Lexington’s losing streak reached 11 games and all three Kentucky minor league teams lost again Thursday. Check out those storylines and more in Friday’s hot links:
Lexington Legends slugger Brian Pellegrini launched his 21st home run of the season for Lexington Saturday to move within four home runs of the franchise record 25 long balls in a season. Astros outfielder Hunter Pence and former Legend Beau Herod currently hole the record of 25 home runs.
- Pellegrini’s home run wasn’t enough for the Legends’ victory. West Virginia scored four runs in the last three innings to win 5-2.
- Matthew Klinker and Pedro Viola combined on a three-hit shutout to give Louisville a 4-0 victory over Toledo in the series opener.
- Chris Andujar allowed one run in six innings to lead Bowling Green to a 3-1 victory over Hickory.
- EKU Sports writes about Christian Friedrich’s performance in high A ball.
- Friedrich checks in at number six and Lexington Legend Jordan Lyles ranked number 11 on this week’s Baseball America Prospect Hot Sheet. Bowling Green pitcher Matt Moore was listed “In the Team Photo.”
- WKU sports reports that ground has been broken on the new Hilltoper clubhouse.
- Don’t forget, the Russellville Little League team plays on ESPN at 7:00 in the finals of the Great Lakes Region tonight.
With the non-waiver trade deadline officially in the past the next important date on the baseball calendar is the Aug. 17 deadline to sign draft picks. 2009 is the second year that teams have faced an August deadline to sign draft picks, but the date was pushed back from Aug. 15 to Aug. 17 because of the 15th falling on a weekend. With that deadline just two weeks from today, I thought we’d look at the remaining unsigned players with Kentucky ties. (Contract status is according to Baseball America’s draft database)
ADDED: JON HEDGES, JAMES JONES, TIM DUNN 8/5/09
UK Players and Signees
- LHP James Paxton — 1st Supp. (37) Toronto Blue Jays
- RHP Stephen Inch — 6th Round Philadelphia Phillies — Vauxhall Academy, Edmonton
- RHP Jordan Cooper — 17th Round Pittsburgh Pirates — Central HS, Shelbyville, Tenn.
- LHP Taylor Rogers — 37th Round Baltimore Orioles — Chatfield HS, Littleton, Colo.
- RHP Sam Kidd — 39th Round Philadelphia Phillies — Ohio County High School, Hartford, Ky.
- C Luke Maile — 43rd Round Boston Red Sox — Covington Catholic HS, Park Hills, Ky.
- OF Brian Adams (Football)– 45th Round Cincinnati Reds — South Forysth HS, Cumming, Ga.
UofL Players and Signees
- SS Jason Thompson — 11th Round Boston Red Sox — Germantown (Tenn.) HS
- 1b Andrew Clark — 31st Round Chicago Cubs
- RHP Matt Koch — 37th Round Boston Red Sox — Washington HS, Cherokee, Iowa
WKU Players and Signees
- RHP Matt Ridings — 25th Round Washington Nationals
Other Kentucky Natives
- RHP Tyler Blandford — Davies County High School; Oklahoma State — 5th round Seattle Mariners
- RHP Daniel Webb — Heath High School, Paducah, Ky.; Northwest Florida State JC — 18th round Toronto Blue Jays
- RHP Patrick Cooper — Boyle County, Ky.; Des Moines Area CC — 34th round Arizona Diamondbacks
- 1b Jon Hedges — Owensboro, Ky., Olney Central College — 43rd round Minnesota Twins
- RHP James Jones — Ballard County High School, John A Logan College — 45th round Cleveland Indians
- RHP Tim Dunn — Carlisle County High School, Tevecca Nazarene University — 46th Round Cincinatti Reds
Kentucky pitcher James Paxton is the only one of the listed players who is almost certain to sign, and Davies County product Tyler Blandford was said to have second-round talent so the Mariners might offerr him over slot money to not return to Oklahoma State. The Phillies and Red Sox will likely make a late push to sign UK recruit Stephen Inch and UofL recruit Jason Thompson, their sixth and 11th round picks respectively. You can probably feel safe counting on the rest of these players to end up on campus in the fall, but that won’t make sleeping any easier for the state’s college coaches over the next two weeks.
Only one Kentucky minor league team was in action Tuesday, but there was still plenty of baseball news in the Bluegrass. Here are some morning links to get you through the early hours:
- Matt Maloney earned his seventh win of the season in 5-2 Louisville victory over Buffalo.
- Lexington and Bowling Green were both off Tuesday. The Legends start a four-game series against the Lake County Captains tonight and Bowling Green will face the Hagerstown Suns for four games starting Wednesday.
