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New Year Means New Faces For Traverse City Pit Spitters

TRAVERSE CITY, MI – The Traverse City Pit Spitters continue to grow their roster as they pursue a third Northwoods League title. With only nine returners, Manager Josh Rebandt has had to plug in new pieces and try to build a winning team. Meet all the new faces on this year’s roster.

#2 Christian Beal – Beal is a 5’9” outfielder born in Chicago. A senior from the University of Richmond, a Division I school in the Atlantic 10 Conference (A10), Beal hit .314 with 32 RBIs in 56 games for the Spiders. After winning a state championship his senior year of high school, Beal attended Miami University in Ohio. After one season, he transferred to Bates College where he had a career .354 average in three seasons. In his third year, Beal was a team captain, First Team All-Conference and the Defensive Player of the Year. He transferred to Richmond for the 2022 season.

#3 Derek Clark – Clark is a 5’8” left-handed pitcher born in Petersburg, Michigan. A junior from Northwood University, a Division II school in the Great Midwest Athletic Conference (GMAC), Clark posted a 4.25 ERA in 82.2 innings pitched across 14 starts for the Timberwolves. Clark was Freshman Pitcher of the Year in 2021.

#4 Chris Whelton – Whelton is a 6’3” right-handed pitcher born in Glen Illyn, Illinois. A freshman from Belmont University, a Division I school in the Missouri Valley Conference, Whelton didn’t see any action his first year with the Bruins. Whelton was a team captain in baseball and golf in high school.

#5 Ariel Garcia – Garcia is a 6’2” infielder born in Homestead, Florida. A freshman from the University of Miami, a Division I school in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), Garcia hit .306 with five home runs and 14 RBIs in 32 games for the Hurricanes. In high school, Garcia lettered all four years at Christopher Columbus High School and was named team captain in 2020.

#10 Brendan Summerhill – Summerhill is a 6’3” outfielder born in Chicago. A commit to the University of Arizona, a Division I school in the Pacific Athletic Conference (PAC12), Summerhill hit .553 with a 1.824 slugging percentage his senior season at Whitney Young, on his way to being named Jackie Robinson North Player of the Year for a second consecutive year. Summerhill is the youngest player on the roster and is joined by his brother Colin, a returner from last year, on the team.

#11 Alec Atkinson – Atkinson is a 5’11 utility player born in Katy, Texas. A sophomore from Yale University, a Division I school in the Ivy League, Atkinson hit .241 in 36 games for the Bulldogs. Atkinson was a four-time varsity letter winner and two-time team captain at Katy High School.

#12 Cody Hultink – Hultink is a 6’ utility player born in Battle Creek, Michigan. A freshman from the University of Michigan, a Division I school in the Big Ten Conference (B1G), Hultink didn’t see any action his first year with the Wolverines. Hultink was a two-sport star at Pennfield High School, being named all-state twice on baseball and all-conference in football.

#13 Dallas Duarte – Duarte is a 5’9” catcher born in Hilo, Hawaii. A junior from the University of Hawaii, a Division I school in the Big West Conference, Duarte hit .293 with 26 RBIs for the Rainbow Warriors. Duarte displays great defense behind the plate, posting a .990 fielding percentage in the spring. In 2016, Duarte won a D2 State Championship as a sophomore in high school at Kamehameha Schools.

#14 Jake Smallwood – Smallwood is a 6’ catcher born in Decatur, Alabama. A sophomore from the University of Montevallo, a Division II school in the Gulf South Conference, Smallwood hit .385 with eight home runs and 42 RBI’s for the Falcons. Smallwood made just two errors on the season, good for a .995 fielding percentage. Jake was a two-time ALBCA Team Alabama Selection at Austin High School.

#17 Mason Patel – Patel is a 6’1” right-handed pitcher born in Knoxville, Tennessee. A sophomore from Georgia State University, a Division I school in the Sun Belt Conference, Patel posted a 3.54 ERA in 13 starts for the Panthers. A hard worker on the field and in the classroom, Patel landed on the Dean’s List in the Fall of 2020.

#18 Jake Michel – Michel is a 6’5” right-handed pitcher born in Baltimore. A sophomore from the University of Richmond, Michel tallied eight innings pitched and a 13.50 ERA for the Spiders. Michel was two-time first team all-state at Archbishop Curley.

