. On Wednesday night, the Chico Heat and Lincoln Potters met at McBean Stadium, for Game 1 of the best of 3 series. Blake Hannan manned the mound for the Chico Heat. He was opposed by Lincoln hurler, Craig Schmich.

Each team hung goose eggs on the scoreboard; until, in the top of the third inning, the Chico Heat broke through. Andrew Meggs, began the inning with a walk. The next hitter, Cole Lemmel, would also reach via a error by the third baseman. That blunder would prove crucial, as 3 batters later with the bases loaded and one out. Trenton Stowe cranked out a 2-run double. Chico would score three more times in the frame, thanks to RBI knocks from Tim Frith and Matt Kimura.

The Potters would score their only run of the contest, in the bottom half of the inning on a one out, home run off the bat of JJ Santana.

Both squads would remain scoreless, until the Heat added single runs in the 7th and 9th.

Coming into the matchup, it was a question of which would win out: Lincoln’s high-powered offense or Chico’s superb pitching and defense.

Thanks to the outstanding combination of Blake Hannan and the shutdown Heat bullpen, the Heat are one win away from claiming the GWL’s ultimate prize. In all, Heat pitching allowed just 4 hits and 4 walks; while, striking out 11. Following Hannan’s exit after 7, the Heat ‘pen threw 3 innings of no-hit ball.

The Heat bats did the job as well- going 12-34 for an average of .353; including, 4 for 10 with runners in scoring position.

The Heat will look to close out the series tomorrow night at Nettleton Stadium. Game 2 of the series comes your way at 6:35PM, with the Chico Heat Pregame Show beginning at 6:15. Catch all the action on www.kpaysports.com, the KPAY Sports App and 101.7FM The Edge.

Statistics courtesy of www.pointstreak.com

By The Numbers: 2018 Chico Heat

By Chandler Guadagnin

This season’s edition of the Chico Heat was unforgettable. This collegiate word-bat league team was record-setting. They set high marks in almost every facet of the game; beginning with their record.

In what turned out to be a 57 game season, the Heat posted an amazing 43-14 record. In fact, they never lost a series all year long, until the final set of the year, when they dropped both games in a fire-shortened, 2 game series against the Lincoln Potters. A team can only do this if they are firing on all cylinders.

In the batting category, Chico was tops in the Great West League, hitting .303, with 608 hits, 32 of which were home runs. The Heat also racked up 469 runs; 402 of them RBIs. The club did not just go up to the plate swinging wildly, they also had a discerning eye. As a team, the Heat drew 332 free passes.

On the defensive side of the ball, Chico came in first with a .963 fielding percentage. They recorded the second least amount of errors (75) with 463 assists.

On the mound, the Heat through to the tune of a league-best 4.03 ERA. The pitching staff struck out 457 batters, in 498.1 innings pitched.

The Heat drew a total of 41,852 fans to Nettleton Stadium. That gave them an average attendance of 1,443 spectators; ranking them first in both statistics for 2018.

The Heat will look to have their regular season success translate to the postseason as they will take on the winner of the Lincoln-Medford first round matchup. Chico will hit the field on the road beginning this Wednesday at 6:35PM. Pregame festivities begin at 6:15PM with the Chico Heat Pregame Show. You can catch all of the Championship Series action on the KPAY Sports App, www.kpaysports.com and 101.7FM The Edge.

Statistics courtesy of www.pointstreak.com

Resolved: Technical Difficulties With Chico Heat Baseball Broadcast

We are currently experiencing technical difficulties. At this time we are unable to bring you the Chico Heat Baseball broadcast on 101.7FM. However, you can still listen on the KPAY Sports App and here, on kpaysports.com. We continue to work on the issue and apologize for the inconvenience. We will continue to update this article with any new information. Thank you for your understanding.

At this time, the Chico Heat lead the Medford Rogues 3-0 in the bottom of the 4th.

8PM UpdateThere are currently no new developments.

8:27PM Update: All technical difficulties have been resolved and we are back on 101.7FM The Edge! Thank you for your patience

All Sports-All the Time

By Chandler Guadagnin

If you can’t get enough sports, there is no need to worry. KPAY Sports is proud to announce that in addition to broadcasting 2017 Chico Heat Baseball live, the station will air archived games from local sports teams. These games include High School Football, Butte College Football, Chico State Basketball and Baseball, as well as Chico Heat Baseball.

Listen now on the KPAY Sports App and www.kpaysports.com. Follow KPAY Sports on social media:

Twitter: @KPAYBacaSports

Facebook: @KPAYSports

Pickles turn series opener sour for Heat

The Chico Heat were looking to stay perfect on the road but a late inning rally by the Portland Pickles resulted in the Heat’s first road loss of the year.

Matt Starcovic’s third hit of the night, a line single to right center plated two runs in the bottom of the 9th giving the Pickles a come-from-behind 8-7 win over Chico.

Chico had scored in six of the first seven innings but their inability to tack on runs proved to be their undoing. Justin Watari got the Heat on the board in the 1st with a solo home run. Jake Davison would hit a solo shot in the 3rd. Chico was scoring but also leaving a lot of runners on base as they left the bases juiced in both the 2nd and 5th innings. With that said, Chico led 7-3 going to the bottom of the 7th inning. That’s when the tables turned as the Pickles got to the Heat bullpen.

Portland would score three runs in the 7th. The rally was aided by a dusk-aided pop up double that was lost in the high sky by Heat fielders. Portland was also fortunate to see a popped up bunt land untouched on the wet turn between first and second that extended the inning.

The Heat still took a 7-6 lead to the bottom of the 9th but Tanner Clark walked the first two hitters in the 9th, after a SAC bunt moved the runners into scoring position, Clark would walk Bobby Kinne to load the bases setting the stage for Starcovic’s heroics.

Watari went 3-for-4 for the Heat with a double and a home run driving in two. Cole Lemmel went 3-for-5 and drove in a run.

Mikey Wright pitched great for Chico. The Chico State product twirled six innings scattering six hits giving up three runs while walking no one and striking out 7.

Chico and Portland will play game two of this three game series tonight at 7:05pm with our pre-game coming your way at 6:45pm on the KpaySports app and right here on KpaySports dot-com. Just hit the listen live tab to hear all the action

Chico Heat shut down Pickles to move to 2-0 on season

For the second straight night the Chico Heat got a stellar pitching performance as they shut down the Portland Pickles 4-1 on Wednesday night.

Feather River College product Justin Watland shut down the Pickles  tossing 6 innings of 4-hit shut-out baseball walking no one and striking out four. Tanner Tokunaga, Marcus Wilhite, Chris Smutny and Bailey Zimmer each had two hits accounting for all the knocks the Heat would get. Chico State product Andrew Schantz pitched a scoreless 9th striking out the side to pick up the save.

Chico won their season opener on Tuesday 6-4 behind 5 innings of one-hit shut-out relief from Chico product Samson Abernathy. The Heat were able to rally from an early 4-0 deficit to get the win.

Chico will now go for the series sweep on Thursday as they host Portland at 7:05pm at Nettleton Stadium. Rory Miller will have the play-by-play with the Heat pre-game at 6:45pm. You can listen on 101.7 FM or the KpaySports app, also right here on the KpaySports website.