OSU's Gunderson gets ready for pro ball

Beavers' closer ticketed for duty with Danville Braves

Relief pitcher Kevin Gunderson from Oregon State is close to signing with the Atlanta Braves and reporting to Danville (Va.) of the Appalachian League.

Gunderson, a graduate of Central Catholic High, is expected to join the rookie league Braves next week. He has been getting some rest after the College World Series in Omaha, Neb., where he helped Beavers capture the NCAA championship.

Atlanta drafted Gunderson, a 5-10, 160-pound left-hander, in the fifth round on June 6.

At Danville, Gunderson would join pitcher Tommy Hanson, who played last summer for the Aloha Knights, a West Coast Collegiate Baseball League team that has home games at Mt. Hood Community College. Hanson, from Riverside (Calif.) Community College, was the WCCBL¹s pitcher of the year. Gunderson played for the Gresham-based Knights in 2004.

Hanson is 0-1 with a 3.38 ERA in two starts for Danville, with 10 strikeouts and one walk in eight innings.

"I think both those kids are going to make it to the 'show,' " says Dan Segel, general manager of the Knights, predicting eventual major league action for Gunderson and Hanson. "They're also two of the best kids you

could ever meet. What a dream to have them both in the Atlanta organization, because the Braves are so good with pitchers."