The West Coast League has announced the rosters for the 2017 All-Star Game, to be played at Yakima County Stadium, home of the Pippins, on July 18th.
Third baseman Nick Nyquist of Gonzaga University will represent the Sweets at the WCL’s midsummer classic for the second year in a row. He will be flanked by outfielder Jake Suddleson of Harvard, outfielder J.J. Hancock of Washington State, and right-handed pitcher Darius Vines of Oxnard CC.
Nick Nyquist has been the team’s most consistent hitter all summer long and he’s thoroughly topped his production from last season. Nick is batting .331/.411/.484 with 14 extra-base hits, including one home run.
Nyquist leads the Sweets in hits, runs, doubles, triples, extra-base hits, walks, and steals.
He ranks tenth in the WCL in batting average (.331), second in at-bats (124), fourth in runs (28), fourth in hits (41), fourth in doubles (10), and second in stolen bases (10).
What’s more, Nyquist has been an iron man for the Sweets. He has started all 31 league games, 24 at third base, and batted either third or fourth in every single one.
As a redshirt sophomore at Gonzaga, the native of Couer d’Alene, ID batted .227 in 22 games.
Jake Suddleson has been the leading run producer on the team despite missing 13 days with a concussion in mid-June.
Suddleson is batting .338/.372/.638. He leads the Sweets in home runs (5) and RBI (24). He also ranks second on the team behind Nyquist is hits (27), doubles (7), and extra-base hits (13).
Suddleson in third in the WCL in slugging percentage (total bases per at-bat), and eighth in batting average.
As a freshman at Harvard, Suddleson batted .219 in 25 games. The native of Pacific Palisades, CA had six extra-base hits, including two home runs.
J.J. Hancock has been a dynamic hitter at the top of the Sweets lineup, and has been incredibly productive despite arriving in late June and having played in just 16 games.
He’s batting .385/.420/.508 and has shown extra-base power to both right and left field.
In 16 games, Hancock has 25 hits, six extra-base hits, and nine RBI. He’s struck out just twice.
As a junior at Washington State, Hancock emerged as the Cougars’ full-time starting right fielder and number five hitter. The native of Kennewick, WA hit .298 with four home runs and 23 RBI. He had 16 multi-hit games and 3 three-hit games. Hancock led the Cougars with eight doubles in conference play.
Darius Vines was selected in the 27th Round of the 2017 MLB Draft by the Chicago Cubs. He’s pitched in eight games for the Sweets, including three starts. In 19 innings, Vines has 24 strikeouts, third-most on the Sweets pitching staff. He also has a team-high two saves.
As a freshman, Vines pitched to a 4-4 record and a 1.94 ERA in 13 games (12 starts) at Oxnard this spring. In 83.2 innings, Vines allowed just 61 hits, walked 26, and struck out 95. He was also the team’s starting third baseman on days he didn’t pitch.
The native of Ventura, CA was also selected in the 32nd round of the 2016 MLB Draft by the Houston Astros.
The All-Star game will be an exhibition contest between the WCL North and the WCL South. The North will be led by manager Greg Goetz and the rest of the Bellingham Bells’ coaching staff. The South will be led by Yakima Valley skipper Marcus McKimmy and his coaches.
First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. from Yakima County Stadium on Tuesday, July 18th. Monday will feature a variety of All-Star festivities, including the WCL All-Star Fan Fest and the league’s annual Home Run Derby.
Full rosters can be found here: West Coast League Press Release