Cotton, Duvall, Saunders off to San Diego for MLB All-Star festivities

Photo courtesy of the Toronto Blue Jays
Photo courtesy of the Toronto Blue Jays

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (July 9, 2016) - Three former student-athletes from Region 8 are off to San Diego for Major League Baseball's All-Star Game festivities.

Former Miami Dade College standout Jharel Cotton will be the first to see action at Petco Park when he represents the World Team in MLB's All-Star Futures Game. 

Cotton, a prospect in the Los Angeles Dodgers farm system established himself during two seasons at Miami Dade, posting a 2.61 ERA and an 8-5 record in 21 starts. Following his sophomore season with the Sharks, the right-hander transferred to East Carolina University for two seasons before being selected by Los Angeles in the 20th round of the 2012 MLB Draft.

Climbing his way up the minor league ladder over the past four years, Cotton joined the Triple-A Oklahoma City Dodgers this season where he has a 7-4 record with a 4.58 ERA.

The MLB All-Star Futures Game will take place Sunday, July 10 and can be seen live on MLB Network beginning at 7 p.m. eastern. 

On Monday, July 11, MLB's annual Home Run Derby will feature Cincinnati Reds outfielder and former Chipola College standout Adam Duvall. 

Duvall played his sophomore season at Chipola before transferring to the University of Louisville.

Duvall is among the Major League leaders in home runs with 22. He also has a .249 batting average and 60 RBIs through 81 games. 

Following Monday's Home Run Derby, Duvall will make his All-Star Game debut on Tuesday as a reserve for the National League. 

Another Region 8 alum making his All-Star Game debut is Toronto Blue Jays outfielder and former Tallahassee Community College standout Michael Saunders. 

Saunders earned his way on to the AL squad on Friday after winning the American League's Final Vote contest with more than 17.7 million votes since the polls opened last Tuesday. 

Saunders played his freshman season at Tallahassee in 2005 then signed a professional contract wtih the Seattle Mariners. 

Through 79 games in 2016, Saunders is batting .298 with 16 home runs and 41 RBIs.

The Home Run derby will air on ESPN beginning at 8 p.m. eastern while the All-Star Game will be carried on Fox beginning at 7:30 p.m. eastern on Tuesday.