Taylor Whitenton is currently going through one of his best stretches of the season. The former Heritage stand out, now in his fourth season in the New York Mets organization, through July 20 had seven consecutive scoreless appearances out of the bullpen of the Single-A St. Lucie Mets of the Florida State League.
In those seven appearances, Whitenton, a right-handed pitcher, has allowed just three hits and four walks while striking out 11 in 10 innings pitched.
Whitenton needed just one pitch to record his third save in St. Lucie's 7-3 win over the Brevard County Manatees on July 15, then struck out the side in his inning of work against the Manatees two days later.
His season numbers have been excellent as well. Whitenton -- who was drafted out of Heritage in the 40th round (1,205th overall) of the 2007 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft, then went to Darton College for two years and was taken in the 39th round (1,184th overall) by the Mets in the 2009 draft -- is 6-2 with a 2.06 ERA (10 earned runs in 43 IP). The 6-3, 190-pounder has 51 strike outs, which is second on the team among relievers.
Austin remains on DL
While Whitenton shines for St. Lucie, another former Heritage star, Tyler Austin, remains on the disabled list. The Tampa Yankees outfielder, who injured his ankle sliding into second trying to break up a double play, hasn't played since July 3.
Austin, who missed the Futures Game during Major League Baseball's All-Star Week earlier this month after being hit in the head with a pitch, said on his Twitter feed he expects to be off the disabled list soon.