The Texas Collegiate League has announced the players invited to its annual showcase event, this year being held in Victoria
The Texas Collegiate League has announced the North and South rosters for the 2012 TCL All-Star Game presented by the University of Houston-Victoria. The Victoria Generals will host the event on Monday, July 9, at Riverside Stadium.
As it has the last two years, the TCL will use a North-South format to divide the league for the All-Star Game. The host Generals lead the South stars, joined by the Acadiana Cane Cutters and the Woodlands Strykers.
The North is made up of players from the Alexandria Aces, Brazos Valley Bombers, Texas Marshals and East Texas Pump Jacks, the league’s first-half champions.
Among the all-stars are six players voted Player or Pitcher of the Week in the first month of the season. The league’s top six hitters and five of the top six sluggers have all received invites as well. The TCL’s top hurlers, including the top-three ERA’s, four of the top-five win totals, and the league leader in strikeouts, will also be in Victoria on Monday.
The host Generals boast the most all-stars with nine, including returning all-star and the TCL’s all-time hit king, Chad Kruse. Kruse was selected to start for the South at second base, the only infield position in which a member of the Cane Cutters wasn’t chosen to start.
Acadiana starters in the infield include catcher Mitchell Nau, first baseman Adam Seal, third baseman Gabe Woods, and shortstop Isaac Rodriguez.
By comparison, the North starting infield is more varied in its composition. Catching is Week One Player of the Week Braden Mattson, with teammate and league home run leader Brennyn Smith getting the nod at third base. Alexandria teammates Lucas Quary and Jami Rachal will start at first base and shortstop, respectively.
Holding down second base for the North is returning all-star Kirby Pellant from the Pump Jacks, the Week Two Player of the Week.
Five different teams had an outfielder voted into the starting lineup, with only the Generals placing two. Victoria teammates Billy Richard and Jude Vidrine will be joined in the South outfield by the Strykers’ Ricardo Sanchez. Alexandria’s Nathan Hale, the Pump Jacks’ Tyler Sullivan, and Myles Parma from Brazos Valley comprise the starting outfield for the North.
Starting at designated hitter for the North is Hayden Simerly from the Marshals, with the Strykers’ Michael Aquino starting for the South.
The South’s reserves include catcher Eric Weiss and infielder Trace Knoblauch, both from Victoria, along with infielder Carter Burgess from The Woodlands and Acadiana’s Braxton Lee in the outfield.
Backing up the North are catcher K.J. Alexander and infielder Wes Jones from the Marshals, East Texas infielder R.J. Santigate, and Bombers outfielder Brandon Wood.
Voted onto the South staff are right-hander Jordan Pacheco, the Week One Pitcher of the Week, and left-hander and second-time all-star Covey Morrow. They’ll be joined by fellow Generals Dillon Newman and Trae Davis.
Filling out the South staff are three hurlers from The Woodlands – Derrick Hadley, Alex Palsha and Talan Roepcke – along with two Cane Cutters, Ben Suit and Kelby Langston.
Like the South, the North staff boasts four pitchers from one squad. East Texas left-hander Kyle Kubat and closer Jason Jester were both voted in, and they’re joined by relievers Jeff Stovall and Gerardo Esquivel.
Alexandria righty Nathan Aultman was voted to the staff, where he’ll be joined by teammate Zach Rodgers. The Bombers placed two in the North bullpen: Franco Pace and Derrick Mazzio. Marshals hurler Storm Griffin completes the North pitching staff.
Two-time TCL Coach of the Year Chris Clemons will lead the South, while East Texas head coach Ben Taylor will be at the helm for his third-straight All-Star Game.
Prior to the game, one entrant from each team will participate in the TCL Home Run Derby presented by Victoria Nissan. Each hitter will be paired with a randomly-selected fan who could win $10,000 if the slugger drives a home run through a target over the Victoria Nissan sign in the outfield during the first round.
Last year’s All-Star Game was won by the South, 7-4. The Bombers, who at the time were part of the South squad, hosted the event, with hometown hero Jordan Hammerman picking up the MVP award. Nick Smelser won the pre-game Home Run Derby.
For more information on the 2012 TCL All-Star Game presented by the University of Houston-Victoria and to purchase tickets, visit www.victoriagenerals.com or contact the Generals at (361) 485-9522.
Rosters for the 2012 TCL All-Star Game presented by the University of Houston-Victoria
(players listed in bold were selected starters)
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