MLB In Full Swing

May 15, 2018

 

While much of the MLB season is now in full swing, the short-season folks have yet to hit the field. We do however finally know where most of them will be setting up shop for summer. We’re also super happy to report a significant decline in injury reports from last month’s update. Take a look through for your favorite players and find out how they’re holding up, knee deep into the first half of the 2018 season. 

 

Czech Republic 

 

Martin Cervenka, Prague

Team: Bowie Baysox

League: Eastern League

Parent Club: Baltimore Orioles - AL

Position: Catcher

2018 Highlights: Martin has settled in now in Bowie, where he’s swinging a respectable .276 through 30 games and 105 at bats. Cervenka’s racked up 13 runs off 29 hits including 8 doubles and 2 homeruns. He’s driven in 10 while walking to 1st 4 times and striking out just 17 times in all. On the field the catcher has actually improved his fielding percentage now catching at .989. We see AAA in this man’s not to distant future.      

 

France

 

Ernesto Martinez, Holguin, Cuba

Team: AZL Brewers

League: Arizona League

Parent Club: Milwaukee Brewers – NL 

Position: 1st 

2018 Highlights: When season begins in June, Ernesto has a seat already reserved for him on the AZL Brewers’ bench. The 1st baseman is the only man assigned to that position on the roster so we expect to see a lot of action for Martinez over his short season. In 2017, the 1st baseman earned a promotion to the AZL club near the end of summer, spending just 11 games with the club. 

 

Andy Paz, Toulousain

Team: Gary Southshore Railcats

League: Northern League

Parent Club: Gary Southshore Railcats

Position: Catcher

2018 Highlights: Paz will spend the summer in Gary Indiana playing independent ball for the Gary Southshore Railcats. After electing free agency, he and the Athletics parted ways over the off-season and no other affiliated team elected to pick him up. Paz told the Chicago Tribune his goal is to return to affiliated ball. When that happens, we’ll have all the coverage. 

 

Germany

 

Aaron Altherr, Landstuhl

Team: Philadelphia Phillies

League: National League

Parent Club: Philadelphia Phillies

Position: OF

2018 Highlights: Not that it would have taken much effort, given where he started, but we’re happy to report a .115 jump in Aaron’s batting average over the past month. Now hitting .192 through 126 plate appearances Altherr is still close to going 1-1 in his strikeouts to walks ratio. He’s whiffed 31 times but taken the free ride 20 times as well. When Altherr’s makes contact he does a lot with it. Aaron has 12 runs off 20 hits including 4 doubles, a triple and 4 homers with 19 RBIs. We expect his average to catch up to his pace at the plate over the season. In the outfield he’s averaging .985 for a fielding percentage across all three positions. 

 

Pascal Amon, Ingolstadt

Team: AZL Dodgers

League: Arizona League

Parent Club: Los Angeles Dodgers - NL

Position: 1st

2018 Highlights: 20-year old Amon will begin his 2nd season with the AZL Dodgers when their season opens in June. Last year he finished 41 games with a .230 average and a perfect fielding percentage at 1st. Though he played the bag for 17 games, Pascal spent more of his season in the outfield where, between daisy picking, he worked 24 games across the backfield finishing with a .939 average fielding percentage out there. Currently, the team still has him listed as a 1st baseman on the 2018 roster. Time will tell if that’s all they’ll have him doing.   

 

Marco Cardoso, Paderborn

Team: Unknown

League: Unknown

Position: SS

Parent Club: Boston Red Sox - AL

2018 Highlights: At this moment Cardoso’s name appears nowhere on the GCL or DSL rosters for the Sox. However, the DSL2 team has yet to post their full roster. The shortstop is not back in Germany with his hometown club so we’re awaiting the start of the short season in the USA for more information. 

