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Photo from UK Athletics

Zach Logue Named SEC Freshman of the Week

Photo from UK Athletics

Photo from UK Athletics

After Kentucky’s historical sweep of Tennessee this weekend, southpaw Zach Logue was named SEC Freshman of the Week on Monday. The Cats notched its first SEC sweep since 2012 and swept the Vols at home for the first time in series history. Logue’s efficiency was superb as he worked just 3.2 innings in the series, earning a win and a save.

In the series-clinching win on Friday, Logue entered the game in the top of the ninth in relief of starter Dustin Beggs clinging to a three-run lead with runners on the corners and no outs. He immediately killed the late Tennessee rally by fielding a sharply hit grounder and starting a 1-4-3 double play, picking up his first save of the season.

Coach Henderson turned to his bullpen in the series finale on Saturday, benching the usual weekend starter Kyle Cody. Logue tossed 2.2 innings in his second win of the year, striking out two batters and surrendering only two hits and a walk on 41 pitches. On the season, Logue owns a 2-1 record and a 4.50 ERA in 28 innings and 13 games.

The Cats now turn their attention to a home game versus Xavier at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday before heading to Gainesville to face No. 6 Florida in a three-game series.

@STHowle


Kentucky Lose Three-game Series to South Carolina

Kentucky Lose Three-game Series to South Carolina

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Photo by UK Athletics

 

The No.14 Wildcats took on the Gamecocks this weekend in a three-game series at John Cropp Stadium. Out of the games, Kentucky was able to win one but came up short in the other two to give South Carolina the overall win.

In the first game of the series, the Gamecocks came out on top in a close 6-4 defeat. Sylver Samuel had a successful game, scoring two of the four points and one hit. Nikki Sagermann and Griffin Joiner received the other two points of the game and each also added one hit and two RBI. Christian Stokes, Breanne Ray, Rachael Metzger, and Ansley Smith also provided hits. Defensively, Kelsey Nunley allowed six hits and six runs.

In the second game of the series, Kentucky came out victorious 2-0. Stokes and Samuel provided the runs of the game and Samuel added a hit. Sagermann, Ray, and Darington Richardson also contributed hits and Maisie Steed got an RBI.

The Cats lost 7-6 in their final game against the Gamecocks. Several of the Kentucky players were about to contribute to the total score. Samuel provided two hits and two runs, while Ray and Hinz each added runs. Joiner got one run, three hits, and two RBI and Steed contributed one run, one hit, and three RBI. Stokes added three hits and a RBI, Metzger and Richardson provided a hit, and Kara Howard received two hits and a RBI. Defensively, Nunley allowed eleven hits and five runs.


Kentucky jumped to fourth in the SEC East this weekend. (Photo by UK Athletics)

Kentucky Finishes Sweep of Tennessee

Kentucky jumped to fourth in the SEC East this weekend. (Photo by UK Athletics)

Kentucky jumped to fourth in the SEC East this weekend. (Photo by UK Athletics)

For the first time since 2012, Kentucky completed a sweep of an SEC series. Following wins on Thursday and Friday, the Cats (22-16, 8-9) wrapped up the series sweep of Tennessee (15-20, 5-13) with a 5-3 win on Saturday. Ka’ai Tom was three for four at the plate with three RBIs to lead the Cats to their eighth SEC win on the year.

Kentucky turned to spot starter Andrew Nelson to take the mound on Saturday. Nelson started earlier this week against WKU, going three innings and allowing one run. He continued his success this week by throwing 4.1 one-run innings against Tennessee. Nelson struck out three and allowed three hits to give the Cats an early presence on the mound. Kentucky has needed a spot starter like Nelson to step up in the third spot of the rotation following Kyle Cody’s recent struggles.

While Nelson was mowing down Tennessee’s batting order, Kentucky’s offense jumped out to an early lead. Back-to-back doubles by Evan White and Ka’ai Tom helped to give Kentucky a 1-0 lead in the first inning. The double was Tom’s 12th on the season and his 40th RBI.

Following an unearned run by Tennessee in the second inning, Kentucky loaded the bases for Dorian Hairston in the third. Hairston roped a single to right field that scored Evan White and gave Kentucky a 2-1 lead through three innings. 

Nelson continued to cruise with a 2-1 lead heading into the fifth inning. Gary Henderson went to the bullpen after Nelson allowed a man to reach in the fifth. Zach Logue came on to pitch for the second straight game after picking up the save in last night’s 3-1 win. Logue would come in with an opportunity to collect the win, and that’s what he would do. Allowing two hits and no runs over 2.2 innings, Logue won his second game of the year.

Kentucky’s big inning came in the fifth. Kyle Barrett led the inning off with a double and advanced to third on a White groundout. Tom came to the plate against Tennessee’s Kyle Serrano with Barrett on third and one out. On a 3-2 pitch, Tom knocked his third home run of the year over the field wall near the football practice facility. This was Tom’s 42nd RBI on the year and his second extra-base hit of the game. JaVon Shelby followed Tom’s home run by hitting one of his own to left field. It was the first time Kentucky had hit back-to-back home runs since A.J Reed and Cameron Flynn in 2012. 

The three-run inning would give Kentucky a much-needed 5-1 lead late in the game. Following Logue’s outing, Logan Salow came in with one out in the eighth and the bases loaded. Salow got a strike out and a fly out to end the jam and maintain a 5-1 lead. Henderson would keep Salow on the mound headed to the ninth, but he would be forced to make a quick change after Salow allowed a single and a double. Closer Spencer Jack took the mound, needing only two outs to complete the sweep. A sacrifice fly would cut the lead to three, but it put Tennessee down to their last out. Tennessee’s Jordan Rodgers singled to score another run, but Jack would shut the door following Rodgers’ RBI. Kentucky finished off the sweep with a 5-3 win over Tennessee.

This was Kentucky’s first sweep since 2012 against Alabama and their first sweep over Tennessee in school history. The three wins propelled Kentucky to fourth in the SEC East with a conference record of 8-9. The Cats take on Xavier on Tuesday and will travel to Florida next weekend to take on the red-hot Gators.

@TreyHuntsmanKSR

 


Dustin Beggs improved his record on the season to 5-2. (Photo by Chet White, UK Athletics)

Beggs Leads Kentucky to Series Win Over Tennessee

Dustin Beggs improved his record on the season to 5-2. (Photo by Chet White, UK Athletics)

Dustin Beggs improved his record on the season to 5-2. (Photo by Chet White, UK Athletics)

Following a dominant performance by Zack Brown on Thursday, Dustin Beggs followed up with an impressive outing on Friday. Beggs fired in eight innings, allowing only one run on eight hits to earn his fifth win on the year. Led by Beggs, Kentucky (21-16, 7-9) beat Tennessee (15-19, 5-12) 3-1 in the second game of the three game series.

For the second time this series, Kentucky jumped ahead early and never looked back. A third inning RBI double by Evan White to score Kyle Barrett put the Cats on the board. Ka’ai Tom followed with a sacrifice fly to extend the lead to 2-0 through three innings. Beggs would not need more than the early two runs to finish off Tennessee. The junior-college transfer showed impeccable command by throwing first pitch strikes to 21 of the 31 batters he faced. Beggs used that early lead in counts to strike out eight batters over eight innings. 

In the seventh inning, Kentucky’s offense delivered an insurance run for Beggs. Tom singled to second to score Zach Arnold and make the score 3-0. This was Tom’s second RBI of the game. Tom’s strong performance was not the only outstanding play by the meat of Kentucky’s batting order. The top five hitters all collected hits for Kentucky, including two hits a piece from Barrett and White. This was Barrett’s 20th multi-hit game of the season.

Beggs went into the ninth looking for a complete game shutout. A double and a single by Tennessee forced Gary Henderson to go to the bullpen with two on and no outs. Zach Logue forced Tennessee to hit into a double play that drove in a run, ending Beggs’ shutout performance. Logue got A.J. Simcox to ground out and end the game with the final score being 3-1.

