Former Greenbrier High School star Nolan Belcher has continued to do what he does best this summer: get batters out.
The southpaw was dominant at the 18-and-under national championships earlier this month. Playing for the Savannah-based Line Drive team, Belcher sparkled in his two starts during the tournament.
First he won a pitchers' duel with 2009 top prospect Jacob Mayers as Line Drive defeated Mayers' Richmond Braves, 2-1. Belcher went the distance, yielding just three hits and striking out 14 of the 21 outs for the game.
Belcher's second start came in the first round of the playoffs. It would have been a lot to ask for the lefty to pitch any better than he did in his previous outing, but as he has done throughout his brilliant amateur career, he found a way to top himself once again.
Belcher completely shut down the Brevard Aces in a 4-0 Line Drive win. The University of South Carolina signee tossed a no-hitter, striking out 13 and walking just one. Also, he picked off the lone base runner he allowed to face the minimum of 21 batters for the game.
Poythress off to hot start in the Cape Cod League
I recently did an update of how the top county baseball products were faring in their respective college summer leagues. At the time, former Greenbrier standout Rich Poythress was just wrapping up his season with the University of Georgia and was planning to take a few weeks off to nurse an injured wrist.
Poythress left for Cape Cod the day I wrote the story. Since then, he has swung the bat pretty well.
The 6-foot-3, 240-pounder is hitting .364 through 10 games. He also boasts an on-base percentage of .512.
Poythress is trying to make the transition to the hot corner this summer. He will likely play third base for the Bulldogs next season, and he has made six starts at third for the Orleans Cardinals, his Cape Cod league team. He also has a couple of starts at first base, and he has yet to make an error this summer at either position.
Now he would like to increase his power numbers. He has yet to go deep in his 33 at bats, but the team only has 13 home runs in 790 at bats, and no one on the team has more than three dingers in the team's 24 games.
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