 

Edwin Jackson, Neu-Ulm

Team: Syracuse Chiefs  

League: International League – AAA 

Parent Club: Washington Nationals - NL

Position: RHP

2018 Highlights: He may be old, in baseball years, but that doesn’t mean there is any rest for the weary. The Chiefs are putting this Nationals vet to good use. Over 8 starts, Jackson has pitched 43.2 innings giving up 39 hits and 18 runs while striking out 37 and walking 20. Edwin’s record is 2-2 and his ERA is currently 3.71. With numbers like this we’d expect Jackson to finish out his year in Syracuse as he contemplates retirement. 

 

Max Kepler, Berlin

Team: Minnesota Twins

League: American League

Parent Club: Minnesota Twins 

Position: RF

2018 Highlights: Never put it in writing. We should have known better and, for that, we apologize Max. No sooner did we go live with our last update talking about, ‘as long as he stays healthy’…, than Kepler made his first appearance on the DL for 2018. On April 19th he was placed on the 7-day DL but never spent a day resting beside the pre-scheduled day off on the 19th. Max was back in the lineup on the 20th and remained there until May 11th when he sat out another game with a bruised left hand as a precaution. He had been hit by a pitch the night before and the team wanted him to rest it a day. Once again, he was back on the field the moment he was cleared on the 12th.  At the moment Kepler is hitting .241 over 157 plate appearances in 39 games. He’s accumulated 17 runs off 34 hits including 11 doubles, 1 triple and 5 homeruns. Max has driven in 15 while walking 16 times and striking out just 21 times. In both right and center he has perfect fielding percentages.   

 

Nadir Ljatifi, Dortmund

Team: Billings Mustangs

League: Pioneer League – Rookie

Parent Club: Cincinnati Reds - NL

Position: 2nd

2018 Highlights: Ljatifi, who is warming up with many of his fellow Europeans in Reds uniforms over in Arizona, has been placed back with Billings for the start of 2018. Their season kicks off in the middle of June where Nadir will be entering his 2nd full season with the club. Last year he finished with a .251 batting average and a solid fielding percentage at 2nd with .985. The team also tried the, just now 20-year old out at 3rd and short with varying degrees of success. If there is a spot open for him to move up, then we’d expect Ljatifi to continue his rise toward the middle-to-end of this season if his bat is hot. If the club decides they’d like to continue his utility training, they may keep him in Montana this last summer before promoting him to start 2019.   

 

Bruce Maxwell, Weisbaden

Team: Oakland Athletics

League: American League

Parent Club: Oakland Athletics - AL

Position: Catcher

2018 Highlights: Bruce continues to share the duties with his colleagues in Oakland. At the moment he’s caught 11 games for the club where he’s posted a perfect fielding percentage through 98.0 innings of work. With the lumber in his hands Maxwell is hitting just .211 over his 38 at bats. If he were seeing action on a more consistent basis chances are he’d be quite the slugger given that half of all his hits this season have been doubles to-date and he has consistently been able to count on a quarter of all his hits each of his MLB seasons coming from doubles as well. At the moment, the catcher is on travel restrictions stemming from legal matters that took place at the end of last season, for which he has plead guilty in court. His sentencing date is June 4th. After that time, we’ll know more about how the remainder of this season will play out, in terms of whether he’ll even be eligible for consideration as a full timer, in the spot. That the club has stood behind him throughout his legal issues is an indication they have plans for him indeed. 

 

Niklas Rimmel, Fürth

Team: Unknown

League: Unknown

Parent Club: Minnesota Twins - AL

Position: RHP

2018 Highlights: Rimmel has remained in Germany for the summer of 2018 where he continues to play for the Regensburg Legionäre. Still under contract with the Twins it is not surprising to find him at home for the season. He’s on the German national team for U-18 and, with the Olympic qualifiers in Germany in 2019, it is logical that the powers that be find it in the best interest of his career, for the moment, to remain integrated with the organizations he’s come up through. Now that Rimmel has graduated, chances are he’ll spend some of the winter months training with the Twins organization but nothing more is likely to be decided beyond that until after Germany’s final roster for the Olympic Qualifiers is set.

