Pacific Association honors Sonoma Stompers’ Brett Creamer, Zack Pace
The Sonoma Stompers’ general manager and field manager were both honored by the Pacific Association for their accomplishments in the 2018 baseball season.
General Manager Brett Creamer was named the league’s Executive of the Year while Manager Zack Pace was named Manager of the Year.
At 25 years old, Creamer was the youngest general manager in professional baseball during the 2018 season.
“I’m thrilled to be recognized for the Executive of the Year Award,” Creamer said. “This season would not have been possible without my incredible front office staff Hayley Slye, Joey Samuelson and Manager Zack Pace. Our entire front office, coaching staff, players, interns, volunteers, day of game and Palooza staff were vital in making this record breaking year possible.”
The Petaluma native joined the Sonoma Stompers during the 2014 inaugural season as the director of Game Day Operations and Community Affairs before working three seasons for the Golden State Warriors in event and arena operations. He also gained Major League Baseball experience in the ticketing department for the Oakland Athletics before returning to the Stompers as assistant general manager in 2017.
Creamer, a Bowling Green State University graduate in sports management, was named general manager this past November.
“I was given a great opportunity from our owner Jon Sebastiani, and never looked back,” said Creamer.
According to the Stompers, the team’s attendance rose to 17,501 which was up more than 70 percent from the previous season. Creamer also formed a partnership with Palooza Brewery and Gastropub from Kenwood which provided the first restaurant dining experience in Pacific Association history.
“Brett set the character of the Stompers family. He lead with good communication and positive outlook toward our goals. It was a pleasure to see him lead the Stompers in 2018,” said Pace.
Pace and Creamer helped lead the Stompers to the best record in Pacific Association history. Their 57 wins marks the most since the 2013 season where the San Rafael Pacifics had 54 wins.
This is the second time the Stompers have won the Executive of the Year award. Theo Fightmaster, who hired Creamer in 2014 won the award for his accomplishments during the 2016 season.
“Theo is a great mentor of mine, and I’m excited to be working with him again,” Creamer said. Fightmaster is the newly appointment Pacific Association commissioner for the 2019 season.
Pace, a Sonoma State University product and longtime centerfielder for the San Rafael Pacifics, said “I’m thankful for the whole Stompers family. From Brett (Creamer) and the front office, host families, sponsors, fans, players, and everyone else involved. With great communication, we all worked hard towards our goals and doing the right thing. It was a pleasure to see a positive atmosphere daily created by everyone on the Stompers family.”
As a player, the Newark native played 11 seasons in professional baseball, the final five with San Rafael, where he helped guide the Pacifics to three championships. With stops in the American Association, Frontier League, and finally the Pacific Association, Pace compiled a .268 batting average, 810 hits, 214 at bats, and a .402 on base percentage. Pace retired as a player following the 2016 season, then took over the Stompers prior to 2018.
Pace played his college ball at Sonoma State, where he earned All-West Region honors as a center fielder. He remains the SSU’s career record holder in on base percentage (.510) and he has assisted head coach John Goelz at the school since 2014.
Pace is the third-consecutive Stompers skipper to win or share the award. Former manager Takashi Miyoshi won in 2016, and was a co-winner, sharing with Vallejo Admirals P.J. Philips in 2017. Miyoshi is now a coach in the Minnesota Twins organization. Philips is the brother of former Major League all-star Brandon Phillips.
“Zack and I shared the same vision from day one,” said Creamer. “We were able to execute our plans effectively and promote players to higher leagues as well… he exceeded my expectations, and is truly a vital asset of the Sonoma Stompers. From his on field demeanor to his off the field upbeat personality, he embodies the Sonoma culture.”