Faulkner’s Antonio Frias named NAIA Pitcher of the Year
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Around Faulkner University, Antonio Frias is called “Papi Punch Out.” Now, you can call him the NAIA Pitcher of the Year.
The Eagle senior left-hander became the first Faulkner pitcher to ever receive the NAIA Pitcher of the Year honor.
What a 2021 season Frias posted.
“Papi Punch Out” finished with a 13-0 record and one save.
He posted 138 strike outs, which was tied for third in the nation.
Frias finished with a 2.22 ERA and held opposing hitters to just a .159 batting average.
He also tossed a no-hitter versus William Carey on March 20. It was Faulkner baseball’s first no-hitter since 2007.
“I remember like in 2019 when my head coach told me, when you want to start throwing for contact, you are going to be more successful. So, this year I came with that in my mind. That’s why I hit 300 strike outs and throw a no-hitter. It was a good season for me,” said Frias.
Frias finished his career with 300 strikeouts on the dot.
That mark is a program record.
“The credit just goes to him for understanding that he needed a change up. He needed to develop a change-up. He and coach Hurst worked on it the entire Fall, developed it and was able to throw it for a strike in any count,” said Faulkner head coach Patrick McCarthy.
Frias was also named the Southern States Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year this season.
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