Simmons back with Gold Sox
Right-handed pitcher Gary Simmons is the fifth player from last year's team to return to the Yuba-Sutter Gold Sox this summer.
Simmons was signed along with three other right-handed pitchers, manager Brad Peek announced Tuesday.
“He has not had a season to write home about,” Peek said about Simmons' sophomore year at Porterville Community College.
Peek said Simmons struggled a bit and then got lost in the roster numbers and did not see very many innings.
But Peek still sees the potential.
“We know what he's made of and we'll get him straightened out,” the skipper said.
Peek is especially high on University of Northern Colorado's Tyler Pearson, a pitcher who has faced the likes of Oklahoma and Nebraska for a team that spends a lot of time on the road. He has a 5-2 record with a 5.92 ERA.
“He is battle tested,” Peek said. “He started out in relief, but is now their number-one starter.”
Peek said Pearson throws between 86 and 88 mph with a change-up and a slider, and good command with all his pitches.
“He'll likely start for us,” Peek said.
The other players are Jason Peters from Stanislaus State and Jake McKinley of Bethany College.
Peek said Peters started out as the top starter for Stanislaus, but has evolved into the team's closer. In a recent three-game set against highly ranked Chico State, Peters picked up a win and two saves.
“He throws 84 to 87 and has got a great strikeout to walk ratio,” said Peek, who sees Peters as a starter for the Gold Sox. “He competes really well.”
The fourth pitcher is 6-foot-4 Jake McKinley, who delivers from the side.
“And he's not afraid to pitch inside,” Peek said.
McKinley pitches for NAIA Bethany College in Scotts Valley.
Peek said he has been absolutely dominant at the NAIA level and has shown he can compete against larger programs like St. Marys.
“He's got some really nasty stuff,” said Peek, who has him earmarked for relief.