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#TGW: Summer's Here And The Time Is Right

June 12, 2015

By Jon Cooper
The Good Word

School may be out but Georgia Tech Baseball is starting summer school, in various summer leagues around the country. Whether it’s up north on the tip of southeastern Massachusetts, in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, or in Georgia Tech’s own backyard, some 18 Yellow Jackets players will be honing their skills and diversifying their games.

In fact, leagues have already started play. The Good Word will keep up with the Jackets throughout the summer.

Here is an introduction to Georgia Tech in the 2015 Summer Leagues…

Cape Cod League

Brandon Gold, Brewster Whitecaps (@WhitecapsCCBL)
Kel Johnson, Brewster Whitecaps (@WhitecapsCCBL)
Ryan Peurifoy, Brewster Whitecaps (@WhitecapsCCBL)
Zac Ryan, Brewster Whitecaps (@WhitecapsCCBL)
Keenan Innis, Cotuit Kettleers (@CotuitKettleers)
Jonathan King, Cotuit Kettleers (@CotuitKettleers)
Connor Justus, Harwich Mariners (@HarwichMariners)
Matt Gonzalez, Harwich Mariners (@HarwichMariners)
Arden Pabst, Hyannis Harbor Hawks (@HarborHawks)
Ben Parr, Wareham Gatemen (@WarehamGatemen)

More than half of the 18 Yellow Jackets that are playing in summer leagues this summer are off to play in the Cape Cod League. The 10 players are only one fewer than the total representation for the Jackets over the last three summers combined and matches the most players Tech has had go to Cape Cod since 2011.

Brandon Gold: Gold got off to a great start, going 3-for-4 with three RBIs in Brewster’s first game, a 5-4, win over Wareham on June 9. His RBI singles in the first and fifth innings scored Tech teammate Ryan Peurifoy, and he added an RBI double in the third.

Kel Johnson: Did not play in opener.

Ryan Peurifoy: Peurifoy did plenty of baserunning in his debut, getting on base three times, going 1-for-3 with a walk (he also was hit by a pitch), stealing a base and scoring three times. He scored on RBI singles by Gold in the first and fifth innings, then came around from first with the game-winning run in the seventh.

Zac Ryan: Ryan earned the win in the season debut, throwing 3 ⅔ shutout innings, allowing three hits, with a strikeout. He allowed a single and a sac fly in the sixth, as Wareham completed a game-tying four-run rally, but Zac retired the side in order in the seventh, then, after allowing a pair of one-out hits in the eighth, set down the final five hitters he faced to lock the gate on the Gatemen.

Keenan Innis: Innis DH’ed, going 1-for-4 in his debut. His single was part of a run-scoring second-inning rally that gave Cotuit a 1-0 lead in their 3-1 victory. Jonathan King: King did not pitch.

Connor Justus: Justus started at short and reached base three times, twice via hits — a sixth-inning single and a one-out eighth-inning triple (he’d be left stranded). Arden Pabst: Pabst had a big debut, going 3-for-5, with a pair of doubles, including an RBI two-bagger as part of the decisive, two-run 11th inning in the Harbor Hawks’ 5-3 win over Falmouth on June 9.

Ben Parr: Did not pitch vs. Brewster.

Valley League

Wade Bailey, Harrisonburg Turks (@HbgTurksVBL)
Jared Datoc, Harrisonburg Turks (@HbgTurksVBL)
Patrick Wiseman, Harrisonburg Turks (@HbgTurksVBL)
Tanner Shelton, Harrisonburg Turks (@HbgTurksVBL)

Georgia Tech will once again have representation in Virginia’s Valley League, “The Earliest Chartered Amateur Baseball League in America Still Operating,” (it was founded on May 15, 1897). Not surprisingly that representation will be with the Harrisonburg Turks. It’s the fifth straight summer Tech has had at least one player on the Turks’ roster and is the third time in five years that four Jackets have played in Harrisonburg.

