ROSEMONT, Ill. (November 28, 2017) – The Chicago Bandits have agreed to a one-year contract extension with third baseman/left fielder Natalie Hernandez, team officials announced on Monday afternoon.
Hernandez enjoyed a career year at the plate in her fourth season at the professional level, which culminated in an All-NPF Team selection for the first time in her career. The Glendora, California native ranked third on the team in batting average (.324) and slugging percentage (.468).
“Natalie Hernandez has been a reliable bat in our lineup since joining the organization in 2014,” Bandits general manager Toni Calmeyn said. “We’re happy to keep her on board and look forward to seeing her build off a tremendous 2017 season.”
Originally a signee via open tryouts ahead of the 2014, Hernandez has re-signed with the team in each of the subsequent seasons.
In 2017, Hernandez showcased her clutch ability at the plate, maintaining a .386 clip when batting with two outs in an inning.
Hernandez has been a member of a pair of Cowles Cup championship teams during her tenure with the Bandits. After appearing largely in a backup role during Chicago’s 2015 championship season, Hernandez became an instrumental bat off the bench the following year, hitting .255 with three home runs and 20 RBI.
The University of Illinois-Chicago product, made her professional debut on May 29, 2014 against the Akron Racers.
During the offseason, Hernandez works as an assistant coach at Transylvania University. In Hernandez’s third season with the team the Pioneers reached the super regional round of the 2017 NCAA Division III Softball Tournament.
The four-time Cowles Cup champion Chicago Bandits will be back at The Ballpark at Rosemont for the 2018 season. For more information about the Chicago Bandits or to reserve your season tickets, please visit chicagobandits.com or call the box office at 877-722-6348.
Since 2005, the Chicago Bandits have been members of the National Pro Fastpitch league. Entering their 14th season as a franchise, the Bandits have provided the Chicago area with high-level softball talent and entertainment en route to capturing six regular season titles and four Cowles Cup championships, the most recent coming during the 2016 campaign. Located in Rosemont, the Bandits play at The Ballpark at Rosemont, one of the premier softball facilities in the nation. The Ballpark at Rosemont is the only stadium in the country built exclusively for a women’s professional softball team. The Bandits provide an opportunity for female fastpitch softball players to further their careers at the professional level and has included legendary figures such as Jennie Finch, Monica Abbott and Tammy Williams.
National Pro Fastpitch (NPF), an Official Development Partner of Major League Baseball since 2004, provides elite female athletes with an opportunity to pursue a professional career in fastpitch softball beyond their collegiate and amateur success. The NPF affiliate teams consist of the Akron Racers, Beijing Shougang Eagles, Chicago Bandits, Scrap Yard Dawgs, Texas Charge and USSSA Florida Pride for the 2017 season. National Pro Fastpitch players hail from the United States, Australia, Canada and China among which are the most accomplished and talented athletes in the sport of women’s softball.