Theo Fightmaster, General Manager
Jayce Ray, a charter member of the Sonoma Stompers Baseball Club, and the 2014 Pacific Association Most Valuable Player, is one of several Stompers alumni getting ready for a postseason pennant drives with upper division teams. Ray and his American Association Wichita Wingnuts begin a best-of-five series with the Laredo Lemurs Wednesday night. Ray was outstanding in his first year in the Association, batting .310 in 89 games, with a .422 on-base percentage, and an OPS (on-base plus slugging percentage) of .804. The 2008 Sonoma Valley High graduate drove in 35 runs, scored 57, stole 17 bases and walked 56 times against just 39 strikeouts. Wichita went 59-41 during the regular season, good enough for first place in the AA’s South Division.
Former Stompers slugging first baseman, Joel Carranza, will embark on his first postseason with the Trois-Rivieras Aigles of the Canadian American Association of Professional Baseball. In his first 28 games with the Aigles, Carranza hit .267 with four homers, drove in 18 runs and had an OBP of .362.
Coming off his sensational 2014 campaign with Sonoma, Carranza was even better for the Stompers this summer. In 44 games the powerful right-handed hitter batted .358 with six homers, 41 RBI and an OPS of .981.
2015 Stompers Opening Day catcher, Isaac Wenrich, endured a bittersweet taste of the postseason, as his Florence Freedom (Frontier League) fell 6-5 to the River City Rascals in a one-game playoff.
Wenrich belted his fourth homer since being promoted to the Freedom on Aug. 16. The solo shot gave Florence (49-48), a 5-2 lead in the eighth inning, but the Rascals rallies for four runs in the bottom of the frame. On the season, Florence had been 40-2 when leading after seven innings. Wenrich, who was 2 for 5 in the one-game playoff, batted .250 with three home runs, 10 RBI in 18 games.
Wenrich was a stalwart behind the plate with Sonoma, hitting .296, had an OPS of .846 with 10 homers, 33 RBI and drew 24 walks in 58 games.
Several more Stompers alums enjoyed playing time at higher levels after their promotions. 2015 Opening Day second baseman, Sergio Miranda, led the Sussex County Miners (CanAm) with a .328 average, and an OBP of .431. Fehlandt Lentini batted .302 with three homers, 39 RBI, stole six bags, and scored 24 runs to lead the Long Island Ducks (Atlantic League) to the postseason.
Brennan Metzger, Matt Hibbert and Jaime Del Valle (2014), all finished the 2015 campaign with the Gary South Shore Railcats of the American Association.