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Reliever Holland added as All-Star

June 23, 2009 - Texas League (TL) - Northwest Arkansas Naturals News Release

Northwest Arkansas Naturals' right-handed relief pitcher Greg Holland has been added to the Texas League North Division All-Star team, League President Tom Kayser announced this morning.

Holland was added as a replacement for Tulsa Drillers' right-hander Samuel Deduno, currently on their disabled list.

The 23-year old from Marion, NC is in his first season with the Naturals and has quickly emerged as one of Manager Brian Poldberg's best right-handed options from the bullpen. Thus far in 2009, the 5'11", 185 lb right-hander has appeared in 20 games out of the Northwest Arkansas bullpen, logging a 3-2 record with a 2.53 ERA. His five saves lead the team, and Holland has fanned 32 batters in 32 innings and limiting right-handed Texas League hitters to a paltry .239 average. The third-year pro was a tenth round selection by the Royals in 2007.

The Kansas City Royals also on Tuesday transferred catcher John Suomi to the Omaha Royals, their Triple-A Pacific Coast League affiliate.

The 28-year old from Toronto, Ontario, leaves Northwest Arkansas with a .311 average and 19 RBI in 37 games. His seven homers are the most ever hit by a Naturals catcher. Suomi was acquired this winter from the Philadelphia Phillies organization in the minor league portion of the Rule 5 draft.

Suomi's departure leaves the Naturals at 23 active players, one below the Texas League roster limit of 24.

The Northwest Arkansas Naturals are the Double-A Texas League affiliate of the Kansas City Royals and play at state-of-the-art Arvest Ballpark, located in Springdale. The Naturals have a toll-free ticket hotline (1-877-444-2637) for fans to purchase Naturals tickets. As well, the website, www.nwanaturals.com, offers fans the opportunity to purchase tickets online and avoid lines at the ticket windows by printing their tickets at home or at the office.

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