ADRIAN, Mich.--With Major League Baseball pennant chases taking shape and NCAA programs preparing for "fall ball" during their non-traditional segments, Minor League Baseball teams are nearing the conclusion of their seasons.
For Adrian College baseball alumni Ryan Dorow '17 and Tommy Parsons '18, they showed this summer that they could play at a high level in the Texas Rangers and St. Louis Cardinals farm systems, respectively. Dorow completed his first full season of professional baseball at long-season Single-A Hickory (N.C.) Crawdads of the South Atlantic League, and his second overall, while Parsons is pitching for the rookie Johnson City (Tenn.) Cardinals team in the Appalachian League.
Parsons, who was a three-time Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association Pitcher of the Year and 2018 American Baseball Coaches' Association First Team All-American for the Bulldogs, made nine starts among 13 appearances and recorded a 5-1 record with one save at Johnson City this summer. In 57 innings pitched, the right-hander posted a 3.00 earned-run average, 43 strikeouts against only 10 walks and a 1.21 WHIP while being named an Appy League All-Star. His five wins led the Cardinals and ranked third in the league, while his ERA also was among the lowest among league starters.
After playing rookie ball during the 2017 summer season, Dorow earned a promotion to the Crawdads and made the most of his 2018 campaign. He topped Hickory with 122 games played, 117 hits, 183 total bases and 61 runs batted in. He belted 28 doubles and 12 home runs while hitting .271 and slugging .425. On defense, he committed just nine errors at shortstop and third base. The most decorated player in Adrian program history with five All-America citations has been invited to attend the MLB Arizona Fall Instructional League.
In his 163-game pro career, Dorow is batting .277 with 12 HR, 78 RBI, 155 hits, 71 runs scored and .417 slugging percentage.
"Adrian College and our Baseball Family are so proud of Ryan and Tommy's professional careers so far. The two put together outstanding summers in the Minor Leagues," Adrian 25-year head coach Craig Rainey said. "I am not surprised that either are having great success, from the time they stepped on campus they were focused and motivated to achieve their goal of being a professional MLB players. They have worked extremely hard to put themselves in this position. What they have done is huge for our program because now it is real, guys know they can come here and reach their dreams and on top of that be very good players. For us to have two guys playing extremely well at the next level is something that does not happen every day."
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Quoting Tommy Parsons: "Pro ball for me was definitely what I expected it to be. Everyone was out there and got drafted or picked up for a reason so that was an adjustment for me. Starting out in the bullpen was difficult, I have never done that in my career but once I settled in and they gave me a chance to start I took it and ran with it. I learned a lot from the JC coaching staff and all the rover coaches we had and got to meet a lot of former big leaguers that are helping our organization out. Meeting all the staff and then learning the technology they use was all just a great learning experiences for helped me grow as a player and as a person of the game. Everything about it was amazing from my teammates to how everything was organized and ran throughout the summer. Definitely an experience I wouldn't trade for anything and can't wait to start training and getting ready to head back down to West Palm Beach for Spring Training next year!"
Quoting Ryan Dorow: "I am very grateful to the Hickory Crawdads and Texas Rangers for giving me the opportunity to pursue my passion and lifetime dream of playing professional baseball. My first full season in Hickory was a learning experience and I took advantage of the support from coaches, teammates and fans to get better as a pro. I look forward to honing my skills in the Arizona Instructional League for the next two months. I am proud to represent Adrian College Bulldogs Baseball."