League News

PGCBL Rising Stars Team Announced

Reliever Kyle Ruchim (Northwestern) and third baseman Josh Anderson (Yavapai), both of the Glens Falls Golden Eagles, were named to the PGCBL Rising Stars Team. Photo courtesy Sheri Williams/Glens Falls Golden Eagles
2011 PGCBL Rising Stars Team

The Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League is pleased to announce its 2011 Rising Stars Team. The full list of selections can be viewed at the link above.

The 20-man "all-star" squad, compiled by the league office, is limited to players listed as collegiate freshmen and redshirt freshmen as well as high school seniors. Only redshirt freshmen no more than two years removed from their high school graduation were considered.

Albany’s Will Remillard (Temple, C), Steve Anderson (Georgetown, 1B) and Brandon Trinkwon (UCSB, 2B) comprised three of the starting five infield slots.

Remillard, the 2011 Philadelphia Big 5 Rookie of the Year as a freshman at Temple University, was the Week 6 PGCBL Player of the Week. The Dutchmen backstop batted .297 with four home runs and 24 RBI over 34 games played. The Cohoes, N.Y., native offensively topped Albany with 10 multi-hit games and he added four multi-RBI games including one five-RBI performance. He went 3-for-5 with five RBI at Elmira on July 21, one day after a 4-for-4 performance against the same Pioneers. Defensively, Remillard threw out seven of 12 runners attempting to steal.

Anderson, a PGCBL All-Star Game starter at first base, belted the first grand slam in league history on June 21 against eventual league champion Newark at Albany's Bob Bellizzi Field. The Georgetown product led the Dutchmen in home runs (six), runs batted in (27) and slugging percentage (.472). Anderson clocked 35 hits in 36 games and batted .285. The Albany, N.Y., native was first on his team with six multi-RBI games; including two four-RBI efforts. Playing at first base, Anderson committed only two errors in 174 defensive chances.

Trinkwon, a PGCBL All-Star Game starter at second base, was one of Albany’s most consistent hitters throughout the summer. The Tustin, Calif., native batted .299 over 32 starts, swiped 14 bases and drove in 14 runs. Trinkwon was second among Albany regulars in batting average, stolen bases and triples (two) and he tied for second in hits (35). Between June 19 and the end of the regular season, Trinkwon’s average never fell below .298. He was second on the Dutchmen with nine multi-hit games. In the field, the rookie second baseman topped the Dutch in double plays (22) and assists (97). He made only four errors in 141 chances and compiled a .972 fielding percentage.

Watertown’s Angel Rosa (Alcorn State, SS) and Josh Anderson (Yavapai, 3B) of Glens Falls round out the left side of the infield.

Rosa, part of an NCAA tournament team in the spring at Alcorn State, was Watertown’s lone selection to the Rising Stars Team. The Puerto Rican shortstop was also one of several Wizards to compete in the PGCBL All-Star Game. Rosa batted .281 over 35 games played with 38 hits, 10 stolen bases, 16 runs scored and 15 runs batted in. He recorded multiple hits in 11 games, nearly one-third of his overall number of games played. The native of Guaynabo, P.R., missed nearly two weeks due to injury however he still finished second on the Wizards in defensive assists (90).

Anderson helped guide the Golden Eagles to the PGCBL East regular season championship and 31 overall victories. The Glens Falls’ starting third baseman was an All-Star Game starter and he came in as the runner-up in the All-Star Game Home Run Derby. Anderson tied for second in the league in home runs (nine) and total bases (92); he finished third among all PGCBL hitters in batting average (.368) and was fourth in RBI (38). The rising sophomore at Yavapai College racked up 50 hits, 23 runs, 13 doubles, and a .676 slugging percentage in only 37 games (missed time due to injury). He had 14 multi-hit games and topped the Eagles with 11 multi-RBI nights. The Poway, Calif., native was the Week 7 PGCBL Player of the Week. He was one three Golden Eagles named to the Rising Stars team. Anderson set franchise single-season records for home runs and batting average.

