Baycats Sign Garces for 2021 Season

BARRIE - The Barrie Baycats Baseball Club announced today that we have signed starting pitcher Frank Garces for the 2021 season.

Garces, 31, rejoins the Baycats after spending the 2019 season in Mexico pitching for Piratas de Campeche and Algodoneros de Union Laguna.

Prior to 2019, Garces, who pitched for Tigres del Licey in the Dominican Winter League this winter, spent the 2018 season with the Baycats and delivered one of the greatest seasons in Intercounty Baseball League [IBL] history.

That year, the 5'11", 175 lbs southpaw went a regular season and postseason combined 10-0 with an earned run average of 0.51, while rocking an absurd strikeout-to-walk differential of 58-3 en route to the Baycats securing their sixth championship in franchise history.

Prior to his 2018 season with the Baycats, the native of San Cristobal in the Dominican Republic spent one season in the Texas Rangers organization, six seasons in the San Diego Pardes organization, and one season in Japan, highlighted by his 2014 and 2015 seasons where he appeared in the big leagues as a member of the Pardes. 

In 55 major league appearances, the IBL Pitcher of the Year in 2018 recorded a respectable ERA of 4.60 to go along with a 1.532 WHIP and a 1.74 SO/W ratio.

The hard-throwing southpaw will lead the Baycats' rotation this summer alongside fellow southpaw, fellow major leaguer, and close friend Jayson Aquino, whom we signed back in November. 

With Garces signed, we have completed our import group for the 2021 season, as Garces will be accompanied by Aquino, former Toronto Blue Jays farm system catcher Andres Sotillo, and infielder Starlin Rodriguez, an IBL All-Star in 2019 who will be entering his third season with the team when our season kicks off in June.

With that, we have released catcher/first basemen Jose Vicente, while starting pitcher Emilis Guerrero will also not return.

The Baycats organization would like to wish both the very best moving forward, especially Guerrero, who will go down as one of our franchise's all-time great pitchers.

Guerrero leaves the Baycats after a legendary four-year tenure with the team, where he went a regular season and postseason combined 38-7 with an ERA of 2.69 in 368.2 innings pitched.

The Max Roseman Memorial Trophy [IBL postseason MVP] winner in 2016, Guerrero ranks third all-time in franchise history in wins, behind franchise icons Brad Bissell and Angus Roy.

The Baycats would like to thank Guerrero for everything that he did for this franchise, both on and off the field. We could not have asked for a better person, import, pitcher, and teammate over the course of the last half-decade.

Baycats president David Mills offered his thanks to Guerrero for everything that he did for this franchise.

Whether on the mound, in the dressing room, in the community, or teaching baseball skills at one of our youth baseball clinics, Emilis was always an upbeat and class guy. He will always be a part of the Baycats family.”

Baycats manager Josh Matlow, meanwhile, said he is thrilled to have added a true co-ace alongside Aquino with the signing of Garces.

"Frank will play a key role in our starting rotation. His dominance in 2018 proved he can not only succeed in this league but win. He will be a great 1-2 punch with Aquino. Frank also being a former Baycat will be returning to a lot of different players, however, we are the same great organization and he knows what to expect. We are excited to have been able to bring him back and look forward to seeing him pitch in 2021."

Photo: Brian Backland/Brian Backland Photography