Kinston, NC – Newport native and West Carteret High School Alum Lonnie Chisenhall will start the 2009 season with the Kinston Indians. Chisenhall was the first round draft pick (29th Overall) of the Cleveland Indians in the 2008 June draft. Chisenhall hit .410 with just eight strikeouts in 218 plate appearances with Pitt Community College last year. After being drafted, Chisenhall hit .290 with five homeruns and 45 RBI in 68 games at Short Season Mahoning Valley last season. Chisenhall is currently ranked as the sixth best prospect in the Cleveland Indians system by Baseball America.
At West Carteret High School, Chisenhall was a two-time North Carolina all-state selection. Chisenhall batted .574 his senior year with nine home runs and 37 RBI. In 2006 Chisenhall earned second team high school All-American honors by Baseball America. He was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in round 11 of the 2006 draft, but did not sign.
The K-Tribe also welcomes former North Carolina Tar Heel Tim Fedroff to the 2009 Indians. The New Jersey native was an All-American in 2008 batting .404 with 78 runs, 12 home runs and 71 RBI. Fedroff was drafted in the seventh round last season and is currently ranked as the 23rd best prospect in Cleveland’s system by Baseball America.
Fedroff hit .319 in 23 games with Mahoning Valley last season
South Mecklenburg Alum Ryan Morris was drafted out of the Charlotte High School in the fourth round of the 2006 draft. Morris went 9-7 with a 3.76 ERA in Low A Lake County last season. He’ll be joined by other first time K-Tribers Zach Putnum (RHP) and Cord Phelps (2B) both ranked as top 25 prospects in Cleveland’s system. Other K-Tribe newcomers include Matt Brown, Ronald Rivas, Garrison Campfield, Dallas Cawiezell and Eric Berger. Chen-Chang Lee, one of the top amateur pitchers in Taiwan, will make his professional debut with Kinston this season.
The Indians will be a great mix of newcomers and veterans as 13 players who spent some of 2008 in a K-Tribe uniform will start the 2009 season in Kinston. The group of returnees will be anchored by lefty pitcher Kelvin de la Cruz rated as the seventh best prospect in the system by Baseball America. Matt McBride, Jason Denham, Cristo Arnal, Alex Castillo, Richard Martinez, Jeanmar Gomez, Roman Pena, Lucus Montero, Heath Taylor, Matt Meyer, Josh Judy and Adam Davis will all return for Kinston.
Your first chance to see the Kinston Indians takes place Tuesday as the K-Tribe hosts the defending NCAA Division II National Champions from Mount Olive College. The exhibition game starts at 7pm at Historic Grainger Stadium. The K-Tribe opens the regular season with an 11 game homestand on Thursday, April 9th at 7pm against the Winston-Salem Dash.
The Indians play 18 of their first 21 games at Historic Grainger Stadium. To purchase and print your tickets on-line go to the K-Tribe’s Official Website at www.kinstonindians.com or call the front office at 1-800-334-5467.