Alec Baker

Alec Baker of the Eau Claire Express pitches against the Duluth Huskies on June 15, 2019 at Carson Park.

The Eau Claire Express have announced pitcher Alec Baker as their second roster member for the upcoming season.

Baker is an Express veteran. The Dallas Baptist redshirt freshman pitched in 11 games for Eau Claire in 2019. He earned a 2-0 mark and 3.60 ERA in 30 innings with the Express.

“I’m super excited to have the opportunity to come back and play in Eau Claire with all the great people there,” Baker said in a statement on the Express’ social media. “It’s an amazing place to play that loves baseball and delivers a tremendous atmosphere to play in.”

The hard-throwing Baker, a right-hander, served as both a starter and a bullpen arm in his first season with the Express. He started five games and appeared in relief in six others, picking up one save.

To get that save, Baker wowed fans — and his own catcher — by hitting 97 mph on the radar gun in that game against Mankato.

He joins Cal Poly infielder Nick Marinconz as Eau Claire’s only publicly-announced signees to this point. Marinconz hit .308 with the Express in 2019 and was a key part of their run to the Summer Collegiate World Series.

“I can’t wait to play in that Express uniform again with the amazing fans and summer vibes,” Marinconz said in an Express announcement on social media last week.

Eau Claire canceled its 2020 season due to the pandemic. The Express have not played since their Northwoods League championship appearance in Traverse City on Aug. 16, 2019.

The Express are scheduled to open the season at home on May 31 against Rochester. The club said last week on social media its hope is to play at Carson Park with fans in attendance and is currently working with the city to meet that goal.