Celebrated Summer

Aug. 8, 2011

By Jon Cooper

Sting Daily

The players on the Georgia Tech Baseball are all on campus and back in class.

But what a great summer it was.

Here’s a final look at the Jackets and how they spent their summer vacations.

Alaska Baseball League

Conner Kendrick: The freshman lefty finished the Alaska League 4-0, with a save. His four wins led the league, he was one of three pitchers with a perfect winning percentage, had a League-low 1.16 ERA, and was second in the league holding batters to a .173 batting average. His 17 appearances and 10 games finished also led the league, while his 39 strikeouts were second. Kendrick also tied for the league lead picking off four base runners. The Bucs finished 16-20, in fourth place.

Cal Ripken Baseball League

Bradley Markey: The sophomore had a superb summer. In eight starts, Markey pitched to a 2.36 ERA, sixth-lowest in the league), allowing 13 earned runs in 49 2/3 innings. He also had two complete games (tied for second in the league). For the summer, he hit .234, with four RBIs and was a perfect 5-for-5 in stolen base attempts. Youses finished 24-16, in second place, eight games behind first-place Bethesda.

Cape Cod League

Luke Bard: The sophomore righty finished strong in his second season with the Brewster Whitecaps and pitched better than his 0-2 record and 4.44 ERA indicated. In 12 games, four of them starts, Bard allowed one run or fewer nine times. He allowed 25 hits in his 24 1/3 innings, striking out 19, but did walk 14. Whlle not registering a decision, he allowed three earned runs in his final three appearances, covering seven innings. He had not appeared in either of Brewster’s first two playoff games. Brewster was 20-20-4, third in the East.

Jake Davies: Davies started slow but came on for the Harwich Mariners. He hit .241 for the summer, with a homer and 13 RBIs. Davies’ 27 hits tied for fifth on the team and his 13 RBIs tied for sixth. He finished the season making two starts on the mound, with mixed results. He threw four scoreless innings in his debut at Falmouth but was hit hard by Yarmouth-Dennis, allowing five earned runs and seven hits in 1 2/3 innings. He finished with a 7.94 ERA, allowing five earned runs in 5 2/3 innings. He didn’t get a decision in either game, although Harwich won both starts. Davies hit .286 (2-for-7), with a two-run single and an RBI double in Harwich’s 8-6 series-opening Playoff win over Brewster. The teams played Game Three on Monday night. The Mariners finished second in the East, going 24-19-1.

Buck Farmer: The freshman right-hander finished 2-1 with a 5.57 ERA for the Chatham Anglers. He allowed 27 hits and 13 earned runs in 21 innings, but nine of those runs came in his first two starts, as his ERA soared to 10.13. It was a different story in Farmer’s final two starts, as he surrendered only two earned runs in each outing, covering 13 total innings (a 2.77 ERA). Farmer’s control was superb all spring, as he struck out 17, while walking only four, three of those coming in his final start. Chatham finished 15-28-1, last in the East.

Matthew Grimes: The freshman righty had a tough summer, going 0-2 in seven starts for the Wareham Gatemen, pitching to a 5.63 ERA (20 earned runs in 32 innings. Grimes struck out 20 while walking 13. He finished on a good note, however, throwing a summer-high seven shutout innings, allowing only two hits against the Bourne Braves. He left leading 1-0, but did not get a decision in the game Wareham won, 4-3. The Gatemen finished 23-21, second in the West.

Daniel Palka: The freshman slugger was a big hit for Wareham this summer, hitting a team-high .327 (seventh in the League). He also was second in slugging (.409), on-base percentage (.390) and OPS (on-base percentage plus slugging, at .799). Palka ended the summer hitting in 12 of his final 13 games during which he hit .465, with six multi-hit games, including a 4-for-4 game at Bourne on Aug. 1. The only game he didn’t get a hit in that stretch he had only one at-bat as a pinch- hitter. Palka picked up in the playoffs where he left off in the regular season, going four for his first seven (.571), with a pair of doubles, four runs scored and three more driven in, as the Gatemen twice beat Bourne, 6-5 and 12-3.

DeAndre Smelter: The freshman righty finished 0-1, dropping his first appearance, with a 2.13 ERA (three earned runs in 12 2/3 innings) in 10 games, striking out 12 and walking only five. During the season he had a streak of six straight scoreless appearances, covering 8 2/3 innings. Ironically that streak was snapped when he hit Tech teammate Brandon Thomas with a pitch then allowed a Daniel Palka RBI double. He didn’t allow a walk in his last four regular-season appearances covering 5 1/3 innings, while striking out eight. He threw a scoreless, hitless inning in his lone playoff appearance against the Hyannis Harbor Hawks, striking out two and walking one.

Brandon Thomas: The sophomore outfielder hit a solid .273, tying for third on Wareham with 36 hits (Palka also had 36 hits). Thomas tied for the team lead in doubles (9) and triples (3) and was second on the Gatemen with 12 steals, He hit in four of his last five games, going 6- for-16 in the stretch (.375). He hasn’t played in either of Wareham’s first two playoff games.

Mott Hyde: The shortstop had a tough summer at the plate, but started to find his stroke, getting a hit in six of his final 10 games, including putting together a summer-high three-game hitting streak. He was a perfect 7-for-7 in stolen base attempts. Hyde played in one of Wareham’s first two playoff games, going 1-for-4, with a double, an RBI and two runs scored in the Gatemen’s 12-3 win.

