Two Yaks Returning, Two More Added to 2021 Roster

YVC pair among six players coming back originally signed for 2020 season

YAKIMA, Wash. — A pair of Yakima Valley College Yaks slated to play for the Yakima Valley Pippins in 2020 will return next summer — and they’re bringing two more teammates as well.

Middle infielder Connor Coballes and catcher Josh Davis were scheduled to play for the Pippins in 2020 before the West Coast League season was canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Their YVC season was also cut short by the pandemic after just 12 games.

Coballes is a 5-foot-11 sophomore from Spokane, who also will spend some time on the mound for the Pippins. Davis is a 6-foot freshman from Bothell.

“I’m excited to bring back Josh and Connor again summer after they were supposed to play for the Pippins in 2020,” Pippins manager Kyle Krustangel said. “Both are great leaders and will be guys to build the summer culture around.”

Krustangel, YVC’s skipper in the spring, also is adding a pair of YVC freshman starting pitchers to the Pippins.

Tyler Frieders is a 6-foot-1 right-hander from Billings, Mont., who had pitched 11.1 innings in three appearances with the Yaks this spring. Dann Blanchard, a 6-foot-3 right-hander who also hails from Billings, tossed 15 innings in his three appearances, striking out 13 and compiling a 1.80 ERA.

“All four of these guys play at the West Coast League level, and they all were signed to play with different teams across the league this past year,” Krustangel said. “I know the work ethic and compete factor are high in each of them.”

Besides Coballes and Davis, four other players signed for the 2020 season will play for the Pippins next summer: Reagan Haas, a former Riverside Christian standout from Wapato, and Owen Wild of Gig Harbor, both right-handed pitchers at Gonzaga; right-hander Seth Kuykendall of Spokane, who pitched for Krustangel at YVC in 2018 and 2019; and outfielder Corey Jarrell of Brewster.

Haas earned a win with three innings of relief work against Washington State on March 10 before the season was shut down. He struck out two and gave up four hits in that appearance.

The Pippins will open their seventh WCL season at Yakima County Stadium on June 4. Season tickets, mini season ticket plans and ticket vouchers are already on sale at Single-game tickets for all 32 Pippins home games will go on sale in early 2021.

By Yakima Valley Pippins

November 25, 2020