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Simmons (Watertown 2010) Leads SALLY, Class A In Saves

Shae Simmons pitching for the GCL Braves in 2012. Photo courtesy BeGreen90/Flickr

One month into the 2013 minor league season, Rome Braves relief pitcher Shae Simmons (Watertown 2010) is one of the top closers in Class A baseball. Heading into the month of May, Simmons leads all South Atlantic League and Low Class A pitchers with eight saves. In addition, his eight saves are tied for first among all minor league closers. Simmons is one of five farm hands at any level to have recorded eight saves.

The Scott City, Mo., native is in his first season with the R-Braves. Simmons has made 10 relief appearances for Rome and has successfully converted eight saves in eight save opportunities. Overall, he has amassed 17 strikeouts, two walks and a 2.25 earned run average in 12.0 innings. Opponents against Simmons have managed a .178 batting average. He has held SAL swingers scoreless eight times in 10 outings. Simmons began his first year in full season Class A with six saves in his first six games. Most recently, he has not given up an earned run in three-straight appearances.

The 22-year-old was selected by the Atlanta Braves in the 22nd round (689th overall) of the 2012 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.  He began his professional career last summer with the Braves affiliate in the Gulf Coast League. Simmons did not yield an earned run in seven GCL appearances. He went 2-0 and fanned 15 batters in 14.1 innings. The Southeast Missouri State University product finished the 2012 minor league season with the Appalachian League’s Rome Braves. He struck out 21 in 10.1 innings and recorded two saves.

Simmons pitched for the Watertown Wizards during the summer of 2010. Perfect Game USA rated Simmons as one of the top 10 prospects in the New York Collegiate Baseball League. Simmons was nearly unhittable in 10 appearances for the Wiz Kids. He went 2-0 with five saves and a 0.61 earned run average. He struck out 25 batters in 14.2 innings for an average of 15.34 strikeouts per nine innings. Simmons yielded just five hits.



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