Ducks all-time leading hitter earns league’s top honor
(Central Islip, N.Y., Oct. 29, 2014) – The Atlantic League of Professional Baseball today announced that Long Island Ducks outfielder and hitting coach Lew Ford has been chosen as the Player of the Year for 2014. He becomes the second player in franchise history to win the award (Ray Navarrete, 2009).
“Lew had an exceptional season offensively, defensively and as a mentor and role model for our club,” said Ducks president and general manager Michael Pfaff. “His historic season was one of the best in Atlantic League history, and he is extremely deserving of this great honor.”
Ford’s 2014 season was highlighted by breaking two Atlantic League records. He finished the year with 189 hits, surpassing the previous high of 179 set by Victor Rodriguez (Somerset) in 2004. In addition, Ford became the first player in league history to play in all 140 games during the regular season. Navarrete and Wayne Lydon (Camden) had previously held the record of 139, which was set in 2009.
The 38-year-old led the Atlantic League in doubles (40) during the 2014 campaign and finished second in batting average (.347), RBI (95), runs (100), total bases (278) and on-base percentage (.415). Ford earned Atlantic League Player of the Month honors in May after compiling a .402 batting average, 47 hits and .470 on-base percentage. Two months later, he was selected to play in the Atlantic League All-Star Game at Constellation Field in Sugar Land, Texas. The former big leaguer’s defense was also outstanding, as he did not commit a single error in 97 games played in the outfield.
2014 was Ford’s fifth season with the Flock, and he currently is the Ducks all-time leading hitter with a .337 career batting average. In 341 games played with Long Island, he has totaled 39 home runs, 216 RBI, 261 runs, 439 hits and 95 doubles. In addition, Ford has helped the Ducks to two of their three Atlantic League championships (2012, ‘13) and three of their four division championships (2011, ’12, ’13).
The Atlantic League also announced that Chris Schwinden of the Lancaster Barnstormers was named Pitcher of the Year for 2014. For a complete list of the Atlantic League’s postseason honors, please visit www.atlanticleague.com.
The Long Island Ducks are members of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball and play their home games at Bethpage Ballpark. For further information, call (631) 940-DUCK or visit www.liducks.com.