Beach Bums Sharpen Up The Infield

TRAVERSE CITY, MI — The Traverse City Beach Bums announce today the signing of utility player Evan Sharpley and infielder Hawkins Gebbers, former teammates with the Everett AquaSox. Photo of Evan Sharpley provided by and used with the permission of the University of Notre Dame.

Originally from Marshall, MI, Sharpley was drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the 2009 MLB June Amateur Draft. He started his rookie campaign with the Arizona League Mariners and finished the 2009 season hitting a .333 clip. He also posted seven homeruns, 29 RBI and stole five bases. In 2010 Sharpley was promoted to the Everett AquaSox, a low A affiliate of the Mariners. He appeared in 71 games for the AquaSox and finished the season with a .985 fielding percentage at third base. Offensively Sharpley hit .231 while driving in 42 runs and hit six homeruns. He had 23 extra base hits including several clutch hits during the AquaSox playoff run on the way to the Northwest League Championship.

A two sport athlete at Notre Dame, Sharpley excelled on and off the field. As a junior Sharpley hit .324 including 13 homeruns, 11 doubles and 40 RBI. He hit .260 for his career with a .528 slugging percentage and 18 homeruns. Sharpley finished his collegiate career as the only athlete in Notre Dame history to throw multiple touchdown passes and hit multiple homers in the same academic year.

"Sharpley can play either corner infield or corner outfield position and is athletic enough to be used as an emergency catcher, if necessary,” said Jason Wuerfel, Director of Baseball Operations “He gives us another guy on our roster that can play multiple positions and give [Beach Bums' Manager] Gregg [Langbehn] several options with the lineup. He is a left-handed hitter with power and should be a big run producer for us this summer."

Hawkins Gebbers joins the Beach Bums infield and former AquaSox teammate Evan Sharpley for the 2011 campaign. Gebbers was drafted in the 33rd round by the Seattle Mariners and spent parts of 2009 and 2010 with the Everett AquaSox. In 2009 Gebbers hit .301 while compiling 63 hits and 13 doubles. Gebbers spends most of his time at second base but has also seen action at third base, first base, and left field. In 2010 Gebbers started the season in Everett before being promoted to the Clinton LumberKings in the Midwest League where he played 19 games. During this time, he posted a .255 avg with 14 hits and 6 runs scored. He finished the season with the high A Mariners affiliate High Desert Mavericks seeing action in 8 games at second base.

Gebbers graduated in 2009 from Biola University in La Mirada, California. He started the season slow but wrapped up the year with a team-best .344 batting average. He also posted a team leading 15 home runs, 53 RBIs, 20 doubles and 49 runs scored. Gebbers was one of just a handful of GSAC players drafted and the lone representative from Biola.

"Gebbers is an athlete that can play anywhere on the infield, but we expect him to be our everyday shortstop,” said Director of Baseball Operations Jason Wuerfel. “Offensively, he is a gap-hitter and should fit our park well. Like a lot of the guys we have been lucky enough to sign this off-season, the reports are he is a quality-character guy and good in the clubhouse. We're excited to have him."

The Traverse City Beach Bums are members of the Frontier League, an independent baseball league with teams in seven Midwest states. The Beach Bums are entering their sixth season of play in 2011. Season tickets are now on sale. The Beach Bums will be playing their season opener at Wuerfel Park on a FANtastic Fireworks Friday, May 27, 2011. First pitch will be at 7:05 p.m. with gates opening an hour prior. Please phone 231-943-0100 for more information.

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