NIGHTHAWKS DECLAW STEEPLECATS
Date: Jul 21, 2018
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. – Former Keene Swamp Bat southpaw Eric Lauer ’14 became the second New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL) alumnus to make his Major League Baseball (MLB) debut in a four-day span after getting the start for the San Diego Padres on Tuesday night.
Lauer settled down after a shaky start and finished with three-plus innings pitched with three strikeouts against the Colorado Rockies.
Lauer, 22, is a former first-rounder (25th overall, 2016) and becomes the latest potential core piece for the Padres to reach the Major Leagues. He’s considered among the top-15 farmhands in a stacked Padres system, ranking 12th at MLB.com and Baseball America and eighth per both ESPN’s Keith Law and Baseball Prospectus. Lauer has made three starts in Triple-A this year and turned in a 3.00 ERA with a 19-to-6 K/BB ratio and a 40.9 percent ground-ball rate.
Lauer joins Ocean State 2013 alumnus Michael Gerber, who was called up to the Detroit Tigers over the weekend and is back on the roster as of Monday, to represent the first two NECBL alums to make MLB debuts in a young 2018 season. The duo run the total up to 146 alumni to reach the Big Leagues, and the two ex-NECBLers are among 22 alumni to have reached the Majors at some point in 2018.
The 2016 MAC Pitcher of the Year, Lauer had a spectacular junior season, allowing just three earned runs in his final 12 starts and leading NCAA Division I with a 0.69 ERA – the lowest for a DI starter since 1979.
As a Swamp Bat in 2014, he totaled four appearances – which was at the conclusion of his freshman season – and went 2-1 with 17 strikeouts over 15-2/3 innings while only walking six.
The New England Collegiate Baseball League is a wooden bat college summer league that fields teams in all six New England states. Partially funded by Major League Baseball, the NECBL started play in 1994 and is enjoying its 25th-year anniversary season this summer. The New England League has sent nearly 150 alumni to the Major Leagues and has had an alum drafted in the first round of the MLB Draft in 10 straight seasons. For continuing coverage of the NECBL, visit NECBL.com and follow the league on Twitter, Instagram and on Facebook
Photo Credit: MiLB