Sept. 4, 2008
LOS ANGELES, Calif. -
Former Lion Josh Whitesell (2001-03) made his Major League Baseball debut for the Arizona Diamondbacks against the St. Louis Cardinals on Tuesday. Whitesell appeared as a pinch-hitter for Arizona before St. Louis claimed an 8-2 victory in the game.
Whitesell, who was originally drafted in the sixth round of the 2003 MLB Draft by the Montreal Expos, is completing his sixth year in professional baseball. Over 127 games played in 2008 for the Tucson Sidewinders, Arizona's Triple-A affiliate in the Pacific Coast League, Whitesell batted .328 with 86 runs scored, 36 doubles, 26 home runs and 110 RBI. He was slugging .568 and reaching base at a .425 clip prior to his call-up. In nearly six seasons in the Minor Leagues, Whitesell amassed a .283 batting average with 339 runs scored, 374 walks, four triples, 105 home runs and 379 RBI.
As a player at LMU from 2001-03, the Rialto, Calif. native, found time both on the mound and at the plate for the Lions. Whitesell garnered second team All-West Coast Conference accolades in 2003, his junior year in Crimson and Navy. In that season, he batted .340 with 41 runs scored, 19 doubles, a team-high 15 home runs and team-best 47 RBI en route to a .735 slugging percentage. He also made 12 appearances from the bump for the Lions, contributing 17.2 innings of work.
Over the three-year stint on the bluff, Whitesell played in 153 games for the Lions, including 33 appearances (10 starts) on the mound. A .319 career hitter, he tallied 92 runs scored, 37 doubles, 25 home runs and 103 RBI to the tune of a .551 career slugging percentage.
After a travel day for the team on Thursday, Whitesell and the Diamondbacks will return to action on Friday in Los Angeles as Arizona and the Dodgers meet in the first game of a crucial three-game series with playoff implications on the line.