Last week, Randy Wynne became at the time the third member of the Otters to be signed to affiliated baseball.
“What can you say about him? He’s a manager’s dream and pitching coach’s dream” said Otters manager Andy McCauley.
Wynne’s story is the Frontier League’s story. After a successful career spent under the radar at Missouri Baptist, the right-hand pitcher went undrafted. But unwilling to let his big league dream die, the San Diego native went the independent route.
“I played in a different independent league in Utica Michigan for two years, and there was an age limit on that league. So, I aged out of that league and got a call from Evansville, the next January and here I am,” said Wynne.
Wynne’s 9-9 record in his first season in Evansville belied his impressive showing, as he compiled a top team single season record 114 strikeouts in 134 1/3 innings pitched while tossing four complete games.
“He takes the ball every five days, never complains, never has a bad word, never disgruntled by not getting picked up last year, with the year he had, and just comes out and does his job,” said McCauley.
One of the things that made Wynne give Evansville a second season was the unique atmosphere and fan base at Bosse Field.
“I love playing for the Otters. The history of the stadium. The fans are great. A lot of energy, always. Sometimes they’ll let you hear it if it’s not going so well out there. But you meed that sometimes. I love playing ay home here. We’re hard to beat when we’re playing at home here. The natural surface too, can’t be beat,” said Wynne.
Wynne’s 2019 season has been even more impressive racking up a 5-2 mark for Evansville, while striking out 47 and walking just eight in 50 innings of work.
“He pounds the zone with strikes. Very effective pitching to contact. Low pitch count guy, keeps you in every game. Last year we didn’t score many runs. This year we’re scoring him a couple. And that’s he’s having the win loss record,” said McCauley.
And those numbers grabbed the attention of the Cincinnati Reds, who made Wynne the third Otter to be picked up by a major league team this season, joining pitcher Andrew McGuff and utility player Taylor Lane.
“That’s always the dream. I mean if you’re here and you’re not looking for an upward move, I’m not really sure you should be. And that’s kind of the plan for a lot of us. We want to move up. We want to keep playing against the best competition possible and really see how you match up,” said Wynne.
Now Randy lived up to his surname in first start for the Reds Arizona League team, as he picked up the win in a relief performance. However, whether his future lies in the big leagues or elsewhere, the diamonds will always shine for this hurler.
“I’d like to stay in baseball in some capacity. I don’t know if I’ll really go back to athletic training. That was originally the goal. Kind of looking into coaching now,” said Wynne.