June 27, 2017
CINCINNATI - Marshall baseball alumnus Kevin Shackelford (2008-10) has been called up to the big leagues by the Cincinnati Reds after spending seven seasons in the minor leagues.
Shackelford was drafted in the 21st round of the 2010 MLB Draft by the Milwaukee Brewers after his junior season with the Thundering Herd. The Charlotte native spent his first two years as a catcher before transitioning to a pitcher in his junior year. As a sophomore, Shackelford served as the primary catcher for the Herd, starting 33 games. He had 24 hits, 17 RBI and 12 runs scored. In his lone year of pitching for Marshall, he went 1-1 with 18 innings pitched, four strikeouts and a 7.50 ERA.
"I couldn't be more excited for Kevin and his family right now," head coach Jeff Waggoner said. "Kevin is one of the toughest players that I've ever coached. To go from being a catcher to a pitcher shows off his hard work ethic and commitment to the game. I'll be in attendance tonight to see him in Cincinnati."
Shackelford has appeared in 248 games and thrown 419.2 innings throughout his minor league baseball career. He has made a strong start to his 2017 campaign with the Louisville Bats, the Triple-A affiliate of the Reds. Shackelford holds 2-0 record with a 1.53 ERA through 27 games played. He has been the primary closer for the Bats with 11 saves in 12 opportunities. He has pitched 35.1 innings and has only allowed six runs. He has 46 strikeouts, the most he has had with one team in a single season.
When Shackelford makes his big league debut, he'll become the second Thundering Herd player to play in a MLB game this season. He will join former Herd teammate Dan Straily, who is currently pitching for the Miami Marlins. Marshall currently has six former players in the minor leagues - Aaron Blair (Gwinnett Braves, Triple-A), Isaac Ballou (Harrisburg Senators, Double-A), JD Hammer (Lancaster JetHawks, Single-A Advance), Corey Bird (Greensboro Grasshoppers, Single-A), Burris Warner (West Michigan Whitecaps, Single-A) and Tyler Ratliff (AZL Rangers, Rookie).
The Reds host the Milwaukee Brewers tonight at the Great American Ballpark with first pitch set for 7:10 p.m.