Summer's On The Way!

May 15, 2017

 

While the Dominican Summer League, Arizona League and Gulf Coast League players are still waiting for their summer to begin, Europeans across the MiLB and MLB are busy changing positions, moving to new cities and making history. 

 

 

Belgium

Sam Buelens, Antwerp

Team: DSL Blue Jays

League: Dominican Summer League – Foreign Rookie

Parent Club: Toronto Blue Jays - NL

Position: 2nd/RF

2017 Status: Buelens is still awaiting assignment for the 2017 season. This means he's likely to remain DSL assigned. This is his season to prove himself or risk heading home for good in the fall. 

 

France

 

Andy Paz, Toulousain

Team: Midland RockHounds 

League: Texas League - AA

Parent Club: Oakland Athletics - AL

Position: Catcher

2017 Status: Paz's first season in AA is off to a solid start. He's played in 20 games and, over 71 plate appearances, is hitting .282 with 20 hits and 10 RBIs. Defensively he's already recorded 159 putouts, averaging one more putout per game than his season-ending totals in 2016. Considering he batted .320 last season over 46 games in AA, the team may soon be saying goodbye to the catcher assuming there is room for him in AAA. If not, the Rockhounds may benefit from Paz's spot on the waiting list. 

 

 

Germany

 

Aaron Altherr, Landstuhl

Team: Philadelphia Phillies

League: MLB - NL

Parent Club: Philadelphia Phillies

Position: OF

2017 Status: Altherr is batting .351 in his first 74 at bats. He's had 19 runs, off 26 hits, including 8 doubles and 7 home runs. He's accumulated 21 RBIs and 3 stolen bases. On defense he's played all three positions in the outfield racking up a combined 46 putouts in 162 innings of play.  

 

Pascal Amon, Ingolstadt

Team: Dodgers1

League: Dominican Summer League – Foreign Rookie

Parent Club: Los Angeles Dodgers - NL

Position: CF

2017 Status: Amon is awaiting assignment for the 2017 season.    

 

Edwin Jackson, Neu-Ulm

Team: Norfolk Tides 

League: International League 

Parent Club: Baltimore Orioles - AL 

Position: RHP

2017 Status: Jackson signed with the Orioles on April 5, 2017, and was assigned to their short season A club the Aberdeen IronBirds. On May 7, 2017, he was re-assigned by the club to AAA in the international league where he has a 3.00 ERA. He's played in three games recording one save over six innings. He's given up 6 hits and 2 earned runs while striking out 4. 

 

Max Kepler, Berlin

Team: Minnesota Twins

League: MLB - NL

Parent Club: Minnesota Twins

Position: RF

2017 Status: Spending all of 2017 in the outfield, Kepler has played 30 games between center and right recording 69 putouts in total. In 105 at bats, Kepler is hitting .238 with 25 hits, including 6 doubles, a triple and 3 home runs. He's scored 16 runs and is responsible for 13 RBIs all while walking 14 times. As with many sluggers, he's also struck out 24 times, which accounts for the dip in his average. As Kepler settles into the role he'll likely begin to see that average swing back around once more. 

 

Nadir Ljatifi, Dortmund

Team: AZL Reds

League: Arizona League – Rookie

Parent Club: Cincinnati Reds - NL

Position: 3rd

2017 Status: Prior to the start of his 2017 season, Ljatifi has signed a glove endorsement deal with SSK Baseball. Carmine Calzonetti, director of business development for SSK USA, said, “His dedication, style and ability corresponds very closely to our mission." Ljatifi said, "I love their products." No word yet on where Nadir will be playing come June. 

 

Bruce Maxwell, Weisbaden

Team: Oakland Athletics 

League: MLB 

Parent Club: Oakland Athletics - AL

Position: Catcher

2017 Status: On May 4, 2017, the Athletics recalled Maxwell to the bigs. In his first 8 games he's had 4 hits in 19 plate appearances along with 3 walks and 6 strikeouts. Last season he hit .283 in 33 games with the club and, in 15 games in AAA this year he was already at .275 when recalled, so he should warm up to his new home in no time. Behind the mask he's already put away 49 in just 57 innings. 

 

Sven Schüller, Wuppertal

Team: Great Lake Loons

League: Midwest League – Class A Full Season

Parent Club: Los Angeles Dodgers - NL

Position: RHP

2017 Status: In 11 games Schüller has 2 saves in as many opportunities. Over 19.2 innings he's posting a 2.29 ERA with 10 strikeouts while giving away 9 walks and 5 earned runs. 

