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2010 Summer Update

July 23, 2010

As Georgia Tech baseball well is represented in summer leagues, and professionally in the minors and majors, RamblinWreck.com provides an update on how both current and former Yellow Jackets are performing away from campus.

Fans can also keep track of former Jackets playing in Major League Baseball and its minor league affiliates, as well as current players in summer leagues each day by visiting the news section of RamblinWreck.com/baseball.

Updates are also posted daily via Twitter at Twitter.com/gt_baseball.

SUMMER COLLEGIATE LEAGUES

Five current Jackets are playing in the prestigious Cape Cod league this summer.

Jed Bradley has been superb as a starting pitcher for the Wareham Gatemen, leading the entire league in strikeouts with 44. Bradley is 2-3 overall, and has the second lowest ERA on the team at 1.98.

The left-hander was also selected to the Cape Cod 48th annual All-Star game, to be played on July 28 at Fenway Park. Also playing for the Gatemen, who are currently tied for third place in the Western Division, is lefty reliever Jake Davies. Davies has pitched 7.0 innings of relief, and has chipped in with 2 RBI at the plate. He will compete in the home run derby at the Cape Cod All-Star game.

Matt Skole (Falmouth Commodores) is batting .221 with two home runs and 13 RBI. Skole recently competed in the 2010 AmeriTrade College Home Run Derby at Omaha’s Rosenblatt Stadium, and finished in third place out of seven contenders.

Right-hander Mark Pope is leading the same Commodore team with 32 strikeouts (fifth-most in the league) this summer, while holding a 2-2 record and a 3.48 ERA. Pope leads the team in innings pitched at 33.2 and was the circuit’s Pitcher of the Week for June 14-20.

Luke Bard has pitched 14 1/3 innings of relief for the Western Division-leading Brewster Whitecaps, with nine strikeouts in the process.

In the Valley Baseball League, Connor Winn (Harrisonburg Turks) and Zach Brewster have the Harrisonburg Turks in fourth place at the moment. Winn is batting .310 with eight doubles, a triple and nine RBI, and was selected to play for the Valley League All-Stars in the Mid-Atlantic Classic . Brewster is 2-3 in 28.0 innings with four starts.

ALUMNI IN THE MINORS

After tying a school-record with 10 selections in the 2010 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft, several Yellow Jackets have taken flight in their first season at the next level.

Chase Burnette (Mahoning Valley Scrappers), an 18th-round selection of the Cleveland Indians, is batting .317 with four home runs and 17 RBI in the Class-A short season of the New York-Penn League. Playing in the same league with the Hudson Valley Renegades, Derek Dietrich is batting .259 with three homers and 14 RBI. Dietrich, a second-round selection by the Tampa Bay Rays (79th overall), is batting .341 with three dingers and 10 RBI in his last 10 games.

Jay Payton is batting .320 with three homers, 53 RBI and nine stolen bases for the Colorado Springs Sky Sox in the Triple-A Pacific Coast League.

Right-handed pitcher Tim Gustafson has pitched well lately the Mississippi Braves, going 3-1 with a 3.20 ERA and 19 strikeouts. He has spent some time with the Gwinnett Braves as well, going 7-5 with 31 strikeouts in the International League.

Catcher Mike Nickeas (.301, 3 HR, 27 RBI) played in the Eastern League All-Star game (double-A) on July 14. Nickeas is teammates with infielder Michael Fisher on the Class AA Binghamton Mets.

Matt Murton has found tremendous success playing with the Hanshin Tigers in the Nippon Professional Baseball league in Japan. Murton is batting .348 with 10 home runs and 57 RBI. Murton leads the league with 127 hits, and is on pace to break Ichiro Suzuki’s NPB record for hits in a season at 210 (set in 1994).

ALUMNI IN THE MAJORS

Marlon Byrd continues to remain hot at the plate in his first season with the Chicago Cubs. Byrd is batting .314 with 27 doubles, 10 home runs and 42 RBI. His 111 hits and 27 doubles lead the team.

The outfielder appeared in the 2010 Major League Baseball All-Star game, helping the National League record its first win over the American League since the 1996 season. Byrd scored a run in the game, and also made an incredible defensive play to throw out David Ortiz at second base on a would-be one-out single to right field in the ninth.

Matt Wieters is hitting at a .245 clip, with six homers and 29 RBI for the Baltimore Orioles. Mark Teixeira is pacing the New York Yankees with 18 home runs and 69 runs scored, while second in RBI with 66. He is currently batting .261.

Shortstop Tyler Greene has played 22 games with the St. Louis Cardinals. He is hitting .267 with two home runs and six RBI since he was called up to the majors on April 29.

Right-hander Blake Wood made his MLB debut earlier this season with the Kansas City Royals. Wood has recorded 10 strikeouts in 28 relief appearances, holding a 5.27 ERA in 27.1 innings.

Eric Patterson has spent 15 games with the Boston Red Sox after a trade from the Oakland A’s. Patterson is batting .220 with two homers and five RBI with his new ball club.

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