 

Sven Schüller, Wuppertal

Team: Rancho Cucamonga Quakes

League: Midwest League – Class A Advanced

Parent Club: Los Angeles Dodgers - NL

Position: RHP

2018 Highlights: Well, even good machines need days off for repairs now and again and it seems that the machine that has been Schüller’s arm these past two years has finally asked for a mileage check-up. On May 14th Sven was placed on the 7-day DL by the Quakes. There is no word on the specifics of his situation at the moment. Through the season to-date he’s pitched in 11 games where he’s posted a 2-0 record and collected 3 saves as well. His ERA is 3.31 through 16.1 innings of work. We’re hoping for a speedy return for the righty but if his arm, or whatever ails him, needs some additional rest we won’t be surprised. It could do his body, and his ERA some good in the long run.     

 

 

 

Italy

 

Cesare Astorri, Parma

Club: AZL Athletics

League: Arizona League - Rookie

Parent Club: Oakland Athletics - AL

Position: Catcher

2018 Highlights: Astrorri is one of 5 catchers assigned to the AZL Athletics for the summer. He’s on the roster and ready to make his mark come the start of season in June. 

 

Marten Gasparini, Ruda

Team: Lexington Legends

League: South Atlantic League - A

Parent Club: Kansas City Royals - AL

Position: OF

2018 Highlights: Gasparini has yet to disappoint on the field. His new career in the outfield seems to suit him, and his stats, perfectly. Though 30 games, he’s perfect. At the plate, Marten is still warming up but that is to be expected for him. At the moment, he’s hitting .215 over 121 at bats with 12 runs off 26 hits including 8 doubles, 2 triples, a homerun and 10 RBIs. He’s also walked 7 times while striking out 41. Yes, Gasparini is a slugger in the making. His bat has always been a weak point but when he makes contact, it is generally not wasted. On the bags, he makes the most of every opportunity as well, already having taken 9 bases on the season. If his bat continues to do at least this well, we’re likely to see that mid-season move we predicted before the year began. 

 

Alex Liddi, San Remo

Team: Northwest Arkansas Naturals

League: Texas League

Parent Club: Kansas City Royals – AL 

Position: Utility Infielder

2018 Highlights: Lidi is back at AA for the Royals and, like his average, seems to have settled into mediocrity. Hitting .231 over 20 games, the Mexican League slugger cannot duplicate the success at AA. He’s had 7 runs off 15 hits with 3 doubles, 1 triple, 2 homeruns and 8 RBIs. He’s also walked 5 times but, like any slugger, has also swung away 27 opportunities. On the field, the club is making the most of his utility skills having placed him in the outfield just once with his other games split between 1st and 3rd with his primarily position being 1st. In the outfield he’s fielding perfectly through 4 innings. At 3rd his average dropped to .900 and on 1st, he’s at .974. Respectable, but not enough to pull him up to a level that makes sense for his age or his experience.  

 

Alberto Mineo, Gorzia

Team: Dunedin Blue Jays

League: Florida State League – A Advanced

Parent Club: Toronto Blue Jays - AL

Position: C

2018 Highlights: Through 13 games with Dunedin, Mineo is spending most of his time behind the plate but did step out for a game to cover 1st. In both positions he has a perfect fielding percentage through 98.0 innings of work. At the plate Alberto is hitting .277 with 4 runs off 13 hits including 3 doubles. He has 3 RBIs as well as 7 walks and has struck out just 10 times over 47 at bats. If Mineo can keep up this pace, he may well move up to AA before summer’s end. 

 

Leonardo Seminati, Torre Boldone

Team: Unknown

League: Unknown

Parent Club: Cincinnati Reds – NL

Position: 1st 

2018 Highlights: Seminati has not been placed on a GCL, AZL or DSL roster with the Reds at the moment. He remains in Arizona at extended spring training with most of his fellow European classmates. If he’s assigned you’ll be the first to know otherwise, we’d expect a small break for him, once the short-season summer leagues are underway, with a return for winter training. 

