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Baseball

    The Atlanta Braves No. 2 prospect, Drew Waters has been named the Southern League MVP after a remarkable 108 games with the Mississippi Braves in Double-A before getting called up to the Gwinnett Stripers. Waters’ MVP stats in AA .319/.366/.481 63 runs 35 doubles 9 triples 5 home runs 41 rbi 13 stolen bases
  • Ronald Acuña Jr. recently joined Mike Trout and Andruw Jones as the only three players in Major League Baseball (MLB) history to record a 30/25 (30 home runs/25 stolen bases) season prior to their 22nd birthday. He is four stolen bases away from joining Trout as the only two players in MLB history to record a 30/30 season prior to their 22nd birthday. Acuña’s two home runs last night lifted him past Mickey Mantle with the 7th-most home runs by a player prior to his 22nd birthday. Players with the most home runs before turning 22 Mel Ott - 86 Tony Conigliaro - 84 Eddie Mathews - 72 Ken Griffey Jr. - 60 Frank Robinson - 60 Al Kaline - 59 Ronald Acuña Jr. - 58 Mickey Mantle - 57 Acuña is quickly turning into one of the best five-tool players in the MLB.
  • Hours after the news broke that the Atlanta Braves No. 1 overall prospect, Cristian Pache had been promoted to AAA Gwinnett, the team announced that the No. 2 overall prospect, Drew Waters will be joining Pache after being promoted to AAA Gwinnett. Pache and Waters are both ranked in the top-30 overall in terms of MLB prospects and are both ranked as top-10 outfield prospects. Waters’ numbers in AA this season .319/.366/.481.847 ops63 runs134 hits35 doubles9 triples5 home runs41 rbi13 stolen bases202 total bases
  • The Atlanta Braves No. 1 overall prospect, Cristian Pache has been promoted to AAA Gwinnett Stripers. Pache played in the Futures Game this summer, while in the midst of a great season with the Mississippi Braves. Pache’s numbers in AA this season .278/.340/.474.815 ops50 runs109 hits28 doubles8 triples11 home runs53 rbi8 stolen bases186 total bases
  • Aaron Schunk was one of the most consistent hitters at Georgia throughout his three years with the Bulldogs. During his time wearing the red and black, Schunk had a career .312 batting average with 19 home runs and 114 runs-batted-in.  Schunk has not skipped a beat with the Boise Hawks throughout his first 32 games. During those 32 games, Schunk is slashing .311/.380/.500 with an .880 OPS. He has recorded three home runs, 12 RBI, 12 bases-on-balls and only 16 strikeouts in the Northwest League.  On July 20, Schunk recorded his first “perfect game” with the Hawks going 4-for-4 with a walk, one RBI and three runs scored.
  • Cole Wilcox dominated on the mound last night for Team USA only allowing one base runner, while striking out three batters over 2.2 innings of relief, helping them secure a 2-0 win while one-hitting Japan at Kizuna Stadium. This was the first time the Collegiate National Team ever played at Kizuna Stadium. Wilcox has shined all summer for Team USA as he still maintains a 0.00 era this summer. Team USA is one win away from winning the USA vs. Japan Collegiate All-Star Series in Japan, something the team has not done in 40 years. Team USA has lost 15-straight series in Japan.
  • The Georgia baseball team and Georgia’s athletic department showed their respect and appreciation to former Bulldog, Jared Walsh with a gift package.  The package included brand new Georgia athletic gear and a personalized letter. Walsh is a two-way player who played three seasons at Georgia before being drafted by the Los Angeles Angels in the 39th round of the 2015 MLB Draft. While in the minors, Walsh moved around the diamond playing first base, left field, center field, right field and pitcher. Walsh made his MLB debut with the Angels on May 15, 2019. He has made eight appearances at first base and three appearances as a pitcher for the Angels since his debut. As a hitter, Walsh has made a plate appearance in 11 games and has since tallied three runs, eight hits, two doubles and two rbi, while averaging .250 with a .607 ops. As a pitcher, Walsh has a 2.70 era, 1.80 whip and has struck out two batters over 3.1 innings of work. Walsh’s last appearance with the Angels came on June 6, he has since been playing with the Salt Lake Bees, the Angels AAA affiliate.
  • All six of the former Georgia baseball players who were taken in the 2019 MLB Draft have made their professional debuts for their new clubs this summer. Tony Locey was assigned to the Single A affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals, the Peoria Chiefs on July 4. Locey had previously been with the Rookie affiliate of the Cardinals, the GCL Cardinals. In three games, Locey has a perfect 0.00 era with a 1.33 whip and has struck out four batters while giving up three walks over three innings pitched. In Locey’s first game in Single A, he struck out one batter in a scoreless inning for the Chiefs. Tim Elliott has made five starts for the Everett AquaSox and is 0-1 with a 2.79 era and 11 strikeouts through 9.2 innings pitched. Aaron Schunk is on a nine game hitting streak for the Boise Hawks and has already recorded eight extra-base-hits through 19 games. Schunk has 15 runs, two home runs and nine rbi while slashing .324/.395/.521 with a .916 ops in the Northwest League. Zac Kristofak has a 1-1 record with a 7.50 era and four strikeouts through six innings of work during five relief appearances for the Orem Owlz. LJ Talley has played in 14 games for the Lansing Lugnuts and is averaging .156 with one home run and six rbi. Tucker Maxwell has a .091 average and a .329 ops through seven games with the Williamsport Crosscutters with one rbi.
  • Georgia’s right-handed pitcher, Cole Wilcox was named to the 2019 USA Collegiate National Team roster this past Monday and made his debut for Team USA last night. Wilcox picked up the win for Team USA in a 4-2 comeback victory over Team Cuba after throwing three shutout innings in relief, where he gave up five hits and zero walks, while striking out three batters. Wilcox is coming off his freshman season where he earned SEC All-Freshman honors after pitching 59.2 innings for the Bulldogs and went 3-2 with a 4.07 era while striking out 64 batters and holding his opponents to a .216 batting average.
  • Baseball America predicts Georgia will be one of the eight teams to reach Omaha and compete in the College World Series in 2020. At the end of every college baseball season, Baseball America predicts who they believe will be the eight teams to reach Omaha next season. They predict that Georgia, Arizona State, Auburn, Louisville, Miami, Michigan, Texas Tech and Vanderbilt will be the eight teams competing in the 2020 College World Series. It is hard to image that Georgia’s pitching staff could be any better than it was this past season, but next year they will be led by starting pitchers Emerson Hancock and Cole Wilcox who are both projected to be taken top-10 in the 2020 MLB Draft.  Hancock and Wilcox were both invited to join the USA Baseball Collegiate National Team summer training camp.  Hancock earned First Team All-Southeastern Conference honors after going 8-3 with a 1.99 era and 97 strikeouts while holding opponents to a .185 batting average over 90.1 innings pitched.  Wilcox earned SEC All-Freshman honors after going 3-2 with a 4.07 era and 64 strikeouts while holding opponents to a .216 batting average over 59.2 innings pitched.  The return of Cam Shepherd is huge for Georgia as he is one of the best defensive players in college baseball and is coming off a Gold Glove season in which he had a perfect fielding percentage in SEC play this past season.