Kyle Wren: The freshman centerfielder hit .282 over the summer (sixth on Cotuit), with 37 hits, and 19 runs scored (all third on the team). Wren finished with a .317 on-base percentage and his 18 stolen bases (in 23 tries) led the CCBL. Unfortunately, the Kettleers finished 16-25-3, last in the Western Division and did not make the playoffs.

Coastal Plain League

Jonathan Roberts: The freshman right-hander finished 2-5 with a 5.68 ERA in 16 appearances for the Peninsula Pilots, including four starts. In 33 2/3 innings he allowed 20 earned runs. He struck out 24 while walking 23 and batters hit .264 against him. Peninsula went 19-9 in the second half and finished in a first-place tie with Wilson in the North Division (The Tobs won the tiebreaker).

Devin Stanton: Fellow freshman lefty Devin Stanton, also made 16 appearances for the Pilots, all in relief. He threw to a 3.16 ERA, allowing nine earned runs in 25 2/3 innings. He struck out 24, while walking 10. He limited opponents to a .181 batting average, allowing only 17 hits and did not allow a home run.

Florida Collegiate Summer League

Zane Evans: The freshman had a good summer, finishing at .297, leading the Leesburg Lightning with three homers and driving in 22 runs, fourth on the team. Evans had 11 multi-hit games and almost a third of his 31 hits were for extra bases. He also had modest success on the mound, allowing two earned runs in 5 1/3 innings of work, striking out 10, including five of the six batters he faced in 1 2/3 innings of work against the Orlando Freedom. Leesburg took the regular season crown, going 29-12, but was upset in the first round of the playoffs by eventual champion Sanford. Evans struggled in the playoffs, going 1 for 13, dropping his overall average to .272.

Alex Cruz: The freshman infielder wielded a sizzling stick for Winter Park, finishing with a .337 batting average, seventh in the League and helping the Diamond Dawgs get to the FCSL Championship Game. He finished red hot, with six multi-hit games in his final 10 regular season games, hitting 17-for-37 .459 (17-for-37) over that stretch. He stayed hot in the playoffs, batting .333 as the Diamond Dawgs beat DeLand before falling to Sanford.

Great Lakes Summer League

Dusty Isaacs: The freshman righty had a tremendous summer, going 5-1 in nine starts, with a 2.44 ERA (12 earned runs in 44 1/3 innings) for the Hamilton Joes. After starting slowly — he pitched into the sixth once in his first six starts — Isaacs turned it on in July, winning three of his four starts. In those starts he pitched to a 2.36 ERA, allowing only seven earned runs in 26 2/3 and 16 hits, while striking out 33 batters. Included was a masterful stint in which he struck out 16 over 8 2/3 innings against the Grand Lake Mariners on July 8th. Isaacs also threw a perfect inning, striking out the side, and earning the win for the North in the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League All- Star Game. Hamilton finished 24-18, five games behind the first-place Southern Ohio Copperheads.

New England Collegiate Baseball League

Paul Kronenfeld: The freshman outfielder/1B had an interesting summer. He batted .214 for the Sanford Mainers, with a homer and 16 RBIs, but still was among the top 25 in the league in on-base percentage (.386), as he led the league drawing 36 walks. He also was fifth in strikeouts (42). He had 27 hits but drew a 36 walks. Sanford is 17-17, in third place a game behind NorthShore. Sanford finished 20-22, good for third in the Eastern Division. They reached the final round, losing to Laconia. Kronenfeld hit .182 (2-for-11), with two more walks, and three RBIs.

Chase Butler: The sophomore third baseman hit .264 for Danbury but really heated up as the season wound down. He had hits in eight of his final 10 games, hitting .316 in that stretch (12-for-38), with three multi-hit games, including a 3-for-4, night against Holyoke on July 26, when he had a pair of doubles and two runs scored in the 13-10 slugfest win. That game concluded a stretch of five straight games in which he scored a run. Butler hit .300 (3-for-10), with an RBI in the Westerners playoff three-game playoff series against Keene, won by the Swamp Bats.

Sunbelt Baseball League

Evan Martin: The junior outfielder/infielder was a hitting machine for the Atlanta Crackers, leading the team with a .371 batting average, a . 536 slugging percentage, a .981 OPS, 36 hits, and 8 doubles. He led the team with 20 runs scored, finished second with nine stolen bases and was third in on-base percentage (.445). Martin reached base with a hit in 20 of the Crackers’ 24 games (including three playoff games) and got on in all but two games. The highlight of his summer came July 18th against the Home Plate Chukars, when he went 4-for-6, with a single, a double, and two triples, with three RBIs and a runs scored in the 9-4 win. In the playoffs, against Berkeley Lake, the only team to keep him off base, he hit .357 (5-for-14), with a double, a triple and an RBI, but the Tides won the series in a decisive third game.

Valley Baseball League

Sam Dove: The sophomore outfielder had a dynamic season, finishing third on Harrisonburg in hitting (.343), on-base percentage (.434), hits (49), and RBIs (30). His 14 doubles were second on the team, his . 441 slugging average and 63 total bases ranked fourth. In addition, Dove was a clutch hitter, batting .411 with runners in scoring position and .410 with runners in scoring position and two out. On the bases, he was a perfect 8-for-8 in stolen base attempts. Defensively, Dove was a .960 fielder at second base, committing six errors in 150 chances.

Chris Triplett: The speedy freshman was a big part of the Front Royal Cardinals attack, as he batted .287 (second on the team), slugged .393 (third), and had a .349 on-base percentage (third) His 43 hits were second on the club and he successfully stole base 11 of 14 attempts. Unfortunately, he also led the team with 38 strikeouts vs. only 14 walks.

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