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Sept. 7, 2009
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Three former Penn State Nittany Lions will play postseason baseball as their respective squads have advanced to baseball's second season. Leading the way is Craig Clark and his league-leading San Jose Giants while Scott Kelley and Drew O'Neil have advanced as well.
Clark, who last week was named California League (high-A) Pitcher of the Year, won his 16th game on Sunday in his final tune up before the postseason. Heading into their final regular season game Monday, the Giants had a team-record tying 92 wins. They also reached the 50-win plateau in a half for the first time in club history. Due to their First Half North Division Title in June, they earned a bye and will begin the postseason at home on Saturday at 2 p.m.
Like Clark's high-A Giants, Scott Kelley is set for the postseason with his new team, the Wilmington Blue Rocks. Last week, Kelley was promoted for a second time in this, his rookie season. After beginning his professional career with the Burlington Royals (A) in June, he was promoted to Idaho Falls (R-Advanced) before his most recent call-up to high-A Wilmington. The Blue Rocks face the Lynchburg Hillcats in a best-of-five Northern Division playoff series with Game One set for Wednesday in Lynchburg. If they advance, they will play the Southern Division Champions in the Carolina League Championship Series.
Drew O'Neil's Kannapolis Intimidators are also playoff bound, set to face the Lakewood BlueClaws, single-A affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies. Game One beings in Kannapolis on Wednesday. O'Neil has been a key part of the Intimidators' bullpen, posting a 4-1 record with a 2.54 ERA.
Meanwhile, in Major League Baseball, former Lion David Aardsma and his Seattle Mariners are still in postseason contention, eight games behind wild card leader Boston with 24 games remaining.
Check back to GoPSUsports.com for updates as Clark, Kelley and O'Neil aim for their respective league championships.
Be sure to follow all the former Nittany Lion baseball players playing professionally in the new Nittany Lion Baseball in the Pros Alumni Central.