Welcome to Appy Astros, a blog dedicated to following current & former Greeneville Astros, the Appalachian League affiliate of the Houston Astros. Here you will find reports on current G-Stros, updates on the development of former G-Stros and occasionally an update on what has happened to the guys who have hung up their spikes.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Niddifer Heads Back To Lex, J. D. Gets More Hardware & Devon Torrance Update

Marcus Niddifer went to college in Lexington at the University of Kentucky. Now it looks like he might become the first former UK player to wear the L2 of the Legends. The UK athletics blog published a story on him this week. Here are the highlights:

On the move from catcher to first:
"I tell you what, playing first base is a lot easier on your body," Nidiffer said. "I feel fresh every day. It's not as much wear and tear on your body like catching is. Catching is just a whole different position, a whole different mindset. At first base you may get a groundball every four innings and catching you're in every pitch. It certainly makes hitting a lot easier."

On the pride the UK coaches take in Marcus' success:
"A lot of us get a lot of pride in seeing Marcus be successful," UK assistant coach and offensive coordinator Brian Green said. "Marcus and I had a really special relationship and watching him do what he did in the minor leagues was really enjoyable for me. Marcus deserves to be successful, he is a good person, he was a great Wildcat and he was a leader. He showed up every day, he played hurt, he gave it his all on a daily basis. I wasn't surprised, but at the same time I was. I was fired up to see him do what he did."

His assessment of Niddifer's character was shared by those around the team here in Greeneville as well. He appeared to be a genuinely good teammate and person.

More Hardware for J. D.
In other news from Lexington, the Lexington Herald Leader is reporting that J. D. Martinez has been awarded a George M. Trautman Award as South Atlantic League Player of the Year. This award is given by the Topps baseball card company. If I am not mistaken, he is the first Astros farm hand to win a Trautman since Mitch Einertson did it back in 2004.

Devon Torrence Update
It looks like the move to pause his minor league career and focus on Ohio State football is working out pretty well for Torrence. The Morning Journal had this feature on him recently. The main gist is that he is getting better as a corner back and hoping he can get a shot at the NFL. He indicates the door isn't closed on baseball but it sounds like a fall back in stead of plan A. I am sure struggling for two years in the Appy might have played a role in that line of thinking.

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