-JaVon Shelby has reached base safely in 11 consecutive games

-Dustin Beggs has an ERA of 1.12 in his last two starts with 14 strikeouts

-Kentucky pitching did not allow a run for the first 17 innings of this series

-Evan White has reached base safely in 32 of his 34 games while at UK

-Andrew Nelson will make his second start of the season tomorrow. He started against WKU on Tuesday. 

 

By winning the first two games of the series, Kentucky has wrapped up their first series win since beating #1 LSU in a three-game series last month. The Cats will send Andrew Nelson to the mound tomorrow to try and sweep the Volunteers at Cliff Hagan Stadium. First pitch is at noon and the game will be broadcast on the SEC Network.  

 

@TreyHuntsmanKSR


Photo by UK Athletics

Zack Brown Tosses Gem As UK Blanks Tennessee 5-0

Photo by UK Athletics

Photo by UK Athletics

Thursday marked the first game of a three-game series against rival Tennessee that, quite frankly, Kentucky (20-16, 6-9 SEC) needs to win heading into the second half of SEC play. UK starter Zack Brown was locked in, picking up his third win of the year, as the Cats defeated the Vols 5-0. In 7.1 innings of work, Brown struck out four batters and allowed just five hits. Reliever Logan Salow was great, as well, in closing out the game. Salow gave up no runs or hits and struck out three in 1.2 innings.

UK applied the pressure early, scoring in the first inning. Leadoff slugger Kyle Barrett opened the bottom of the first with a single up the middle and scored the Cats’ first run on a JaVon Shelby single through the left side.

After going scoreless in their next three innings, UK extended the lead to 3-0 in the fifth. Designated hitter Zach Arnold led off the inning with an infield single. Then later, with one out, Barrett smoked a grounder right at the pitcher who pivoted and threw to second for what looked to be a routine 1-6-3 inning-ending double play, but the shortstop overthrew the first baseman allowing Arnold to score. Evan White followed up the Tennessee miscue with a double to the left-center gap to score Barrett.

Another two-run inning in the seventh gave UK a commanding lead that would seal the victory. With two away, Connor Heady drew a walk and Barrett ripped a deep double down the left field line to score Heady from first. Barrett then hustled to score from second on a White single through the right side.

The Wildcats collected nine hits on the evening, including multi-hit performances from Barrett, White, Shelby, and Dorian Hairston. Barrett’s season average is now up to .369 after going 2-3 last night with a walk, RBI, and three runs scored.

Kentucky and Tennessee will face off again tonight at 6:30 p.m. at Cliff Hagan Stadium. You can watch the game on SEC Network+.

Highlights of the series-opener below.

@STHowle


Ka'ai Tom collected two hits and stole two bases in Tuesday's loss to WKU. (Photo by  UK Athletics)

UK Loses to WKU in Extras

Ka'ai Tom collected two hits and stole two bases in Tuesday's loss to WKU. (Photo by  UK Athletics)

Ka’ai Tom collected two hits and stole two bases in Tuesday’s loss to WKU. (Photo by UK Athletics)

Kentucky fell to Western Kentucky for the second time this season on Tuesday night. Despite leading the entire game heading into the ninth, Kentucky fell 5-3 to the Hilltoppers. Ka’ai Tom, Zach Arnold and Evan White all collected two hits, while Andrew Nelson, Dylan Dwyer, Zach Strecker and Logan Salow all pitched well for Kentucky.

After Andrew Nelson sat down WKU in order in the top of the first, Kentucky’s offense got to rolling. Singles by Kyle Barrett and White put runners on first and second with one out. JaVon Shelby walked to load the bases and bring Dorian Hairston to the plate. Hairston walked to drive in the first run of the game. Storm Wilson extended the lead with a sacrifice fly to right field. 

Andrew Nelson lasted three innings, his only blemish being a third inning home run by Hunter Scanlon. Nelson was replaced by Dwyer in the fourth after throwing 36 pitches. Dwyer and Strecker combined to pitch four innings and strike out four batters while not allowing a run. Leading 2-1 in the eight inning, Kentucky’s offense woke up and found an insurance run. Tom led off with a double and came around to score on a wild pitch.

