RiverHawks re-sign all-time saves leader
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January 2, 2008 - LOVES PARK, Ill. – The Rockford RiverHawks’ all-time saves leader is coming back.

The RiverHawks announced Wednesday that they have re-signed pitcher Mike Marksbury. After dominating Frontier League hitters in the first half of 2007, Marksbury signed with the Milwaukee Brewers and finished the season in the Florida State League.

“He’s a big asset for us because he’s one of the premier relievers in the Frontier League,” RiverHawks director of baseball operations Dave Ciarrachi said. “With his ability, he may get another chance (in affiliated baseball), but in the meantime, he’s an asset to our organization.”

Marksbury was the RiverHawks’ closer from the start of the 2006 season until last year’s all-star break and totaled a team-record 26 saves in a Rockford uniform. He was a Frontier League all-star in each of the last two seasons.

“I’m excited I’m going to get the guy who’s been the best closer in the league the last two years,” manager Bob Koopmann said.

Last season, Marksbury had 14 saves, tops in the Frontier League at the break and one short of the team’s single-season record, a 0-0 record, a 1.33 earned-run average and 32 strikeouts in 20 1/3 innings when he signed with the Brewers. The right-hander spent the rest of the year as a setup man at high Class A Brevard County. Marksbury was 2-0 with no saves and a 9.88 ERA in 13 2/3 innings in the FSL. Milwaukee released him in October.

“I just want to win a championship. I don’t really care about me, I just want to get back to the playoffs and win it,” said Marksbury, who has been in the bullpen for one of the RiverHawks’ four consecutive postseason appearances.

Marksbury, who spent 2004-05 with Florence, is a fifth-year professional who has 1-Year status in the Frontier League. He has averaged more than a strikeout an inning in his career and has a 2-to-1 career strikeout-to-walk ratio.

The RiverHawks are members of the Frontier League, a 12-team independent professional baseball league that will play its 16th season this summer. Advertising and season-ticket information is available by calling the box office at (815) 885-2255. Most games are broadcast live on WNTA (1330 AM) and the internet. Fans can also visit the RiverHawks online at www.rockfordriverhawks.com.


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