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Browsing Posts tagged Ryan Sadowski



By Scott Barancik, Editor

Don’t let the first name fool you.

Reliever Ryan Sherriff (St. Louis Cardinals/AAA) is the latest player to join the growing roster of Jewish pro baseball players.

The 26-year-old southpaw is enjoying a tremendous season with the Memphis Redbirds. Sherriff is 2-0 with a 1.45 ERA — third-best among Pacific Coast League players with at least 30 innings pitched — and is limiting opposing batters to 0.96 walks/hits per inning and a batting average of .176.

You might say the California native is pitching beneath the radar. When issued its most recent list of the Cardinals’ top 30 prospects, Sherriff’s name was nowhere to be found.

That’s okay. He’ll let his left arm do the talking. Selected by St. Louis in the 28th round of the 2011 draft, Sheriff has a career ERA of 2.89 since then.

Why so many parents of Jewish baseball players have named their son “Ryan” is a mystery. (As Sherriff’s Twitter feed correctly implies, the name is often translated as “little king.”) Sherriff joins four current or former major leaguers named ‘Ryan’ (Ryan Braun, Ryan Kalish, Ryan Lavarnway, Ryan Sadowski), one 2016 draftee (Ryan Gold), and one current independent-league player (Ryan Lashley). Check out this video to get a sense of who Ryan Sherriff is.

Thanks to our friends at for confirming our reader’s tip.

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Ryan Sadowski, in 2009 (AP)

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By Scott Barancik/Jewish Baseball News

When Ryan Sadowski bid the U.S. adieu in early 2010 to spend the first of three seasons with the Lotte Giants in Korea, the likelihood of getting another chance to play in the MLB appeared as slim as the Miami native’s 6-foot-4, 195-pound frame.

He just may beat those odds. Now a mature 30, The Big Sadowski signed a minor-league contract with the other Giants in December and currently is participating in the major-league squad’s Spring Training, pitching batting practice and hoping for some gametime innings to show what he can do.

Sadowski’s MLB debut with San Francisco in 2009 was short and sweet, until it soured. In his first start, the University of Florida alum pitched six shutout innings as the Giants beat the Milwaukee Brewers 7-0 (see box score). He delivered seven shutout innings in his second start, a 13-0 whipping of the Houston Astros (see box score). But Sadowski lost the next four games, was sent back down to AAA, and became a free agent that Fall. Just like that, his six-year sojourn through the Giants’ organization was over.

“All of sudden, I hit a rough spot and I really didn’t know how to deal with it,” Sadowski told last week. “I went to Triple-A and didn’t pitch well. I was putting so much pressure on myself. I went to Korea and struggled my first two months there. I thought I was going to get released. Finally, I learned how to deal with pitching in front of 30,000 people and failing, which I had never done before. I settled down a little bit.”

Sadowski’s chances of staying with the Giants beyond Spring Training remain slim. According to, the team has 37 pitchers at training camp and just one roster opening for a pitcher. But a strong performance with the Fresno Grizzlies (AAA) this Spring could pave Sadowski’s path back to the majors.

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Good news Tuesday (5/29/2012)

By Scott Barancik/Jewish Baseball News

Because Monday was Memorial Day, dontcha know:

  • Texas Rangers 2B Ian Kinsler broke out of a 27-game HR slump on Sunday (5/27/2012) with a HR, double, and four RBIs in a 12-6 triumph over the Texas Rangers. Despite the drought, Kinsler leads the majors with 41 runs scored. Sunday’s two-hit game was his fifth in six starts.
  • After an impressive debut with the Boston Red Sox in 2010, neck and shoulder surgery sidelined LF Ryan Kalish for the better part of the past year. But in the first game of a rehab stint with the Salem Red Sox (A-advanced) last week, the 24-year-old celebrated his return with a HR and a single, and yesterday (5/28/2012) he even stole a base. Way to go, Ryno.
  • Success has split up the power duo of San Diego Padres sluggers Nate Freiman and Cody Decker. While playing for the San Antonio Missions (AA) this season, the pair led the Texas League with 14 HRs apiece. Alas, Decker was promoted to AAA last week. So far he’s earned his keep: through 6 games and 22 at-bats, he is hitting .364 with a HR, three doubles, two RBIs, and an OPS of 1.098.
  • Ryan Sadowski led the Lotte Giants of the Korean Baseball Organization to victory Saturday (5/26/2012) with a 3-hit, complete-game performance. The 6’4″ hurler, whom Korean fans call “Dow,” is enjoying his third season with the team after completing one of the more unusual MLB careers. Called up in 2009 by the San Francisco Giants, the University of Florida alum promptly delivered two shutouts, followed by four less-impressive outings that led him back to AAA. Rather than try returning to The Show in 2010, Sadowski indulged his wanderlust by signing with the “other” Giants. At age 29, he’s young enough to revisit American baseball, but so far the iconoclastic Florida native is staying put. To learn more about this clever young man, see these 2011 and 2012 interviews.
  • It’s no fun being sent down to the minors, but Minnesota Twins 3B Danny Valencia is making the best of an opportunity to retool his mechanics. The 27-year-old started out slow with the Rochester Red Wings (AAA) but has hit .325 with 2 HRs and 9 RBIs in his past 10 games.
  • Second-year player Jack Marder of the High Desert Mavericks (A-advanced) is tearing up the California League. The Seattle Mariners prospect ranks among league leaders with a .368 batting average (2nd), .413 on-base percentage (3rd), and .566 slugging percentage (7th), to go along with 4 HRs and 24 RBIs in 136 at-bats. On Sunday (5/27/2012), Marder’s two-run single with two outs in the 12th inning earned the Mavericks a 3-2 win over the Modesto Nuts.
  • Released last week by the Minnesota Twins, P Jason Marquis is a free agent. Could the Twins’ loss be Team Israel’s gain?
  • Tampa Bay Rays OF Sam Fuld may be on the disabled list, but that didn’t stop him from appearing as a sabermetrics expert on a recent Rays broadcast. The Stanford alum is a former STATS Inc. intern who applied for the position after reading Michael Lewis’ book Moneyball.
  • And now our favorite headline of the week, from the San Francisco Chronicle: All Eyes are on Ryan Braun’s Groin. San Francisco’s reputation notwithstanding, the headline concerned a recent injury suffered by the reigning N.L. MVP.
Have any good news about Jewish athletes? Send it to

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