Kentucky turned to Spencer Jack after Logan Salow was removed with one out in the ninth. WKU was down to their last strike when Scanlon singled to bring up Lexington-native Anderson Miller. Jack once again had WKU down to their last strike, but Miller was able to stay alive. Miller hit a line drive over the right field wall to tie the game at three. Jack retired Philip Diedrick to end a brutal ninth inning. Kentucky was retired 1-2-3 in the bottom of the ninth to send the game to extra innings.

Kentucky kept Jack on the hill in the tenth inning. After allowing a runner to reach third with two outs, Brad Schaenzer replaced Jack. Scanlon delivered yet again with an RBI triple to give WKU a 4-3 lead. An RBI double by Paul Murray extended the lead to 5-3 after the top of the tenth inning. Kentucky sent Marcus Carson, White and Tom to the plate in the bottom half. A walk and stolen base by Tom went to little use as Shelby popped out to end the game.

Kentucky falls to 19-16 on the season after losing to WKU for the second time this season. The Cats will look to respond this weekend with a three-game series against Tennessee at Cliff Hagan Stadium. 

 

@TreyHuntsmanKSR

 


Cats Lose Three Game Stretch to Florida

Cats Lose Three Game Stretch to Florida

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Photo by UK Athletics

 

No. 13 Kentucky took on the No. 3 Gators in Gainesville, Florida this weekend in a three game series. Although the Wildcats put up a fight, they lost all three of the meetings.

In the first game of the series, Kentucky was defeated 1-0. Although no players were able to score, Christian Stokes and Nikki Sagermann each contributed a hit. Defensively, Kelsey Nunley allowed three hits and one run in the circle.

On Sunday, the Cats lost their second game of the series 6-3. Offensively, Stokes and Griffin Joiner each provided one hit and one run. Ansley Smith scored the remaining run of the game and Rachael Metzger added a hit. In the circle, Meagan Prince allowed eight hits and six runs.

Kentucky ended the series with a 2-0 loss to the Gators. Maisie Steed and Smith contributed hits but no score was added. Nunley allowed six hits and two runs in the circle for a three game loss to Florida.

 

The Cats will play their next game at Eastern Kentucky University on Wednesday.


Photo via @Angels Twitter

Cowgill Hits First Home Run of 2015

Photo via @Angels Twitter

Photo via @Angels Twitter

Former Kentucky outfielder Collin Cowgill went two for five with a home run and two RBIs against the Texas Rangers on Monday night. Cowgill batted lead-off for the Angels and collected his first multi-hit game and his first home run of the season.  The home run came with one out and a runner on in the fifth inning off Rangers’ starter Ross Detwiler. Cowgill’s home run traveled 427 feet over the head of the Rangers’ centerfielder. A sixth inning single gave Cowgill two hits on the night, leading the Angels to a 6-3 win. 

@TreyHuntsmanKSR


Photo from UK Athletics

Cats Feeling the Heat After Series Loss in Fayetteville

Photo from UK Athletics

Photo from UK Athletics

Officially halfway through SEC play, Kentucky (19-15, 5-9 SEC) must show more consistency if it wants to compete in the postseason. In an evenly matched weekend, Arkansas (20-16, 7-8 SEC) made things tougher on the Wildcats on Sunday, claiming the series in the rubber match with a 7-3 win. After UK evened the series Saturday with a 12-run victory, the Hogs responded the following day by using an early four-run lead and a pitching clinic courtesy of Keaton McKinney (complete-game, five-hitter).

The road ahead for the Cats is daunting, so it is critical for UK to take advantage of home series contests versus Tennessee and Georgia (7th and 4th place in the SEC East, respectively) and avoid sweeps against #6 Florida, #7 Vanderbilt, and #14 Missouri. It can be done, but it’s time for this team to lock in down the final stretch of the regular season. With that said, let’s take a deeper look at how this past weekend played out.

Weekend Scores 

Friday: Arkansas 5, Kentucky 3

-Andrew Benintendi led the way for Arkansas with a pair of homers. UK’s Dorian Hairston had a nice game with two hits, including his second career home run, while the Wildcats collected a total of nine hits on the evening. Starting pitcher Zack Brown (2-4) suffered the loss.

