(Photo Credit: Chris Kelly, Wisconsin-Milwaukee baseball)
As the 2017 summer league season comes to an end, it is time to roll out CBBSN’s collegiate summer league updates from around the country. Over the next two weeks, our scouts will be sharing how their school’s players have fared over the season, and how they look to project going into fall practice.
by Matt Gallagher
Wisconsin-Milwaukee baseball had a little bit of a disappointing season with a 22-32 record in 2017 after consecutive years of winning seasons. The team is looking to avenge its early exit in this past season’s Horizon League tournament. There is no better way to improve your skills than getting more reps in college summer leagues. Here is a look at how some Panthers have fared this summer.
Trevor Schwecke: Joliet Admirals, Midwest League
After hitting .306 in his freshman campaign and earning second team All Horizon League honors, Schwecke had quite the season for the Admirals, where he was named to the All-Star Game in the Midwest League. Schwecke continued his hot hitting by batting .365 over the first half of the season. The young shortstop looks to be a major piece of the 2018 lineup.
Mike Ferri: Wisconsin Woodchucks, Northwoods League
Another freshman infielder, Ferri, looked to gain additional high-level baseball experience this summer with the Woodchucks. He was limited to just nine games because of injury. In those games, he hit .219 with four runs scored.
Ben Chally: Green Bay Bullfrogs, Northwoods League
Chally had a strong 2017 season for the Panthers as he started 46 games, hit .327, and was fourth on the team in RBI. This summer, he hit a bit of a slump, batting only .197. With his senior season coming up and lots of experience under his belt, Chally should be able to turn it around for the 2018 Panther baseball season.
Jake Sommers: Eau Claire Express, Northwoods League
Sophomore right handed pitcher Jake Sommers pitched well for the Express this summer. In 14 2/3 innings, he kept a 2.45 ERA while also striking out 10 batters. Walks were a bit of an issue for Sommers in the Northwoods League, but this should not be a major concern given his walk percentage during the 2017 college season, as it was much lower.
Josh Serio: Lakeshore Chinooks, Northwoods League
Rising senior Josh Serio pitched 11 innings for Lakeshore. In those innings, he struck out nine batters but did have a high 6.54 ERA. Serio could easily be knocking some of the rust off as he was ineligible to play in the 2017 season because he transferred from Wisconsin-Parkside. Panther baseball hopes to have the pitcher who had 11.8 SO/9 in 2016 playing for them this season.
Even though these players’ Wisconsin-Milwaukee careers ended after the 2017 season, they are still playing ball this summer – in the minor leagues.
Daulton Varsho: Hillsboro Hops (Diamondbacks Short-A), Northwest League
After being drafted in the second round of the 2017 MLB First Year Player Draft, the highest ever for a Wisconsin-Milwaukee player, Varsho has continued turning heads. In 34 games, he is hitting .319, has a .870 OPS, and 29 RBIs. What may be more impressive are his five stolen bases, something you do not see often from a catcher. Varsho hopes to keep improving and reach the MLB in a few years.
Adam Reuss: AZL Athletics (A’s Rookie), Arizona League
Panther baseball also had senior pitcher Adam Reuss drafted in June. Reuss was taken by the Oakland A’s in the 29th round. He has been assigned to the rookie league team in Arizona. In 13 1/3 innings thus far, he has a 6.75 ERA, but sports an impressive 10.8 SO/9.