WEYMOUTH, Mass. (July 7, 2023) -- With more than a month of baseball in the 2023 summer season in the books, the Futures League has recognized its PLÁKATA! Bats Player of the Month and 78 Sports Pitcher of the Month for May/June.
Drury University shortstop Tyler Bastunas and University of Massachusetts pitcher Max LeBlanc of the league-leading Worcester Bravehearts are the winners of the respective awards.
Sparking the Worcester offense right from the May 24 season opener, Bastunas compiled a .410 average with a whopping 43 hits (more than halfway to league’s single-season total), 27 runs scored and 26 stolen bases over his first 29 games of the summer. The native of Lake Saint Louis, Mo., started the summer with four consecutive multi-hit games before turning in back-to-back four-hit games and Futures League Player of the Night honors following his first two games of June. As of Friday, Bastunas remained the league leader in batting average, runs scored, hits, walks, on-base percentage, stolen bases, at-bats and games played.
LeBlanc has made the most of his second time around as a Braveheart, going 3-0 with a 1.44 ERA over 25 innings of work to begin the summer. The 6-foot-6 right-hander from Sharon, Mass., worked two shutout frames in a relief appearance before jumping right into the starting rotation and allowing just one earned run over his first two starts combined. LeBlanc posted starts with nine and eight strikeouts during the first month, the former of which was scoreless on June 27 against New Britain. His 37 strikeouts in 25 innings led the league in May/June, a span that included a pair of scoreless starts.
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