Johnson Highlights List of Former Argonauts in Minor League Baseball
Former Argo Pitcher Promoted to Angelsí Triple-A Team
PENSACOLA, Fla. – Former University of West Florida baseball star Kevin Johnson leads a list of nine Argonauts currently in professional baseball at the minor league level. Johnson was recently promoted to the Los Angeles Angels’ Triple-A affiliate, the first Argonaut to make it to the Triple-A level since pitcher Greg Beck in 1999.
Johnson, a Pensacola native and graduate of West Florida High School, pitched for UWF in 2009-10. The right-hander recently made his Double-A debut for the Arkansas Travelers of the Texas League on April 5, and after two appearances he quickly earned a promotion to Triple-A Salt Lake. After being drafted by the Angels in the 20th round in 2010, Johnson holds a 4.55 ERA in 67 appearances and 10 starts in three years in the minors.
Outfielders Dustin Lawley and Greg Pron, teammates on the Argonauts’ 2011 national championship team, are back in Savannah to start the year with the New York Mets’ Single-A affiliate in the South Atlantic League. Both players have seen action in seven games for the Sand Gnats, and Lawley is off to a hot start, batting .333 with a double and three RBIs. Lawley was a 19th round pick by the Mets last year after a two-year stint with the Argos, and Pron was a 42nd round pick after a four-year career at Jim Spooner Field.
Former Argonaut pitcher John Church started the year on the roster for the New York Mets’ Single-A affiliate in St. Lucie in the Florida State League, and he has logged two relief appearances so far this year. Church played for UWF one season in 2009 before being drafted by the Mets in the 23rd round. In four years in the Mets system, Church holds an ERA of 3.57 in 95 appearances in 14 starts.
Four other players from UWF’s national championship team in 2011 are currently in minor league systems, but they are on rosters for short season teams with schedules starting in June. Infielder Brandon Brewer and pitcher Daniel Vargas-Vila are on the Los Angeles Angels’ Single-A Orem Owlz roster to start the year, pitcher Ben Hawkins will return to pitch for the Washington Nationals’ Single-A Auburn Doubledays, and Zach Jadofsky is slated to return to pitch for the Atlanta Braves’ Single-A Gulf Coast League affiliate.
Jason Postill, signed by the Arizona Diamondbacks last summer after finishing his time with the Argonauts, will start the 2012 season pitching for the independent Normal CornBelters of the Frontier League.
UWF has had one former player reach the major leagues, pitcher Mark Ettles. Ettles was drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the 33rd round of the 1989 draft, and he appeared in 14 games for the San Diego Padres in 1993, his one season in the majors. For information on all former Argonauts in professional baseball, visit the Argos in the Pros page at www.GoArgos.com.
Baseball-Reference.com Player Profiles:
Brandon Brewer (IF)
John Church (RHP)
Ben Hawkins (LHP)
Zach Jadofsky (RHP)
Kevin Johnson (RHP)
Dustin Lawley (OF)
Jason Postill (RHP)
Greg Pron (OF)
Daniel Vargas-Vila (RHP)