The nationally-ranked Amsterdam Mohawks had five players chosen to the Rising Stars team and three of the five are outfielders. Overall, four outfielders were selected as Rising Stars including Newark’s Luke Swenson (UCSB) and Amsterdam’s Jude Vidrine (Lamar), Josh Nethaway (UAlbany) and Josh Alexander (Utah).

Swenson, who did not see game action at UCSB in the spring, was one of the key ingredients in Newark’s run to the PGCBL championship. The Moorpark, Calif., native ended the regular season as the Pilots’ lead-off hitter. Swenson batted .325 with 50 hits, 33 runs and 16 stolen bases in 41 games. He finished first on the team in walks (19) and on-base percentage (.411) and second in stolen bases and runs scored. The UCSB outfielder led all Newark hitters with 19 multi-hit games; 15 of those contests came during the final month of the regular season. The former Maramonte League Pitcher of the Year also compiled five outfield assists.

Vidrine was one of the Mohawks’ top offensive performers throughout the summer. He appeared in 43 regular season games and batted .348 with eight home runs and 29 RBI. Vidrine led his team in triples (three), total bases (92) and runs batted in (29) and he deadlocked with teammate Luke Maile (Kentucky) for the team high in home runs (eight). The Lamar University product recorded two multi-home run games. Overall, the Nederland, Texas, native finished in Amsterdam’s top three in almost every offensive category including batting average (second), hits (55, second), runs scored (34, second), walks (15, second), slugging percentage (.582, second), on-base percentage (.412, second), multi-hit games (17), multi-RBI games (five, tied-second) and doubles (seven, tied-third). At the league level, Vidrine’s 92 total bases tied for second-most among all swingers and his eight belts were tied for the fourth-most.

Nethaway, coming off an America East All-Rookie selection in the spring for UAlbany, turned in a solid summer for Amsterdam despite missing the final few weeks of the season due to injury. At the time of his departure, Nethaway led the Mohawks in doubles (10) and runs batted in (26). The UAlbany catcher primarily played in the outfield. He amassed a .314 batting average, 32 hits including two home runs and 14 scores in 35 games. He recorded 10 multi-hit and five multi-RBI performances. The Fonda, N.Y., slugged a grand slam for the Mohawks on July 13 at Doubleday Field in Cooperstown and then followed up with a three-run clout the next day at home against Elmira.

Alexander, a 19th round pick of the Cincinnati Reds in the 2010 Major League Baseball draft, was a fixture in the Amsterdam outfield for most of the summer. The University of Utah rising sophomore rising sophomore tallied 30 hits, 19 runs scored, two home runs, 13 RBI, five stolen bases and five defensive assists over 40 games. The Phoenix, Ariz., native stepped up his offensive play in the PGCBL postseason, leading the Mohawks with a .500 batting average and 10 hits. Six of his 10 postseason hits were recorded in the PGCBL Championship Series against Newark. Alexander went 3-for-4 with two doubles and three runs scored in the winner-take-all Game 3 of the PGCBLCS.

The designated hitter on the Rising Stars team is Elmira's Ty Yesensky (Old Dominion). Yesensky was a .300 hitter for an Elmira offense that led the loop  with 306 total runs. Elmira was the only league team to break the 300-run plateau. Yesensky appeared in 37 games for the Pioneers. He batted .308 with 41 hits, 18 RBI and 20 runs. Yesensky compiled 11 multi-hit and five multi-RBI games including one five-RBI game. The Elmira third baseman went 3-for-5 with two doubles and five RBI in a win over Albany on July 27. The Endwell, N.Y., native finished the regular season with the second-highest batting average for any Elmira regular.

The PGCBL Rising Stars team boasts two utility players, Kyle Ruchim (Northwestern) of Glens Falls and Mohawk Valley's Michael Gunn (Christian Brothers H.S.).

