Austin Peay Govs in the Pros: All-Star break update
Austin Peay Sports Information
Clarksville, TN – As baseball fans shift their attention to Cincinnati for the 2015 All-Star Game, it’s an appropriate time to look across the country at former Austin Peay State University players competing in the pros.
Currently, there are two Govs playing in the big leagues, seven in minor league systems, and one signed to the Frontier League.
Games have been slim for the veteran Los Angeles catcher, A.J. Ellis, while playing behind All-Star Yasmani Grandal, but his offensive numbers have increased this summer.
Los Angeles Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis (17) hits a solo home run in the fifth inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Dodger Stadium. (Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports)
After batting a mere .138 in early June, Ellis is 10-for-25 (.400) over his last 10 games with home runs in his last two starts.
Now healthy, Shawn Kelley has solidified himself as a reliable relief pitcher for the San Diego Padres. After a rough start to the season to go along with a calf strain in May, Kelley has an ERA of 2.31 over his last 25.2 innings.
With a wicked slider in his arsenal, he has become a cornerstone on the West Coast. On July 2, Kelley earned his first victory in a San Diego uniform, allowing just two hits in two innings on the bump against St. Louis.
San Diego Padres relief pitcher Shawn Kelley throws against the Cincinnati Reds in the seventh inning at Great American Ball Park. (David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports)
Matt Reynolds has remained with Triple-A Reno throughout the 2015 season after rehabbing an elbow injury which forced him to miss the previous campaign. In 30 games played, the 6-5 reliever is 2-4 with a 6.12 ERA and 35 strikeouts.
Ryne Harper had a short rehab stint at Single-A, and now calls Double-A Mississippi home as a member of the Braves. In 16.2 innings pitched, Harper has an impressive ERA of 1.62, with opponents hitting.145 against the righty. However, Harper is currently sidelined on the 7-day disabled list.
Following a successful occupancy which included multiple All-Star appearances with the Richmond Flying Squirrels, right-hander Jack Snodgrass was brought up to Triple-A Sacramento in the San Francisco Giants organization.
Since then, the native of Bowling Green, Ky., has been primarily utilized as a reliever, and currently holds an ERA of 4.84 in eight appearances.
Another member of the Giants, Tyler Rogers, was moved from Double-A Richmond to Advanced-A San Jose in mid-May. The right-hander’s numbers have improved in the new setting, with his ERA sitting at 1.66 through 20 games. Rogers has not allowed a run in his last 10.1 innings, and has compiled a 4-1 record in relief duty.
Jordan Hankins has been a project engineered by the Chicago Cubs, converting him into a full-time catcher. The former All-American has found a home with the Myrtle Beach Pelicans at the Class-A Advanced level, and currently has five hits, two RBI, and two runs scored.
As for the younger Harper brother, Reed Harper was promoted to Class-A Advanced Carolina in the Atlanta Braves farm system in early May. While his average has dropped from .258 to .156 during the transition, the shortstop has showcased his talents defensively. Sit back and watch one of the best plays you’ll see this baseball season.
After a successful tenure in the Frontier League, Casey Delgado has been a welcome addition to the Savannah Sand Gnats in the New York Mets organization. The right-hander is 3-2 this summer with a 3.98 ERA and strikeout to walk ratio of 33:5.
Now a full-time outfielder, Craig Massoni was traded to the Gateway Grizzlies in the Frontier League, and was placed on the 14-day injured list. With the Lake Erie Crushers, Massoni was 5-for-24 with a double and run scored.