Josh McElwee promoted to Myrtle Beach Pelicans

Josh McElwee promoted to Myrtle Beach Pelicans
Monday, August 27, 2012 | by Andrews native skips from short season A to high-A

MYRTLE BEACH - Newberry College alumnus and 2012 20th round draft Josh McElwee has been promoted within the Texas Rangers organization to the high-A Myrtle Beach Pelicans for the remainder of the season.

This is a special call-up for McElwee, as the Pelicans' stadium is less than 60 miles from his hometown of Andrews. He also skipped levels with this promotion, jumping past the low-A Hickory Crawdads.

Also, with this promotion, McElwee is the only 2012 draftee on the Pelicans' roster and will finish the season as the highest-assigned 2012 draftee within the Rangers' organization.

McElwee is also the second former Newberry player to make the Pelicans' roster, as Thomas Berryhill played for Myrtle Beach in 2010 when the Pelicans were an affiliate of the Atlanta Braves organization.

McElwee's promotion comes at a crucial time for the Pelicans' season, as they clinched a spot in the Carolina League playoffs on Sunday, McElwee's first full day on the roster. McElwee's only regular season home appearances for the season will come on Labor Day weekend, as the Pelicans host the Lynchburg Hillcats on Saturday-Monday, September 1-3, to close the season.

McElwee wrapped up his time in Spokane with a 1-2 record and 3.67 ERA with a team-leading seven saves, which ties for fourth in the Northwest League. He pitched 27.0 innings with 35 strikeouts and only six walks and 26 hits.

In his collegiate career, McElwee was named honorable mention all-Southeast Region by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association and graduated cum laude from Newberry in May with a bachelor of science in business administration.

He was a first team all-South Atlantic Conference selection and finished his senior season with a 5-4 record and a 3.99 earned run average, striking out 97 batters in 79.0 innings pitched. He was twice named the SAC Pitcher of the Week and ranked eighth nationally in strikeouts per nine innings and 16th in the nation in strikeouts. He also hit .273 with a homerun and 20 RBIs as an infielder.

He was the first South Atlantic Conference player picked in this year's draft and third from the Southeast Region of Division II.

McElwee was only the fourth first team all-SAC selection for Newberry since joining the league in 1997. He is Newberry's all-time strikeout leader with 318 punchouts. In his career he notched a 17-12 record with one save, four complete games and a 3.86 earned run average. Opposing batters only hit .257 against him in 263.1 innings over 51 appearances.

He was the 15th Newberry player picked in the MLB Draft since Johnny Harbin was picked in the first round of the 1972 Draft by the Dodgers. He was the second Newberry player drafted into the Rangers organization and the first since Don Hager in 1979.