East Carolina has a decent representation in the Coastal Plain League this summer. Five Diamond Bucs have been spending their summers honing their craft with various teams across the state.
Garrett Brooks has found the most success thus far. During his sophomore campaign this spring, he posted a modest .207 batting average through 58 appearances with 21 runs and eight RBI. He’s built on that greatly as a part of a dominant Peninsula Pilots team.
Brooks, who was recently named to the Coastal Plain All-Star team, helped the Pilots to a 22-9 record in the first half of the summer season. He’s batting .265 and has scored 20 runs while plating an additional 18 runners.
More importantly, he’s getting better at hitting the ball hard into gaps. Only four of his 34 hits last season for ECU were doubles and he didn’t hit a triple or homerun all season. He’s hit five doubles this summer and his three triples tie for first in the league. Also, after going 6-for-8 on stolen base attempts in the spring, he’s continued to be an aggressive base runner. He’s tied for third in the league with 17 stolen basses on 24 attempts.
Brooks continues to show strong development. He’s on pace to beat what was an impressive performance with the Pilots a year ago. As a member of the 2013 squad, which won the Petit Cup Championship, he batted .249 with 21 runs, 12 RBI and 22 stolen bases.
The Mid-Summer Classic will be played on July 13 and 14 in Morehead City at the Big Rock Stadium.
The other four Pirates in the Coastal Plain League just wrapped up impressive freshman seasons on the diamond. Charlie Yorgen, as a freshman, became a vital part of ECU’s infield. He’s spending his summer with the Wilson Tobs, who have a 17-16 record thus far. He’s only played in a dozen games, so he hasn’t had much of a chance to make an impact. He’s batting .148 with a pair of runs and four RBI.
Shortstop Kirk Morgan and right-hander Davis Kirkpatrick both play for Morehead City this summer. The Marlins, at 9-22 so far this summer, have struggled. Morgan batted .185 with six runs and 12 RBI in his debut season. Kirkpatrick pitched in nine games and started in five of them. He posted a 2-1 record with a 5.87 earned run average while striking out 18.
Kirkpatrick has had it rough through the first half of the summer. He’s 0-3 in six appearances and has an ERA of 5.32. Morgan hasn’t fared too well, either. He’s appeared in 15 contests and started 11 and is batting .171 with six runs and a pair of RBI.
Lefty pitcher Jacob Wolfe is the final ECU representative in the Coastal Plain League. He pitched relief in 10 games as a freshman with an ERA of 2.35. He’s found success in the same role this summer with the Asheboro Copperheads. He’s amassed an impressive 1.29 ERA in six relief appearances and has only allowed a single run (earned) in seven innings of work.
The Coastal Plain League still has about half a season to play. Some Pirates will be looking to continue having impressive outings while others must hope to get more chances to hit the diamond and make an impact.