July 2, 2009
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Former All-American wide receiver and 2006 MLB fifth round draft choice Jeff Samardzija was recently called back up to the Chicago Cubs big league roster. Samardzija and Cubs' teammate Aaron Heilman, along with Craig Counsell of the Milwaukee Brewers and Brad Lidge of the Philadelphia Phillies, give Notre Dame four former monogram winners on MLB rosters.
Samardzija opened the season with the Cubs, but was sent down in May to Class AAA after six appearances with an 8.10 ERA. He made 13 appearances, 12 starts, with a 5-3 record and 3.72 ERA with the Iowa Cubs. Samardzija has made one outing out of the Chicago bullpen since the promotion. He tossed a scoreless inning of relief on June 30.
Heilman has made 32 appearances out of the Cubs bullpen, third most of any Chicago reliever. He owns a 2-3 record with a 3.89 ERA in 34.2 innings of work. Heilman has fanned 31, walked 23 and surrendered 15 earned runs on 33 hits.
Counsell has seen action in 62 games for the NL Central leading Brewers. He is hitting .298 with 10 doubles, four triples, two home runs and 14 RBI. Counsell has added 29 runs scored, 20 walks and two stolen bases.
Lidge, who failed to blow a save during the entire 2008 regular and postseason, recently returned from a knee injury that left the all-star closer on the DL. He is currently 0-3 with a 7.57 ERA in 30 games. Lidge has registered 14 saves in 20 opportunities. He has fanned 28, walked 17 and yielded 36 hits in 27.1 innings of work. Since returning from the DL, Lidge has allowed two earned runs on three hits in 1.1 innings.