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Puckett Returns; Vance Joins the Long Island Ducks for the 2015 Season

Cody Puckett. Photo by: Stacy Podelski

Cody Puckett. Photo by: Stacy Podelski

 The three-time Atlantic League champion Long Island Ducks  announced on Tuesday the signings of infielder Cody Puckett and pitcher Kevin Vance. Puckett returns for his second consecutive season with the Ducks while Vance begins his first year on Long Island.

“Cody put together a strong season in 2014 and brings both offensive and defensive talent to our club,” says Ducks President and General Manager Michael Pfaff. “Kevin has been a successful pitcher throughout his career, and we are happy to add him to our bullpen.”

Puckett finished second in the Atlantic League and set new career highs this past season in both games played (138) and at-bats (568). He also ranked third in the league in hits (169) and eighth in batting average (.298), both of which were career bests as well. The 27-year-old totaled 10 home runs, 77 RBI, 64 runs and 17 doubles and was honored by the league as a Second Team All-Star following the season’s conclusion.

The California native has played seven seasons of professional baseball, reaching as high as Triple-A in both the Cincinnati Reds and Chicago White Sox organizations. In 2009, he set career highs with 19 homers, 76 runs and 19 stolen bases with Single-A Dayton. The following year, he posted career best marks in doubles (40), triples (4) and walks (45) with Single-A Lynchburg. Entering 2015, the California State University – Dominguez Hills alum has a .262 career batting average with 107 homers, 426 RBI and 165 doubles in 804 games. Puckett was originally drafted by the Reds in the eighth round of the 2008 amateur draft.

Vance comes to Long Island with four seasons of professional baseball experience, all in the White Sox organization. He reached as high as Double-A Birmingham in each of the past two seasons. In 2014, the right-hander compiled a 7-4 record with a 4.48 ERA and six saves in 43 games. In addition, the San Diego native struck out 61 batters in 62 and one-third innings pitched.

The 24-year-old achieved career best totals in ERA (2.75), innings pitched (101.2) and strikeouts (99) in 2012 when he split time with Single-A Kannapolis and Single-A Winston-Salem. In 145 career games (10 starts), he is 16-13 with a 3.62 ERA, 14 saves and 315 strikeouts over 281 innings pitched. The University of Connecticut alum posted a 2-1 record with a 2.29 ERA and 21 saves in 49 career games with the Huskies. Vance was originally drafted by the White Sox in the 19th round of the 2011 amateur draft.

The Long Island Ducks are members of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball and play their home games at Bethpage Ballpark. For further information, call (631) 940-DUCK or visit www.liducks.com.

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