MOBILE, Ala. – On Tuesday, the Southern League named the South Division representatives for the Southern League All-Star Game to be played on Monday, July 13 at Regions Park. Eight BayBears were chosen, including starting pitcher Jarrod Parker who won’t be available because of the All-Star Futures Game in St. Louis and catcher Orlando Mercado who has been promoted to Triple-A Reno.
The BayBears that will be participating in Southern League All-Star festivities are outfielders Cyle Hankerd and Chris Rahl, infielders Sean Coughlin, Pedro Ciriaco, and Ricardo Sosa, and starting pitcher Barry Enright.
Rahl, a third-year BayBear, has also been strong with a .296 average, 11 stolen bases,
and a team-leading 42 runs scored. Rahl has played outstanding defense in right and center,
not having committed an error all season long. He has been very streaky
offensively, at times seeming like he belongs in the major leagues while others
making you wonder whether he is in the right profession. But the good
times have most certainly overshadowed the bad this season.
Hankerd, in his second season with the BayBears, has been rewarded as a Southern League Hitter of the Week this year and is among the league leaders with a .316 average and 43 RBI.
He leads all BayBears in hits, doubles, RBI, and total bases, but has cooled off
considerably in June after a blistering hot first two months of the season.
Coughlin has only appeared in 41 games for the BayBears but has made a delving impression with a team-high seven home runs, playing primarily at first base.
Coughlin also leads the team in batting average, on-base percentage, slugging,
and OPS. He is playing more at catcher lately, however, since Orlando
Mercado was promoted to Reno last week.
Mercado, a fan-favorite, was hitting .304 with 31 RBI at the time of his call-up to the Aces.
He also pitched two innings when manager Hector de la Cruz was short in the
bullpen and played excellent defensively behind the dish. He had thrown
out 30% of would-be basestealers at the time of his promotion.
Ciriaco, the club’s primary shortstop, is hitting .262 with a team-high 16
stolen bases and has perhaps the best defensive infield arm in the league.
He makes highlight-reel defensive plays on a nightly basis, showing an
athleticism that Mobile hasn't seen at the shortstop position since the days of
caught fire out of the gate, batting .365 with 4 homers and 18 RBI in the month
of April. He slumped to .198 with no homers and six RBI in May before
leveling off in June. Overall, Sosa has punched out seven taters as well
for the BayBears while smacking a .267 average and driving in 35 runs. He won
Player of the Week honors on April 20th. Sosa was similarly strong last April,
batting .327 with five homers and 24 RBI en route to leading the Visalia Oaks
with 13 homers on the season.
Enright, a first-year starting pitcher for the BayBears, has been a model of consistency while posting a 3.92 ERA.
He averages 5 2/3 innings per start and rarely allows more than three earned
runs in a game. His five victories and 54 strikeouts have him tied for the team lead,
while his 1.29 WHIP is best among the club's current starting pitchers.
Parker has the lowest ERA (2.87) among the team’s starting pitchers and has fanned 51 hitters in 53.1 innings.
He was briefly on the disabled list after being struck by a hard line drive, but
has allowed just one earned run in each of his two starts since.
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