Ruchim, a unanimous selection to the 2011 Big Ten All-Rookie team, was the top two-way threat in the PGCBL and was a key component in Glens Falls’ 31-win season that included the PGCBL East regular season championship. He topped the Green and Gold in hits (55), runs scored (37), doubles (16), multi-hit games (19) and saves (nine). Overall, Ruchim led the loop in doubles and he finished fourth in total bases (91). Ruchim doubled as the starting second baseman and the closer for the Golden Eagles; he also spent some time in the outfield. He batted .333 with six home runs, 27 RBI and six overall sacrifices, four of which were sacrifice flies. The Northwestern product added a .400 on-base percentage and a .552 slugging percentage. On the mound, the Buffalo Grove, Ill., native struck out 43 and went 3-0 with a 2.05 earned run average over 15 outings. He averaged almost two strikeouts per frame and limited the opposition to a .175 batting average. Ruchim did not allow a run over his final seven regular season appearances and he blanked opposing teams in 11 of his 15 games pitched.

Gunn, a graduate of Christian Brothers High School in Memphis, Tenn., was the only non-collegian chosen for the PGCBL Rising Stars squad. He has committed to the University of Arkansas for the 2011-2012 academic year. Gunn, who led his high school team to a state championship in the spring, appeared in 42 games overall for Mohawk Valley and missed just five contests (three because of a late arrival). He batted .301 with three home runs and 24 RBI. Gunn racked up 44 hits including nine doubles, 18 runs and 20 walks. The Mohawk Valley utility man was second on his team in hits and he tied for second in RBI. He added 12 multi-hit and seven multi-RBI efforts. On the mound, the Razorback commit was limited to just eight appearances. He struck out 13 batters over 10.0 innings, posted one save and garnered a 0.90 earned run average. Gunn fanned at least three batters on three occasions and he whiffed five over a season-high three frames at Elmira on July 28.

Three starting pitchers were chosen to the PGCBL Rising Stars team in a hitter-friendly 2011 season - Newark's Justin D'Amato (St. John Fisher), Derek Mazzio (Saint Louis) of Glens Falls and Amsterdam's Jack Fischer (Wake Forest).

D’Amato, one of four Newark pitchers named to the PGCBL All-Star Game, was the youngest arm among the Pilots top three starters. The strikeout artist fanned 52 batters in 42.2 innings and went 2-0 with a 3.38 earned run average over seven regular season starts. D’Amato finished fourth overall in the PGCBL in strikeouts. He was second on his team in strikeouts, third in ERA among starting pitchers and fourth in innings pitched (42.2). D’Amato struck out 10 batters twice and whiffed at least four in every start. The St. John Fisher rising sophomore was more impressive in the PGCBL playoffs. He struck out 14 over eight innings and allowed just one run on four hits. D’Amato fanned six in three shutout innings to help Newark clinch the PGCBL championship over Amsterdam.

Mazzio, a PGCBL All-Star Game selection, was the ace of the Golden Eagles pitching staff throughout the summer and he was one of the top pitchers in the PGCBL. Mazzio finished second among all league starting pitchers in earned run average (1.99) and third in strikeouts (58). The St. Louis, Mo., native went 2-1 over 10 appearances with nine starts. He struck out 58 batters in 54.1 innings. Mazzio led the Green and Gold in strikeouts and innings pitched. The Glens Falls’ starter recorded at least five strikeouts in nine of 10 appearances and he strung together four-straight starts with seven strikeouts each between June 15 and July 1. Mazzio fanned seven batters on five occasions. He held opponents to one earned run or less in seven of nine starts.

Fischer, signed as an infielder out of Wake Forest, ended the summer as one of Amsterdam’s top three starting pitchers. During the month of July, Fischer went 3-0 with a 2.45 earned run average over five starts. He lasted at least six innings four times and struck out at least four batters in all five starts. Overall, Fischer accrued a 2.45 earned run average in 33.0 innings which included seven appearances. He struck out 27, walked five and allowed only six extra-base hits. The Chicago, Ill., native added another quality start in the postseason against rival Glens Falls. He allowed two runs on five hits over six innings in Game 2 against the Golden Eagles which ended up as a 5-4 Amsterdam victory.

