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Announcing our 71st Annual Pitch and Hit Awards Banquet Sunday January 29th, 2017 at the Tinley Park Convention Center (18451 Convention Center Drive at Harlem Ave just north of Interstate-80).

Honoring notable Chicago baseball professionals (both Major League and Minor League) from athletes to the front offices as well as amateur baseball people who have helped make the game of baseball better in the Chicago area.


2017 Pitch & Hit Club 71st Annual Awards Banquet


We expect a near capacity crowd! Please get your tickets early! Early Honoree is Paul Stevens (former long time Coach of Northwestern University).

Convention Ticket 2017

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2017 Pitch and Hit Club of Chicago Award Winners

  • Lou Boudreau Hall of Fame - Bill Haller, Retired MLB Umpire
  • Bo Jackson Courage Award - Bernie Gerl
  • Dizzy Trout Ambassador Award - Lou Collier, Retired MLB Player
  • Len Diforte Amateur Baseball Service Award - Armi Bambino
  • Charlie Humm Service Award - Rich and Marty Del Boccio
  • Mary Francis Veeck Woman of the Year Award - Susan Hemond Dent
  • Chicagoland Minor League Player of the Year Award - Zack Burdi (Chicago White Sox)
  • Pitch and Hit Presidents Award - Kevin Coe
  • Harry Caray Sportscaster of the Year Award - Jason Benetti, White Box Broadcaster
  • Chicago Rookie of the Year Award - Tim Anderson (Chicago White Sox)
  • Lifetime Achievement Award - Paul Stevens (Northwestern University)
  • Ron Santo Inspiration Award - Mark Smith, Head Baseball Coach Providence High School
  • Amateur Coach of the Year Award - Brian Sterako, Head Baseball Coach Lemont High School

Pitch and Hit Club Member Renewal

Fellow Members and prospective members, it is time to renew or join the club for 2017. DUES HAVE BEEN REDUCED TO $25 for the year.
Please click here for online Membership Application.


(FYI there are 2 minutes of commercials preceding the interview)

Len Diforte, Long time Pitch and Hit Club Member
Long time Pitch and Hit Member, Len Diforte (middle).
Also, pictured is Past-President of Pitch and Hit Club, Pete Caliendo (left) and Beverly Caliendo (right).

Lou Collier's Stars Practice at Curtis Granderson Stadium at UIC
Lou Collier's Stars Practice at Curtis Granderson Stadium at UIC
Lou Collier, Angela Christino (Beyond the Diamond), Derrick May (St. Louis Cardinals Hitting Coach) and Herb Forkenbrock

Pitch and Hit Club Donation to White Sox Charities
Pitch and Hit Club Presentation to White Sox Charities

Members Outing at Joliet Slammers
Pitch and Hit Club Members Outing at the Joliet Slammers in August 2016


Pitch and Hit Club presented check for Cubs Charities

Pitch and Hit Club presented check for Cubs Charities

At today's (7/20/16) Cubs game the Pitch and Hit Club presented to the Cubs a sizable check for Cubs Charities....pictured from Left to right are members Bill Motluck (treasurer), Kellon McFarlin (board member), Connie Falcone (Cubs Charities) Herb Forkenbrock (president), Russ Gangler (member).

Presentation to
the Joe Maddon
Respect 90 Foundation

Presentation to the Curtis Granderson "Grandkids" foundation form the Chicago Pitch and Hit Club

Corey RayPitch and Hit Club 2016 Honoree (Chicago Area Collegiate Player of the Year; COREY RAY - A Simeon Grad, Louisville OF, is chosen 5th in the 2016 MLB Draft

Congratulations from the Chicago Pitch and Hit Club!!

Pitch and Hit Club's Ken Miller receives Illinois "Coaches" Hall of
Fame Call

Ken Miller admits to being like a lot of young people when he left high school.

"I was one of those people that probably went to college for all of the wrong reasons. I went to be an athlete," the long-time Coal City coach said. "But once I was there, I started to realize all of the people that impacted me at a coaching level. It was really all I wanted to be."

After a four year stint at now consolidated Cornell High School (students in that community now attend Flanagan High School), Miller landed at Coal City, where he became something of a coaching utility knife. He coached the baseball team and the basketball team and, when the school instituted football in the fall of 1978, he jumped in there too as an assistant.

