Stingers add Golden Gophers catcher, pair of infielders for 2017
Wilson, Bissonette, Del Prado set to join the Stingers
Willmar, Minn. – The Willmar Stingers are excited to announce that Eli Wilson (University of Minnesota), Josh Bissonette (Baylor University) and Eric Del Prado (Willamette University) have been added to the Stingers roster for the 2017 season. With these signings, the roster is now at eleven players for the upcoming season, the organization’s eighth in the Northwoods League.
Eli Wilson, a 6-2 190-pound freshman, joins the Golden Gophers baseball program as a catcher and infielder out of Seattle, Washington. Wilson has seen action in seven of the Gophers 16 games thus far into the 2017 season, making four starts. In his limited time on the field, Wilson has posted a .308 batting average with four hits and three runs batted in.
During his senior year at Garfield High School (WA), Wilson was named to the All-State All-Star team. Wilson compiled a .394 batting average, 17 RBI, 14 SB and an on-base percentage of .469. Following his senior year, Wilson was drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the 37th round of the 2016 Major League Baseball draft.
Eli’s father, Dan, was a member of the Golden Gophers baseball program (1988-1990) as well. Dan was drafted with the 7th overall pick in the 1990 MLB Draft by the Cincinnati Reds. After debuting with the Reds in 1992, Wilson was eventually traded to the Seattle Mariners following the 1993 season. Wilson played with the Mariners from 1994-2005, earning a place on the 1996 American League All-Star team.
Josh Bissonette, a 6-0 185 sophomore infielder, has seen a lot of time in the field since arriving in Waco, TX. Bissonette started all 52 games in 2016 as a freshman for the Bears and has started all 16 games thus far in 2017. He has a .327 batting average early on this year with two doubles, six RBI and 17 hits. As a freshman, Bissonette posted a .236 average with 37 hits and 22 RBI.
Bissonette is not a stranger to summer collegiate league baseball, playing last summer in the Alaska Baseball League for the Matsu Miners. In 39 games with the Miners Bissonette had 34 hits, 14 RBI and seven doubles, which earned him an All-Star nomination.
Eric Del Prado, a 6-4 230 junior infielder, has been a relative mainstay in the Bearcats lineup in 2017, appearing in 19 of the team’s 20 games. In 2017, Del Prado has a .264 batting average with 19 hits, four doubles and a team-leading 14 RBI. Del Prado is looking to build off his solid sophomore season in 2015 in which he led the Bearcats roster in batting average (.350), at-bats (140), hits (49) and RBI (32).
Field Manager Eric Vasquez, as well as the Stingers organization, will continue to build the roster for the 2017 season. If you would like more information on tickets for the 2017 season, or more information regarding this press release, please contact the Willmar Stingers front office at 320-222-2010 or visit www.willmarstingers.com.
The 2017 season is presented by Marcus Construction. “From start to finish we’ll make your job easier and build a facility you will be proud of.”
The Willmar Stingers are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The 23-year-old summer collegiate league is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 20 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, more than 160 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including two-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champion Ben Zobrist (CHC) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM) and Lucas Duda (NYM). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.willmarstingers.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Stingers as your favorite team.