La Crosse, Wis. – Josh Frye helped the La Crosse Loggers win a Northwoods League Title in 2012 as a member of the pitching staff. Beginning in 2023, he’ll try to do the same thing but this time as the skipper. The Loggers officially named Frye as their field manager for the upcoming 2023 season earlier today, making him the first former player to take the reigns as the Lumbermen prepare for their 21st season of play in the Northwoods circuit.
Frye, responding from his home in California, is thrilled to return to La Crosse and lead a team that is very near and dear to him. “I’m very excited to return to La Crosse for my fourth season as both a player, and now coach. The Copeland Crazies, the atmosphere around the city, and the on-field talent is second to none,” exclaimed Frye. “I hope to bring a championship back for the Loggers by strengthening our team camaraderie and developing these young athletes for the next level.”
Frye, who played his collegiate baseball at Long Beach State, was a late summer addition to the Loggers in 2012 and helped them to their only NWL Championship that summer. He came back to La Crosse with a vengeance in the summer of 2013, going 6-3 with a 3.31 ERA. Frye made 12 starts over the summer, pitching a team-high 76.0 innings, while striking out a league-high 79. Frye was named a 2013 Northwoods League mid- and post-season All-Star, and the 2013 La Crosse Loggers Cy Young Award Winner.
At Long Beach State, Frye was named a 2014 First Team Big West Pitcher and a 2014 second team All-American after going 8-1 with a 1.94 ERA. In addition to his time with the Loggers, Frye also played summer ball for the Long Beach Legends of the California Collegiate League, where he was their 2012 Pitcher of the Year and was inducted into the Long Beach Legends Hall of Fame in 2015.
Frye played professionally after college, spending two years in the Los Angeles Angels organization, a year in the Frontier League, and finishing his final two years in the Western Australia League. He began his coaching career in 2016 as the Assistant Pitching Coach at Long Beach State in 2016, before becoming the pitching coach at Cypress College. The Long Beach, Calif. native has spent three previous summers coaching in the Northwoods League, including a stop with the Rochester Honkers during the summers of 2017-18 along with leading the Loggers pitching staff this past summer. Frye also currently serves as the pitching coach at St. John Bosco High School in Bellflower, Calif.
Loggers team president Chris Goodell shared in the excitement with the newest Loggers skipper. “Having Josh return as our field manager is pretty special and really brings his baseball career in La Crosse, and the Northwoods League, full circle. He’s a guy who has excelled at the collegiate and professional levels as a player and is now sharing his experiences with our next crop of future stars.” Goodell continued, “This will be his sixth season in the NWL as either a player or coach … he’s been through the grind and understands what it takes to be successful at this level and the next.”
Frye, who becomes the ninth manager in Loggers history, replaces Rob Sidwell who stepped away from the team after one season to be able to spend more time with family. Frye and the Loggers will open their 2023 campaign on May 29 when they travel north to Eau Claire. The 2023 home opener is set for May 30 at Copeland Park & Events Center. Season tickets and ticket packages for the 21st season of Loggers Baseball are on sale now with information available at www.lacrosseloggers.com or by calling the Loggers ticket office at 608-796-9553. Fans can also visit the Loggers office at 1225 Caledonia Street, La Crosse between 8:30-5, Monday thru Friday.
The La Crosse Loggers are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. Now in its’ 29th season, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 22 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, 300 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time All-Star and 2016 Roberto Clemente Award winner Curtis Granderson, three-time Cy Young Award winner and World Series Champion Max Scherzer (NYM), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and World Series Champion Chris Sale (BOS). As well as 2019 Rookie of the Year and 2019/2021 Home Run Derby Champion Pete Alonso (NYM) and 2021 All-Star, MLB Gold Glove winner and 2019 Second Team All-MLB shortstop Marcus Semien (TEX). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. League games are viewable live at watchnwl.com and on ESPN+. For more information, visit www.lacrosseloggers.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Loggers as your favorite team.