Wade Bailey: Bailey scored at least once in each of Harrisonburg’s first four games, as the Turks got off to a 3-1 start, outscoring opponents 27-9. The second baseman is hitting .250 (3-for-12 with a double), with a .641 OPS (slugging plus on-base percentage), but is second on the team with his five runs scored. Defensively he has been flawless in 13 opportunities (four putouts, nine assists).

Jared Datoc: Datoc pitched a scoreless inning in his debut appearance in the eighth inning of the Turks’ 11-0 rout of the Covington Lumberjacks on June 5. He allowed two hits but also struck out two.

Patrick Wiseman: Wiseman has yet to allow a run or a hit in two appearances, covering two innings. He threw a scoreless sixth in the June 5 opener then added a scoreless eighth, with a strikeout two days later in an 8-1 win over the Charlottesville TomSox.

Tanner Shelton: Has not pitched.

Coastal Plain League

Daniel Gooden, Peninsula Pilots (@PeninsulaPilots)
Matt Phillips, Columbia Blowfish (@ColaBlowfish)

With roots tracing back to 1937 and such greats as Ted Williams, Babe Ruth and Cal Ripken Sr. amongst the legendary Major League names that have been in its parks, the Coastal Plain League holds a special place among summer baseball leagues. For the third straight summer the Yellow Jackets have put multiple players in the league. T

Daniel Gooden: Gooden is in the process of pitching himself down from a 9.00 ERA. Coming in with a 12-3 lead on May 31 at Wilson, he allowed two earned runs on a hit and two walks, with a hit batsman, striking out one. He rebounded nicely in his next outing on June 6, at Edenton, pitching a scoreless eighth inning, with two K’s in a 6-1 loss. That loss has the Pilots just out of first in the East, as they are 8-2, behind only the 9-2 Steamers.

Matt Phillips: Phillips is in a similar boat as Gooden, as he’s 0-1, with a 6.35 ERA in his first two starts allowing two earned runs in each of start. He went 3 ⅔ in his first appearance, allowing the two runs on three hits, with one homer on May 30 against Martinsville. In his next start he lasted two innings, allowing two runs (both earned) on three hits on June 5 at Asheboro, the team for whom he pitched last season. Control has been an issue, as Phillips has walked three in each start. The three against Asheboro were particularly damaging, as they came consecutively, with the last two walking in runs. The Blowfish fell 4-3 and 5-3 in his appearances and are 5-7.

Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League

Grant Wruble, Southern Ohio Copperheads (@Copperheads)

The 11-team league with teams in Ohio, Michigan and Kentucky began in 1986 has produced the likes of Cleveland Indians outfielder Nick Swisher and former MLB pitchers Dustin Hermanson and Paul Quantrill and outfielder David Dellucci. Junior Grant Wrubel returns to the Great Lakes League and the Southern Ohio Copperheads after a superb season in which he hit .281, with nine RBIs and a .712 OPS, seeing time in the outfield as well as behind the plate.

Grant Wruble: Wruble has started off swinging a sizzling bat, hitting .417 (5-for-12), with a pair of multi-hit games and a towering homer for the Copperheads, who are 3-0 and in first place overall. He also has driven in a run in each game and has a team-high four. The homer, which keyed a 6-4 win over Lake Erie on June 9, was the team’s first of the summer.

Sunbelt League

Trevor Craport, Oglethorpe Bucks

The North Georgia/East Alabama-based Sunbelt Baseball League continues to grow in prestige and will welcome Trevor Craport.

Trevor Craport: Craport has come out swinging, as he was hitting .400 (4-for-10), with a 1.100 OPS through the first week. He kicked off the summer with a 3-for-3, 2-double, 2-run day in Oglethorpe’s 10-0 rout of Gwinnett on June 1. In his one mound appearance, Craport was charged with two runs in 1 ⅔ innings in the Bucks’ 4-3, 10-inning win over the East Cobb Patriots on June 4. He allowed two hits, and a walk while striking out three (the two runners he left on in the seventh came around to score).


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