LYNCHBURG, VA. (MAY 4, 2015) - In conjunction with Minor League Baseball, the Carolina League announced their Players of the Week on Monday, and Myrtle Beach Pelicans right-handed pitcher Tyler Skulina earned the honor of Pitcher of the Week for the week of April 27-May 3. Skulina tossed six shutout innings on Sunday, facing two over the minimum, and struck out a career-high eight batters in a 2-1 win over the Lynchburg Hillcats.
Skulina, 23, earns the first Pitcher of the Week award of his professional career. In his start on Sunday against the Lynchburg Hillcats, he surpassed his previous career-high in strikeouts (7). He retired the first 14 hitters of the ballgame and faced just two over the minimum, allowing an infield single to Eric Haase and a walk to Paul Hendrix. The starting pitcher is 1-2 on the year with 4.95 ERA in four starts. In 20.0 innings, the Strongsville, Ohio, native has fanned 22 and walked six, allowing 18 hits and surrendering 11 runs, all earned. Skulina was taken in the fourth round (108th overall) by the Chicago Cubs in the 2013 MLB Draft after a two-year collegiate career at Kent State University, where he played with former Pelicans Ryan Bores and David Lyon.
The Pelicans had a player named Offensive Player of the Week six times last year (Joey Gallo, three times; Nick Williams, Jorge Alfaro, Ryan Cordell), but no pitcher won the Pitcher of the Week award. The last time that a Pelicans pitcher has won the award was for the week of August 12-18, 2013, when Alec Asher won the honor.
Skulina is the first Cubs pitcher to win his league's Pitcher of the Week award this year and third overall player to win a weekly award. Dan Vogelbach of the Double-A Tennessee Smokies has won Southern League Offensive Player of the Week twice this year for the weeks of April 9-19 and April 20-26, and Cael Brockmeyer won Midwest League Offensive Player of the Week for the Opening Week (April 9-19).
Also honored this week was Salem Red Sox infielder Sam Travis, who earned Carolina League Offensive Player of the Week.
The 2015 season marks the 17th season for the Pelicans franchise and first as the Class A-Advanced affiliate of the Chicago Cubs. For information on tickets to see the Pelicans in 2015, please call (843) 918-6000, e-mail [email protected], or visit www.MyrtleBeachPelicans.com.