Pivetta CBN’s Best
By Matthew Betts
When the Canadian Baseball Network named its player and pitcher of the year honours, RHP Nick Pivetta, 21 (Victoria, BC) was shocked to see his name.
The pool of Canadian talent is large — 100 Canadians were on the minor-league rosters this season — ,and despite his impressive season with the class-A Hagerstown Suns, he was surprised when he heard the news.
Pivetta took home the 2014 CBN top pitcher award. Realizing what an incredible honour it is, said he found out about the unexpected recognition second hand.
“My parents actually found out before I did,” Pivetta said. “I went on Facebook and was looking around and saw a bunch of links about the awards. I was with my girlfriend making breakfast.”
For Pivetta, it means a lot more than just one season’s worth of success. It shows that his hard work is paying off and he is on the right path. He just wants to stay healthy and continue to improve.
“It means I am doing something right,” Pivetta said. “That I am taking the right steps.”
After pitching for the New Mexico Thunderbirds, the Victoria Harbourcats and then in Hagerstown it was extra nice for the former Junior National Team pitcher to once again be recognized. It is clear that the B.C. native is proud of his homeland and wants to represent it in a positive way and with pride. The humble Pivetta admits it was a shock mainly because of how many pitchers could have received the accolade.
“There are so many great players in this country,” Pivetta said. “I had no idea (I would win), to be recognized is amazing.”
This acknowledgement puts Pivetta’s name alongside the likes of other top Canadian Baseball Network honorees such as this years top player and current Blue Jay Dalton Pompey (Mississauga, Ont.) and winner of the Randall Echlin memorial award.
Both young players have seen success early in their careers. It may not be long before we see Pivetta taking the mound for the Washington Nationals in a big league game.
Former Canadian minor league pitchers of the years include major leaguers James Henderson (Calgary, Alta.) has won the award twice, Scott Diamond (Guelph, Ont.), John Axford (Port Dover, Ont.), Scott Mathieson (Langley, BC) and Andrew Albers (North Battleford, Sask.).
Mark Hardy (Campbell River, BC) was the other winner.
To arrive at where Pivetta is in his career does not happen without the help of others. He was quick to compliment the support of his family and friends. Also, the coaches that have come into the young righthander’s life have had a huge influence on him. To Pivetta, it is all about using what he has learned, will continue to learn, and focusing on putting it all together. “It’s nice to be recognized,” Pivetta said. “But I still have to get better every day, I still have a long way to go.”
His 13 wins this season to lead all Canucks, clearly show that he has what it takes. On the season he 13-8 with a 4.22 ERA walking 39 and fanning 98 in 132 2/3 innings.
He was second in innings pitched amongst Canadians, third in strikeouts and was ninth in ERA and tied for 10th in appearances.
There is little doubt about Pivetta’s upside, his 6-foot-5 frame combined with a fastball that sits in the mid to low 90s have scouts turning their heads and talking about just how good this guy can be.
He has an ideal pitchers body and has used it well thus far in his career. It is no wonder the Nationals chose the Canadian standout 136th overall in the fourth round of the 2013 draft.
Pivetta is yet another Canadian to keep your eye on over the next few seasons.