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Heesch promoted to Triple-A; Pelicans add Markey

Southpaw reliever's second Triple-A promotion; Markey moves into rotation
July 5, 2015

ZEBULON, N.C. (JULY 5, 2015) - The Chicago Cubs promoted Myrtle Beach Pelicans left-handed pitcher Michael Heesch to Triple-A Iowa on Sunday. In a corresponding move, the Pelicans have received Class-A South Bend hurler Brad Markey who is expected to make his Pelicans debut out of the starting rotation on Tuesday.

Heesch, 25, earns his second career call-up to the I-Cubs. A native of Crystal Lake, Illinois, Heesch made one relief appearance and earned the win with three shutout, one-hit innings for Iowa in a 14-inning affair on July 9, 2014, in Omaha. The lefty has been a standout for the Pelicans this year out of the bullpen, with the second-lowest ERA on the pitching staff at 1.85.With a 5-0 record, Heesch has the second-most wins with the Pelicans despite making all of his 19 appearances out of the bullpen. In 34 innings of work, the six-foot, five-inch right-hander has struck out 24 batters and walked 12, allowing just one home run. He holds batters to a .209 average while attaining a 0.99 WHIP. With two saves recorded in two opportunities this year, Heesch has also stranded 80-percent of inherited runners this year (10 of 12) from the bullpen. His promotion comes one day after pitching a season-high four innings in which he allowed one earned run on two hits against the Carolina Mudcats in a 16-4 win. Heesch was selected by the Cubs out of the University of South Carolina Beaufort in the eighth round of the 2012 draft.

Markey, 23, is in his second year as a professional, having spent the 2014 season between the Rookie level AZL Cubs and Class-A Short-Season Boise Hawks. In 12 games and one start with Class-A South Bend this season, Markey has pitched to a 2.48 ERA, racking up 23 strikeouts and four walks in 29.0 innings pitched. The Cubs selected Markey in the 19th round of the 2014 Draft out of Virginia Tech. A native of Bel Air, MD, the five-foot, eleven-inch right-hander has the second lowest walks per nine innings ratio in Virginia Tech history, as well as the lowest strikeouts per walk ratio in school history. He also spent time collegiately with Georgia Tech and Santa Fe College.

Markey is expected to move into the rotation in the spot of Fernando Cruz and make his Pelicans debut on Tuesday night when the Pelicans host the Winston-Salem Dash at 7:05 p.m. at TicketReturn.Com Field at Pelicans Ballpark.

Heesch is the tenth Pelican to earn a promotion this year and first to skip Double-A. Starling Peralta, Matt Brazis, Jacob Hannemann, Gerardo Concepcion, Wes Darvill, Billy McKinney, Tayler Scott, Zach Cates, and Cael Brockmeyer have all been promoted to Double-A Tennessee this season.

With the roster moves, the Pelicans' roster is at 24 active players, which is one below the Carolina League limit, and includes seven players on the disabled list and one on the inactive list.

The Pelicans play game two of their road series on Sunday with a 6:00 p.m. ET meeting with the Carolina Mudcats at Five County Stadium in Zebulon, North Carolina.

The Pelicans return home on Tuesday to open a six-game homestand at TicketReturn.Com Field at Pelicans Ballpark. Myrtle Beach welcomes the Winston-Salem Dash for three games July 7-9 and the Carolina Mudcats on July 10-12.

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