Metro Minute

Branneky Earns SLIAC Player of the Year

By Sophie Ozier

Tyler Branneky, a junior from Westminster College and four-year Metro Collegiate Player, was named the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SLIAC) Baseball Player of the Year for 2015.

“I was really excited about it. I hadn’t really thought I was going to get it, so I was pretty surprised,” said Branneky upon hearing about the award. “I think this was just a confirmation that what I’ve been doing is working.”

Branneky led the Westminster Blue Jays with a .413 batting average and broke the school’s RBI single-season record with 45. He also tied the school’s career triple record with eight, six of which came during the 2015 season. Westminster finished the year with a 24-12 record, going 16-6 in SLIAC conference play.

Branneky was later selected to the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA)/Rawlings NCAA Division III Central All-Region 2nd Team.

In addition to his success on the baseball field, Tyler has been on the Dean’s List at Westminster and this summer is working an internship for the St. Louis Cardinals. 

Bob Totterer, Commissioner of the St. Louis Metro Collegiate League, coached Tyler from the time he left t-ball until he entered high school. "At every level, Ty was always an outstanding talent," Bob said, "and he was one of those exceptional young gentlemen who make coaching enjoyable. I'm personally very proud of his accomplishments through high school and college. SLIAC Player Of The Year is especially gratifying."

Last year with the Metro Collegiate Knights, Branneky batted .346 (18-52) with 12 RBIs in 18 games. He has been coached by ex-Big Leaguers, Lonnie Maclin, and Ken Reitz in Metro Collegiate Baseball and by Scott Cooper on hitting since 8th grade. However, despite Branneky’s success at the plate, the hitter says he does take a slightly different approach when playing in the Metro League.

“You have to be a little more explicit with the pitches you swing at because if you swing at a bad pitch, you’re probably going to snap the bat. Everything has to be more precise.”

The third-baseman represented the National Team in the 2014 St. Louis Metro Collegiate Baseball League’s annual All-Star Game. Branneky is currently playing for the Metro Collegiate Trojans and will play his final season at Westminster College next spring.