July 9, 2012
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- Three members of Purdue baseball's 2012 Big Ten championship team have received All-America honors from College Baseball Insider and two alumni pitchers were recently promoted in Minor League Baseball.
Kevin Plawecki, Joe Haase and Blake Mascarello were recognized among College Baseball Insider's All-America teams. Plawecki was the Second Team catcher, marking his fifth All-America honor of the year. Haase and Mascarello were among CBI's Honorable Mention All-Americans. Together, the three players were a big reason why Purdue won the opener of every Big Ten series on the way to posting a school-record 45 wins.
Haase was recognized as the Boilers' first Big Ten Pitcher of the Year after winning a school-record 11 games and Purdue posting a 15-1 mark in the games he started. But throughout the year Haase regularly credited Mascarello for helping make those impressive records possible. While a few of Mascarello's eight victories came at Haase's expense early in the season, the duo made for a formidable starter-reliever duo in 2012. Mascarello took the mound in 11 of Haase's 16 starts. The only two Big Ten games in which Mascarello wasn't called upon were Haase's compete game shutouts against Northwestern (April 6) and Michigan (May 11).
Purdue was 23-6 in games in which Mascarello took the mound in 2012. And Plawecki was behind the plate for all 16 of Haase's starts.
In Minor League Baseball, Alumni Dan Sattler (2004-07) and Matt Bischoff (2007-10) were both recently promoted one level. Coincidentally, both pitchers were signed earlier this season by new organizations after initially being released in spring training.
Sattler is now at the Triple-A level with the Rochester Red Wings, the Minnesota Twins affiliate in the International League. Sattler was selected by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the Triple-A portion of the Rule 5 Draft in December 2010 but this marks the first time he has pitched at the Triple-A level. In his first two appearances for Rochester, he has worked 3 1/3 innings of one-hit relief, earning a hold in his debut with the team Friday (July 6).
Bischoff is now at the High-A level with the Frederick Keys, the Baltimore Orioles affiliate in the Carolina League. There he is once again a teammate of fellow alumnus Andy Loomis (2007-08), who returned to Frederick after two scoreless appearances with Triple-A Norfolk last week. Bischoff and Loomis both pitched in the Keys' July 7 win at the Salem Red Sox (Boston Red Sox affiliate).
Speaking of former Boilers playing in the same game, Kevin Plawecki's Brooklyn Cyclones (New York Mets affiliate) played host to Cameron Perkins' Williamsport Crosscutters (Philadelphia Phillies affiliate) and Nick Wittgren's Jamestown Jammers (Miami Marlins affiliate) during a recent homestand at Coney Island in the New York-Penn League.
Plawecki faced Wittgren in a hitter-pitcher matchup Saturday (July 7) in a 6-3 win for Jamestown. Wittgren retired Plawecki on a pop out to second base to begin the eighth inning. Besides fall ball action and practices on campus, it was believed to be the first time that Plawecki has faced Wittgren in game action since high school. The All-Big Ten standouts were also teammates last summer in the Cape Cod League.
Wittgren gave up three doubles in his two innings of relief, surrendering the first run of his Minor League career, but closed out the game for his fourth save in six appearances this summer.
Meanwhile, Perkins (1-for-5, run) and Plawecki (2-for-4, 2 runs) both played in a July 6 game between Williamsport and Brooklyn. Plawecki has helped Brooklyn open the New York-Penn League season with a 14-7 record to take an early lead in the four-team McNamara Division.
Sunday (July 8), Perkins was involved in a rare start to a ballgame. He delivered the third of three consecutive triples to right field to begin an 11-8 win at Staten Island (New York Yankee affiliate).
Also in Minor League action Sunday (July 8), alumnus Dan Black saw his first action since June 29 in a wild 12-inning, walk-off win for the Winston-Salem Dash (Chicago White Sox affiliate). As the starting DH and cleanup hitter in his first game back from injury, Black went 2-for-5 with a double, walk and run scored. His double ignited a four-run sixth inning that helped Winston-Salem overcome an 8-3 deficit.
In recent summer league wood bat action, rising sophomore Joe Eichmann had another good outing for the Northwest Indiana Oilmen of the Midwest Collegiate League in a Fourth of July game played in 100-degree temperatures. The righthander finished just one out shy of a nine-inning complete game, giving up two earned runs on seven hits. Brandon Krieg (1-for-4, walk, run, stolen base) and Bennett Oliver (3-for-4, double, RBI, walk, stolen base) played in the same game for Northwest Indiana, which leads the Midwest Collegiate League's South Division with a 19-11 record at the league's All-Star Break.
Meanwhile, Kyle Wood also made his debut (as a hitter) with the Oilmen Friday (July 6). Wood redshirted at Purdue during the 2011-12 school year after having Tommy John surgery. He saw action as the designated hitter in Northwest Indiana's last two games before the All-Star Break. It's quite possible that four active Boilers could all play in Eichmann's next start for the Oilmen.