Saturday: Kentucky 16, Arkansas 4

-In the largest win in series history over Arkansas, and the second largest home loss in Arkansas history, the Cats sent 56 hitters to dish and 9,874 fans went home underwhelmed. UK junior leftfielder Ka’ai Tom went 3-5 with a career-high five RBI. Kyle Barrett, Evan White, JaVon Shelby, and Hairston also added multiple hits, while Zach Arnold drove in three runs. Starter Dustin Beggs (4-2) had another strong outing, allowing three runs on five hits in eight innings to earn the win.

Sunday: Arkansas 7, Kentucky 3

-UK starter Kyle Cody (2-4) struggled in the series finale, allowing four runs on six hits in just 2.2 innings of work. The Razorbacks built an early lead and did not let go, clinching the series in the process. Sophomore second baseman JaVon Shelby accounted for two of UK’s five hits on the afternoon, including two RBI and his second straight game with a homer.

3 Key Takeaways:

1. Kyle Cody remains an enigma. Cody started the year as a preseason All-America selection and the 19th-best prospect available in the 2015 MLB draft, but his upside has yet to come to fruition for the up and down Wildcats. Granted, UK is not playing the sisters of the poor in the mighty SEC; however, Cody, as the Sunday ace, must pitch at a high level for a team with a thin bullpen to be more competitive.

2. On the other hand, Dustin Beggs is legit. In his fifth quality start of the season on Saturday, Beggs worked eight innings, throwing 111 total pitches. The right-hander notched six strikeouts with only one walk, and surrendered just one earned run in the Cats’ sole win of the weekend. These kinds of performances are becoming the norm for Beggs and it is apparent that UK thrives when he is on the mound.

3. The usual suspects on offense continue to shine, as well. Through 34 regular season games, UK sluggers Ka’ai Tom, Kyle Barrett, and JaVon Shelby are batting .374, .364, and .347, respectively. On the weekend, the three combined for a .315 average (12-38) with 13 RBI and 10 runs scored. Not too shabby.

The Cats will return to action on Tuesday night, hosting Western Kentucky at 6:30 p.m. at Cliff Hagan Stadium, before hosting conference foe Tennessee this weekend.

@STHowle


@KentuckyTrack

Kentucky Track & Field Competes at the Oregon Team Invitational

 

@KentuckyTrack

@KentuckyTrack

On Saturday, the Kentucky Track and Field teams competed at the Oregon Team invitational at Hayward Field. The Wildcats placed third overall in the meet with 110 total points. Although Kentucky came up a little short as a group; several Wildcats shined individually. To highlight the meet, Raymond Dykstra defeated the reigning NCAA champion in the javelin throw.

Also, Kendra Harrison won the 100m hurdles with a time of 12.94. Her time was the only sub 13-second time this season. To add to her winnings, Harrison won the women’s 4x400m. She ran a time of 24.69. Keilah Tyson finished second with a time of 23.86 and Javianne Oliver finished third with a time of 24.13. Here are some more notable times from the meet:

  • The women’s 4×100 relay team of Keilah Tyson, Kenyattia Hackworth and Dominique Booker ran a season best time of 43.99.
  • Adrianna Brown finished first in the women’s discus throw with a distance of 157’8”
  • Keffri Neal won the 800m in a time of 1:49.89.
  • Justin Kretchmer won the men’s high jump with a clearance of 6’11”. His teammate Ibn Short placed second with a clearance of 6.9.75”.
  • Brad Szypka won the shot put with a mark of 62’8”.
  • Morganne Phillips finished first in the 400m with a time of 54.85.
  • Leah Nugent won the 400m hurdles with a time of 57.19

@PerkiliciousKSR


Kentucky vs. Louisville Game POSTPONED

(UK Athletics)

(UK Athletics)

Kentucky’s away game against Louisville has been postponed. The game was scheduled to start at 6 p.m, but strong storms moved into the area at 6:30. A rain delay was already underway at that point, but a lightning strike before first pitch pushed it back. As more strong storms moved into the area, the stadium was evacuated and the game was postponed.

