NASHVILLE, Tenn. – With 14 former student-athletes appearing in a Major League game and 45 across the professional ranks, Vanderbilt’s presence in baseball has extended beyond its College World Series title and into the dog days of summer.
Newest ‘Dores in the Pros’
Among Vanderbilt’s SEC record 13 players who were selected in the MLB Draft, 11 have appeared in games including ninth-round selection Philip Clarke, who was named to the Northwest League All-Star team. In 23 games, the catcher has batted .289 with 35 total bases and 10 RBIs.
Former standout Julian Infante has risen in the ranks with the Marlins organization and has batted .289 with 11 hits in as many games since being called up to Single-A Batavia Muckdogs. On the mound, southpaw Zach King has logged a 1.69 ERA in four games, including two starts, with the GCL Marlins.
Major League Baseball
Vanderbilt led the nation with three former players making MLB all-star appearances as hurlers Walker Buehler (Dodgers), Sonny Gray (Reds) and Mike Minor (Rangers) made their way to Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio, for the 90th midsummer classic.
The trio have carried over their success following the break. Minor (11-6, 2.90 ERA) has posted consecutive scoreless starts including an 11-strikeout performance, lifting Texas to a 1-0 victory against Milwaukee on Sunday.
Five days after his 25th birthday, Buehler authored a 15-strikeout start for the second time this season. The Lexington, Kentucky, native is 10-2 with a 3.08 ERA in 22 starts. Gray has made his mark in his first year in the National League, notching a 7-6 record and 3.10 ERA alongside a .211 opponent average.
The last pitch of Walker Buehler’s 15-strikeout complete game was filthy 🔥
— SI MLB (@si_mlb) August 4, 2019
Three Commodores are suiting up with the San Francisco Giants in Tyler Beede, Sam Selman and Mike Yastrzemski. The trio have helped the Giants hang in the National League playoff race. Yastrzemski has belted 12 homers and recorded 38 RBIs in 67 games.
Beede put together an impressive stretch in July, capping the month with a 3.34 ERA and 2-2 record in five starts alongside a 27-4 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Selman received the call-up on August 1 after going 3-1 with a 1.50 ERA and .134 opponent average in 48 innings.
Arguably the biggest splash for Vanderbilt has taken place in Pittsburgh where Bryan Reynolds has made his case for National League Rookie of the Year. Reynolds ranks second in the NL in batting average (.336) and is hitting .368 (21-for-57) over his last 15 games. He’s also clocked 11 home runs.
📓 Reynolds notes:
✅ His .335 average ranks third among NL leaders
✅ Leads all rookies in average, OBP and doubles
✅ Ranks second among rookies in hits and fourth in total bases and RBI
✅ Is hitting .338 with 32 RBI while batting with RISP#ROYnolds pic.twitter.com/PCoQwQx4WY
— Pirates (@Pirates) August 7, 2019
Tony Kemp has found a new home with the Chicago Cubs and is batting .263 in nine games since being traded from the Houston Astros. Dansby Swanson and David Price have each spent time of late in the injured list. Swanson is batting .265 and is 12 hits shy of matching his 2018 output while Price recently reached his 150th career win and is 7-5 with a 4.36 ERA in 21 starts.
The Reds’ Curt Casali, who is coming off a rehab assignment with Triple-A Louisville, is batting .313 (5-for-16) with four runs, two homers and four RBIs in his last seven games. Drew VerHagen (Tigers) and Carson Fulmer (White Sox) have made 14 appearances with their respective organizations.
Kyle Wright has split time between the Atlanta Braves and Triple-A Gwinnett, going 9-4 with a 4.33 ERA in the minors and 0-3 with a 9.72 ERA in the majors. In his last 10 appearances in Triple-A, the right-hander has gone 6-2 with a 3.03 ERA.
Four Dores in Triple-A
In addition to Wright, three other Commodores are knocking on the doors of the majors including Zander Wiel who is pacing the Rochester Red Wings (Twins) with 20 home runs. Meanwhile, Ryan Flaherty ranks second on the Columbus Clippers (Indians) with 67 RBIs. Southpaw Ben Bowden was called up to the Albuquerque Isotopes (Rockies) on June 20 after notching a 1.05 ERA in 26 games at Double-A.
Flash continues to shine. ⚡️
— Vanderbilt Baseball (@VandyBoys) August 7, 2019
Sheffield, Delay highlight Double-A
Jordan Sheffield has impressed with the Tulsa Drillers (Dodgers) to highlight five Commodores in Double-A. The right-hander is 2-3 with a 2.89 ERA with the ballclub across 27 appearances and one start. Opponents have hit just .172 against the Tullahoma, Tennessee, native.
Jason Delay produced a tremendous first half with the Altoona Curve (Pirates) and was named to the Eastern League All-Star Game. The Plano, Texas, native has logged 79 total bases across 56 games.
On the mound in Single-A
Right-hander Collin Snider has gone 5-2 with a 2.17 ERA in 23 appearances with the Wilmington Blue Rocks (Royals). Even more impressive, the Nashville native has allowed just two earned runs over his last 10 appearances, posting a 1.06 ERA in the 17-inning span.
Righty Reid Schaller has held opponents to a .202 average in eight games with the Hagerstown Suns (Nationals). Fellow right-hander Reed Hayes is 2-1 with a 1.88 ERA this season including 0-1 with a 4.32 ERA in five games with Frederick Keys (Orioles).
Right-hander Justin Wilson has posted a 2.08 ERA in 12 appearances with the short season Staten Island Yankees including racking up 23 strikeouts in 17.1 innings. Patrick Raby and AJ Franklin each picked up their first professional wins in rookie ball while Pat DeMarco, Ethan Paul, Stephen Scott and JJ Bleday have produced first pro homers in their inaugural seasons.