Our winner from yesterday is Rick Spiers; he’ll move on to face Gunnar McNeill in the next round.

Today, we have one of the best VBLers I’ve ever seen in person, Cory Spangenberg (Winchester 2010), against Brandon Murray (Waynesboro 2012)!

  • Cory Spangenberg, the MVP of the league in ’10, hit .399/.463/.527 in 203 at-bats that summer for the Royals, with 15 doubles, a triple, three home runs, a 24/27 BB/K ratio, and 21 stolen bases. Spangenberg joined the league the summer after his freshman year, hich he spent at VMI. (And crushed it there, too, hitting .370/.409/.596 in 235 at-bats, with 62 runs scored, 14 doubles, three triples, 11 home runs, 49 RBIs, 14/45 BB/K ratio, and 24 stolen bases.) He was in the middle of transferring, though, and his summer performance helped him land at Indian River State College in Florida. After his sophomore year in 2011, the San Diego Padres drafted him 10th overall, and thus began his pro career. He reached the major leagues in 2014, and has now spent parts of six seasons at the game’s highest level. In 419 games and 1,250 at-bats in the majors, he’s hit .256/.315/.389, with 49 doubles, 15 triples, 29 home runs, a 99/374 BB/K ratio, and 34 stolen bases. He played 2019 in the Milwaukee Brewers’ system, and is currently a free agent. (By the way, he might be a traditonal “tweener,” in that he’s too good to stay in Triple-A, but struggles to get time in the majors. He’s hit .301/.362/.433 in 2,100 minor league at-bats.)
  • Brandon Murray defeated Robby Campbell (a whopping 8-2) to get to this matchup. His previous writeup: “Brandon Murray was the second best hitter in the 2012 Waynesboro General lineup (the best one is in this bracket), as he hit .344/.410/.631 in 160 total at-bats. He added 32 runs scored, five doubles, a triple, 13 home runs, 41 RBIs, and a 14/39 BB/K ratio, and ATVL named him the 6th best hitter in the league. The Generals went 31-13 that summer, winning the South Division title but losing in the league semi-finals. Murray played for the College of Charleston all four years in college. He was not drafted, but played a season in the independent Frontier League in 2017, hitting .256/.312/.461 in 219 at-bats, with 11 home runs.”

Vote by going to twitter.com/JohnATVL.

And by the way, if you want to read a ton about either the 2015 or 2019 VBL season, be sure to check out the 2019 Valley League Annual!