Gators Down on the Farm: 7/23/12 continues its weekly “Gators Down on the Farm” feature, recapping how former Florida baseball players are performing in the professional ranks.

The big news this week was the career debut of former Florida Gators outfielder Preston Tucker. In just his second game of his career Tucker homered and five RBI.

Several other former Gators playing professional baseball had solid weeks as well.

Darren O’ Day (UF’05), pitcher Baltimore Orioles . O’Day appeared in one game last week and only faced one batter, whom he walked.

Mark Ellis (UF’99), infielder, Los Angeles Dodgers. In four games last week Ellis went 4-for-19 with two runs scored for the second place Dodgers.

David Ross (UF’98), catcher, Atlanta Braves. Ross appeared in five games last week, going 2-for-9 with a home run for the second place Braves.

The Gators are also well represented in the minor leagues as 16 former players sprinkled across various leagues.

Here is how they performed this past week:

Matt Laporta (UF’07), first baseman, Columbus Clippers, AAA, Indians. In three games last week Laporta went 1-for-12 with a double and two RBI for the second place Clippers.

Bryan Augenstein (UF’07), pitcher, Durham Bulls, AAA, Rays. Augenstein appeared in three games, giving up three earned runs over the three outings for the third place Bulls.

Cole Figueroa (UF’08), second baseman, Durham Bulls, AAA, Rays. In three games Figueroa went 6 for 10 with two doubles and three RBI’s for the Bulls.

Brian Jeroloman (UF’06), catcher, New Hampshire Fisher Cats, AA, Blue Jays. On the disabled list.

Matt Den Dekker (UF’10), outfielder, Buffalo Bisons AAA, Mets. Den Dekker played in six games last week, picking up five hits including a home run and seven RBI for the fourth place Bisons.

Kevin Chapman (UF’10), pitcher, Corpus Christi Hooks, AA, Royals. Chapman picked up a save last week while in less than a full inning of work for the Hooks.

Patrick Keating (UF’09), pitcher, Northwest Arkansas Naturals, AA, Royals. On the disabled list.

Bryson Smith (UF’11), outfielder, Pensacola Blue Wahoos, AA, Indians. In seven at-bats last week, Smith picked up two hits and a double for the first place Wahoos.

Ben McMahan (UF’11), catcher, Wisconsin Timber Rattlers, A, Brewers. McMahan appeared in five games last week going 7-for-21 with a home run and three RBI for the fifth place Rattlers.

Josh Adams (UF’11), infielder, Greensboro Grasshoppers, A, Marlins. In four games last week Adams picked up four hits in 13 at-bats with four doubles and three RBI.

Tommy Toledo (UF’11), pitcher, Brevard County Manatees, A, Brewers. In two games last week Toledo picked up a win while pitching three scoreless innings for the Manatees.

Alex Panteliodis (UF’11), pitcher, Savannah Sand Gnats, A, Mets. Panteliodis started one game last week, going six innings but picked up a loss for the sixth place Gnats.

Anthony DeScalfani (UF’11) , pitcher, Lansing Lugnuts, A, Blue Jays. In one start DeScalfani went six innings picking up his eighth win of the season while only giving up three runs in the start.

Nick Maronde (UF’11), pitcher, Inland Empire 66ers, A, Angels. In two games last week Maronde picked up a win in two starts for the fourth place 66ers.

Nolan Fontana (UF’12) shortstop, Lexington Legends, A, Astros. In four games Fontana was strong defensively and was 3-for-16 with a triple and three RBI for the Legends.

Daniel Pigott (UF’12) outfielder, Billings Mustangs, Rookie ball, Reds. Pigott did not appear in a game last week.

Steven Rodriguez (UF’12) pitcher, Great Lakes Loons, A, Dodgers. Rodriguez appeared in one game, pitching one inning and allowing just one hit for the Loons to pick up his first save as a professional.

Mike Zunino (UF’12) catcher, Everett Aqua Sox, A, Mariners. In six games last week Zunino went 9-for-22 with three home runs and three RBI while scoring six runs and having two doubles for the Aqua Sox.

Preston Tucker (UF’12) outfielder, Tri-City Valley Cats, A, Astros. Tucker had a home run and six RBI in his first four games for the Valley Catts.

Greg Larson (UF’12) pitcher, Lowell Spinners, A, Red Sox. In two games last week Larson had a loss in two outings.

This week’s Gator Country Player of the Week is Preston Tucker.

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Andrew Spivey
Andrew always knew he wanted to be involved with sports in some capacity. He began by coaching high school football for six years before deciding to pursue a career in journalism. While coaching, he was a part of two state semifinal teams in the state of Alabama. Given his past coaching experience, he figured covering recruiting would be a perfect fit. He began his career as an intern for, covering University of Florida football recruiting. After interning with Rivals for six months, he joined the Gator Country family as a recruiting analyst. Andrew enjoys spending his free time on the golf course and watching his beloved Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter at @AndrewSpiveyGC.