 

Kentucky and Louisville play again on April 28th, so there will be an opportunity for a doubleheader.

@TreyHuntsmanKSR


James Paxton (pictured) and Collin Cowgill will face each other tonight. (Getty Images)

Former Cats Set to Square Off

James Paxton (pictured) and Collin Cowgill will face each other tonight. (Getty Images)

James Paxton (pictured) and Collin Cowgill will face each other tonight. (Getty Images)

Former Kentucky Wildcats Collin Cowgill and James Paxton will face off tonight. Cowgill, starting in the outfield for the Angels, and Paxton, starting at pitcher for the Mariners, will play tonight at 10:10 p.m. Both players will make their 2015 debuts tonight. 

 

Good luck to both players in their season debuts.

@TreyHuntsmanKSR


National Player of the Year A.J Reed will begin 2015 in High-A. (Photo by UK Athletics)

Kentucky Alumni In the Pros: Part Two

 

National Player of the Year A.J Reed will begin 2015 in High-A. (Photo by UK Athletics)

National Player of the Year A.J Reed will begin 2015 in High-A. (Photo by UK Athletics)

In part two of our previews of UK Alumni in the Pros, we look at players in Double-A or lower. These are players from as recent as last season. For part one, click here.

Gott will begin the season in Double-A after being traded from San Diego to Los Angeles last year. (Photo by UK Athletics)

Gott will begin the season in Double-A after being traded from San Diego to Los Angeles last year. (Photo by UK Athletics)

Double-A

Trevor Gott- Pitcher, Arkansas Travelers. Parent Club: Los Angeles Angels. Time at Kentucky: 2011-13

Kentucky fans remember Gott as the dominant closer who would hit nearly 100 MPH on his fastball. Gott is receiving the same amount of love from scouts entering the 2015 season. After being traded from the Padres to the Angels, Gott and his fastball posted a 1.56 ERA in Double-A. Gott, the Angels’ #15 prospect by MLB.com, impressed many in 2015 Spring Training, and he has a chance to be up in the Majors very soon.

Single-A 

A.J Reed- Infielder, Lancaster JetHawks. Parent Club: Houston Astros. Time at Kentucky: 2012-14

There isn’t a way to describe what Reed means to the Kentucky Baseball Program. The Consensus National Player of the Year will begin the season in the hitter-friendly California League with Lancaster. After hitting 12 home runs in half of a professional season in 2014, Reed will surely enjoy the thin air out west.

Micheal Thomas- Catcher, Lakeland Flying Tigers. Parent Club: Detroit Tigers. Time at Kentucky: 2011-14

After spending four years as a letter-winner in Lexington, Thomas was selected in the 22nd Round of the 2014 MLB Draft. The Elizabethtown-Native played in only 15 games after being selected, but was promoted to High-A near the end of the season. Thomas will begin the season in High-A with Lakeland in the Florida State League.

Corey Littrell- Pitcher, Palm Beach Cardinals. Parent Club: St. Louis Cardinals. Time at Kentucky: 2011-13

Following two fantastic seasons in the Red Sox Organization, Littrell was traded to St. Louis last summer. The Cardinals are known for developing young pitchers better than any organization in baseball. Littrell will begin his first full season with the Cardinals where he ended last year, High-A.

Chandler Shepherd- Pitcher, Greenville Drive. Parent Club: Boston Red Sox. Time at Kentucky: 2012-14

After being a starter throughout his career at Kentucky, Boston moved Shepherd to the bullpen in his first professional season. Time will tell if Shepherd will start for Greenville in 2015. Fans will be able to see Shepherd pitch for Greenville when they come to play the Lexington Legends from April 20-22.

Cameron Flynn- Outfielder, Jupiter Hammerheads. Parent Club: Miami Marlins. Time at Kentucky: 2012 

Following a season where he only played in 39 games, Flynn returns to Jupiter yet again. The 25-year old has a career batting average of .283 in the Marlins’ farm system since being drafted in 2012. Flynn will look to replicate his success from 2013 and stay on the field more this season.