 

 

Markus Solbach, Dormagen

Team: Rockland Boulders

League: Can-Am League

Parent Club: Independent

Position: RHP

2017 Status: Solbach left Bonn, Germany this week to head back to the USA for the summer. He'll be playing in New York this season with the Rockland Boulders, an independent team in the Canadian-American Professional Baseball League.  Markus elected free agency at the end of 2016 and left the Diamondbacks organization. He leaves the Capitals with a .643 ERA over 14.0 innings recording two saves and two wins for a .714 WHIP. He gave up 5 hits but no runs while striking out 8.

 

Italy

 

 

Marten Gasparini, Ruda

Team: Lexington Legends

League: South Atlantic League - A

Parent Club: Kansas City Royals - AL

Position: OF

2017 Assignment: Still settling into his new role in the outfield, Gasparini has recorded 70 putouts in 257.1 innings with just 2 errors in 29 games. Compared to his 48 errors and 132 putouts in 107 games at shortstop in 2016, this role seems to be a better fielding fit. At the plate however, Gasparini appears to be in a slump, hitting just .192 in the same league he averaged .259 last year.

 

Alberto Mineo, Gorzia

Team: South Bend Cubs

League: Midwest League – A 

Parent Club: Chicago Cubs - NL

Position: C/1B

2017 Status: In 20 games Mineo has 19 hits, including 6 doubles and 2 triples, along with 14 RBIs. The catcher has also been walked 14 times while striking out 13 times for a total average of .275 in 69 plate appearances. On the field he's been dividing his time between catching duties and 1st base with about a 2:1 time split. He's recorded 118 putouts behind the mask and another 33 on the bag. 

 

Lithuania

 

Dovydas Neverauskas, Vilnius

Team: Indianapolis Indians  

League: International League – AAA

Parent Club: Pittsburgh Pirates – NL

Position: RHP

2017 Status: On April 24, 2017, Neverauskas made MLB history. He threw 2.0 innings of relief for the Pirates becoming the first Lithuanian born player in the history of the game. Through his two innings he gave up 2 hits and 1 earned run while striking out the opposing pitcher to record his first major league K. Though he left the game with a 4.50 ERA on the day, his performance was the best from their staff as the Pirates took a 14-3 beating from the World Series champion Cubs. On the 26th Neverauskas was optioned back to his club in Indianapolis where he has maintained a 2.12 ERA over 11 games with 4 saves in 6 opportunities. 

 

 

Modolva

 

Vadim Balan, Tiraspol

Team: GCL Twins – Rookie

League: Gulf Coast League

Parent Club: Minnesota Twins - AL

Position: RHP

2017 Status: Balan is awaiting assignment for the 2017 season. 

 

Netherlands

 

 

Paul Brands, Haarlem

Team: GCL Pirates

League: Gulf Coast League - Rookie

Parent Club: Pittsburgh Pirates - NL

Position: C

2017 Status: Brands is awaiting assignment for the 2017 season. 

 

Taylor Clemensia, Amsterdam

Team: GCL Twins

League: Gulf Coast League – Rookie

Parent Club: Minnesota Twins - AL

Position: LHP

2017 Status: Clemensia is awaiting assignment for the 2017 season. 

 

Sir Didi Gregorius, Amsterdam

Team: New York Yankees

League: MLB – AL

Parent Club: New York Yankees

Position: SS

2017 Status: After suffering a shoulder strain during the World Baseball Classic, Didi spent the better part of April on the DL and rehabbing through the minor league system. He rejoined the Yankees lineup on April 28th and has appeared in 13 games. In 59 plate appearances he's hitting .321 with 18 hits and 10 RBIs putting him back on pace with his pre-injury stats where he hit .348 for the tournament. In the field he's recorded 13 putouts and 39 assists at short while committing just one error.  

 

Matz Schutte, Almere

Team: GCL Twins

League: Gulf Coast League – Rookie

Parent Club: Minnesota Twins

Position: RHP

2017 Status: Schutte is awaiting assignment for the 2017 season. 

 

 

Kingdom of the Netherlands

 

Nelmerson Angela, Willemstad Curaçao

Team: DSL Mets1

League: Dominican Summer League - Rookie

Parent Club: NY Mets - NL

Position: LHP

2017 Status: Angela is awaiting assignment for the 2017 season. 

 

Xander Jan Bogaerts, Oranjestad Aruba

Team: Boston Red Sox

League: MLB - AL

Parent Club: Boston Red Sox

Position: IF – SS, 3B

2017 Status: In his first 32 games this season Bogaerts is hitting .339 with 42 hits including 7 doubles and 2 triples, and 10 RBIs. He's walked 9 times while striking out 16. On the field he's recorded 40 putouts and 85 assists while committing 3 errors at short. 

