Former Tide star promoted to Major Leagues

Former University of Alabama right fielder Dustan Mohr has been promoted to the Minnesota Twins and is expected to make his debut tonight when the Twins host the Texas Rangers at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome. Mohr, who learned of the news after leading the New Britain Rock Cats (Eastern League, Class AA) to a 6-1 victory over the Binghamton (NY) Mets with a home run and three RBI.

Mohr becomes the 40th former Crimson Tider to play Major League Baseball, more than any other Southeastern Conference school. In addition, Mohr is the second player from the Jim Wells era to reach the big leagues, joining left-hand pitcher Tim Young, who made his debut with the Montreal Expos in Sept. 1998. Young is currently playing professional baseball in Japan.

A native of Hattiesburg, Miss., Mohr was a three-year letterman (1995-97) for the Crimson Tide under Coach Jim Wells. In 200 career games, Mohr batted .312 (233-for-747) with 47 home runs and 178 RBI. Mohr ranks fourth all-time at Alabama with 47 career home runs. In addition, he is one of 18 players in Southeastern Conference history to swat 40 or more career home runs.

As a freshman, Mohr appeared in 64 games and batted .293 (72-for-246) with 12 home runs and 44 RBI. For his efforts, he was named to the Mizuno/Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-America team. As a junior, Mohr played in 68 games and batted .337 (84-for-249) with 25 home runs and 79 RBI. The 25 home runs rank second on the Crimson Tide's single-season charts. In addition, Mohr was one of four Alabama players (Roberto Vaz, G.W. Keller and Robbie Tucker) to hit 20 or more home runs in 1997, establishing an NCAA record for most players with 20 or more home runs.

Mohr was named to the SEC All-Tournament team in 1996 and 1997 and led the Crimson Tide to back-to-back College World Series appearances, including a runner-up finish in 1997. In addition, Mohr played on three straight SEC Tournament Championship teams.

Mohr, 25, has enjoyed one of the finest seasons by any individual player in New Britain franchise history. The Hattiesburg, MS native leaves New Britain as the Eastern League leader in batting average (.336), hits (174), and doubles (41) while also placing in the circuit's top five in RBI (91-3rd), on-base percentage (.395-2nd), slugging percentage (.566-3rd), extra-base hits (68-2nd), and runs scored (90,T-3rd). Mohr has also clobbered a career-high 24 home runs, joining Michael Cuddyer (29) and Michael Restovich (23) as the first trio in the 19-year history of the franchise to collect 20 or more homers in one season.

The 6-0, 210-lb. slugger erased the names of two current Major Leaguers from the New Britain franchise record book with his .336 batting average and 174 base hits. Houston Astros superstar and 1990 Eastern League Most Valuable Player, Jeff Bagwell, set the previous batting mark of .333 as a member of the New Britain Red Sox 11 years ago. Former E.L. batting champ and current Minnesota first baseman, Doug Mientkiewicz, collected 162 knocks with the 1998 Northern Division Champion Rock Cats.

Tonight will not be the first glimpse of Dustan Mohr for Minnesota this season. Prior to the Rock Cats-Twins exhibition game at New Britain Stadium on April 23rd, Mohr dominated a pre-game home run derby with five long balls in 10 swings, defeating the likes of Minnesota sluggers Brian Buchanan, Jacque Jones, and David Ortiz, in front of a sell-out crowd of 6,271. The Rock Cats' April Player of the Month also made quite an impact in the month of July. The five-year veteran was in the starting lineup for the American League club at the 2001 Double-A All-Star Game, July 11th, in Round Rock, TX. Joined by teammates Michael Cuddyer and Brad Thomas on the squad, Mohr launched a home run for his only hit in two at-bats.

The Twins signed Mohr as a free agent on March 31, 2000. The Cleveland Indians originally drafted Dustan out of the University of Alabama in the ninth round of the 1997 June draft. In 568 career games, the North Las Vegas, NV resident owns a career batting average of .281 with 69 home runs and 346 RBI.

Dustan becomes the sixth Rock Cats player to make the jump from New Britain Stadium to the Metrodome this season, joining RHP Grant Balfour, RHP Adam Johnson, RHP Kyle Lohse, RHP Juan Rincon, and LHP Brad Thomas.

UofA, Barry Allen


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