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Three Crawdads Earn South Atlantic League All-Star Nods

Minor League Baseball announced the league awards and All-Star teams for the South Atlantic League on Wednesday afternoon, with the ‘Dads being honored with several selections.

Abimelec Ortiz was not only named the first base All-Star, but also the league’s MVP, Chad Comer was selected Manager of the Year, and Josh Stephan was named an All-Star as a starting pitcher.

Ortiz, 21, joined the Crawdads in late May and had an instant impact in the lineup. He smacked 26 homeruns for the ‘Dads, leading all High-A hitters this season. He led the South Atlantic League with a .624 slugging percentage, was second in RBI (88), and tied for fifth in total bases (181).

Comer returned to the Crawdads for his third season, first as manager, after serving the 2015 season as a bench coach and the 2021 season as the hitting coach. His first season as skipper in the minors was a successful one, leading the Crawdads to a 70-55 record and a .560 winning percentage, which was the best in the league. He guided the team to the Crawdads longest ever win streak, reaching 15 games. The ‘Dads led the division from the first day of the second half through the end of the regular season, winning the second half Southern Division title and a ticket to the postseason.

Stephan, 21, had a masterful first half for the Crawdads, earning a promotion in early July to Double-A. In 12 games (11 starts), he was 6-3 with a 2.17 ERA, racking up 73 strikeouts to just 12 walks in 62.1 innings. He held opponents to a 1.75 batting average and set the Crawdads best-ever mark for WHIP (min 50 innings) with a 0.80.

The awards were voted on by South Atlantic League managers.