Boomers Sign California League Standout

Thursday, April 5, 2018
by Drew Winter

SCHAUMBURG, IL - The Schaumburg Boomers, presented by Wintrust Community Banks, have signed 1B Austin Byler, OF Danny Pardo, and RHP Mitch Schulewitz to the roster for the upcoming 2018 season.

Byler, 25, played last season for the Visalia Rawhide, a Class A – Advanced team of the Arizona Diamondbacks, of the California League (CAL). The first baseman had a great year for the Rawhide as he finished second in the league in hits (109) and RBIs (66) and first in the league in doubles (31), triples (5), and runs scored (64). Not only did he show he could hit when he stepped in the batter’s box, but he also showed great discipline when at the plate as he finished second in walks in the CAL in 2016 with 42.

The Peoria, AZ native attended the University of Nevada-Reno where he ranks in the top 10 in program history in home runs (4th, 39), walks (5th, 115), triples (5th, 11), games played (6th, 209), at bats (7th, 757), doubles (7th, 50), runs (8th, 180) and hits (8th, 242).  He was drafted in the 2015 MLB Draft by the Washington Nationals, but instead decided to return for his senior season. Byler was on the midseason watch list for the USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award which is given annually to the best amateur baseball player in the United States and sponsored by the Major League Baseball Players Association. In his senior season Byler batted .325 with 62 hits, 50 RBIs, 66 runs scored, and 13 homeruns on his way to being a semifinalist for the Dick Howser Trophy, which is given to the national college baseball player of the year. After a stellar senior season, the first baseman was drafted in the 11th round of the 2015 MLB Draft by the Arizona Diamondbacks. In his first year for the Missoula Osprey, a Rookie Advanced team of the Diamondbacks in Montana, Byler batted .298 with 68 hits, 22 doubles, 5 triples, and a league leading 15 HR’s. The first baseman also led the league with 57 RBIs, 59 runs scored, and 50 walks to go along with a .422 on base percentage and a 1.058 OPS. Byler has spent time with Missoula (Rookie Advanced) , Kane County (Class A), and Visalia (Class A – Advanced) and has had a career batting average of .259, .343 OBP, .454 SLG, and .797 OPS in 3 years in the minors.

Pardo, 22, will be making his professional debut this upcoming season. He last played for the Willmar Stingers of the Northwoods League (NWL) in 2016. While with the Stingers, Pardo finished first in the NWL in hits (95), on base percentage (.485), and runs scored (75). Pardo was a phenomenal hitter for Willmar as he finished second in the NWL in batting average hitting .360 while also showing discipline at the plate as he got walked a league high 61 times. Not only was Pardo a great hitter, but he also was a great baserunner for the Stingers after finishing tied for third in the NWL with 27 stolen bases in 30 attempts.

The Pembroke Pines, FL native began his collegiate career at Campbell University in Buies Creek, NC. In his freshman year, Pardo batted .271 with 23 RBIs, 50 runs scored and a team high 13 steals in 58 games. His play that year earned him a second team All-Big South Conference selection while also helping the Fighting Camels win their first conference title in 24 years and first-ever NCAA tournament win. Pardo played again with CU in 2015 before transferring to the University of Montevallo in Montevallo, AL. The left handed batter hit .313 with 7 HRs, 49 RBIs, 52 runs scored, and a team-high 24 stolen bases in 28 attempts for the Falcons.

Schulewitz, 23, will be debuting for the Boomers on the mound this year. Schulewitz last played with the Arizona League Royals, a rookie-level affiliate of the Kansas City Royals, in 2017. The sidearm right-handed pitcher signed with Kansas City after graduating from the University of Illinois at Chicago undrafted. In his senior year at UIC he appeared in 20 games as a reliever and posted a 3-1 record with two saves and a 2.58 ERA in 22.2 innings pitched. He held opponents to .200 batting average his senior year and averaged 9.3 strikeouts per nine innings. While at UIC, Schulewitz appeared in 83 games (tied for third in program history) going 10-15 with a 4.13 ERA in 152.2 IP striking out 136 batters and walking on 55. When finally signing with the Royals, the Mundelein, IL native appeared in 11 games and finished 7 of them with one save. In 15 innings pitched, Schulewitz posted a 2.40 ERA and 1.000 WHIP, with 15 strikeouts, while allowing only 2 walks and 4 earned runs.

The Boomers 2018 season, presented by Wintrust Community Banks, begins May 11. The Home Opener is Tuesday, May 15 vs. Southern Illinois.

Season ticket packages and group and hospitality offerings for the 2018 season can be reserved by calling (847) 461-3695 or emailing info@boomersbaseball.com. Single-game tickets are currently on sale now.