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Rett Varner has a 0.47 ERA in 19 innings for the Coppell Copperheads this summer
Rett Varner has a 0.47 ERA in 19 innings for the Coppell Copperheads this summer

June 30, 2009

ARLINGTON, Texas - The UT Arlington baseball program is being represented in the collegiate summer leagues by several players who wore a Maverick uniform this past spring, including Michael Choice who is playing for the USA Baseball National Team (Collegiate).

The 10 returning UT Arlington baseball players playing in collegiate summer leagues include, Choice (Team USA), Jason Mitchell (Anchorage Glacier Pilots), Tim Steggall (Seattle Studs), Adam Boydston (Coppell Copperheads), Chad Comer (Liberal Bee Jays), Brian Watson (Brazos Valley Bombers), Rett Varner (Coppell Copperheads), Mark Picca (Waterloo Bucks) and Eric Wright and Jordan Vaughn (Trombley Thunder).

After being named to the 22-man roster on June 24, Choice has led Team USA with a .615 batting average (8-for-13) in their first five games of their summer schedule. Choice has three multi-hit games, including his most recent 2-for-4 performance on Monday where he hit a double and led the team with three RBI. In his last three starts he is batting .700 (7-for-10) with five RBI.

Choice has started in left field in three games and in center field once. He has scored four runs, has one walk and one stolen base. He has tallied a .692 slugging percentage and a .588 on-base percentage in four starts and one pinch-hitting appearance.

Mitchell and the Glacier Pilots are 10-10 on the season in the Alaska League, which is traditionally known as one of the most competitive leagues across the country. Mitchell is 1-1 with a 3.22 ERA with a team-high 22.1 innings pitched. He has combined on one shutout and has recorded one complete game with 15 strikeouts and six walks.



Varner, a 34th round draft pick of the Chicago Cubs in this summer's MLB Draft, is 1-1 with a 0.47 ERA in 19.0 innings pitched with the Coppell Copperheads in the Texas Collegiate League. In three starts, Varner has allowed only one earned run and two walks with 29 strikeouts. In addition, opponents are batting only .186 against Varner this summer.

Boydston is teammates with Varner on the Copperheads, where he has made five appearances and logged an 8.22 ERA in 7 2/3 innings pitched. Boydston has five strikeouts and has allowed 15 base hits and six walks in his five relief appearances.

Comer is playing for former major league manager Mike Hargrove with the Liberal Bee Jays in the Jayhawk League in Liberal, Kan. Comer has been the primary starter behind the plate for the Bee Jays while hitting .245 (13-for-53) with seven doubles (second on the team), one triple and 12 RBI. Comer has thrown out 30 percent of would-be base stealers. Liberal is currently in third place in the Jayhawk with a 7-8 league record.

Picca has thrown 12 2/3 innings for the Waterloo Bucks in the Northwoods League in Waterloo, Iowa. He is 0-1 with a 2.84 ERA in five appearances, including one start. He is allowing opponents to bat .200 and he has tallied nine strikeouts with five walks this summer.

Steggall is playing for the Seattle Studs for the second straight season in the Pacific International League. Steggall and the Studs were runner up at last summer's National Baseball Congress World Series in Wichita, Kan., with a 54-13 overall record. This summer, Steggall is among team leaders with a .412 batting average, three homers and 15 RBI. Steggall has three stolen bases and has made only two errors in 14 games played.

Watson is pitching for the Brazos Valley Bombers in the TCL, who are currently in second place in the league with an 11-6 overall record. Despite a 0-2 record, Watson owns a 1.96 ERA in 18 1/3 innings of work while making five appearances (one start). Watson has 11 strikeouts with only two walks allowed.

Wright and Vaughn are playing for the Trombley Thunder in California, who are currently 6-8 overall this summer. Wright is batting .350 with six stolen bases and three doubles while playing center field and leading off. Vaughn, while playing first base and hitting cleanup, is hitting .370 with one home run and six doubles this season.


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