April 27, 2011

UPDATE FROM "THE BIGS: TRIO OF FORMER RAMS PLAYING MAJOR ROLES

Every since it was built in the 1980s, The Diamond has served as a pitstop for plenty of future big leaguers. Sure, it has served as the home for the Richmond Braves and the Richmond Flying Squirrels, but that's not what we're talking about.

We're talking about all the VCU baseball standouts that played inside the comfy confines on the Boulevard and then made their way into various levels of MLB organizations.

We also know that the Rams have some of the best fans in the country and always want to keep an eye on how former Rams are doing. I mean, those riveting games of solitaire, sudoku and even "word with friends" aren't going to play themselves.

Enter VCUathletics.com, where we will give you monthly updates on all the guys who donned the Black & Gold. They'll be two different updates, one will be update all the guys in "The Big Show" and the other will feature the guys living up it "Down on the Farm."

For the first report, we'll focus on "The Big Show", where three former Rams are making an impact.


SEAN MARSHALL
CHICAGO CUBS
LEFT-HANDED PITCHER

After being bounced around between the starting rotation and various roles in the bullpen, Marshall was finally allowed a chance to settle into a role last year. The Richmond, Va. native took it and ran, becoming one of the best left-handed relievers in all of baseball

He posted a career-high 80 appearances with seven wins, 22 holds and held opponents to just a .210 batting average against. He was a steady late-inning option for the fans at Wrigley and it looks as if he is on his way yet again this year.

So far this year, Marshall has appeared in 12 of Chicago's 23 games, picking up one win and posting a miniscule ERA of 0.82.

#45 SEAN MARSHALL - CHICAGO CUBS - BY THE NUMBERS
Year G
W-L
SV
HLD
CG
IP
H
R
ER
HR
BB
K
Opp. Avg.
WHIP
ERA
2011
12 1-0
1
6
0
11.0
11
2
1
0
1
10
.262
1.09
0.82
Career (6th year)
226
27-34
3
38
1
465.1
459
235
215
55
175
370
.257
1.36
4.16


BRANDON INGE
DETROIT TIGERS
THIRD BASEMAN

Inge has been a mainstay in Detroit over the past decade and it shows with all the fan fare surrounding the former Black & Gold standout.

After starring at both shortstop and on the mound for the Rams in the mid-to-late 90's, Inge has developed into one of the best fielding third basemen in all of baseball. In fact, in many experts mind he should be a constant factor in the Gold Glove race.

At the plate, Inge is a consistent part of the bottom of the Tigers' order with an occassional dose of power and always filled with timely hitting.

#15 BRANDON INGE - DETROIT TIGERS - BY THE NUMBERS
Year G
AB
R
H
2B
3B
HR
RBI
BB
K
SB
OBP %
SLG %
OPS %
Avg.
2011
22 72
6
16
5
0
1
8
6
15
0
.278
.333
.612
.222
Career (11th year)
1319
4409
502
1044
206
36
137
572
399
1124
44
.307
.393
.700
.237


CODY EPPLEY
TEXAS RANGERS
RIGHT-HANDED PITCHER

Who doesn't like to root for an underdog? Well how bout a guy who was drafted in the 43rd round and worked his tail off to get his chance at his dream? That's former Ram Cody Eppley for you.

Eppley got the call he had always wanted to get on Saturday, April 23rd when he was promoted from Triple-A Round Rock to the Ballpark at Arlington and a spot in the bullpen for the defending American League Champions.

All he's done since? Oh, just a 1-0 record, three hits in four innings and just one earned run.