Over the course of the next 37 years, Miller became a fixture in the coaching staffs of many successful Coal City football teams. Last year, Miller elected to step down from the coaching ranks, and it marked the first time in nearly 50 years where Miller wasn't coaching some sport, somewhere.

That overwhelming commitment to student athletes didn't go unnoticed by the Illinois High School Football Coaches Association, as they have selected Miller to enter the organization's Hall of Fame. The 2016 class will be inducted on Saturday, April 2 in Champaign.

"I'm just very humbled by it all," Miller said. "It's probably one of the greatest honors I've ever had. I've always felt that one of the highest compliments someone can call you is to call you coach. I've been very blessed."

Miller never treated the coaching facet of his job as anything like a job.

"I was always something I very much looked forward to doing," Miller said. "At the end of a day of a classwork, it was a pleasure to go outside and help young kids in a way that you just can't in the classroom."

It would be easy for Miller to point to the 1993 season, the year that the Coalers captured the Class 2A state title as the highlight of his coaching career. But Miller really doesn't; he counts pretty much all of it among the highlights.

"I've coached for a very long time, and when you do that, you might take some of it for granted," Miller said. "I've tried not to. I've always felt very fortunate to do what I love to do for as long as I've done."

Although Miller willingly hung up his coaching whistle last season, he remains connected to Coal City and serves as the School Board President and remains connected to sports through his work as director of community relations for the Joliet Slammers, a Frontier League Independent Baseball team.

"I wasn't looking for the job; it just kind of came to me," Miller said. "And it's been a great thing. It allows me to stay connected to sports. And I'm happy to have it. Sports has given me everything I have. I'm happy to try to give some back."


70th Pitch and Hit Club Banquet a Success!

This years 2016 Pitch and Hit Club Awards Banquet was held at the Tinley Park Convention Center on Sunday Jan 31, 2016. We experienced a near capacity crowd highlighted by the award winner presentations, the autograph tables, and a nice assortment of memorabilia for our guests. We want to thank all that came out to share the great night at the 70th annual banquet.
Click here to view pictures from the event.

Congratulations to the 70th 2015 Pitch and Hit Award Winners

Click on pictures to enlarge.

Major League Player of the Year (New York Mets - Chicago resident)

2016 Pitch and Hit Club Hall of Fame Inductee (long time Chicago Cub Radio Announcer)

MLB Comeback Player of the Year - Chicago White Sox


GREG BLAESING of Rhino Baseball
Len Deforte Amateur Service Award

Charlie Humm Pitch and Hit Club Service Award

Bo Jackson Courage Award


Dizzy Trout Ambassador Award

Mary Frances Veeck Woman of the Year

College Player of the Year (Corey Ray Senior accepting the award)


Chicagoland Minor League Player of the Year

Jerome Holtzman Award (Presented by Chicago Baseball Museum) - Comcast Sports Net

Harry Caray Broadcasting Award


Pitch and Hit Club President’s Award

Major League Coach of the Year (Chicago Cubs Hitting Coach)

Nick Kamzic MLB Scout of the Year Award (Paul Kamzic presenting)


John Mallee, Major League Coach of the Year 2016 Award Winner

John Mallee, Major League Coach of the Year 2016
John Mallee, Major League Coach of the Year 2016 Award Winner (Chicago Cubs Hitting Coach) pictured with Herb Forkenbrock Pitch and Hit Club President.




Meeting Schedule

Please note that all meetings begin at 6:30 pm with Dinner and then Meeting to follow.

  • Next Meeting:



The mission of the Pitch & Hit Club of Chicago is to expand, develop and promote the great game of baseball at all levels. We are particularly interested in reaching out to the youth of our communities to increase involvement in baseball here in the Chicagoland area. We continue our 7 decade tradition of honoring the people who have given so much to the game from the youth and amateur levels all the way to the major leagues! Our upcoming annual awards dinner in January 2017 will be our 71st event honoring true baseball heroes!

Thanks to the hard work of our Board and Club Members along with the support of the community, we are able to continue our time honored commitments, donating a portion of our dinner proceeds to numerous great baseball-related causes such as The Professional Baseball Scouts Foundation, Cubs Charities, White Sox Charities, Joe Maddon's Respect 90 Foundation, and the Grand-kids Foundation (Curtis Granderson). As club president, I pledge to continue the good work done by previous presidents and club members dating back to our club's inception in 1942.

Herb Forkenbrock, President

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