HAGERSTOWN M.D. - The Hagerstown Suns announced today that six Suns players, along with manager Tripp Keister and pitching coach Franklin Bravo will be representing the team at the 54th annual South Atlantic League All-Star Game later this month. The game will be played in Lakewood, NJ on Tuesday, June 18 at FirstEnergy Park, the home of the Lakewood BlueClaws.
The six Suns players named to the North division team matches the most players named to the team by any other South Atlantic League team this season. The Six players who will be representing the Suns are RHP Robert Benincasa, RHP Dixon Anderson, RHP Ivan Pineyro, Catcher Pedro Severino, 2B Tony Renda, and RF Brandon Miller.
Benincasa is 0-1 this season with a 3.24 ERA in 16 relief appearances for the Suns. He has served primarily as the team's closer, and has been successful in that role, collecting eight saves this season. Benincasa was drafted by the Nationals in the seventh round last June and spent all of 2012 pitching in Auburn, where he went 2-0 with a 3.09 ERA in 16 games.
Anderson is 4-2 this season with a 2.50 ERA in 11 starts for the Suns. He was Hagerstown's opening day starter and has yet to miss a start this season. Anderson was selected by the Nationals in the ninth round in 2011 out of the University of California at Berkley. He split time last season between the Gulf Coast League Nationals and Hagerstown.
Ivan Pineyro is 4-3 this season with a 3.33 ERA in 11 starts. Pineyro also has yet to miss a start this season for Hagerstown, and he has an impressive 53 strikeout to 14 walk ratio. Pineyro was signed by the Nationals as a non-drafted free agent out of the Dominican Republic on July 2, 2010. Pineyro pitched for the Dominican Summer League Nationals in 2011, and pitched for the Gulf Coast League Nationals and Auburn last season.
Severino is hitting .234 (26-111) in 33 games for the Suns thus far this season. He has seven doubles and 14 RBI, but he has been most impressive with his defense. Severino has thrown out 20 of 41 attempted base stealers this season, for a 48.79% clip. Severino was signed by the Nationals as a non-drafted free agent out of the Dominican Republic on December 13, 2010. He played for the Gulf Coast League Nationals in 2011 and 2012.
Renda is leading the Suns with a .297 (63-212) average this season. He has started and played in all 53 of Hagerstown's games this year, and has 20 doubles, three triples, one homerun, and 26 RBI. He also leads the team with 10 stolen bases in 12 attempts. Renda was selected by the Nationals in the second round last June out of Berkley. He played last season in Auburn, where he hit .264 in 71 games.
Miller is leading the Suns in homeruns this season with 11. He also leads the team in RBI (32) and is hitting .260 (52-200) in 51 games this season. Miller was the Nationals fourth round draft pick out of Samford last June, where he led all of Division I in homerun in 2012. Last summer Miller played in Auburn, hitting .292 with four homeruns in 29 games.
Keister, who will manage the North division team, is in his first season as skipper for the Suns. He managed the Gulf Coast League Nationals last year and guided the team to a 27-33 record. Keister joined the Nationals organization after spending six seasons as the head coach at Wesley College in Dover, DE. He played four seasons in the minor leagues, all within the Mets organization.
Bravo will be a coach for the North division team. This is his 11th straight season as a pitching coach in the Washington farm system. He has also served with Auburn, Vermont, the Gulf Coast League Nationals, and the Dominican Summer League Nationals. Bravo played for five seasons in Pittsburgh's minor league system, retiring after the 2000 season.
To catch your 2013 Hagerstown Suns All-stars in action all season and to reserve your seats at Municipal Stadium, call 301-791-6266, or go to www.hagerstownsuns.com. The Hagerstown Suns are owned by Hagerstown Baseball, LLC.