Huskies Continue to Chase Major-League Dreams

The News Magazine of HCU

Huskies Continue to Chase Major-League Dreams

HBU right-handed pitcher Kyle Gruller (’19) agreed to terms to sign a free-agent contract with Major League Baseball’s Houston Astros on June 15.

“A big thanks to the Astros for giving me this opportunity and thank you to everyone who has helped me get to where I am today! All glory to God! Go ‘Stros,” Gruller said.

Gruller was 1-2 with a 2.70 ERA and 36 strikeouts in 23.1 innings across four starts before the rest of the HBU season was canceled. He ranked third in the Southland Conference in strikeouts and eighth with a .175 opponent batting average. Gruller also posted a 3.96 GPA to earn CoSIDA Academic All-District and Southland Conference All-Academic Team honors.

©Juan DeLeon Studio

The Cypress, Texas, native allowed one run on four hits and struck out six in 6.2 innings to earn the victory in the series clincher against Sam Houston State in his last start on March 7. Gruller struck out nine in 4.2 innings in the season opener at No. 3 Texas Tech and nine in six innings at Cal Baptist. He fanned 12, one shy of his career high, in six innings against Ball State.

Gruller was a Preseason All-Southland Conference First Team selection, after earning all-conference third team honors as a junior. In 2019, he made 12 starts, going 3-3, ranking second in the league with a 2.18 ERA, third with a .207 opponent batting average, sixth with 85 strikeouts and did not allow more than three earned runs in any appearance. He gave up one run on four hits and struck out a career-high 13 in eight innings to notch a victory over Abilene Christian.

In August, former HBU right-handed pitcher Addison Russ (’17) was traded to the New York Yankees from the Philadelphia Phillies and is now in the Yankees’ 60-player available player pool taxi squad. In his three seasons in the minor leagues, Russ is 15-10 with a 2.48 ERA, 50 saves and 200 strikeouts in 152.2 innings.

Former Huskies outfielder Zach Nehrir (’15) is playing for the Milwaukee Milkmen in the independent American Association. He has played in all 45 games and is hitting .226 with two home runs, three doubles, 15 RBIs, 22 runs and eight stolen bases.