Instant Peay Play: Several former Govs, Lady Govs give fans something to follow until fall sports arrive
Clarksville, TN – With the end of the NCAA Baseball World Series this week, another year of college sports officially comes to an end.
But that doesn’t mean Austin Peay State University fans don’t have anyone to follow, support and cheer for as the dog days of summer arrive, as several former Governors and Lady Govs continue their sporting careers in the pros.
Right now there are 12 former baseball players still playing baseball on the professional level, including three – A.J. Ellis, catcher, Los Angeles Dodgers; Shawn Kelley, pitcher, New York Yankees and Matt Reynolds, pitcher, Arizona Diamondbacks – that are on major league rosters.
Ellis — who has been the Dodgers starting catcher the last two seasons — recently caught teammate Clayton Kershaw’s no-hitter, but has played in less than 30 games this season die to some early-season injuries, but looks like he’s starting to come back around to last season’s form.
Kelley is in this second season with the Yankees, coming out of the bullpen both as a closer and in middle relief.
In 21 appearances this season so far, Kelley has a 1-2 win-loss record, while recording the first four saves of his major league career.
Reynolds has yet to pitch this season, after undergoing Tommy John surgery last September, but threw from a mound for the first time two weeks ago and hopes to return to the Diamondbacks pitching staff before the end of the current season.
There are also seven former Govs baseball players currently on MLB affiliated minor league team rosters – three in Double A (Jordan Hankins/Dayton Cubs; Ryne Harper/Mississippi Braves and Jack Snodgrass/Richmond Flying Squirrels), two in advanced full-season Single A (Lee Ridenhour/Clearwater Threshers and Tyler Rogers/San Jose Giants), one in full-season Single A (Reed Harper/Rome Braves) and one in short-season Single A (Craig Massoni/Salem-Keizer Volcanoes).
Two others are playing for independent-league teams, Greg Bachman/Frontier Greys and Casey Delgado/Traverse City Beach Bums.
But it’s just not baseball that has former athletes in the pros, as women’s soccer has two former Lady Govs playing professionally here in America.
Natalia and Tatiana Ariza both play for the Houston Aces of the Women’s Premier Soccer League, where they are currently a part of a team that is leading the Big Sky Division with a record or 7-0-1.
Golfer Grant Leaver is playing on the Web.com Tour, trying to earn his PGA Tour card – but has made a couple of appearances in PGA events, including the FedEx St. Jude Classic in Memphis, TN this past May.
Then where are former men’s basketball players that are playing around the world, like Drake Reed in France, Caleb Brown in Brazil, Adrian Henning in Israel, John Fraley, United Kingdom and Derek Wright in Greece who are continuing careers on the hardwood.
APSU fans can find information about these and other former Govs basketball players on the website Eurobasket.com.