#50 CODY EPPLEY - TEXAS RANGERS - BY THE NUMBERS
Year G
W-L
SV
HLD
CG
IP
H
R
ER
HR
BB
K
Opp. Avg.
WHIP
ERA
2011
2
1-0
0
1
0
4.0
3
1
1
1
0
1
.200
0.75
2.25
MLB Career (1st year)
2
1-0
0
1
0
4.0
3
1
1
1
0
1
.200
0.75
2.25
Minors Career (4 years) 115 9-7 32 N/A 0 173.0 145 61 46 8 37 204 .212 1.10 2.39

TIDBITS ON JOEY:

· Heart and soul of the Rams, coming off a career-year at the point guard spot
· Has shown the ability to play both the shooting guard and point guard positions in his three years with the Black & Gold
· Earned Second-Team All-CAA honors in 2009-10

Joey's Career Highs
Points:
25 vs. UNCW (1/5/09)
Rebounds:
7 at Akron (2/23/08)
Assists:
13 vs. Towson (1/27/10)
Field Goals Made:
8, six times
last time vs. Boston (3/24/10)
Three-Point FG Made:
6, two times
last time at Mason (2/9/10)
Free Throws Made:
9 at Drexel (1/6/10)
Free Throws Attempted:
9 at Drexel (1/6/10)
Steals:
7, two times
last time at Delaware (2/9/08)
Blocked Shots:
1 vs. Miami (11/16/07)
Minutes:
44 at Mason (2/9/10)

RODRIGUEZ’s TIME AT VCU:

· Has not missed a game over his three seasons (102 games played) despite having a countless number of nagging injuries
· Coming off a junior year where he led the CAA in assists per game (5.8) and steals per game (1.9). His assists per game average ranked 15th in the country.
· Became only the second Ram and sixth CAA player to eclipse 200 assists last year when he dished out 208. He also only turned the ball over 98 times for a 2.12 assist-to-turnover ratio.
 · Along with dishing out assists, Rodriguez possesses the ability to knock down long-range jumpers, posting 142 three-pointers in his first three seasons, ranking in the top-10 in school history.
· His quickness on the defensive end has led to 176 career steals, including two games in which he tied a school record with seven steals (2/9/08 at Delaware and 2/2/08vs. Towson). In his 102 career games, he has registered a steal in 93 of those contests.
· Durability is not in question as Rodriguez has averaged over 31 minutes per game over the past two seasons for the Black & Gold
 · Aggressiveness on the offensive end resulted in 118 free-throw attempts, more than his first two years combined. His trips to the charity stripe were nearly always a success as Rodriguez is a 79.5% free-throw shooter
· Rodriguez has been able to torch opponents on the offensive end, tallying nine 20-point plus performances over the past two seasons, seven of which have come against CAA opponents

PRIOR TO VCU:

· Accolades and recognition were something that Rodriguez got used to during his four years at Lake Howell, where he earned First-Team All-State honors his senior year and three straight appearances on the First-Team All-County squad.
· Rodriguez finished as Lake Howell’s all-time leader in assists and also helped the Silverhawks to a 31-3 mark during his senior year, the best mark in school history.
· Unfortunately for teammate Ed Nixon, Rodriguez will always have bragging rights, after his Lake Howell squad defeated Nixon’s Lakewood team to win the Florida 5-A State Championship in 2007.
· Rodriguez played with the Florida Rams AAU program.

GETTING TO KNOW JOEY:

· Son of Joe and Annette Rodriguez
· Majoring in Criminal Justice
· Born on June 20, 1988
· Often referred to as “Boo Boo”, but also goes by the less popular “J-Rod.”
· Also played many years of baseball in the Sunshine State and listed that as the sport he would be playing if not for basketball.
· One of his favorite activities off the court is going to the movies.

BRADFORD BURGESS - CAREER STATISTICS
Year GP-GS Min.
FG-FGA
Pct.
3FG-ATT
Pct.
FT-FTA
Pct.
Off-Def-Tot
Avg.
PF-FO
Ast.
TO
Blk.
Stl.
Pts.-Avg.
2007-08
32-18
24.7
47-146
.322
23-79
.291
47-59
.797
17-75-92
2.9
55-1
79
58
1
48
164-5.1
2008-09
34-31
31.9
108-259
.417
62-149
.416
40-52
.769
28-66-94
2.8
72-0
85
79 0 61
318-9.4
2009-10
36-35 32.9
157-361
.435
57-163
.350
95-118
.805
28-69-97
2.7
60-0
208
98
0
67
466-12.9
Totals
102-84
30.0
312-766
.407
142-391
.363
182-229
.795
73-210-283
2.8
187-1
372
235
1
176
948-9.3

 

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