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Maile Makes MLB Debut

Luke Maile last played for the Mohawks in 2011 and those who watched him then knew that a major league call up wasn't a question of if, but when. Four short years later, Luke made his debut for the Tampa Bay Rays as they played against the Baltimore Orioles.

A catcher from the University of Kentucky, Luke first came to Amsterdam as a freshmen in 2010. He had a solid season as he hit .318 with 8 doubles and 10 RBI in 23 games. The Mohawks went on to win the NYCBL Championship over the Elmira Pioneers and finished with a 33-15 record.

In 2011, Luke started the year in the Cape Cod League, but after a month of limited playing time, he returned to a struggling Mohawks team. The Mohawks were a game under .500, but Luke became the catalyst that brought the team to another championship appearence. 

Maile returned to Amsterdam on July 3rd of 2011 and hit .378 with 8 home runs (a team record at the time), 7 doubles and 25 RBI in 26 games. After the Mohawks endured a 9-10 start, they went 21-7 after Luke's return, but fell in the PGCBL Championship to the Newark Pilots 2 games to 1.

After those two great seasons, Maile was inducted into the Mohawks Hall of Fame in 2014.

The Tampa Bay Rays selected Maile in the 8th round of the 2012 draft. He systematicly rose through the Rays minor league system as he played in a higher level each season. In 342 minor league games, Luke hit .259 with a .340 OBP.

Luke struggled at times in Triple-A with the Durham Bulls this season as he hit .207 with 5 home runs and 29 RBI. However, major league rosters expand from 25 to 40 players in September and Tampa Bay decided to add catching depth to the major league roster, making Luke one of the September call-ups.

The Rays were playing the Baltimore Orioles on Tuesday night, and with the Rays up 11-0 in the eighth inning, Luke grabbed a bat and pinch-hit for James Loney. Luke hit a fly out to left field off Baltimore reliver Oliver Drake, and stayed in to catch the final two innings.

"I walked out to the field, and had to turn around. It didn't even look real" said Maile as he stepped onto a major league field for the first time.

Luke became the eighth former Mohawk to reach the major leagues. The last being Logan Darnell, also from the University of Kentucky who made his debut with the Twins in May of 2014.



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