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Express Alumni Update: 2019 MLB Draft Class Update

Last season the Express saw 16 former plays drafted to MLB teams, in today’s Alumni Update presented by Lakeland University, we are going to take a look at two Express alums taken in the draft and that are now members of the San Diego Padres farm system, Andrew Dean and Ripen Reyes.

Andrew Dean, a left-handed pitcher from Alvin, Texas, played for the Express during the 2018 campaign and was drafted by the Padres in the 18th round of the 2019 MLB draft. While with the Express, Dean tossed the fourth-most innings among the Eau Claire pitching corps and struck out 39 batters in 51 innings pitched.

Andrew Dean – 2018

Dean played collegiately for Illinois-Springfield where he racked up some impressive stats. In two seasons with the Prairie Stars, Dean became UIS’s career wins leader after racking up a 22-1 record that included a 10-1 junior year record and an unblemished 12-0 senior year tally. Dean was the first All-American pitcher in UIS history and was also named the GLVC Pitcher of the Year and named First-Team All-GLVC. Additionally, Dean led the conference in ERA, strikeouts, and wins.

In his short MiLB career in San Diego’s farm system, Dean has split time between Rookie ball and Class-A Full season ball in the Midwest League with the Fort Wayne Tin Caps. In all, Dean has taken the field in 14 MiLB contests, holds a 3-0 record with a 3.19 ERA and 30 strikeouts over 31 innings pitched.

Ripken Reyes – 2016

Ripken Reyes, a shortstop from Stockton, California played for the Express in 2016, helping Eau Claire to a 45-27 overall record, a First-Half North Division Championship, and return to the Northwoods League Playoffs. Reyes played in 32 games for the Express in 2016 hitting for .222 with four extra-base knocks and 12 RBIs.

Reyes played his final season of collegiate ball with the University of San Diego after completing three seasons at California. Reyes led the West Coast Conference with a .366 batting average, a .462 on-base percentage including a team-high 71 hits, and 27 HBP. He was named First-Team All-WCC and earned WCC All-Academic Honors before being drafted by the Padres in the 30th round of the 2019 MLB Draft.

Reyes played in 58 MiLB games to complete the 2019 season, finishing the year with Dean and the Fort Wayne Tin Caps. Reyes hit for a .308 average with 24 RBI’s and 18 extra-base hits that included 12 doubles in his first season in the minors.

Keep a lookout all off-season for more alumni updates presented by Lakeland University. At Lakeland University you’ll find unique 14-week BlendEd courses that allow you to complete coursework either online or in class from week to week depending on your location, schedule, and other life commitments allowing you to choose the format that works best for you.

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The Eau Claire Express are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. Having completed its’ 26th season, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 22 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, over 230 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time Cy Young Award winner and World Series Champion Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and World Series Champion Chris Sale (BOS). As well as 2019 Rookie of the Year and Home Run Derby Champion Pete Alonso (NYM) and MLB All-Stars Jordan Zimmermann (DET) and Curtis Granderson (MIA). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.eauclaireexpress.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Express as your favorite team.