"The Riddler" returned to Lexington with Greensboro last season.  He will do the same in 2015. (Photo by UK Athletics)

“The Riddler” returned to Lexington with Greensboro last season. He will do the same in 2015. (Photo by UK Athletics)

J.T Riddle- Infielder, Greensboro Grasshoppers. Parent Club: Miami Marlins. Time at Kentucky: 2011-13

Riddle stuck around in big league camp until late March for the second consecutive Spring. The Marlins obviously see the potential oozing from Riddle’s offensive game. Riddle hit nine home runs and had a batting average of .280 in his first year of full-season ball. He will return to Greensboro to begin the 2015 season.

Max Kuhn- Infielder, Beloit Snappers. Parent Club: Oakland A’s. Time at Kentucky: 2012-14

Yet another key piece of the 2014 NCAA Regional Team begins his first full professional season. Kuhn will begin in the Midwest League with the Beloit Snappers. The utility infielder hit .277 last season with Vermont. Kuhn drove in 23 runs in 52 games with Vermont last year.

Jerad Grundy- Pitcher, Beloit Snappers. Parent Club: Oakland A’s. Time at Kentucky: 2012-13

Grundy will join his former teammate (Kuhn) in Low-A Beloit. After pitching in 27 games for Vermont over the last two years, Grundy will begin his first year of full-season baseball. Grundy will continue to work on his control, something that he has improved on the last two years and has began to master.

Austin Cousino- Outfielder, Clinton Lumberkings. Parent Club: Seattle Mariners. Time at Kentucky: 2012-14

Cousino had a prolific career at Kentucky before being selected in the third round by the Mariners last year. The former Collegiate Gold Glove Winner committed only one error in his debut season. Cousino also stole 23 bases and hit 17 doubles. He will begin the season on the disabled list, but will play for Clinton when he returns.

Rookie Leagues

Matt Reida- Infielder, Gulf Coast Rays. Parent Club: Tampa Bay Rays. Time at Kentucky: 2011-14

Signed as an undrafted free agent after four years at UK, Reida made his case to stay in professional baseball with a fantastic debut season. Reida hit .295 and reached base at a .379 clip in 42 games with the GCL Rays. He will remain in the Rays’ Spring Training Facility and play there until he is assigned to a Short-Season Team this June.

 

@TreyHuntsmanKSR

 

 

 


Cowgill was an All-American at UK. (Photo by Tom Szc

Kentucky Alumni in the Pros: Part One

(Photo by UK Athletics)

(Photo by UK Athletics)

With the MLB Season opening up Sunday night and nearly every Minor League season being shortly, it’s time to look at where UK alumni will be playing this year. Kentucky has players at each professional level entering the 2015 regular season. Take a look at where each professional Wildcat will be this year.

Major Leagues

Collin Cowgill- Outfielder, Los Angeles Angels: Time at Kentucky- 2005-08

Cowgill expects to see much more playing time in the 2015 season for the Angels. The former All-American will fill a bigger role in the absence of Josh Hamilton in the Los Angeles outfield. Cowgill was drafted in 2008 and has spent time with the Arizona Diamondbacks, Oakland A’s, New York Mets and now the Angels.

Cowgill was an All-American at UK. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski, Getty Images)

Cowgill was an All-American at UK. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski, Getty Images)

James Paxton- Pitcher, Seattle Mariners: Time at Kentucky- 2007-09

Paxton made his Major League debut in the 2013 season for the Mariners. Since his debut, Paxton has done nothing but dominate. Paxton has a career ERA of 2.66 in 17 career starts in only two seasons with Seattle. The lefty will begin the season as Seattle’s number two starter in their rotation.

Triple-A

Alex Meyer- Pitcher, Rochester Red Wings. Parent Club: Minnesota Twins. Time at Kentucky: 2009-11

Perhaps the top prospect to come out of Kentucky in the last few years, Meyer begins the season just a step away from the MLB. Ranked as the 30th best prospect in baseball by MLB.com, Meyer will push to make the Twins’ rotation by the end of 2015.

