Craig Molldrem returns to the Dallas Spirits Baseball Club in his seventh overall season as an ace on the pitching rotation. Molldrem made an immediate impact to the Spirits Club as well as the North Texas Amateur Baseball League (NTABL) as a whole after his first season of play, featuring incredible arm strength and command as a starting pitcher. Molldrem went 10-3 in 2016 with 9 complete games. Molldrem averaged a strike around 70% of every pitch he threw in 2016. He finished the season with a 0.85 ERA and struck out 117 hitters in Veterans League baseball. In the Fall League, Craig batted .522 including a double, triple, and home run. He tied for third in team hitting with 12 RBI and tied for firth with 12 hits. On the mound, he finished the Fall with a perfect 6-0 record, striking out 61 hitters and finishing with an ERA of 0.16 while leading the Spirits to the Fall Ball Championship and a perfect 12-0 season. Molldrem was named the Veterans (35+) team MVP, and won the honor of best pitcher in the NTABL Veterans League.
Injury set Molldrem down in 2018 after he played in 6 games. Craig pitched to a 2-1 record with a save with 20 innings under his belt before Tommy John surgery ended his season. Molldrem struck out 24 hitters and had an ERA of 1.35 prior to the injury ending his season. Molldrem returned for fall baseball and helped lead the Spirits to a 2019 Fall Championship. Upon returning later during the summer campaign and seeing some time at first base, Molldrem showed off his hard work and rehabilitation by pitching again during the fall campaign. Craig batted .500, finishing with 5 hits including a double and 5 runs batted in. From the mound, Molldrem finished at 2-0, while striking out 18 hitters in 8 innings pitched while walking just one and allowing just one hit and ending with a 0.77 ERA.
Molldrem didn’t play in 2020 due to COVID-19 and due to the birth of his second child, and saw limited action in 2021. Molldrem played in a pair of games for the Spirits (40+) squad during 2021, finishing 2-for-5 at the dish, adding a run scored and an RBI. Molldrem added 11 innings on the hill, throwing 131 strikes versus just 68 balls, striking out 10 in just 2 games played.
Craig will likely be limited once again in 2022 as he and his wife expect their third child to the family. Born in Boscobel, Wisconsin, Molldrem took his talents through the ranks of high school and enrolled at the University of Minnesota. He was drafted in the 43rd round of the 2000 MLB Amateur Draft out of high school and then again by the Florida Marlins organization in the 8th round (248 overall) of the 2004 MLB June Amateur Draft out of U of M.
In his senior season of college, Molldrem collected Second-Team All-Big Ten honors. He finished the season seventh in the Big Ten in ERA at 3.62, tied for sixth in wins with six on the season, and was seventh in opponent batting average at .250. Molldrem tied for second in Big Ten wins with five on the season and was eighth in opposing batting average in Big Ten play. He finished the 2004 season with a 6-3 record, a 3.62 ERA, and managed 41 strikeouts. He also had a 1.19 WHIP for that season. He finished 5-1 with a 4.05 ERA and a .261 opponent batting average in Big Ten play. Molldrem spent the entire conference season as Minnesota’s second starter behind Glen Perkins.
Molldrem finished his career with a 16-13 overall record, and was 10-5 in Big Ten games. The 10 career Big Ten wins tied him for 10th on the Minnesota career list. He also pitched 237.0 career innings for Minnesota, just barely missing the school’s top 10 list for his career. Molldrem finished his career with a 4.37 ERA and 153 strikeouts. Molldrem became the fourth Golden Gopher player since 2000 to be picked in the first eight rounds of the draft, joining Jack Hannahan (2001- 3rd round), Luke Appert (2003 – 6th round) and Glen Perkins (2004 – 1st round).
Craig played for a number of Minor League teams peaking at AAA, including a stint with the Albuquerque Isotopes spanning from 2004 through 2008 before injuring his shoulder. At 6’6″ 220 lbs, he shows some stature from the mound, and with a rejuvenated work ethic he’ll no doubt contribute to a majority of the team’s success. He’s a humble athlete and his positive demeanor allows him to gel with each of the players on the team and those they compete against.
Molldrem, his wife Maritza, and their two children reside in Dallas, TX where Craig is currently employed as a Financial Advisor at North Star Resource Group.