Haley Turns Around for HR Derby
In last Thursday's College Home Run Derby, Oklahoma outfielder Hunter Haley was one of three representatives from the Big 12 conference in an eight-player field. Haley, who slugged six home run in his sophomore season, has registered 362 at-bats in his two seasons with the Sooners. Each of those, including his eight career home runs, have come from the left side of the plate.
However, at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha last week, Haley surprised everyone by taking his hacks from the right side. A switch hitter in high school, he has been working throughout summer ball with the Brazos Valley Bombers of the Texas Collegiate League to return to his switch hitting form. Despite hitting several line drives, Haley mustered just one home run on the night, a bullet to left field.
Windy City Reunion
Former Sooners Garrett Carey, Jake Fisher and Max White, teammates on the 2012 and 2013 Super Regional teams, have reunited on the Windy City Thunderbolts. For Carey and White, it is their first chance in professional baseball after not playing following the 2013 season. Fisher, a 22nd round pick of the Los Angeles Dodgers last season, is coming off a season spent with the Ogden Raptors of the Pioneer League, a rookie affiliate of the Dodgers.
The Thunderbolts is an independent professional team in the Frontier League. They currently sit in last place in the Western Division with a 16-28 record. White is currently hitting .214 with 14 RBI and Carey is fighting his way toward the Mendoza line at .152. On the mound, Fisher has been an innings-eater with 56 in nine starts. He has 47 strikeouts to just 14 walks, a 4.28 earned run average, but just a 2-6 record. On July 4, he struck out a season-high 11, allowed one run over seven innings and walked away with a no-decision.
Summer Ball Notes:
- Sheldon Neuse returned to playing with the San Luis Blues after a stint with the Team USA Collegiate National Team. He hit just .154 (2-for-13) with two starts in the team's first seven games. He also made one pitching appearance and registered a save in one inning of work.
- Jacob Evans has yet to allow a run in 16 innings of relief on the Cape. The lefty has made five appearances for the Harwich Mariners, who are 14-8 on the season, and holds a record of 2-0 with 19 strikeouts and just four walks.
- In the Northwoods League, Keach Ballard has been an RBI machine for the Duluth Huskies. The left-handed hitting infielder has driven in 27 runs in 38 games with seven doubles, two home runs and a .297 average.
Around the Pros:
- Chase Anderson has recorded a decision in each of his first 10 starts in the big leagues. He made his MLB debut with the Diamondbacks on May 11 an immediately won his first five starts. He then lost his next four, but bounced back with a win on July 7 in a six-inning, eight-strikeout effort against the Marlins.
- For four days in June, Jackson Williams spent a cup of coffee in the majors with the Colorado Rockies. He was called up from the Triple-A Colorado Sky Sox, where he is hitting .253, on June 23, but was optioned back down on June 26 without appearing in a game.
- Three of the Sooners' 2014 draft picks have signed and made their professional debuts. Sixth rounder Mac James was assigned to the Hudson Valley Renegades of the New York-Penn League, while Connor Buchmann is with the rookie ball Kingsport Mets and Hector Lorenzana the GCL Red Sox.