By Roger Hoover / Jacksonville Suns
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jacksonville Suns right-handed relief pitcher Brian Ellington has been selected to represent the United States of America in the 2015 Pan American Games from July 10-19 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
With his selection to Team USA, the Miami Marlins have placed Ellington on the temporary inactive list on the Jacksonville Suns roster.
Ellington has been one of the most consistent Suns relievers this season, going 4-1 with a 2.77 ERA in 22 relief appearances. In his 39 innings on the mound, he has only allowed 12 earned runs on 27 hits, while walking only 11 batters compared to 42 strikeouts. He also has not allowed a home run this season, and batters are only hitting .196 against him, which is the third best mark among Southern League relievers. He also has the fourth-highest strikeout per nine-inning ratio at 9.69, and he has allowed the third fewest baserunners per nine innings at just nine among Southern League relievers.
This is the first season for Ellington at the Double-A level, who was an Arizona Fall League Rising Stars selection in 2014. Ellington, a native of Gainesville, Florida, is listed by Baseball America as the Marlins’ 22nd-best prospect entering the 2015 season. Ellington was selected by the Marlins in the 16th round of the 2012 draft out of the University of West Florida in Pensacola, Florida.
Ellington is joined by fellow Southern Leaguers Dan Vogelbach and Albert Almora of the Tennessee Smokies on the USA roster.
Jim Tracy will manage the team in Canada, and he will be joined on the coaching staff by pitching coach Marcel Lachemann, hitting coach, Ernie Young, and assistant coaches Jim Lett and Roly de Armas.Tracy, who brings 856 wins and 11 years of Major League managerial experience, has an internationally experienced staff with Lachemann, Young and de Armas, who have all previously coached with Team USA. Young also played, and won gold, at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games.
The Pan Am Team will first gather in Cary, N.C., at the USA Baseball National Training Complex where it will train from July 4 to 8. The U.S. will then depart for Toronto for the Pan American Games where it will look to win its first Pan Am gold since 1967. First round action kicks off on July 11, against Puerto Rico at the President’s Choice Ajax Pan Am Ballpark.
The 2013 World Baseball Classic Team was the latest professional team fielded by USA Baseball. In the most recent Pan American Games, the 2011 club earned the silver medal with a 3-2 record, falling to Canada in the gold-medal game.
The Suns roster now stands at 24 active players, and a revised roster is attached.
Tonight the Suns will take on the Chattanooga Lookouts for the first of five games Saturday night from Bragan Field with a first pitch set for 7:05 p.m. ET. The Suns will send out right-hander Trevor Williams (3-7, 4.57 ERA) while the Lookouts have yet to announce their starter.
On Saturday, stick around after the game for the largest fireworks show at Bragan Field during the 2015 season courtesy of Winn-Dixie. The Bloodmobile will be at the Baseball Grounds and the SUNS encourage ALL fans to donate blood. The first 25 donors receive two tickets to the game, a hotdog and a soda voucher. Can’t make the game? No worries. Watch the Suns for SUN(s)day baseball live on CW17. The Suns salute the military with the Suns players wearing patriotic pink jerseys to be auctioned off during the game to benefit the Greater Jacksonville Area USO courtesy of Northrop Grumman. Presented by Northrop Grumman, Brumos Automotive, CW-17, 99.9 Gator Country.
Suns fans can also listen to Saturday’s game on the Suns Baseball Network, 600 AM & 100.3 FM “The Answer” or through http://www.jaxsuns.com, MiLB.com, or the TuneIn radio app, coverage will start with the Memorial Hospital Suns Pregame Show beginning at 6:50 p.m. ET.
The 2015 season of Suns baseball is presented by EverBank, the official banking partner of the Jacksonville Suns. Sponsorships, group outings, and season/individual game tickets are currently available by calling the Suns front office at (904) 358-2846.