Thursday, June 6, 2013

Fear the Rua -- and the former pitcher

Former Lake Erie College baseball star Ryan Rua is belting homers at rapid rates this season.

Rua, who plays for the South Atlantic League's Hickory Crawdads, homered twice Thursday against Lakewood. The big night increased Rua's league-leading total to 17. Another familiar name, Stetson Allie, is second in the league with 16 homers. 

Allie, a former St. Edward standout, started his professional career as a pitcher. His career is perfect blog fodder. In short, Allie failed as a pitcher, so the Pirates converted him to a position player last year. He's settled nicely into the middle of the West Virginia Power lineup.

Rua's power numbers are especially impressive because he plays second base, a position scouts and executives don't view as a power spot. Rua, who attended Amerhest Steele High School, also has 15 doubles in 42 games. He's hitting .247 and his 50 RBI are tied for second in the league. Allie leads the league with 54 RBI.

Hickory's L.P. Frans Stadium is known as a hitter's ballpark. But the 6-foot-2, 180-pound Rua also hit seven homers at short-season Spokane last season. In three seasons at Lake Erie, Rua hit 374 with 27 homers and 131 RBI. The Texas Rangers selected Rua in the 23rd round of the 2011 draft. He's the first -- and still only -- Lake Erie player to be selected in the Major League Baseball Draft.

Rua, 23, was selected to appear in the South Atlantic League All-Star. Allie, 22, will also appear in the game, which is June 18 in Lakewood, N.J.

South Atlantic League leaders

-- Guy Cipriano | @newsheraldguy

5 Comments:

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