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Seton Hill pitcher Neal McDermott named a Futures League all-star

Bill Beckner Jr.
| Friday, July 13, 2018, 4:18 p.m.

Neal McDermott was as much a lock to be an all-star in the Futures League as he is to save a game for the Bristol Blues.

Case closed.

McDermott, the former Greensburg Central Catholic pitcher who will be a sophomore at Seton Hill in the fall, leads the collegiate summer league in strikeouts (36) and saves (11) and carries a penny-pinching ERA of 1.47.

His efforts earned him a spot on the Team Dodgers (Campanella) roster for the Futures League All-Star Game set for Tuesday night at Holman Stadium in Nashua, N.H.

“It’s exciting and it’s good to have,” Bristol manager Ronnie Palmer told the New Britain Herald regarding McDermott’s abilities. “You call on him wherever and whenever. There’s this air of confidence around him, even though he has this ‘kid next door’ mentality. He just does what he has to do. It’s great to watch.”

McDermott (1-0) has allowed just seven hits and three earned runs in 18 1/3 innings for Bristol, which tops the league with 298 strikeouts.

Teammate Jared Kollar also has added to the K’s total, fanning 35, which ranks tied for second behind McDermott. A starter, he is 3-1 with a 4.55 ERA. He also will be a sophomore at Seton Hill.

The local pair have had a strong summer with the Blues. Both have shown their propensity to work counts, get out of jams and help win games.

Kollar was a WPIAL and PIAA champion with Latrobe two years ago.

“He’s got a routine that he follows to the T,” Palmer said of Kollar. “Even in between his starts, he has a plan and process all of the time. I think some of his inconsistencies are simply because he was a true freshman this season. He also may be getting a bit tired after the college season. But I’ve been really impressed with him, especially for such a young kid.”

Bristol is 20-16 and in third place, 4.5 games behind the Marthas Vineyard Sharks (23-10).

Bill Beckner is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Bill at bbeckner@tribweb.com or via Twitter @BillBeckner.

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