The bullpen was the most competitive slot on the Rising Stars team with five overall selections including two from Mohawk Valley. Relief pitchers named to the team include Mohawk Valley’s Tyler Kane (Washington) and Alex Lester (Kentucky), Amsterdam’s Mike Dodakian (Dartmouth), Cooperstown’s Parker Ray (Texarkana JC) and Elmira’s Adam Davis (St. John’s).

Kane and Lester were two of Mohawk Valley’s top arms out of the bullpen. Kane, a PGCBL All-Star Game selection, made 25 appearances for the University of Washington in the spring. He began the summer season as a one-inning reliever and evolved into a starter for the DiamondDawgs. The Mill Creek, Wash., native pitched in 13 games and went 1-1 with a 1.93 earned run average. Kane struck out 33 over 28.0 innings and walked just one batter. Opponents managed a .204 batting average. The Huskies' rising sophomore did not allow a run in his first seven summer outings. In his first two starts against Albany and Elmira in July, Kane combined to strike out 18 batters in 12.0 innings. His ERA never rose above 2.00.

Lester pitched in 18 games overall for the DiamondDawgs and came out of the bullpen 17 times. He went 2-2 with one save and a 1.83 earned run average. The University of Kentucky arm struck out 34 batters in 34.1 innings and walked only seven. He finished among the league’s top 10 in earned run average for relief pitchers. Lester pitcher did not allow a run (earned or unearned) over his final eight relief appearances which included 15.0 innings. The Nicholasville, Ky., native did not allow an earned run in 13 of his 17 bullpen outings. He turned in best performance in back-to-back appearances at Elmira and Watertown in late July. Lester combined to allow two hits over eight shutout innings (four in each game) and he struck out 10 in a pair of Mohawk Valley victories; both games were decided by two runs or less.

Dodakian was one of the most–used relievers in the PGCBL. He tied for third among league relievers with 19 bullpen appearances which also was tied for fourth-most for all pitchers. The Dartmouth College product accrued a 3-0 record with one save and a 2.35 earned run average. He struck out 36 batters over 30.2 innings and posted a .204 opponents’ batting average. Dodakian’s .204 OBA was the lowest among all Amsterdam pitchers with at least 10 appearances. He struck out at least one batter in 16 games and fanned a season-high seven over three innings against Newark on June 29. The Walpole, Mass., native did not give up an earned run in nine-straight games pitched between June 24 and July 12.

Ray, a PGCBL All-Star Game selection, was the closer for the PGCBL West regular season champion Cooperstown Hawkeyes. The converted catcher/infielder took to the mound for the first time collegiately at Texarkana in the spring. Ray topped Cooperstown in saves (five), appearances (16), opponents’ batting average (.140) and strikeouts for a reliever (36). The hard-throwing former high school quarterback went 3-2 with a 2.83 ERA in 28.2 innings. The fireballer struck out five twice and fanned at least two batters on 11 occasions. Ray yielded only two earned runs over his final nine times on the mound and he finished the regular season with five-straight shutout appearances (nine innings).

Davis was primarily used as a long reliever for the Pioneers. He concluded the regular season second on the team in wins (three), third in earned run average (2.67) and fourth in innings pitched (33.2). Davis struck out 43 and walked 12 in 33.2 innings. Opponents batted .204 against the St. John's University reliever. He snapped up victories over Amsterdam, Glens Falls and Watertown. The Drums, Pa., native turned in his best pitching performance at home against Glens Falls on July 12. He entered in a 5-5 game and went on to allow one unearned run on one hit over five innings of relief. Davis walked one, struck out five and faced three batters over the minimum.

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