CLARK, NJ -- Zach Lipshitz of Scotch Plains will be among the local student athletes honored by the Union County Baseball Association for their achievements in 2015 at the 80th annual Hot Stove League Baseball Dinner on Feb. 21st. The association will also induct five new members into the Union County Baseball Hall of Fame.

The Hot Stove League Baseball Dinner begins at 1:00 p.m. at Gran Centurions, 440 Madison Hill Road in Clark, NJ. The event is sponsored by UCBA, in cooperation with the Union County Freeholders and the Union County Parks and Recreation.
 
Among the honorees at this year’s “Hot Stove” event will be:

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  • Zach Lipshitz, named Union County Hitter of the Year with Scotch Plains-Fanwood. He now plays for Drew University.
  • P.J. Walker and Jahad Thomas, graduates of Elizabeth High School who are now teammates at Temple University;
  • Jackie Lima, a graduate of Linden High School who led the Ramapo College to its first NJAC Tournament Championship;
  • Kathleen Walsh, another Linden graduate, who was named to the All Union County First Team and now plays for Walsh University in Ohio;
  • Gianna Randazza, a junior at Arthur L. Johnson Regional High School in Clark, who was named Union County Player of the Year.

"There have been a few players in the history of Scotch Plains-Fanwood baseball that have won this award and I'm so privileged to be in this category with them," said Lipshitz, who thanked his coaches, teammates and family. "I feel very honored and extremely proud because of the exceptional talent in Union County."

The UCBA will induct five new members into the Union County Baseball Hall of Fame: Joe Alvarez of Elizabeth, Ray Crepeau of Linden, Wally “Sam” Engelhardt of Elizabeth, Bruce Henderson of Rahway, and Damien Kane of Roselle.
 
Sparky Lyle, the 1977 Cy Young Award winner and a two-time World Series champion with the New York Yankees, will be the guest speaker. Lyle, an outstanding relief pitchere who is also known for his book, “The Bronx Zoo." Lyle also was the original manager of the Somerset Patriots and guided the club to five championships during his tenure (1998-2012).
 
Tickets for the dinner are $50 each. Proceeds will help fund the Union County Summer Youth Baseball League for youngsters 8 to 15 years, and the Fall Wood Bat League for teens.
 
Since 1937, the Hot Stove League Dinner has been the primary fund-raising effort for the Union County Baseball Association’s summer and fall programs. Over the years, the awards dinner has honored many local and national baseball luminaries – including Phil Rizzuto of Hillside, Don Newcombe of Elizabeth, Joe Collins of Union, Jeff Torborg of Mountainside, Willie Wilson of Summit, and Elliott Maddox of Union.
 
Tickets for the 80th Annual Union County Baseball Association Hot Stove League Dinner on Feb. 21st are available from the UCBA by visiting www.UCBA-NJ.org or by mailing a check to the Union County Baseball Association, PO Box 176, Fanwood NJ 07023. For more information, call Jim Iozzi at 908-917-2523.