Isaac Alexander Hess
- Bats Left, Throws Left
- Height 5' 10", Weight 175 lb.
- School University of Arizona, Washington State University, South Mountain Community College
- High School Shadow Mountain High School
Isaac Hess pitched professionally for seven years. He was the first minor league pitcher to have had a total hip replacement.
Hess did not play in junior college in 2004 due to hip problems (he began having problems at age 7 due to Legg-Calve-Perthes). Transferring to Washington State in 2005, he had his total hip replacement and did not play. He transferred to the University of Arizona in 2006 and did not play for them either. He signed with the independent Windy City Thunderbolts and went 10-2 with a save and a 3.28 ERA. He tied Zac Cline and Brock Hunton for 9th in the Frontier League in wins, then was named MVP of the championship series.
On August 5, 2008, he threw the first no-hitter in Thunderbolts history, shutting down the Midwest Sliders. He finished the season at 7-6, 3.91 with 110 K in 89 2/3 IP. He tied Derek Blacksher for 6th in the league in strikeouts. The team repeated as league champs. In 2009, the lefty pitched for the Newark Bears (Sv, 0 R, 5 K in 3 IP), Victoria Seals (9-2, 3.86) and the Calgary Vipers (9.88 ERA in 3 G). He was also 1 for 4 with a run and two RBI offensively. He tied Erik Dessau and Lou Pote for 3rd in the Golden Baseball League in wins and led with 99 strikeouts (3 over Lorenzo Barcelo).
Hess opened 2010 with the Diablos Rojos del Mexico, going 3-1 with a 3.66 ERA in 17 games, then was dealt to the Guerreros de Oaxaca, for whom he was 0-2 with a 8.14 ERA and 2.22 WHIP. Let go by Oaxaca, he returned to Victoria, where he posted a 5-4, 3.91 record with 80 K in 73 2/3 IP and hit .364/.382/.606 in 40 plate appearances. Despite not being in the GBL all year, he missed the top 10 in strikeouts by just two. He signed with the Niigata Albirex of the independent Japanese Baseball Challenge League but did not wind up reporting due to the tsunami and concern of radiation exposure. Instead, he was back in Canada with the Winnipeg Goldeyes, going 8-4 with a 4.15 ERA. He was 2-3 with a 6.40 ERA for the 2012 Bridgeport Bluefish. That put him at 44-24, 4.39 with two saves in 148 games (81 starts) between the US and Mexico, with 518 K in 541 IP. He had hit an impressive .325/.341/.525.
Signing with the Czech Republic's Technika Brno, he was 0-1 with a 1.36 ERA for the rest of 2012, going 1 for 4 with a walk on offense, but fell to 1-0, 6.89 in two postseason starts. He led the Extraliga in ERA in the regular season despite only making four appearances, .25 ahead of former major leaguer Pat Ahearne. He also was 9th with 42 whiffs, between Martin Drong and former big leaguer Greg McCarthy.
He had tryouts with four major league teams, but each time concerns about his hip prevented his being signed.