- Lexington native Robbie Ross continues to dominate short-season ball in his first season. He earned his third win of the season with five shutout innings.
- Mark Sheldon at MLB.com has a feature about former Louisville catcher Craig Tatum’s recent big league call-up.
- Former WKU third baseman Wade Gaynor and Murray State pitcher Daniel Calhoun were named first-team All-Americans by CollegeBaseballInsider.com.
- Mark Maloney at the Herald-Leader previews Lexington’s series with Lake County.
Tuesday night was just another victory for the American League in the MLB All Star game, but there were more BluGrass Baseball storylines unfolding across baseball than met the eye.
- Former Legend Ben Zobrist struck out in his only appearance in the game for the American League, and former Legend Hunter Pence didn’t see any action for the National League in the 4-3 AL victory.
- Louisville Bats pitcher Justin Lehr will start for the International League tonight in the AAA All-Star game.
- The Legends dropped their second game of the road trip to Delmarva 7-3.
- Matt Moore earned his sixth win of the season in Bowling Green’s 7-4 victory over Lakewood.
- WKU Sports passes on an update of former Hilltoppers in the minor leagues.
- The News-Enterprise in Hardin County, profiles former Meade County and UofL pitcher B. J. Rosenberg, a reliever for low A Lakewood.
- Jason Stella of Examiner.com has a Q&A with Louisville Bats outfielder Drew Stubbs.
- Chris Dominguez was promoted to short-season Salem-Keizer and is 6-14 with two home runs, eight RBI and six runs scored in his first three games in the Northwest League.
The Louisville Bats were off last night for the AAA All-Star break, but the two Bluegrass low A teams probably wish they were off as well. Here are some links from an ugly night on the diamond for Kentucky teams:
- The Delmarva Shorebirds set new highs for runs scored and margin of victory in their 19-0 shutout of Lexington.
- Bowling Green didn’t fare quite as badly as Lexington, but still lost 9-4 to the Lakewood BlueClaws.
- Chris Heisey of Louisville continues to rake in the accolades. He was named International League Player of the Week Monday after batting .450 with two home runs and 9 RBI.
- Louisville manager Rick Sweet will manage the International League team in the AAA All-Star Game tonight, and he’ll have Bats outfielder Drew Stubbs and RHP Justin Lehr at his disposal in the game.
- WKU will host a Labor Day Showcase camp for teenagers interested in playing college baseball.
- Sean McMann of the Poughkeepsie Journal passes along a post about Bowling Green outfielder Kyeong Kang with a video from the Futures Game on his blog.
- Jim Callis at Baseball America tackles the question of which Lexington pitcher is the better prospect in his latest edition of “Ask BA.”
- The Cleveland Indians signed second-round pick Jason Kipnis. Kipnis was the Pac 10 POY, but before he was a star for Arizona State he was an outfielder for UK. Kipnis was dismissed from the team at UK for a violation of team rules following a hot start to the 2007 season.
- According to Baseball America’s weekly Minor League Transactions update the Dodgers promoted Kentucky Wesleyan alum Cory Wade to the majors, and the Astros released former Legend Jeff Icenogle. The “Ice Man” was a favorite of mine from a terrible 2008 Legends team. He thought his baseball career was over before the Astros signed him, but he actually posted impressive numbers in the second half of last season. Here’s hoping he catches on somewhere if he wants to keep playing baseball.
- In a match-up of Kentuckians, EKU alum Christian Friedrich earned the win in his first start back from injury for High A Modesto. The losing pitcher in that game was North Hardin alum Nathan Adcock.
The following baseball players from Kentucky have signed a professional contract after being selected in the 2009 Amateur Player’s Draft according to Baseball America’s Draft Database.
- Chris Dominguez — 3rd Round San Francisco Giants — University of Louisville
- Wade Gaynor — 3rd Round Detroit Tigers — Western Kentucky University
- Chris Rusin — 4th Round Chicago Cubs — University of Kentucky
- J. B. Paxson — 13th Round Los Angeles Dodgers — Western Kentucky University
- Chad Cregar — 15th Round Florida Marlins — Western Kentucky University
- Terrence Dayleg — 22nd Round Florida Marlins — Western Kentucky University
- Daniel Calhoun — 29th Round St. Louis Cardinals — Murray State University
- Clint Tilford — 31st Round Colorado Rockies — University of Kentucky
- Evan Teague — 35th Rounds Toronto Blue Jays — Western Kentucky University
- Michael Thompson — 47th Round St. Louis Cardinals — Bellarmine College