Baseball alums go pro in Big Apple

Former Wolverine ace Nik Turley ’08 and second baseman Josh Satin ’03 have begun their professional baseball careers in New York. Both were drafted in this year’s MLB Amateur Draft by the Yankees and the Mets, respectively.

Turley, who started in last year’s 20-inning playoff loss, originally committed to Brigham Young University at the start of his senior year. To lure him away from college, the Bronx outfit went over slot – the amount of money Major League Baseball suggests that teams pay for a certain pick – and gave him a 6-figure signing bonus. Turley has joined the Gulf Coast League Yankees (a low level minor league organization). In eight innings pitched thus far, Turley has a 2-1 record. He has only let in one run and has struck out 13 batters.

In his final year of high school baseball, Turley proved to be the ace of the Wolverine pitching staff. He had a 1.88 ERA in 11 starts. It was rumored that the Yankees were going to draft him earlier, but feared that he would choose to go to college. The Yankees also agreed to pay $60,000 for Turley to go to BYU in the offseason.

Varsity Coach Matt LaCour got a chance to talk to him before he left. The Turley family invited the Wolverine coaching staff over after the decision was made.

“I did talk to Nik and his parents quite often during the process. I have already told Nik everything I felt I should,” LaCour said. “He will be fine.”

Satin was selected in the sixth round of the first year Major League Baseball player draft by the New York Mets and reported to short season single A Brooklyn after signing a five figure signing bonus.

Satin was a four year starter at second base for University of California Berkeley, earning first team All-American honors from Baseball America in his senior season.

Satin had a walk off home run in his last home game against UCLA to send the Golden Bears to the playoffs, and hit for a .379 batting average with 18 home runs and 47 runs batted in for Cal.

At Harvard-Westlake, Satin led the Wolverines to the State Championship game while hitting for a .478 average with 10 home runs. He was named to the All CIF Southern Section 1st team and the Los Angeles Times All-Region team. Satin entered his name into the 2007 draft but was not selected, and had to deal with injuries throughout his college career.

“[Being drafted] was the best feeling in the world,” he said. “All the work of the last 21 years of my life had finally paid off. My dream of being a pro finally came true.”

Satin has also had dealt with obstacles in Brooklyn, spending two weeks on the disabled list with a knee sprain and being demoted to rookie ball for three games.

“The hardest part of the adjustment for me has been having to play every day instead of just three times a week like in college,” he said. “The daily grind is really difficult.”

However, after hitting for a .583 average with a home run in rookie ball, Satin was sent back up to Brooklyn where he has hit for a .254 average with four home runs and 12 runs batted in 38 games.