Minor League Baseball Update

Newnan’s Jesse Wierzbicki promoted in minor leagues

Jesse Wierzbicki took another step up the ladder of the Houston Astros minor league affiliates on Tuesday, one that will swing the 6-foot-3, 210-pound first baseman from Newnan out to the West Coast for now to play for the Lancaster (Calif.) Jethawks. Wierzbicki was elevated to the Astros’ High Class A club after batting .264 with six homers and 54 RBIs in 87 games for the Quad City River Bandits, Houston’s Midwest League affiliate in Class A.

The former Newnan High standout, who eventually helped North Carolina reach the College World Series in 2011, joins a Jethawks roster including Georgia natives Delino DeShields, a first-round draft pick out of Woodward Academy in 2010 and Telvin Nash, a third-round pick in 2009 out of Griffin High. In a recent listing of the top 100 major-league prospects by MLB.com, Deshields was ranked the 80th.

Nash, who also plays first, could also be on the move up after bashing 16 homers this year for the Jethawks. Agent Allen McDuffey of McDuffey Sports Management confirmed Wierzbicki’s promotion to Lancaster.

BEDROSIAN PICKS UP PAIR OF SAVES: Possibly following his father’s lead as a potential major-league closer, former East Coweta pitching ace Cam Bedrosian is gaining steam as a reliever for the Class A Burlington Bees of the Midwest League. Despite suffering a loss on Sunday in a save opportunity, the 6-0, 205-pound right-hander picked up two saves last week, his third and fourth of the season.

Since the league’s All-Star break, Bedrosian is 1-2 with a 3.60 ERA and three saves in 15 innings pitched.

SMITH RACKING UP STRIKEOUTS AT OMAHA: After returning to the minor leagues in early July following his fifth stint of his professional career with the Kansas City Royals, former Northgate ace Will Smith has continued to rack up strikeouts as a left-handed reliever out of the bullpen for Triple-A Omaha.

In six appearances since his return, the 6-3, 250-pound left-hander has 21 strikeouts in nearly 14 innings pitched compared to only two walks.

Smith has a 2.61 ERA in his last 10 games at Omaha, with opposing batters hitting just .231 over the span.

EVEN YEAR FOR BLOUGH: After a stellar June with the Winston-Salem Dash of the Carolina League, former East Coweta pitching standout Bryan Blough saw his record even to 8-8 after making his 21st start of the season.

Blough, who went 5-0 last month, ended July with a 1-4 record while posting 16 strikeouts in his five starts. He leads Dash pitchers with 125 ? innings work this year, all as a starter.

KENDRICK GETS FIRST STARTS WITH YANKEES: After making his first four appearances as a professional out of the bullpen, former Northgate High ace Conner Kendrick took the mound as a starter twice last week with the Staten Island Yankees of the New York-Penn League, allowing one earned run over eight combined innings and posting eight strikeouts to just three walks. The 20-year-old Kendrick, who was drafted by the New York Yankees following his first year at Auburn, is now 1-2 with a 5.71 ERA in 17 ? innings.



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