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Wingnuts Lose Perez to Mexican League, Add Derke

July 4, 2018 - American Association (AA) - Wichita Wingnuts News Release

WICHITA, Kan. - One of the realities of independent baseball is the possibility of losing talented players to higher levels, forcing clubs to adjust on the fly. The Wichita Wingnuts experienced that phenomena this week, as the team announced that infielder Fernando Perez has signed with the Tijuana Toros of the Mexican League and first baseman Graylin Derke has been acquired from the Vallejo Admirals of the Pacific Association.

Perez was with the Wingnuts for 28 games, hitting .262 with eight home runs and 23 RBI. Playing both corner infield spots, Perez notched a base hit in each of his last seven games, including a two-homer game versus the Winnipeg Goldeyes on June 27. Averaged out over the course of a full 100-game regular season, Perez was on pace to hit 29 homers and drive in 82 runs.

The 23-year old Derke (pronounced DIRK-ee) comes to the Wingnuts via the Vallejo Admirals of the Pacific Association, acquired in exchange for a player to be named later. Derke was hitting .340 with seven doubles, six home runs and 37 RBI through his first 24 games with Vallejo, on the heels of a 2017 campaign that produced a .302/.395/.445 slash line. That performance helped the Admirals to a second half championship in the Pacific Association, completing a worst-to-first turnaround and earning a spot in the league title game.

Derke made his professional debut with the White Sands Pupfish of the Pecos League in 2016, blasting six doubles and seven home runs in just 29 games. His collegiate career spanned four seasons at NAIA Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California, producing a .312 combined average and 83 RBI for the Warriors.

The Wingnuts continue their series with the Saltdogs on Wednesday, with Charlie Gillies (3-1, 3.42) going up against fellow righty Tyler Herron (4-4, 6.87). First pitch is scheduled for 6:05 PM, and will be broadcast on 1410 AM/93.9 FM KGSO, TuneIn and

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

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