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Moving Up the Ranks

Area players move up in their baseball careers and sign professional contracts.

took another small step in his quest to make the big leagues. Thegraduate was promoted by the Detroit Tigers from their single-A affiliate in the Midwest League to their entry in the Florida State League, the Lakeland Flying Tigers. Detroit's 10th round pick in the 2011 earned the promotion after hitting .288 with eight home runs and 25 RBI's in 170 at-bats with the West Michigan Whitecaps. He also had a sterling on-base percentage of .402. In his first game with Lakeland on Saturday, Casali went 1-for-3 with two runs scored. 

Another area baseball standout who might be moving on up is Branford's . The former first-round pick of the Texas Rangers leads the Texas League with 20 home runs and 58 RBI's. He's also hitting a robust .305 and has been playing stellar defense at third base.

of Bethel had the worst outing of his professional career on June 23 against Lynchburg. The first-round pick of the Boston Red Sox in 2011 had been dominating opponents in his first two stops, the South Atlantic League and Carolina League. But the Hillcats got to the right-handed pitcher for five runs over 3 2/3 innings, marking the shortest outing of his young career. For the season, Barnes is 7-1 with a 1.59 ERA and he was recently selected to play in the Futures Game during All-Star festivities in Kansas City on July 8.

, who attended in Trumbull and was part of the Stony Brook team that made it to the College World Series, will begin his professional career in Ogden, Utah. Drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the recent MLB draft, Campbell signed his contract over the weekend and was expected to arrive in Utah late Monday night. Campbell will pitch for the Raptors, the Dodgers rookie team in the Pioneer League.

Greenwich native LJ Mazzilli, recently drafted in the ninth round by the Minnesota Twins, was named to the All-Northeast Regional second-team. The second baseman at UConn hit .339 with a team-leading nine home runs. Mazzilli was named All-Big East first team earlier this month. He has yet to sign with the Twins.

Stratton Faxon Half-Marathon Results

More than 4,500 runners entered the Stratton Faxon Half-Marathon in Fairfield on Sunday. Tesfaye Girma of Ethiopia won the men's division with a time of 1:05:37 while Milaki Mejdoub of Morocco captured the woman's division, clocking a time of 1:17:47. Several area runners turned in sterling performances including Connor Rog, 18, of Fairfield. The Fairfield Prep graduate placed 11th overall and won his age group (14-19) with a time of 1:13:38. Sam Lagasse of Stamford, who is also 18-years old, finished 23rd overall and second behind Rog in his age group with a time of 1:21: 31.

Other age groups winners from the area:

Men's Division

Allan McDougall 47 Branford 1:24:13 1st-Age Group (45-49) 34th Overall Giancarlo Cottignoli 54 Fairfield 1:27:01 1st-Age Group (50-54) 56th Overall Pedros Cobos 58 New Milford 1:28:39 1st-Age Group (55-59) 70th Overall Ron Rembaum 66 Greenwich 1:42:57 1st-Age Group (65-69) 368  Overall

Women's Division

Megan Keane  18 Darien 1:34:55 1st-Age Group (14-19) 145th Overall Caitlin Stote 20 Stamford 1:25:43 1st-Age Group (20-29) 45th Overall Amy Bevilacqua 38 Wilton 1:25:10 1st-Age Group (30-39) 40th Overall Cynthia McHugh 53 Fairfield 1:41:48 1st-Age Group (50-59) 315th Overall Janet Voelpert 65 Shelton 1:57:55 1st-Age Group (65-69) 1,171 Overall

Yours truly, Paul Devlin, 47, 2:02:22, placed 137th in the age group, 1,540th overall.

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