03/22/2020 11:25 AM -
Whiting, Ind. – March 22, 2020 – The Northwest Indiana Oilmen continued to stockpile talent for the 2020 season on Sunday by announcing the addition of nine newcomers to the pitching staff.
After welcoming five returning pitchers last week, the Oilmen have added southpaws Luke Pappas (Western Michigan / Chicago, Ill.) and Cole Anderson (Maryville / Burbank, Ill.) and right-handers Michael Schalasky (University of Indianapolis / Palos Heights, Ill.), Brandon Tyler (Grambling State / Hammond, Ind.), Tommy Windt (South Suburban / Orland Park, Ill.), Cade Turner (Illinois Springfield / Frankfort, Ill.), Marek Bauner (University of Tennessee Martin / Crown Point, Ind.), Ryan Troxel (St. Xavier / Valparaiso, Ind.) and Jacob Frencl (Southeastern / Frankfort, Ill.).
Pappas pitched 1 2/3 innings over two appearances at Western Michigan this spring before the season was cut to 15 games due to the coronavirus. He yielded four hits and struck out two while issuing no walks during his abridged freshman campaign. Pappas prepped at Mount Carmel High School, where he went 5-4 with a 3.10 ERA as a senior and was named a team captain and CCL All-Star. He earned “King of the Hill” Pitcher of the Year honors during his time with the Caravan and helped the squad earn a regional title in 2018.
Pappas’ father Erik played in the big leagues with the Chicago Cubs in 1991 and St. Louis Cardinals in 1993 and 1994. He was selected by the California Angels with the sixth overall pick in the 1984 Major League Baseball Draft and debuted with the Cubs on April 19, 1991. Pappas caught a perfect game pitched by Rick Helling of the Triple-A Oklahoma City 89ers (Texas Rangers) in 1996.
Anderson is a high school senior at St. Laurence in Illinois. The 6-foot-3 lefty has signed to continue his collegiate career at Maryville, where he’ll play for the Saints in the Division-II Great Lakes Valley Conference starting with the 2020-2021 academic and athletic year. The Saints are under the direction of head coach Pat Evers.
Schalasky, a Brother Rice High School graduate, will bring a veteran presence to the Oilmen pitching staff. He has made 52 appearances at UIndy including 22 during the 2018 season, when he tossed 59 1/3 innings highlighted by a 10-strikeout game against Truman. He allowed just one earned run in his first 18 innings of work that season.
Tyler has worked 4 1/3 innings during his freshman go-around at Grambling State. The 6-foot-1 righty made three appearances over the team’s first 16 games before the virus outbreak. He played his high school ball at Hammond and was part of the Chicago White Sox ACE organization.
Windt is a freshman at South Suburban under Steve Ruzich after playing his high school ball at Carl Sandburg. In addition to his work on the mound, he is expected to see time at third base for the Oilmen.
Turner, a 6-foot right-hander, is currently a senior at Lincoln-Way East. He ranked 235th overall and 76th among RHPs in the state of Illinois, according to Prep Baseball Report. A member of the Cangelosi Sparks travel team, Turner went 1-0 with a save and 1.70 ERA while logging 12 1/3 innings as a junior at LWE. He has a fastball in the mid-80s and will continue his development with the Oilmen before joining the Prairie Stars of Illinois-Springfield next season.
Bauner, a Crown Point High School product, is currently a freshman at UT Martin in the Ohio Valley Conference. The 6-foot-2 righty was a prep standout for the Bulldogs, where he thrived as both a pitcher and shortstop for head coach Steve Strayer. He was one of the top-25 players in his class in the state of Indiana and was a Perfect Game Preseason All-American honorable mention in the Central Region in 2019. He helped Crown Point to a 28-5 record during his senior season and had an 11-strikeout, one-hit performance in a 1-0 sectional loss to Hobart in 2018.
Troxel is a freshman at St. Xavier, where he’s teammates with Joe Rycerz, who will also join him with the Oilmen this summer. The 6-foot-2 righty has made three appearance and one start, allowing four earned runs while walking eight and striking out eight over eight innings. He was the ace of the Valparaiso High School staff under head coach Todd Evans a year ago.
Frencl, a 6-foot-4 freshman at Southeastern CC, played his high school ball at Lincoln-Way East. Frencl worked 2/3 of an inning and did not allow an earned run in his Blackhawks debut, the lone appearance of his collegiate career thus far
The Oilmen have announced much of the 2020 roster over the last week, but will continue to unveil members of the team leading into the season. The home opener is slated for June 9 at 7:10 p.m. vs. defending MCL champion Bloomington as Chris Cunningham will make his home debut as Oilmen manager.