Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Susac Key To Giants' Win/ Larson Has Strong Race In CT.

The San Francisco Giants are looking for help to get the defending World Champions out of an early-season funk.

Their first call-up from Triple-A Sacramento last week was former Jesuit catcher Andrew Susac.

Local baseball fans will remember Susac quite well when he was leading the Marauders to back-to-back Sac-Joaquin Section championships in 2008 and 2009.  Teamed with current Cardinals’ farmhand Jimmy Bosco and Danny Hayes, an Elk Grove resident now playing in the White Sox organization, Susac was instrumental in a 6-5 playoff win on May 17, 2008 over Elk Grove.

That Jesuit win ended the Herd’s 18-game playoff win streak that stretched from 2005 through 2007.

Three times in the North Division I playoffs that year the Marauders defeated Pleasant Grove and then Jesuit beat Buhach Colony for the 2008 Section title.

In his senior season in 2009, Susac batted .445 with eight homers, nine doubles and three triples. He also drove in a team-high 34 runs. That year Jesuit swept St. Mary’s for the 2009 Division I Section championship.

Susac went on to Oregon State University where he became a teammate of Elk Grove graduate Jake Rodriguez. He was taken by the Giants in the second round of the 2011 draft.

Susac quickly moved through the Giants’ farm system and was called up to the majors on July 24, 2014. He stayed with the big club for the rest of the year and was on the World Series roster in the fall. Susac batted .273 with three home runs and 19 RBI’s as the backup to All-Star catcher Buster Posey.

He began this season with Sacramento, the Giants Triple-A club. When pitcher Jake Peavy went on the disabled list, it was Susac who got the call to take his place on the 25-man roster.

Through Friday’s Susac’s already started three games and is batting .425, including a 2-for-3 night at the plate in Tuesday's 6-2 win over the Dodgers

Larson Leads Bristol Race For 90 laps, Finishes Seventh

For 90 of the 500-lap NASCAR Sprint Cup race in Bristol, Conn., Sunday Elk Grove’s Kyle Larson was in first place.

In lap 345 of the Food City 500 Sprint Cup leaders Kevin Harvick and Jimmy Johnson got into a multi-car crash that sent cars scurrying into the pits during the yellow flag. Larson’s crew chief, Chris Heroy, decided to keep the #42 Target Chevrolet on the track so when the race went back green Larson was in the front of the pack.

He was quite impressive for the next 90 laps fighting off several cars on the .5-mile oval, betting that a caution flag might come out so that he could pit and perhaps keep the lead. That didn’t happen so Larson had to pit under a green light and dropped back in the pack. 

Matt Kenseth eventually won the race with Larson finishing in seventh place.

He’s still waiting for win number one on NASCAR’s top circuit and last Sunday in Bristol was about as close as he’s gotten.

In 2014, he did finish second at the Auto Club 500 in Fontana.

Larson will give it another try this Saturday at the Toyota Owners 400 at the Richmond (VA.) International Raceway.

He says he is doing much better following a fainting spell in late March during an autograph session prior to a race at Martinsville, VA.

The morning he fainted the 22-year-old had overslept and was in hurry. He didn’t eat breakfast and paid for it. Going forward, Larson was instructed to be more mindful of his eating habits and take better care of himself.

"I hate breakfast, so I've got to find something that I like to eat in the morning and just make sure I drink enough fluids," Larson told reporters at Texas Motor Speedway. "I feel like I take decent care of myself. That morning was a little bit different because I overslept and had to rush out to the car, but we should be good.”

"When you are young, you think you are bulletproof and that is just one little instance that shows you that you aren't. You've got to take care of yourself as you get older, definitely going to try and do a better job of that."

Larson tweeted a photo of himself eating a chicken wrap and holding a sports drink for lunch Friday, which he directed towards car owner Chip Ganassi, who jokingly told Larson to "lay off the pizza and tacos diet."

Quick Hits …

Two former Elk Grove-area athletes were amongst 28 Jackson State student-athletes honored as 2015 Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars, which recognizes those who have achieved high standards of scholarship, athleticism and humanitarianism. 

They are golfer James Reede III and soccer player Arriana Rieland...

Former Elk Grove slugger Rowdy Tellez is in the Class A Midwest League playing for the Lansing Lugnuts. He’s batting .260 with a pair of home runs in the first 12 games of the season.

His ex-Herd teammate, Dom Nunez, is playing in the Class A South Atlantic League for the Asheville, N.C., Tourists. In the first eight games of the year, he’s batting .207.

Derek Hill, another former Elk Grove player, who was drafted in the first round of last summer’s MLB Draft by Detroit, is on the disabled list of the West Michigan Whitecaps. The cause of his injury wasn’t specified.  He’s played in just two games thus far this year...

Cosumnes River College’s baseball team faced off this week against one of the state’s top-ranked teams, San Joaquin Delta College. In game one Tuesday, the Hawks surprised Delta, 8-1. That was just the second loss of the year for Delta, now 31-2. CRC is now 23-11 on the season.

Former Pleasant Grove pitcher Brett Elgin got the win in relief of another former Eagle, Matt Stafford.

Games two and three between these two clubs are scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday to conclude the regular season. Playoffs will begin next week.

Former Pleasant Grove pitcher Kyle Devore is signed to play this summer for the Kansas City T-bones in an independent baseball league, the American Association.

Former Elk Grove softball pitcher Shelby Wisdom has an elbow injury that will keep her off the mound her senior season at UC-Santa Barbara. Wisdom is now a DH for the Gauchos.

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