baseball player throwing pitch

Pitching in the Last Frontier

August 1, 2022


Most Spider baseball players will spend the summer playing in leagues across the U.S. But Brenden Argomaniz had his sights set on somewhere outside the lower 48.

“I’m the Spider who went to Alaska,” Argomaniz said. 

The pitcher is throwing for the Chugiak-Eagle River Chinooks outside of Anchorage. It’s his second summer playing for the team.

Before graduating magna cum laude in 2022, Brenden Argomaniz was given a Presidential Citation for having the highest GPA among male senior athletes.

Many athletes can’t study abroad in college because of their playing schedules, so when Argomaniz heard about the opportunity to play in Alaska, he knew he wanted a change of scenery. He graduated this year, and after the season he’ll return to UR to begin a master's in nonprofit studies.

The players on the Chinooks come from all over the U.S. and play in a league against four other teams around Anchorage. 

“I remember getting off the plane at midnight, and it looked like it was 4 p.m. outside,” Argomaniz recalls from his first night in Alaska. “Just broad daylight — the sun shining in my face. The mountains were towering over me. It was beautiful." 

Traveling and playing together, Argomaniz said, has solidified friendships with his teammates that he hopes will last forever. 

“I knew as soon as I went home last summer that I wanted to come back, and a lot of that had to do with the team,” Argomaniz said. “The type of players that they recruit — they take time to make sure that they bring in quality human beings. To experience an incredible place with a group of guys looking for the same experiences that you are and being able to share that with them has been really cool.”

Argomaniz says the summer leagues are more relaxed, and when he isn’t on the mound, he likes to experience the Alaskan landscape by hiking and fishing. 

“It’s a little counterintuitive, but just to be able to see a bigger picture of life outside of baseball actually helped me out in baseball. So that was a blessing, too. And I don't think I could have learned that anywhere else but here.”