Mountaineer Diamond Review: Winston-Salem’s Buckner breaks out for best week of 2014 season

Mountaineer Diamond Review: Winston-Salem’s Buckner breaks out for best week of 2014 season

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Mountaineer Diamond Review: Winston-Salem’s Buckner breaks out for best week of 2014 season

In our past two editions of the Mountaineer Diamond Review, Winnipeg Goldeyes’ Tyler Kuhn was above and beyond the best of our WVUPros in the baseball world, but another player’s performances this week pushed him down from the top spot.

We’ll also give update on how West Virginia’s latest draftees are making the move from Morgantown to the Minor Leagues as they begin their step on their way to being on a Major League roster.

The Tar Heel State is our first destination as we begin this week’s edition of our roundup of how our WVUPros performed on the diamond this past week.

Grant Buckner

After a season stuck in neutral at the plate, Grant Buckner broke out for a week of great performances at the plate for the Winston-Salem Dash.

Buckner had his best game of the week against the Wilmington Blue Rocks with three hits and two RBI, followed by another two games with at least two hits, a home run and an RBI for Winston-Salem. The remainder of the week saw minimal action for Buckner, so with any luck the absence from the starting lineup won’t snap his momentum gained early last week.

Tyler Kuhn

Kuhn remained scorching at the plate for the Winnipeg Goldeyes through last week, but Mother Nature kept him and the team off the field with rain on Saturday and Sunday of this past weekend.

Thursday, Kuhn went 4-for-5 at the plate with two RBI to help Winnipeg sweep a three-game series from the Grand Prairie Airhogs to stay equal with the St Paul Saints in the American Association’s North Division.

In trying stay in the division lead, Winnipeg will play a pair of three-game series against the New Jersey Jackals and the Quebec Capitales this week.

Ryan Tuntland

While the Augusta GreenJackets didn’t have the best of weeks on the field, Ryan Tuntland was effective at the plate with seven walks, four runs scored and four hits in another week with rain postponements.

Tuntland had a pair of games with an RBI for Augusta in losing effort against the Rome Braves Tuesday and in a win against the division leading Savannah Sand Gnats Friday, respectively.

With Augusta eliminated from the South Atlantic League playoff chase, Tuntland can continue to make strides at the plate that can help him through the rest of the season into a stronger third season in baseball.

Vince Belnome

After a rough patch the week prior, Vince Belnome had a good end to the week after a hat trick of strikeouts in four at-bats against the Norfolk Tides last Tuesday.

Since that, Belnome collected five hits, which included three doubles, and three RBI that helped push Durham’s lead in the International League’s South Division to 7.5 games, the biggest of any of the league’s three divisions.

Billy Fleming

Of the six West Virginia players drafted this month, Billy Fleming is already on the field and making plays for the Bourne Braves of the Cape Cod Baseball League.

Fleming drove in Bourne’s Richie Martin for 1-0 win over the Orleans Firebirds in his first game with the club, which helped the team open the season with its second-straight win.

David Carpenter

The up-and-down weeks on the mound for David Carpenter continue as the Atlanta Braves reliever had two rough starts during the week, but finished with a strong outing over the weekend.

In his start against the Colorado Rockies Wednesday, Carpenter allowed two runs in his one inning of work in the seventh, and was ejected after hitting Corey Dickerson in the thigh during the eight in Thursday’s game. On Sunday, Carpenter hit another a batter,  this time Albert Pujols, with a pitch after allowing lead-off single to Mike Trout in the top of the ninth.

The lone bright spot came Saturday as Carpenter allowed an infield single to the Angels’ Chris Iannetta before striking out Kole Calhoun and Trout to keep Atlanta in striking distance in the ninth inning of what would be a 13-inning marathon.

Jedd Gyorko

The San Diego Padres’ second baseman Jedd Gyorko, who went on the disabled list retroactive to June 4, is scheduled to return on June 19, but it will remain to be seen with the uncertainty of plantar fasciitis in his left foot.


The record-tying, six draftees for the West Virginia baseball program are slowly finding their place for the respective clubs following the 2014 MLB Draft this month.

Here are some updates over the past week on the contract status on our newest WVUPros taken in this year’s draft from the official WVU baseball Twitter account and some saddening news on one draftee:

Bobby Boyd

After agreeing to terms with the Houston Astros, Boyd was hit by the news of his father, Bob Boyd, losing his battle with esophageal cancer this week. Our thoughts are with the Boyd family in this difficult time and hope the best moving forward for them.

Sean Carley

Ryan McBroom

John Means

Harrison Musgrave

Corey Walter

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