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Baseball notes: Hightower promoted to AA Altoona

Contributed photo

By Marcus Modey and Jimmy Trodglen

Tnsports360.com

Here is Tnsports360’s weekly update of professional baseball players from Austin Peay and the Clarksville area and how they have performed in the past week.

Clarksville High alumni Scooter Hightower was promoted to the Pirates’ AA affiliate, the Altoona Curve of the Eastern League.

Clarksville High baseball coach Brian Hetland confirmed Hightower had been promoted from Class A after texting with his former pitcher Tuesday.

The 24-year-old Hightower had a phenomenal season in Class A when he was called up to AA for the first time.

Hightower was 5-0 with three saves and a 1.47 ERA with the Class A Bradenton Marauders in the Florida State League. Hightower had appeared in 18 games and had struck out 35 in 30.2 innings.

In his four seasons in the Pirates’ farm system, Hightower is 17-8 with a 2.28 ERA. He has appeared in 66 games, starting in 19 games. Hightower has worked primarily as a closer this season. On July 1, Hightower picked up a save throwing three innings, allowing three hits while striking out one.

Following Clarksville High, Hightower pitched two years at Columbia State before being selected in the 15th round by the Pirates in the 2015 MLB Draft.

Hightower is one of two former Clarksville High pitchers now throwing in Class AA. Ryne Harper is working out of the bullpen for the Chattanooga Lookouts, an AA affiliate of the Twins. Harper has five saves and is 0-2 with a 2.55 ERA in 17 appearances.

Player highlights

  • Alec Mills, a right-handed pitcher for the Iowa Cubs, pitched in one game over the past week. He pitched 6.2 innings in the loss with seven hits, six earned runs and five strikeouts with an ERA of 4.81.
  • Harper pitched in two games over the past week. He pitched in two innings with one hit and four strikeouts with an ERA of 3.06.
  • Wes Parsons was sent down to the Triple A Gwinnett Stripers from the Braves. Parsons had been called up by the Braves, but was only with the big league team for one game and didn’t make an appearance.
  • Ridge Smith, former catcher for the Lansing Lugnuts, has been put on the voluntarily retired list.
  • Alex Robles, third baseman for the Elizabethton Twins, has been to the plate 11 times over the past seven days. He has two hits, along with one RBI, walk, and strikeout with a batting average of.181.
  • A.J. Ellis, catcher for the Padres, was at the plate five times over the past week. He had no hits and three walks.
  • Shawn Kelley, a right-handed pitcher for the Nationals, pitched one inning over the past seven days. He gave up one hit, one walk, and struck out one batter with an ERA of 0.00.