The seven days spanning June 4-10, 2018, will go down as one of the best weeks in the history of Cartersville baseball.
On June 4, a Monday, recently graduated Anthony Seigler heard his name called with the 23rd overall pick in the MLB draft. By the time Saturday rolled around, he had inked his name with the New York Yankees.
As one journey to the majors began, another came, somewhat, to an end.
While Seigler was signing his professional contract, Sam Howard was preparing to possibly make his MLB debut for the Colorado Rockies. He had to wait until Sunday, but the 2011 Cartersville High graduate did get to take the mound at Coors Field, tossing a scoreless inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
The two Canes legends are extremely close and work out together during the offseason, according to Howard. It made the week even more special for Howard seeing Seigler drafted in the first round.
"I'm stoked for Anthony and his family," Howard said Monday. "I know Ant really well and his dad, Todd. The past three offseasons when I come home and spend them in Cartersville, as I start getting closer to the spring through the holidays and having to get my arm in shape for spring training, I usually spend a lot of time with Ant. When it comes to just getting my throwing program in every day, throwing bullpens to Ant, throwing him some soft-toss so that he can hit BP after we play catch.
"Ant is almost like a little brother. I got to spend time with him, work with him and now he just went first round to the Yankees. so I couldn't be more excited for him and his family. He deserves it."
Sam Howard (Colorado Rockies; Cartersville) — In his MLB debut, Howard worked a scoreless top of the ninth inning allowing only one hit in an 8-3 home loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sunday. He got John Ryan Murphy to fly out to right field on the first pitch of the inning. He then retired Ketel Marte on a groundout to shortstop. Chris Owings doubled into right field on a 1-2 pitch and — after a mound visit — Howard retired Jarrod Dyson on a ground out to second base to end the frame. He was called up from Triple-A Albuquerque on Saturday to join the Rockies. His last work with the Isotopes was against Fresno on June 2, where he allowed three runs on four hits over five innings of work. In nine starts this season with the Isotopes, Howard is 3-4 with a 4.68 ERA. The 25-year-old, fifth-year pro, who played at Georgia Southern University, has 33 strikeouts this season. He was a third-round draft choice by the Rockies in the 2014 MLB draft. Howard has a career minor league record of 29-33 with a 3.68 ERA in 513 innings over 97 starts (98 total appearances).
Connor Justus (Mobile BayBears, L.A. Angels organization; Cartersville) — In six games this week, Justus was only 4-for-24 and saw his season batting average dip to .193. In the final three games of a series at the Chattanooga Lookouts, he was 1-for-12 with three walks, three runs scored and two RBIs. At home for three games with the Jackson Generals Friday through Sunday, Justus was 3-for-12 including a two-RBI triple in the first inning of Sunday’s game. He also walked and scored a run Saturday against the Southern League North Division-leading Generals. Defensively, Justus has logged 445 innings across 52 games at the middle infield positions, where his fielding percentage is .953. The BayBears (34-28) are in second place in the South Division, 3.5 games behind division-leading Biloxi, with only seven games remaining in the first half of the season. They had home games Monday and Tuesday with Jackson and conclude the first half with a five-game series at Pensacola today through Sunday.
Anthony Seigler (N.Y. Yankees organization; Cartersville) — Seigler signed his first professional contract over the weekend after being selected by the New York Yankees in the first round of the MLB draft on June 4. His first minor league assignment has yet to be announced.
Elliott Anderson (Auburn So., Cartersville) — Anderson and his teammates saw their season end in heartbreaking fashion just shy of a College World Series berth Monday night in Gainesville, Florida. After forcing a winner-take-all Game 3 with top-ranked Florida, No. 19 Auburn lost 3-2 on a walk-off home run in the 11th that bounced off the right fielder's glove and over the wall. The Gators had won the Super Regional opener by an 8-2 margin before the Tigers pulled out a 3-2 victory in Game 2. Although he didn't feature in the series, Anderson finished the year with a 5-0 record and a 3.64 ERA in 24 relief appearances, spanning 29 2/3 innings this season. Anderson worked the eighth inning June 2 in the Tigers’ 12-1 win over Army at the Raleigh Regional. Anderson struck out two of the four batters he faced and allowed one hit in what ultimately became his final outing of the season.
— Charles Wilson of Bartow Sports Zone contributed to this report.