Williams, Kiritsis earn MLB Draft League Weekly honors

Tyler Williams and Dan Kiritsis named Draft League Hitter and Pitcher of the Week, respectively

NEW YORK -- The MLB Draft League announced that State College’s Tyler Williams and Trenton’s Dan Kiritsis were named Hitter and Pitcher of the Week, respectively, for the period of June 27 to July 3.

Williams, 21, garners Hitter of the Week honors after batting .500 (8-for-16) with one home run, one triple and two doubles in four games for the Spikes. He led all MLB Draft League hitters during the period in hits, batting average and total bases (15), and ranked second in slugging (.938) and OPS (1.438). The outfielder went 4-for-4 with a triple Tuesday to begin his week and followed it with a home run and a double Wednesday as part of a 2-for-4 performance. Altogether, Williams recorded three multi-hit games on the week.

Williams is batting .310/.370/.571 with eight runs scored and seven RBI through 12 games this season in the MLB Draft League. The Newport Beach, Calif., native is coming off of a junior season at Arkansas-Little Rock in which he batted .302/.369/.472 with 22 extra-base hits and 21 stolen bases in 51 games.

Draft League Data: Williams attacked fastballs early in the count, batting .625 with a 1.625 OPS against heaters while averaging 1.6 pitches per plate appearance on the week. He also fared well against breaking balls, batting .375 with a 1.250 OPS. For the season, Williams is averaging 90.8 mph on his Top 50% Exit Velocities and has an average launch angle of 18.7 degrees on Hard-Hit contact.

Kiritsis, 20, worked four hitless innings in his June 30 start against Mahoning Valley, his longest outing this season. He did not issue a walk while hitting one batter and striking out three, throwing 32 of 47 pitches for strikes in his first start since June 14. The Pompton Lakes, N.J., native has pitched 15 innings over six appearances (three starts) for the Thunder, registering a 7.20 ERA and .222 opponents’ batting average. Pitching at Bergen Community College (N.J.) this past spring, the sophomore right-hander went 1-0 and struck out 18 batters in 13 innings, making six appearances including two starts. 

Draft League Data: Kiritsis posted a 68.1% Strike% and 42.9% Whiff% rate in his June 30 start. He was particularly effective with his sinker, throwing it for a strike 73 percent of the time while posting a Whiff% and Chase% of 38% and 50%, respectively, with the feature offering. Opposing hitters have an average exit velocity of 78.6 mph against Kiritsis’ sinker this season.

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