 

Lithuania

 

Dovydas Neverauskas, Vilnius

Team: Pittsburgh Pirates 

League: National League

Parent Club: Pittsburgh Pirates 

Position: RHP

2018 Highlights: Looks like another year of ups and downs for Neverauskas. Still listed on the 40-man, Dovydas has been assigned back to Indianapolis for the summer. Since we checked in on him in April, he’s not added any more stats to his big league line. He’s now pitched 10 games for the Indians where he has a 1.29 ERA and a 1-1 record. Neverauskas has yet to start a game for the club in his 14.0 innings of work. He’s given up 2 runs off 7 hits while walking 7 and striking out 18. It is such a stark contrast to his MLB stats where he’s sitting on a 10.8 ERA over 7 games and 6.2 innings of work. There he’s walked just 3 but also struck out only 2 while giving up 8 earned runs off 11 hits. It is easy to see the Pirates’ dilemma when it comes to Neverauskas, especially in light of their overall battery issues. Hopefully they learn to grow their farm system at a better pace moving forward. If they can, it will help players, like Dovydas, be able to sit out their turn in the MLB pen where they can learn through observation while getting the instruction they need, without the team’s own numbers taking such drastic hits, when they want to give one of their colts a proper workout.   

 

Modolva

 

Petru Balan, Tiraspol 

Team: GCL Twins

League: Gulf Coast League

Parent Club: Minnesota Twins – AL

Position: LHP

2018 Highlights: The younger of the Balan brothers has been added to the GCL Twins roster for another season. After rocking a +7 ERA over 9 games last year though, this will be his final opportunity to prove he’s worth keeping around. At 22-years old, Petru will need to do more than perform well. He’ll need to outshine his competition and work toward the one spot reserved for whomever is working their way out of the GCL this summer.   

 

Vadim Balan, Tiraspol

Team: None

League: None

Parent Club: Minnesota Twins - AL

Position: RHP

2018 Highlights: On March 19th the Twins made the call, officially pulling the plug on the elder Balan’s career with their organization. This comes as no surprise to anyone who has been following his progress through these past few years. In 2017 he pitched just 11.2 innings of ball. He managed to put up a 2.31 ERA and strike out 9 though so the 24-year old’s career is far from over. No word yet on whether Vadim will stay and try to play in the USA, or return to the EU and work his way onto a league roster this summer. If we hear, we’ll let you know. 

 

 

Netherlands

 

Paul Brands, Haarlem

Team: Bristol Pirates

League: Appalachian League

Parent Club: Pittsburgh Pirates - NL

Position: C

2018 Highlights: Paul will remain the starting catcher for the Bristol Pirates in 2018. He finished his season there last year playing in 32 games where he posted a .983 fielding percentage and a .220 batting average. At the moment, he is the only catcher on their roster. Even if Brands can bring his bat up to the .250 range when season opens in late June, he may well be stuck in Bristol until they can at least groom his replacement. That could work out just fine for the 21-year old. This will be just his 3rd year with the Pirates and he’s already worked his way through the DSL, GSL and now into rookie ball. Brands is perfectly on track with his peers and, if he plays his game, could become the face of his position for the club in 5 years’ time. The Pirates are desperately growing their pitching staff at the moment. Paul will have the advantage of having worked with anyone that gets called up. When it comes to a battery relationship, it is comfort that trumps seniority behind the plate. Considering their current big league catchers are 32 and 27, Brands is in a really comfortable position with the club. 