#21 Jared Miller – Miller is a 5’10” infielder born in Montrose, Colorado. A senior from Oakland University, a Division I school in the Horizon Conference, Miller hit .299 with 30 RBIs for the Golden Grizzlies. Miller was a star at Lamar CC before transferring to Oakland, batting .333 in two seasons and walking off the Regional Championship game in 2019. Miller was also named to the Dean’s List his two years at Lamar.

#23 Marshall Toole – Toole is a 5’11” outfielder born in Decatur, Georgia. A freshman from Wofford College, a Division I school in the Southern Conference (SoCon), Toole started 30 of 46 games played and posted a .267 batting average. In high school, Toole was All-County Gold Glove twice at Decatur HS. With Perfect Game, he won four WWBA championships and was a two-time tournament MVP.

#24 Hunter Tabb – Tabb is a 5’11” first baseman born in Scott, Louisiana. A sophomore from Southern University, a Division I school in the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC), Tabb hit .295 with 26 RBIs in 36 games with the Jaguars. Before transferring to Southern, Tabb won the 2021 JUCO National Championship with Louisiana State University-Eunice in 2021. He won a Gold Glove as well.

#26 Duncan Lutz – Lutz is a 6’5” right-handed pitcher born in Homerville, Georgia. A sophomore from Georgia State University, Lutz posted a 6.88 ERA in 17 innings out of the bullpen for the Panthers. Lutz was all-state three times in Georgia and helped his team to the state playoffs four times.

#28 Easton Johnson – Johnson is a 6’4” right-handed pitcher born in Gilbert, Iowa. A freshman from Creighton University, a Division I school in the Big East Conference, Johnson did not see action his first year at Creighton. He was First Team All-State his junior and senior years in high school.

#29 Blake Ignaciak – Ignaciak is a 6’2” right-handed pitcher born in Oceanside, California. A redshirt freshman from Palomar College, a junior college (JUCO) in San Marcos, California, Ignaciak posted a 5.00 ERA in 25 appearances with the Comets.

#33 Jake Buxton – Buxton is a 6’2” right-handed pitcher born in Mill Valley, California. A sophomore from California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly), a Division I school in the Big West Conference, Buxton appeared in four games and posted a 12.46 ERA with the Mustangs. In high school, Buxton missed his senior season due to the pandemic, but second team all-state honors as a junior.

#34 Ryan Insco – Insco is a 5’11” right-handed pitcher born in Kirkwood, Missouri. A redshirt junior from Central Michigan University, a Division I school in the Mid-American Conference (MAC), Insco posted a 5.10 ERA in 23 appearances with the Chippewas. Insco won a Missouri state championship in 2018 with St. John Vianney HS. He transferred from UT Martin to CMU after two seasons.

#16 Morgan Lunceford – Lunceford is a 6’0 right-handed pitcher born in Edmond, Oklahoma. A freshman from San Diego University, a Division I school in the West Coast Conference, Lunceford appeared in 12 games and posted a 14.73 ERA for the Toreros. Morgan was a high school senior when he played for the Pit Spitters, posting a 2.83 ERA in 34.2 innings pitched. With a year of college ball under his belt, Lunceford will look to pick up right where he left off.

#22 Avery Goldensoph – Goldensoph is a 6’3” right-handed pitcher born in Saginaw, Michigan. A freshman from the University of Michigan, Goldensoph recorded an 8.87 ERA in 22.1 innings pitched for the Wolverines. A multi-sport athlete, Goldensoph was a four-year letter winner in baseball and football at Swann Valley HS. He was three-time all-conference in football, four-time in baseball, and earned All-State as a freshman.

#39 Jake Keaser – Keaser is a 6’1” right-handed pitcher from Rochester, Michigan. A freshman from the University of Michigan, Keaser pitched 16.2 innings with an 8.64 ERA for the Wolverines. Keaser won back-to-back state championships with Orchard Lake St. Marys in high school. In 2021, his team was the No. 1 ranked high school team in the country, going 43-1.

The Pit Spitters are still expecting more players to arrive within the next couple weeks. To follow the transactions, go to the Pit Spitters Twitter page @TCPitSpitters.

You can also check out the full roster here.

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.