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Sweet-Swinging Reaves Signs with Wingnuts

March 19, 2018 - American Association (AA) - Wichita Wingnuts News Release

WICHITA, Kans. - The Wichita Wingnuts took steps to bolster the 2018 infield on Monday, announcing the signing of Jared Reaves.

Reaves comes to the Wingnuts after spending five seasons in the Detroit Tigers organization, having last played with High-A Lakeland in 2016. His professional debut came in 2012 after the Tigers selected him in the 25th Round of the MLB Draft out of the University of Alabama. Reaves was assigned to the Tigers short-season affiliate in Connecticut, hitting .240 with two home runs in 55 games and earning a promotion to Class-A West Michigan. The Eastman, Georgia, native also flashed the defensive ability that would become one of his calling cards, helping turn 36 double plays while fielding at a .967 clip as Connecticut's shortstop.

In 2013, Reaves started the year with West Michigan, but another strong performance with the bat and glove helped him finish the year with High-A Lakeland. For the season, the righty hit .272 with a career-best five homers and 37 RBI. His defensive versatility was on display as well, as Reaves split time at second base, third base, and shortstop during the 2013 campaign.

2014 offered Reaves the opportunity to spend the entire season at one level for the only time in his minor-league career. As Lakeland's everyday shortstop, Reaves hit .236 over 94 games. He repeated the level in 2015, producing a .253 average before earning a call-up to Double-A Erie for nine games. Injuries limited the 25-year old to just eight games with Lakeland in 2016, and the Tigers granted Reaves his release in March of 2017.

During his time in the Tigers organization, Reaves was teammates with former Wingnuts relievers Daniel Bennett and Gage Smith.

Reaves began his college career at Southern Union Community College, where he hit better than .400 in each of his two seasons with the Bisons. That success carried over into his first season with Alabama, as Reaves immediately established himself as the Crimson Tide's starting shortstop. In his first season in Tuscaloosa, Reaves hit .340 with 22 doubles, leading the team with 47 RBI. At the time, his 22 two-baggers ranked fourth all-time for single season doubles in program history. Reaves started every game at shortstop for Alabama again as a senior, hitting .316 and pacing the club with four home runs and 34 RBI.

Reaves's signing brings the number of Wingnuts players under contract for the 2018 season up to 18. American Association clubs may carry up to 28 players during spring training, which opens on May 6.

Stay up to date on all player signings and transactions by checking on the Wingnuts roster here.

The 11th season of Wingnuts baseball and the club's pursuit of an eighth consecutive division title kicks off with a three-game home series against the Kansas City T-Bones, beginning on Friday, May 18. For information on season tickets, group outings, and party packages, call the Wingnuts main office at (316) 264-NUTS, or visit the Wingnuts official website at www.wichitawingnuts.com.


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