COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – A.J. Kirby-Jones and Stephen Pryor, two of Tennessee Tech’s nine former baseball players in the minor leagues, are heating things up as they continue their journey to the show.
Kirby-Jones is in his second season of the Oakland Athletics organization, currently playing with the Burlington (Iowa) Bees, and was recently named the Midwest League Player of the Week. Following a record-setting career with coach Matt Bragga's Golden Eagles, he was drafted in the ninth round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft.
Selected by the Seattle Mariners in the fifth round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft, Pryor is currently in his second season in the Mariners organization, and first season with the Double A Jackson (Tenn.) Generals. Pryor was promoted to the Generals in July and has continued to thrive as he has pitched shutout baseball in his last four appearances.
A.J. Kirby-Jones – Burlington Bees (A, Oakland Athletics)
Kirby-Jones has been one of the hottest batters in the last two weeks. He has registered at least one hit in nine of his last 10 games, while knocking four runs out of the ballpark and driving in 15 RBIs. He was recently named the Midwest League Player of the Week for his efforts and he currently ranks third on the team in home runs with 14 and is second in walks with 44.
(Kirby-Jones photos courtesy of John Rogers)
Stephen Pryor – Jackson Generals (AA, Seattle Mariners)
Pryor is continuing to thrive after his promotion to the Double A Jackson Generals a few weeks ago. In his last four appearances, he has not allowed one run to score in 6.2 innings, while striking out 11 batters and earning a pair of wins. Since his promotion to Double A, Pryor has maintained a 1.50 ERA, while striking out 17 batters.
Adam Liberatore – Charlotte Stone Crabs (A Advanced, Tampa Bay Rays)
Liberatore has made five appearances during the last two weeks, pitching a total of 14 innings during that span. Over his last 10 appearances, he has tallied a 3-1 record, while striking out 25 batters in 27 innings.
Ryan Dennick - Wilmington Blue Rocks (A Advanced, Kansas City Royals)
Dennick has made three appearances in the last two weeks, striking out five batters, in five innings. Over his last 10 appearances he has maintained a 3.77 ERA, while making a team-leading 37 appearances on the mound.
Chad Oberacker – Vermont Lake Monsters (A Short Season, Oakland Athletics)
In his last 10 games, Oberacker has tallied seven hits, while driving in a pair of runs. Oberakcer is batting .288 on the season, while ripping five doubles and two triples.
Bubbie Buzachero – Long Island Ducks
Bubbie has been lights out in his last six appearances, pitching shutout baseball over 9.2 innings pitched. He has tallied a 3-0 record during that span, striking out five batters while allowing just three hits.
Lee Henry - Shreveport-Bossier Captains
Henry has struck out three batters in his last four appearances, and still owns a 4-0 record.
Jim Ed Warden and Casey Benjamin – Southern Maryland Blue Crabs
Over the last two weeks, Warden has upped his total amount of saves to 20, while maintaining a 2.57 ERA. Benjamin owns a .257 batting average with 11 doubles and eight home runs.