 

Donny Breek, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Team: DSS 

League: Holland Series 

Parent Club: Minnesota Twins

Position: RHP Pitcher

Signed September 2017

2018 Highlights: At this moment Breek is back with his hometown club in Holland. He’s active on the DSS roster for 2018 and does not appear on either the DSL or GSL Twins expected 2018 rosters. At just 17-years old this is not unusual for a player of his age. Often clubs lock down European players, especially pitchers, very young but continue to let them grow at home until the league has a spot for him. Currently Breek is posting a 1-0 record and 0.00 ERA for the club over 2.0 innings of work. He’s struck out 1 and walked 1 while facing a total of 7 batters. We’ll keep an eye on Donny as the summer leagues open but, unless he’s brought down south for action, we’ll catch up with him again next season. Until then, you’ll be able to follow his progress, right where you always have, at home in the Netherlands on the DSS bench. Like Germany, the Netherlands are contenders for that European Olympic seat so keeping him at home with his club is the right call until their final national team roster is revealed. 

 

Tom de Blok, Amstelveen

Club: Lakeland Flying Tigers

League: Florida State League – A Advanced

Parent Organization: Detroit Tigers

Position: RHP

2018 Highlights: Tom is getting the opportunity with his new club to settle into the role of starter. Over 7 appearances, he’s dropped his ERA to 7.16 and added 2 to his W column while only tacking on a single more loss. de Blok has pitched 32.2 innings, striking out 26 while giving up as many earned runs. He’s walked just 12 and hit only 1 so his control seems to be in good shape given his age. As his speed and placement continue to improve, Tom should turn into a fine starter. It looks like the Tigers are giving him every opportunity to make that happen.    

 

Sir Didi Gregorius, Amsterdam

Team: New York Yankees

League: American League

Parent Club: New York Yankees

Position: SS

2018 Highlights: Gregorius’ batting average has bottomed out since last month. With a drop of .072, he’s now swinging his lumber back in line with personal expectations. After hitting well over .300 through April, Didi’s average has dipped slightly below where he’ll likely average out on the year. At this moment he’s hitting .255 over 149 at bats with 30 runs off 38 hits including 10 doubles, as many home runs, and a triple. Gregorius has knocked in 31 while stealing 3 bags and he’s taken a walk 21 times, striking out just one time more than that. On the field, his average is up .003 points since last month with just 2 errors over 348 innings of work at short. Once his putouts catch up, Didi’s average should rise to reflect the depth of that feat for any SS.  

 

Makesiondon “Mike” Kelkboom,  Leiden, Netherlands

Team: DSL Indians/Brewers

League: Dominican Summer League

Parent Club: Cleveland Indians

Position: SS

2018 Highlights: Makesiondon, who goes by Mike in the league, will spend this summer on the joint Indians/Brewers DSL roster. Their season opens in just about a month’s time so we’ll catch you up on his progress a bit later in the summer. 

 

Marco (Olivier) van der Wijst, Monte Plata, DR

Team: DSL Astros

League: Dominican Summer League 

Parent Club: Philadelphia Phillies - NL

Position: 2nd 

2018 Highlights: van der Wiljst has been promoted for the season. Up from DSL2 last year, Marco is currently on the DSL roster to begin the season. Games start in June so we’ll let you know how it’s going then.   

 

 

 

Kingdom of the Netherlands

 

Ozzie Albies, Willemstad, Curaçao

Team: Atlanta Braves

League: National League

Parent Club: Atlanta Braves

Position: 2B

2018 Highlights: In his second season with the big club, Albies has appeared, and started, in 42 games at 2nd for the Braves. He’s currently fielding .979 with 78 putouts and 113 assists on top of his 4 errors. At the plate Ozzie’s swinging a respectable .283 with 40 runs off 52 hits, including 15 doubles, 2 triples and 13 homeruns. He’s racked up 31 RBIs and 6 stolen bases, as well as 9 walks, while still managing to find time to strike out 36 times. He’s leading the national league in runs, doubles and homeruns at the moment. Not a bad start for a 21-year old in his first full season in the bigs. Albies is signed just through the end of this season on a one-year $555,000 contract. Though he is not arbitration eligible until 2021, and won’t be able to claim free agency before 2024, we can’t imagine he’ll have any trouble getting his cost-of-living during his annual review, if he’s able to maintain today’s tempo throughout the season. 

