Five Pippins Make West Coast League’s All-Star Team
A day after learning that outfielder Vince Fernandez had been named the West Coast League's Player of the Week, the Yakima Valley Pippins are claiming five spots on the league's all-star team.
In addition to Fernandez, the Pippins named to the team include pitchers Brandon Williams and Eli Morgan, outfielder Jake Roberts and infielder Shawn Wardian.
The annual West Coast League All-Star Game will be played Monday in Kiger Stadium in Klamath Falls, Ore. First pitch is at 6:35 on 1460 ESPN Yakima.
A Tuesday news release from the Pippins described how valuable the players have been to the team:
"Williams has been one of the staples in the Pippins pitching staff this summer, carrying a 4-2 record and 2.95 ERA so far this season. Williams, a right-hander from Central Washington University, has worked a team-high 39 2/3 innings so far this summer.
"Morgan has been one of the most pleasant surprises for the Pippins this year. Having recently graduated from Peninsula High School (Palos Verdes, California), the Gonzaga commit is 5-0 this season with an ERA of 2.76. He has the most wins of any undefeated pitcher in the West Coast League this season.
"Fernandez, like Morgan, has been one of team’s pleasant surprises. After only taking nine at-bats this spring for UC Riverside, Fernandez finds himself in the league lead for average (.394) entering play Wednesday, is tied for fourth in the league in home runs (4) and is third in RBI (28). Fernandez is the team leader in all of those categories.
"Roberts has anchored the leadoff spot for the Pippins most of the season. Entering play Wednesday, Roberts sports an average of .359 (third in the WCL) with two home runs and 17 RBI. He is also tied for first on the team with 21 runs scored. He has also been impressive defensively, only committing three errors in his first 26 games.
"Wardian has provided a strong presence with both his bat and his glove through the first half of the summer. Entering Wednesday, he is hitting .316 with no home runs and 15 RBI. He is the team leader in walks with 21. Wardian recently strung a 14-game hitting streak together, the second longest in the West Coast League this season."
Fernandez will take part in the home run derby prior to Monday's all-star game. The derby starts at 5:10 p.m.