Taylor Rogers- Pitcher, Rochester Red Wings. Parent Club: Minnesota Twins. Time at Kentucky: 2010-12

Rogers is yet another young pitcher in the Twins’ system that played underneath Gary Henderson at UK. Following a breakthrough season in 2012, Rogers posted back-to-back seasons with 11 wins and an ERA below 3.30. Rogers will begin his first year in Triple-A after starting 24 games there in 2014.

Andrew Albers- Pitcher, Buffalo Bisons. Parent Club: Toronto Blue Jays. Time at Kentucky: 2005-08

Following a season pitching in Japan, Albers returns to the States with the Blue Jays. Albers pitched 60 innings for the Twins in 2013 before moving to Japan. Albers will most likely jump up and down throughout 2015 when the Major League Club needs an extra arm on their roster.

Meyer pitched in the Futures Game at the 2014 MLB All-Star Game. (Photo by Hannah Foslien, Getty Images)

Meyer pitched in the Futures Game at the 2014 MLB All-Star Game. (Photo by Hannah Foslien, Getty Images)

Logan Darnell- Pitcher, Rochester Red Wings. Parent Club: Minnesota Twins. Time at Kentucky: 2008-10

Darnell made his debut with the Twins in 2014 as a reliever and as a starter. In his time in the minors, Darnell has pitched in 115 games and thrown over 600 innings. The ability to go deep into games and be versatile will keep Darnell in the minds of Twins’ management.

Chris Rusin- Pitcher, Albuquerque Isotopes. Parent Club: Colorado Rockies. Time at Kentucky: 2006-09

After five seasons in the Cubs’ organization, Rusin will make the move out west. Rusin signed with the Rockies after pitching in 24 MLB games with Chicago over the last three seasons. Before being selected by the Cubs, Rusin was a First Team All-SEC Selection in 2008 for Kentucky.

Joe Blanton- Pitcher, Omaha Storm Chasers. Parent Club: Kansas City Royals. Time at Kentucky: 2000-02

The active player with the longest professional tenure is making his return to the mound in 2015. Blanton announced his retirement before last season, but signed with the Royals on a minor-league deal for this year. After being selected by the Athletics in the 2002 MLB Draft, he won a World Series with the Phillies in 2008. Blanton will attempt to reach the Majors yet again in 2015.

Luke Maile- Catcher, Durham Bulls. Parent Club: Tampa Bay Rays. Time at Kentucky: 2010-12

Maile has risen through the ranks of the Rays’ farm system quickly since being selected in the 8th round of the 2012 MLB Draft. The former Kentucky catcher had a fielding percentage of .995 in Double-A last season. Maile has a career average of .268 in the minor leagues and will make a push to find a backup role in Tampa at some point in 2015.

 

Part Two will follow shortly.

 

@TreyHuntsmanKSR


Kentucky Comes Out Victorious Against Florida Atlantic

Kentucky Comes Out Victorious Against Florida Atlantic

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Photo by UK Athletics

 

The No. 13 Cats conquered two big wins over the Owls today at John Cropp Stadium. Florida Atlantic came to Lexington with a 26-13 record while the Wildcats held a 26-11 record.

Kentucky defeated the Owls 3-1 in the first game. Offensively, Christian Stokes, Breanne Ray, and Maisie Steed scored the three runs of the game. Stokes and Ray also added two hits. Nikki Sagermann contributed three hits while Darington Richardson and Kara Howard each provided one. Defensively, Meagan Prince only allowed one run and five hits in the game.

In the second game of the day, the Cats won 7-1. Offensively, many players scored runs. Sagermann had two runs and one hit while Howard had one run and one hit. Steed contributed a run, a hit, and two RBI and Sylver Samuel added one hit, one run, and one RBI. Stokes provided an RBI, Ray added a hit, and Ansley Smith had two hits and two RBI. Defensively, Erin Rethlake was the winning pitcher and only allowed one hit and no runs.

Kentucky takes on Marshall at John Cropp Stadium on Wednesday at 6:00 PM.