 

Nelmerson Angela, Willemstad, Curaçao

Team: DSL Mets2

League: Dominican Summer League 

Parent Club: NY Mets - NL

Position: LHP

2018 Highlights: At the moment Nelmerson is showing up on the DSL Mets2 roster once again. Despite posting a 1.90 ERA last year, the team has opted to keep him where he finished 2017. Depending how his season starts, we may yet see a mid-season move for the hurler in late July. 

 

Xander Jan Bogaerts, Oranjestad, Aruba

Team: Boston Red Sox

League: American League

Parent Club: Boston Red Sox

Position: IF – SS, 3B

2018 Highlights: Following his broken ankle on a dive in the dugout on April 8th, on the 12th, the Sox placed Xander on the 10-day DL. Bogaerts returned to Boston’s lineup on April 27th following just a single game in AAA with the Paw Sox of Rhode Island. Through 27 MLB games Xander is hitting .306 with 13 runs off 34 hits, including 12 doubles and 5 homeruns. He’s batted in 21 while walking 4 times and striking out 25. At short Xander’s played 248.1 innings where his fielding percentage is currently .976. He has just 44 putouts and 77 assists with 3 errors. Any shortstop coming back to work off a broken ankle on their plant foot is going to need a few days to settle back in. It seems Bogaerts is right on schedule and doing just fine. Considering the injury, we couldn’t be happier to hear it. 

 

Hendrik Clementina, Willemstad, Curaçao

Team: Dayton Dragons

League: Midwest League – A 

Parent Club: Cincinnati Reds – NL

Position: Catcher

2018 Highlights: Wow! That’s all we have to say about Clementina’s progress to-date. We’re really excited to see the slugger doing so well in full season A ball. After an outstanding start to 2017, where he finished the first half of the year hitting .370 and earning a spot on the All Star roster, he was laterally traded and his 2nd half stats looked like a totally different player had filled his shoes. In the same league he finished the year hitting .240 over nearly the same number of games. Hendrik’s new club still gave him the promotion to full season A and, at the rate he’s going, he’s on-schedule not only for another All Star appearance but a mid-season move up, as well. It will be interesting to see how the Reds decide to handle Clementina’s successes as they move forward together. At the moment the catcher is posting a .994 fielding percentage with 142 putouts and just a single error through 133.2 innings of work. Add to that his 29 hits, including 6 doubles, 1 triple and 8 bombs, accounting for his .330 average, along with his 12 walks and 14 runs, and you know this kid is playing like the cream of this year’s crop as well. No doubt, if he stays healthy and on-pace, he deserves nothing less than AA by the end of 2018. A-Advanced would be a wasted move. If settling in to a new home turns out to be his problem, then giving him the chance to do it at a level that will challenge him once he does makes way more sense than forcing him through the rank and file and affecting his average along the way. 

 

Calten Daal, Willemstad, Curaçao

Team: Pensacola Blue Wahoos

League: Southern League - AA

Parent Club: Cincinnati Reds - NL

Position: SS

 

2018 Assignment: He’s back! After nearly two years on the DL, Calten Daal has finally jumped the line once again. Earlier this month Calten joined his teammates at extended spring training for his first game at short since having shoulder surgery a year ago. He currently remains on Pensacola’s 7-day DL list with their season opening on May 18th. Time will tell if he shows up suited and ready to play or if they’ll keep him in Arizona until the short-season leagues have taken all of his playmates away. 

 

Kenley Jansen, Willemstad, Curaçao

Team: Los Angeles Dodgers

League: National League

Parent Club: Los Angeles Dodgers

Position: RHP

2018 Highlights: Not too much has happened since we last checked in on Jansen. His record is still 0-1 though he’s added another 10 games and 11 innings to his stats. That’s not much but it was enough to cut his ERA by nearly half to 3.78. When considering his contract, which pays him 11M this season, prior year ERAs, which average to 2.13, and overall games in the last 3 years, 190, you have to wonder if something is happening with Kenley that the club is just no ready to talk about. After all, if you were making all that cash to be available for up to just 160 days nights in a year, you’d probably expect to work a bit more often than 40% of the time; especially when your club is sitting 8 games back to put you in 4/5 for your division. Yes, it is definitely early, but something just isn’t sitting right about all this.  

