WICHITA, Kans. (March 1, 2017) – The Wichita Wingnuts have granted left-hander Anthony Capra, the franchise leader in career strikeouts, his release as he has chosen to retire from professional baseball, the club announced Wednesday.
“Anthony has been a mainstay in our rotation ever since he joined us back in 2012 and has been a huge part of our success during his time with us,” Wingnuts President/GM Josh Robertson said. “As successful as he was on the field, he was an even better teammate, leader and person to have in our clubhouse. We will miss him a lot and wish him all the best going forward for whatever is next for him.”
Capra first signed with the Wingnuts in 2012 after he was released by the Oakland Athletics. The southpaw has spent at least part of every subsequent season with the Wingnuts, with his Wichita tenure only interrupted in 2015, when he left after six starts to pitch for Monclova of the Mexican League.
After his nine-start stint in Mexico, Capra returned to the Wingnuts for the 2016 season, a campaign that saw the veteran miss a little more than two months with injury. In his second start back from injury, Capra picked up his 300th strikeout as a Wingnut in a no-decision against Kansas City on August 17.
The 29-year old wraps up his five-year Wingnuts tenure with 305 strikeouts, a franchise record. The lefty’s 122 strikeouts in 2013 were third-most in the American Association that season, and is the second-highest single-season total in club history, behind only Junior Guerra’s 126 that same year. Through 2016, Capra has started the second-most games in franchise history (55), and also ranks in the top five in wins (19) and innings pitched (294.1).
Capra first came to Wichita to play baseball in 2006, when he began a three-year career at Wichita State by posting a 1.76 ERA in 30 relief appearances as a freshman. The southpaw followed that up with a sophomore year that saw him once again post a 1.76 ERA, which was the lowest in the Missouri Valley Conference and seventh-lowest in the nation. Following a 9-1 junior season, Capra was selected in the fourth round of the 2008 draft by the Oakland Athletics.
That summer, Capra began his professional career with Class-A Kane County in the Oakland organization. After the 6’1” lefty was named the Oakland’s A’s Organizational Pitcher of the Year in 2009, he spent the entire 2010 season at Double-A Midland, and then reached Triple-A Sacramento for the first time in 2011. Capra began 2012 in Sacramento, but latched on with the Wingnuts in July after he was released by Oakland. In nine total professional seasons, Capra finished 42-50 with a 4.48 ERA and 809 strikeouts in 825.0 innings (8.8 K/9).
The 10th season of Wichita Wingnuts baseball begins on Thursday, May 18 against the Laredo Lemurs at Lawrence-Dumont Stadium. For information on season tickets, group outings, and party packages, call the Wingnuts main office at (316) 264-NUTS, or visit the Wingnuts official website at www.wichitawingnuts.com.