Some honors from the summer-collegiate Futures Collegiate Baseball League: the Vermont Lake Monsters is the 2021 FCBL Organization of the Year, while Senior Vice President C.J. Knudsen is Executive of the Year.
“From start to finish, the Vermont Lake Monsters were the class of the Futures League,” Commissioner Joe Paolucci said via press statement. “Behind the leadership of President & COO Chris English, Senior Vice President C.J. Knudsen, General Manager Dave Shermerhorn and Field Manager Pete Wilk, the Lake Monsters thrived on and off the field. The Futures League is stronger because of what they did this summer and we are all excited to see how their brand will continue to grow.”
After being affiliated with the Montreal Expos (1994-2004), Washington Nationals (2005-10) and Oakland Athletics (2011-20), the Lake Monsters were announced in late February as one of two new teams to join the FCBL for the 2021 season.
Led by English and Knudsen, a new era of Lake Monsters baseball was launched less than three months before the first pitch was thrown at Centennial Field. The community responded as Vermont averaged more than 1,700 fans and welcomed a total of 63,104 for its 37 regular-season home openings. More than 5,000 attended three playoff games in late August, the last of which was a title-clinching victory in the best-of-three series finale against Pittsfield.
“We want to thank our partners in the Futures League for this great honor,” English said via press statement. “It truly was an organizational effort and award. An organizational award means you excelled on all levels of running a baseball team. Congratulations to the entire organization.”
“It’s an incredible honor to be selected as the Organization of the Year,” Knudsen said via press statement. “What an exciting season both on and off the field; the dedication and pride shown by the players, staff and the community was next level.”