||Bulls & Pelicans Selected for All-Star & Futures Games
Several Durham Bulls and Myrtle Beach Pelicans players received the honor of being selected for their league’s All-Star and Futures games.
Durham Bulls All-Stars
Durham Bulls pitchers Carlos Reyes and Lee Gardner, along with short stop Jason Smith, played in the 16th Annual Triple-A All Star Game on Wednesday, July 16, 2003. Bulls first baseman Ryan Jackson got a last minute call for the game, replacing injured Norfolk infielder Jorge Toca. Playing on the International League team, the four helped pull off a victory over the Pacific League team. The game took place at AutoZone Park in Memphis, TN.
Smith hit a two-run homer in the fourth inning to contribute to the 13-9 win. ESPN2 aired the game on television nationally beginning at 7:05pm CT, and Sporting News Radio & Armed Forces Radio carried the event over the radio waves.
The three were selected to join the field of All-Star players by club field personnel, media representatives and League administrators. At the time of selection, Reyes led the International League with a 1.50 ERA and 7-1 record, Gardner was tied for the most IL saves at 16, and Smith lead the IL roster with 12 home runs. Jackson was batting .294 (94-for 320) with seven home runs and 39 RBI, ranking second in the IL with 29 doubles and 40 extra-base hits.
Bulls & Pelicans Futures
Bulls catcher/DH Pete LaForest received a bid for the World Team in the 5th Annual Radio Shack All-Star Futures Game. Pelicans third baseman Andy Marte represented his club on the team with Perez.
The Sunday, July 13, 2003, game featured top US and international Minor League prospects and took place at US Cellular Field in Chicago and aired on ESPN2. The US Team took a 3-2 victory.
LaForest joined the auspicious list of Bulls to play in the game. Bulls star Toby Hall played in the Futures game in 2001 and Carl Crawford & Gerardo Garcia played on the 2002 roster. LaForest served as the starting DH, hitting cleanup and getting one walk for the team.
Baseball America called Marte one of the Braves pre-season Top Ten Prospects and at the time of selection was hitting .289 with team highs in homeruns (8) and RBI (35).
The fifth annual game, which features outstanding prospects from Minor League Baseball, matches players born in the U.S. against players born elsewhere. The annual event has become a regular feature played just prior to the Major League All-Star Game.
Three Myrtle Beach Pelicans played on the Carolina League team for the California/Carolina League All-Star Game on Tuesday, June 24, 2003, at The Epicenter in Rancho Cucamonga, CA. Pelicans third baseman Andy Marte, short stop Tony Pena and pitcher Macay McBride helped their league take the game with a 3-5 final score.
Pena brought home honors as the Carolina League MVP for the game.
Marte hit a double to bring in the first run of game and then ran home himself off of Frederick Keys’ Woody Cliffords’ single bring the score to 2-0. Pena went 2-for-2 with a double and a run scored.