SHAWNEE – Former Oklahoma Baptist University baseball standout Taylor Hearn earned his first career major league win against the Houston Astros on Sunday, Sept. 27, allowing no hits or runs in one inning of work. He is the first former Bison to earn a win at the big league level.
Hearn also saw action against the Astros on Thursday, Sept. 24, throwing 2.1 shutout innings while striking out three Houston batters.
Hearn closed out the 2020 season with a 3.63 ERA, fourth-best amongst Rangers relievers with at least 10 inning pitched. His 23 strikeouts and 13 hits allowed were both the third-best marks from the bullpen. His opponent batting average of .206 was good for sixth-best on the Texas pitching staff, matching that of ace Lance Lynn.
Julian Merryweather did not see action this past week after being placed on the short term injury list with right elbow tendonitis. He will not be available for the Blue Jays Wildcard series against the Tampa Bay Rays, but could return later in the postseason if Toronto advances.
Merryweather had an outstanding career at OBU with a 22-5 record over two seasons. The All-American had a 1.73 career ERA in 182 innings pitched after tying the second-lowest ERA in program history with 1.07 in 2014. He registered 208 strikeouts with the Bison. He was drafted by Cleveland Indians in the fifth round of the 2014 MLB Draft.
In his lone season on Bison Hill, Hearn compiled a perfect 9-0 record with a 3.50 ERA. He struck out 71 batters in 64.1 innings pitched and held opposing batters to a .191 average as the Bison advanced all the way to the NAIA World Series. Hearn was drafted in the fifth round of the 2015 MLB Draft by the Washington Nationals.
Three more Bison are in minor league affiliates, but saw their seasons canceled due to COVID-19.
Right handed pitcher and 2018 graduate Albertus Barber is currently with the full season A Lakewood BlueClaws, an affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies.
Right handed pitcher and 2019 graduate Shane Kelso is currently with the full season A Burlington Bees, an affiliate of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
First baseman and 2019 graduate Jake Gozzo is currently with the rookie ball Billings Mustangs, an affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds.