Traverse City, MI – The first-half Great Lakes East Champion Traverse City Pit Spitters will be represented by four players in the Northwoods League All Star Game on July 20 in Mankato, MN.
The four players selected are 1B/DH Chris Monroe (IL Springfield), SP Jeremy Neff (Richmond), RP John Beuckelaere (Madonna) and Closer Evan Gates (N.C. A&T St.)
Monroe finished the first half hitting .319 thanks to a nine-game hitting streak with multiple hits in his last four. He capped off the first half with a grand slam and five RBI game on July 4 against Kalamazoo. In the Great Lakes East sub-division, Monroe is currently second in RBI’s (31), third in hits (41) and slugging (.492) and sixth in average (.320).
Monroe will be pulling double duty as he will also participate in the Home Run Derby presented by the Mayo Clinic Health System & Community Bank on July 19. Monroe’s five home runs rank first in the Great Lakes Division and third overall in the Northwoods League.
Neff finished the first half 2-2 with a 1.74 ERA in 31 innings pitched. He didn’t allow a run in three of his four starts and gave up multiple runs just twice. He struck out 28 batters and allowed 14 walks. He finished the first half with the least hits allowed in the Great Lakes East sub-division (14), second in BAA (.175), third in ERA (1.74) and fifth in WHIP (1.03).
Beuckelaere finished the first half 1-1 with a 0.00 ERA. He leads all pitchers on his team with a .140 BAA and .78 WHIP, and he leads relievers in strikeouts (21). Beuckelaere is just one of four qualified pitchers in the entire Northwoods League to record a 0.00 ERA, and he’s faced the most batters of those four pitchers.
Gates is the Northwoods League leader in saves (8) and has three more saves than any other closer in the Great Lakes Division. Gates recorded a 2.77 ERA and 1.15 WHIP in 13 relief appearances. He has recorded a save in seven consecutive opportunities and had a seven-game span where he did not allow a run.
The four all-stars surpass the three chosen for Traverse City in 2019, the Pit Spitters inaugural season. The Pit Spitters also send the second most members to Mankato, behind the five selections for division rival Kenosha.
The Traverse City Pit Spitters 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’ 27th 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 250 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time All-Star and 2016 Roberto Clemente Award winner Curtis Granderson, three-time Cy Young Award winner and World Series Champion Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist 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 Gold Glove finalist and 2019 Second Team All-MLB shortstop Marcus Semien (TOR). 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.PitSpitters.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Pit Spitters as your favorite team.