Bridgewater, NJ – First baseman/ designated hitter Josh Pressley has been named #2 on the Patriots Top 15 list, a part of the team’s 15th Season Anniversary, designed to celebrate the best players in team history as voted on by fans, Patriots players and coaches, and team officials.
“It is a tremendous honor to be mentioned with all the other guys on the list and what they’ve all brought to the community on and off the field. My time in Somerset will always have a special place in my heart,” Pressley said. “Some of the best friends I’ve made anywhere was with the Patriots. It was my family here.”
Pressley joined the Patriots in 2007 after time in the Tampa Bay Rays, New York Mets, Kansas City Royals, Boston Red Sox, and St. Louis Cardinals organizations. He finished his first season with the team with a .281 batting average with 92 hits, 18 doubles, 13 home runs, and 55 RBI in 327 at bats in 102 games played for Somerset.
During the playoffs that year, Pressley hit .333 with eight hits, two home runs, and six RBI in six post-season games. His strong first season in Somerset was only a precursor to what Pressley had in store.
2008 saw one of the finest seasons by any Atlantic League player through its existence. Pressley earned Player of the Year for a season where he won the batting title with a .354 average, set a team home run single season record with 30, and added 173 hits and 101 RBI. His remarkable season helped Somerset win their first Atlantic League Championship since 2005.
“It was a magical season where everything fell into place. A year like that can come once in a lifetime and sometimes not all. That team was the best collection of individuals I’ve ever been associated with. The accolades don’t happen without all the other guys in the clubhouse pushing you to be your best day in and day out,” Pressley said.
Pressley returned and led the Patriots to the league’s first ever Back-To-Back Championships in 2009 and continued to lead the team’s offense through the 2010 and 2011 seasons. In both seasons, he finished with a team high in home runs, reaching 22 in 2010.
The only year he was a Patriot that the team did not make the playoffs was the 2011 season, but he still produced All-Star numbers with a .297 average, 16 home runs, and 75 RBI.
Pressley was a five-time All-Star, a two-time champion, and just one of three Patriots selected as Atlantic League Player of the Year in the league’s 15 seasons.
“There was a core group of guys that never wanted to let each other down. You came to the field to work hard with your teammates and organization in mind. It was a very special group of guys that played healthy or hurt with one goal in mind- to win. My memories of Somerset will last a lifetime,” Pressley added.
Pressley is among the team’s all-time career leaders in several offensive categories for his time with the team from 2007-2011. He became a fan favorite for his leadership, determination to win, and tremendous clutch hitting and power that made every one of his at bats a must see event.
Throughout the 2012 season, the Patriots will be counting down the Top 15 players in team history and then highlight the chosen players on baseball card giveaways and a special lithograph during the year.