 

 

Rachid Engelhardt, Willemstad Curaçao

Team: DSL Orioles1

League: Dominican Summer League – Foreign Rookie

Parent Club: Baltimore Orioles - AL

Position: OF

2017 Status: Engelhardt is awaiting assignment for the 2017 season. 

 

Kenley Jansen, Willemstad Curaçao

Team: Los Angeles Dodgers

League: MLB – NL

Parent Club: Los Angeles Dodgers

Position: RHP

2017 Status: As the weather heats up so too does Jansen's arm. His ERA has dropped from 3.86 in April to 1.23 in May. He's recorded 2 wins and 7 saves while striking out 28. He has yet to give up a walk or a home run on the season and has given up just 2 earned runs in 14.2 innings of relief.   

 

Jair Jurrjens, Santa Maria Curaçao

Team: Oklahoma City Dodgers

League: Pacific Coast League - AAA

Parent Club: Los Angeles Dodgers - NL

Position: RHP

2017 Status: New to the Dodgers organization this year the RHP started out in Ogden where he spent just two nights before being reassigned to AAA without having thrown a pitch. Not surprisingly, the former MLB pitcher has settled right in at AAA. He's posting a 3.20 ERA in 7 games with 3 wins and a loss to his credit. In 39.1 innings he's given up 14 earned runs, including 3 dingers, while walking 9 and struck out 35. 

 

Shairon Martis, Willemstad Curaçao

Team: Unknown

League: Unknown

Parent Club: Baltimore Orioles

Position: RHP

2017 Status: On April 6, 2017, Martis signed a free agency deal with the Orioles but the 30-year old has yet to appear on a roster for the team across any of their MiLB or MLB teams. 

 

Ryan Oduber, Oranjestad Aruba

Team: Boston Red Sox

League: Gulf Coast League

Parent Club: Boston Red Sox - AL

Position: LHP

2017 Status: Oduber is awaiting assignment for the 2017 season. 

 

Jurickson Profar, Willemstad Curaçao

Team: Texas Rangers

League: MLB – AL

Parent Club: Texas Rangers

Position: Utility

2017 Status: When Profar isn't hanging out in left field you can find him around the bags this season. He's played a game each at SS, 1st and 2nd. All together he has 22 putouts and 3 assists with no errors in the field. At the plate he's hitting an abysmal .135 in 37 appearances including 8 strikeouts. Still he has managed to record 3 RBIs, 8 walks and 5 hits. We mentioned last month that we expected his average to drop compared to his Classic performance but this is more than just a dip and certainly an unexpected turn in his hitting cycle. Considering he's only signed through the end of this season it is not the performance Profar would, no doubt, like to have. 

 

Jonathan Schoop, Willemstad Curaçao

Team: Baltimore Orioles

League: MLB - AL

Parent Club: Baltimore Orioles

Position: 2B

2017 Status: Continuing to rise, Schoop's average now sits on the cusp of .300. He's hitting .293 through 116 at bats. This shatters his previous year averages where, the closest he ever got was in 2013 when he finished the season at .286. At just 25 years old, if Shoop can find his hitting stride this season, it will bode well for him heading into contract negotiations at the end the year. The arbitration-eligible IF has 34 hits, including 10 doubles and 5 homeruns, as well as 18 RBIs with just 23 strikeouts. Compared to last season's 137, that is a jump in the right direction. On the field he has 87 putouts and 83 assists with 2 errors for a .988 fielding percentage. 

 

Sharlon Schoop, Willemstad Curaçao

Team: Bowie Baysox 

League: Eastern League - AA 

Parent Club: Baltimore Orioles - AL

Position: SS

2017 Status: The elder Schoop signed a free agency deal with the Orioles following the summer classic in April. He played one game in the international AAA before being reassigned to the Baysox on May 8th. He's played two games for the new club. Through just 7 plate appearances he's posting a .143 average. On 3rd he's played 8 innings and recorded a putout. 

 

Andrelton Simmons, Mundo Nobo Curaçao

Team: Angels of Anaheim

League: MLB – NL

Parent Club: Angels of Anaheim

Position: SS

2017 Status: Since April Simmons' average has dropped more than .50 from .286 to .232 in 138 plate appearances. On the field he's recorded 59 putouts and 91 assists with 3 errors at short. Considering his fielding percentage of .980 and that he's signed through 2020, he has a bit of time to work his bat back up to speed. 

 

Chadwick Tromp, Oranjestad, Aruba

Team: Daytona Tortugas

League: Florida State League – A Advanced

Parent Club: Cincinnati Reds – NL

Position: Catcher

2017 Status: Tromp has hit for a .327 average in 52 plate appearances. The catcher has 51 putouts and 3 assists while committing one error in 46 innings of play. Considering he has spent some time in AAA his numbers make a lot of sense. If he continues to perform well, we may see a move in June. 

 

With a solid month of ball behind us this is where your hometown players stack up. There is far more season ahead of them than in the rear view mirror so check in on the 15th of every month to see how their seasons are changing as things heat up this summer. 

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