NCAA Baseball Championship Regional vs Navy

Junior catcher Andrew Knizner fouls off a pitch in the Wolfpack's first game of the NCAA Regional Tournament against Navy at Doak Field in Raleigh on June 3, 2016.

With all three teams that MLB Pack Pros are currently playing for in the midst of pennant and wild card races, it’s been another exciting past few weeks for those keeping up with former NC State players in the big leagues. Despite cooling off a bit, Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop and second baseman Trea Turner is still lighting it up out west and Chicago White Sox left-handed pitcher Carlos Rodón is only continuing to add to his list of dominant starts this season.

Trea Turner, shortstop/second baseman, Los Angeles Dodgers

It’s gearing up to be a close race to the finish for the Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants in the National League West. The Dodgers currently sit two and a half games back, and Turner has continued to be a large part of what's keeping them in the pennant race.

Turner’s actually been in somewhat of a slump these past few weeks, batting .256/.313/.419 since the start of September compared to .319/.357/.473 throughout the month of August.

He recorded just three hits in the crucial series in San Francisco at the beginning of the month, but a solo shot in the first inning back on Sept. 4 provided the Dodgers some much-needed momentum for their lone win of the series.

Turner also hit a crucial sacrifice fly in extras the night before to score Walker Buehler and give the Dodgers the lead in the top of the 10th, but it was a game in which the Giants would ultimately come out on top.

With 15 games left in the regular season, it is more important now than ever for Turner to step up for his new team and close out what has been an incredibly successful 2021 campaign.

Carlos Rodón, left-handed pitcher, Chicago White Sox

Rodón has had two more successful outings since our last Pack Pros update.

He pitched five innings against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Sept. 1, giving up only one earned run while striking out five for the win. On Sept. 10 he pitched again, this time against the Boston Red Sox in another five-inning outing, letting up only three hits, one earned run and recording seven strikeouts.

With a history of injuries, the White Sox have been extra careful with Rodón as of late to ensure he’s in good health for the postseason as they currently lead their division by 13 games. He missed a start earlier in the month with a sore shoulder after his first September appearance, but he never quite made it to the injured list and was back in good health 10 days later with another spectacular performance.

Andrew Knizner, catcher, St. Louis Cardinals

Sitting just one game out of the wildcard spot, these past few weeks have been a frenzy for the Cardinals. Knizner has had six appearances so far in the month of September, and he’s actually been able to take advantage of a few opportunities and help St. Louis in a big way.

Most notably, he went 2 for 3 with a double and an RBI against Turner and the Dodgers back on Sept. 9 to help give the Cardinals the 2-1 win over Los Angeles.

Correspondent

I’m Rachel Umbach, a communication media major in the class of 2023. I joined the Technician in the fall of 2019.