Deacons in the Pros Update

Wake alums are faring well in the professional ranks this summer

Josh Ellis has pitched well as a closer for the Visalia Oaks this season.

Josh Ellis has pitched well as a closer for the Visalia Oaks this season.

June 19, 2008

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Wake Forest baseball is once again well-represented throughout the professional ranks. With three more Demon Deacons drafted in 2008, that representation may soon grow. Below is an update on how the current Deacons in the pros are faring thus far.

Matt Antonelli (2004-2006) is playing second base for the Portland Beavers, a Triple-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres in the Pacific Coast League. In 63 games, he is hitting .185 with eight doubles, two triples and three home runs. He has also managed to draw 40 walks on the year.

Dave Bush (1999- 2002) is currently with the Milwaukee Brewers as a starting pitcher. So far this season he has posted a 2-7 record with a 5.73 ERA. He has appeared in thirteen games making starts in twelve of them. Notable starts include the game against the St. Louis Cardinals on May 12 in which he went six innings and only allowed one run on four hits. He also went seven innings against the Atlanta Braves and Houston Astros on May 27th and June 1st allowing only two runs and one run respectively.

Jamie D'Antona (2001-2003) is starting at third base for the Triple-A Tucson Sidewinders, an affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks in the Pacific Coast League. In 66 games, he has hit a team-leading .396 with 27 doubles and eight home runs. In the month of May, D'Antona hit a league-leading .451 with eight doubles and seven home runs.

Josh Ellis (2004-2007) is playing for the Visalia Oaks in the Class A Advanced California League. The Oaks are a minor league affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks. While relieving for the Oaks he has compiled a 2.14 ERA while striking out 37 in only 33.2 innings of work. He has collected five saves in 20 games so far this season. In his last ten games he has managed to strikeout 21 batters in 16.0 innings of work.

Mike MacDougal (1997-1999) is currently playing for the Charlotte Knights (Triple-A), a minor league affiliate of the Chicago White Sox. He did, however, begin the season with the White Sox in the majors and threw 8.2 innings while only allowing two earned runs and striking out seven. Since joining the Knights on April 26 he has logged a 4.50 ERA while striking out 28 in 20 innings of work. He has been playing the role of closer for the staff and has also collected four saves in seventeen games.

Eric Niesen (2005-2007) is pitching for the St. Lucie Mets in the Class A Advanced Florida State League. They are a minor league affiliate of the New York Mets. While starting for the St. Lucie Mets this season he has posted a 3-7 record with a 4.24 ERA over 63.2 innings of work.

Cory Sullivan (2000-2001) is currently playing the outfield for the Colorado Springs Sky Sox (Triple-A), a minor league affiliate of the Colorado Rockies. In 48 starts for the Sky Sox, Sullivan has hit a respectable .308 with 17 doubles and four home runs. Sullivan has also seen time at the Major League level with the Rockies this season. He earned playing time in nine games, hitting .167 in 12 at-bats.

Ryan Braun (2000-2002) a hard-throwing reliever for the Kansas City Royals, underwent reconstructive elbow surgery earlier this year and is out for the season. In the previous two seasons, he appeared in 35 games for the Royals with a 6.66 ERA and 2-1 record. He assigned this spring to Triple-A Omaha but never pitched before undergoing surgery.

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