RICHMOND, Va. – The VCU Baseball program has been a pipeline to the pros over the last decade, and the story is no different in 2013. Four former Rams, Brandon Inge (Pittsburgh Pirates), Sean Marshall (Cincinnati Reds), Scott Sizemore (Oakland Athletics) and Cody Eppley (New York Yankees), have made 2013 opening day rosters.
VCU's four big league players on opening day rosters, is the second-most out of the 13 Virginia state schools. The Black and Gold is also one of three programs in the state (Virginia and Old Dominion) that has more than one big leaguer on an opening day roster to start the season.
Brandon Inge- INF- Pittsburgh Pirates
Brandon Inge is entering his 13th major league season and his first with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Inge, who was an all star in 2009, has over 1,000 career hits and an average of .238. The Lynchburg, Va. native is starting the season on the 15-day DL after injuring his shoulder when he was hit by a pitch in spring training. Inge made a name for himself in the big leagues while playing his first 10-plus seasons with the Detroit Tigers. After being released, Inge spent 2012 with the Oakland Athletics, helping them to the American League West crown.
Sean Marshall – LHP – Cincinnati Reds
Sean Marshall is entering his eighth season in the big leagues and second season with the Reds. Marshall has thrown nearly 600 innings in his career, with 365 appearances, 513 strikeouts, 16 saves and a 3.51 ERA. The Richmond, Va. native was traded from the Chicago Cubs to Cincinnati prior to the start of last season. In his first season with the Reds, Marshall was a force out of the bullpen, collecting a career-high nine saves, while helping Cincinnati to the National League Central title.
Scott Sizemore – INF – Oakland Athletics
Scott Sizemore, who missed last season with a torn ACL, is in the mix for the second base starting job in his third big league season. Sizemore was traded to Oakland prior the start of last season, but suffered the ACL injury in the first week of spring training. The Virginia Beach, Va. native has spent parts of two season in the big leagues with a .239 average (122-for-368), hitting nine doubles, five home runs, and 18 RBIs.
Cody Eppley – RHP – New York Yankees
Cody Eppley is entering his second season in the New York Yankees' bullpen. Eppley, who made his big league debut with the Texas Rangers in 2011, had a breakout year last year in pinstripes. The Dillsburg, Pa. native pitched in 59 games, and threw 46 innings. He finished the year with a 1-2 record, a 3.33 ERA and 32 strikeouts. Eppley helped the Yankees to the American League East title, as well as a berth in the American League Championship Series.
The Major League Baseball season opened on Sunday, March 31 with a game between the Texas Rangers and Houston Astros game. All four former Rams open their 2013 seasons on Monday, April 1.