Clinton, IA - The Midwest League announced the official rosters for both the Western and Eastern Division All-Star teams this past Wednesday. Four LumberKings players will be headed to Fifth Third Ballpark in Grand Rapids, home of the West Michigan Whitecaps, on June 17th for the 2014 MWL Mid-Summer Classic.
Two right-handed pitchers, Edwin Diaz and Emilio Pagan, catcher Marcus Littlewood, and shortstop Jack Reinheimer were the four Clinton players who were nominated by opposing Western Division managers.
Diaz, the 2013 Appalachian League Pitcher of the Year, was slotted in as the No.1 starter and ace of the LumberKings rotation. Last season, Diaz went 5-2 with a 1.43 ERA and while his numbers have slightly regressed this season, he has still been the most consistent starter of the rotation. As of last Saturday, the 20-year-old has a 2-3 record along with a 3.42 ERA. The hard-throwing Puerto Rican has racked up a team-high 52 strikeouts in 55.1 innings.
Pagan, 23, split time last season between the Pulaski Mariners and the Everett AquaSox, both short-season affiliates of Seattle. Pagan did not allow a single run in 20.1 innings last year with Pulaski before earning a late season promotion to Everett. This season, Pagan has eight saves in nine opportunities. He is currently 1-2 with a 3.12 ERA in 19 relief appearances.
Littlewood, one of five returnees on Clinton's 2014 opening day roster, raked in the month of April. The switch hitting catcher hit .379 over 15 games, but the 22-year-old converted shortstop cooled off in May, hitting just .206. The switch-hitting catcher is currently hitting .282 with four home runs, 25 RBIs, and 11 doubles. Despite his second month struggles, he earned national recognition after launching a game-tying, ninth-inning grand slam on May 7th at Burlington, an eventual 20-17, 12-inning win over the Bees. The LumberKings erased a 17-1 deficit and Littlewood was the face of the comeback.
Reinheimer, in his first professional season, was the starting shortstop in the Northwest League All-Star Game, representing the Everett AquaSox. The right-handed hitting do-it-all infielder has been a mainstay in the heart of Clinton's lineup. The 2013 5th round pick out of East Carolina is currently hitting .280 with six doubles, four triples, and 27 RBIs. He has scored a team-high 42 runs (tied for 5th in the MWL) and has also swiped a team-high 22 stolen bases in 27 attempts.
Both Reinheimer and Littlewood were named as starters at their respective positions, while Diaz and Pagan will pitch for the Western Division team out of the bullpen.