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Nik Turley turns in fine few days with Trenton Thunder

La Cañada Flintridge native ends 2012 season with strong postseason performance in Trenton.

September 22, 2012|By Andrew Shortall, andrew.shortall@latimes.com

The following are updates on local baseball players at the minor league level.

Nik Turley (La Cañada Flintridge native) starting pitcher, Trenton Thunder: Needing to win to keep their hopes of an Eastern League Championship alive, the Thunder turned the ball over to Turley in the fourth game of the best-of-five series with Trenton trailing the Akron Aeros in games, 2-1.

Turley, who graduated from Harvard Westlake, gave Trenton a chance to win, but didn't have the run support after he gave up three runs on seven hits and two walks through six innings. He also struck out eight batters in the 6-1 loss.

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Turley retired the side in order in the first, third and fourth innings but gave up two runs in the second on a one-out walk, triple and sacrifice fly. He gave up one more run in the fourth after he surrendered two straight singles to start the inning and gave up a one-out double for his final run of the day.

Although his stint with the Thunder only lasted nine games, as he was called up from the Tampa Yankees on Sept. 3, Turley certainly left an impression in Trenton. The 6-foot-6 left-hander drew comparisons to Andy Pettitte, according to an article in the Times of Trenton.

"I guess we're both tall, both lefties and have a good pickoff move,'' Turley told the Times of Trenton. "I can see why people would compare me to him. But growing up I didn't try to look like him. I just tried to be me. But if people want to compare me to Andy Pettitte then that's an honor. He was one of my favorite pitchers growing up."

Turley, who is listed as the Yankees 12th-ranked prospect on MLB.com, flashed his pickoff move Sept. 15 when he caught an Aeros baserunner leaning the wrong way at first base in the first inning.

Turley went 1-1 with a 4.91 ERA in the postseason with Trenton. He gave up 13 hits, six runs, five walks and struck out nine in 11 innings in the playoffs.

For the year — combining his numbers with Trenton and Tampa — Turley was 10-5 with a 3.00 ERA and 117 strike outs in 117 innings. Turley made 22 starts and had one shutout.

Christian Bergman (St. Francis High, 2006) starting pitcher, Modesto Nuts: Hope wasn't lost for the Nuts. Although Modesto trailed the Lancaster JetHawks, 2-0, in the best-of-three series coming into third game of the California League Championship on Saturday, it knew full well one victory could quickly lead to another with Bergman being saved for a possible game four, according to the Modesto Bee.

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