Wildcat baseball update: Part 2 of 3
Getting his first shot at Double-A ball, Michael Bertram took full advantage of the opportunity posting excellent numbers in 33 games for the Erie SeaWolves. With Erie, Bertram collected a .285 batting average with seven doubles, three triples, eight homers and 30 RBI. Before moving to Erie, the Lexington, Ky., native, hit .281 with 10 homeruns and 47 RBI in 82 games with the High-A Lakeland team. Bertram, drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the 39th round in 2006, has played in the minors for four years posting an overall .272 average with 29 homers and almost 200 RBI.
Playing with former teammate Michael Bertram in Erie, Ryan Strieby played exceptional baseball all year for the SeaWolves being named Eastern League Player of the Week once and a Mid-Season All-Star. The first baseman/left fielder hit .303 in 86 games posting an incredible 19 homers, 18 doubles and 58 RBI. Along with those impressive totals, Strieby had an on-base percentage of .427 while slugging .565. The native of Seattle, Wash., hit over the .300 mark against lefties and righties on the season. His best month of the year was in July, when he posted a remarkable .362 average and an on-base percentage of .434. Strieby, who has played on a team with Bertram since arriving at UK in 2006 and earning SEC Player of the Year honors, battled injury over the last month of the season and with Miguel Cabrera blocking Strieby's path to the Tigers in the future, a transition has begun to move him to left field, adding to his versatility. Expect to see Strieby dangled by the Tigers as trade bait if they can't find a spot for him on the Big League club in 2009.
The recent great Kentucky outfielder Sawyer Carroll, played for three teams during the 2009 season, moving his way up the ladder and growing ever closer to the big leagues. With every team he was with, Carroll posted a batting average well over .300. Carroll started the season in Class A, then moved to Advanced-A, and eventually ended the season with Double-A San Antonio. In 28 games in Class-AA, Carroll posted a .317 average with five doubles, three triples and one homer. The native of Stillwater, Okla., also had 14 RBI and an on-base percentage of .440. For the season combined, the outfielder posted a .317 average with eight homers, 40 doubles, nine triples, 96 RBI and nine stolen bases. Carroll was also named throughout the year as a Midwest League Player of the Week, Midwest League All-Star Game Top Star and a Midwest League mid-season All-Star.
Pitching in 32 games with the Lakeland Flying Tigers in the Advanced-A Florida State League, pitcher Scott Green posted a 3-4 record with a 3.25 ERA and a team high 11 saves this season. Green worked 36 innings allowing 42 hits, 21 runs, 13 earned and three homers while striking out 35 and only walking 14. Green pitched exceptional on the road for the Flying Tigers, posting a 1.65 ERA in 15 games. The native of Dayton, Ohio, did not allow a home run on the road this season where opponents hit only .200 against him. The UK great also was lights out in the month of May, gathering a 0.90 ERA eight games posting a 2-0 record. Green also suffered a season-ending injury and will be looking to rebound in 2010.
Sean Coughlin, a former UK All-American slugger, made great strides up the minor league system this past season starting the year in Advanced-A ball and eventually ending the season in AA. For the year, Coughlin hit .287 with 15 doubles, 11 homers and 40 RBI. The first baseman also posted an on-base percentage of .396 while slugging .468. Coughlin's best hitting came in Class-AA when he hit .304 with eight doubles, seven homers and a remarkable on-base percentage of .432. The native of Arizona and left-handed hitter, pounded left-handed pitching all year posting a .333 batting average with a .469 on-base percentage and a slugging percentage of .692. Coughlin tore the cover off the ball in the month of June, posting an amazing .384 batting average with five doubles, six homers and a .509 on-base percentage. Coughlin was awarded this summer with the honor of being named a Southern League mid-season All-Star. Coughlin also suffered from injury issues towards the end of the season.
Stay tuned to Kentucky Sports Report for part three of this three-part update on Kentucky Wildcats in the professional leagues.
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