 

Urwin Juaquin, Willemstad, Curaçao

Team: Billings Mustangs

League: Pioneer League

Parent Club: Cincinnati Reds - NL

Position: SS

2018 Highlights: Juaquin’s name currently appears on Billings’ roster for the 2018 season. Of course the league is still a month away from opening day but it is where Urwin was promoted to mid-year in 2017 so it will be no surprise to see him, once again, suited up in Montana to start his first full season in short-season A ball. He finished the year hitting just .205 over his 17 games with the club. 

 

 

Sicnarf Loopstok, Oranjestad, Aruba

Team: Akron Rubber Ducks

League: Eastern League - AA

Parent Club: Cleveland Indians - AL

Position: C 

2018 Highlights: Through 32 games, and 100 at bats, Loopstok has 18 runs off 25 hits with a double, 2 triples, 5 homeruns and 19 RBIs for a .240 average. On the field, he’s sticking behind the plate and this is good, for he and the team alike. Having started 30 of his 32 games, all spent as the team’s catcher, Sicnarf’s fielding .960. Over 267.2 innings, he’s putout 253 and assisted on 20 others, while committing just 2 errors. If he can maintain his pace at the plate, and Cleveland needs the help in Columbus, we could see him making a mid-season move. 

 

Chris Pieters, Willemstad, Curaçao

Team: Myrtle Beach Pelicans

League: Carolina League – A Advanced

Parent Club: Chicago Cubs

Position: RF

2018 Highlights: Pieters has settled in nicely in Carolina. Through 27 games he’s hitting .226 with 21 hits, including a pair of doubles and triples and 9 runs while driving in 7. He’s also making his way around the bags with extra zeal. At the moment he’s stolen 4 bases without being caught once. This is nothing new to Chris, whose record is 25 back in 2015, over 62 games. In right Pieters has a .925 fielding percentage having started 25 of his 26 games in the position. If Chris can continue to increase his average, we could be looking at an All Star break move. That move may now be in danger however. On May 12th Pieters was placed on the 7-day DL. No word on the cause of injury. 

 


Juremi Profar, Willemstad, Curaçao

Team: Frisco RoughRiders

League: Texas League – AA

Parent Club: Texas Rangers - AL

Position: 3rd 

2018 Highlights: Profar is certainly having a rough ride over in Frisco. He’s been on the bench much of the last month where he’s played in just 2 games for the club. His bat has failed to light a spark so no one could blame them really. He’s sitting at .109 through 46 at bats. Juremi’s fielding hasn’t done him any favors either. At 1st he’s fairly solid, with a .941, but that is still lower than you’d like to see out of the guy who gets the ball for outs a large percentage of any game. At both 2nd and 3rd, he’s fielding the same, .778.   

 

Jurickson Profar, Willemstad, Curaçao

Team: Texas Rangers

League: American League 

Parent Club: Texas Rangers 

Position: Utility

2018 Highlights: Profar clearly passed all the eye exams and head scans necessary under MLB protocol. Following an on-field collision in April, he was placed on the 7-day DL in line with MLB rules in head injury cases. Jurickson was back in the lineup for Texas the following night however and has remained active since. It looks like the scare was enough to stop their never-ending desire to play ring-around-the-bases with his glove though. He’s now fielded 31 games at short were his percentage is .972, compared to his 10 games in other positions. Over 39 games Jurickson has had 150 plate appearances with 13 runs off 30 hits, including 11 doubles, 2 triples and 2 homeruns. He’s brought 15 mates around the bases, stolen one himself and walked 14 times compared to his 24 strikeouts. Hitting .224 somehow seems wrong with that line. 

 

Jonathan Schoop, Willemstad, Curaçao

Team: Baltimore Orioles

League: American League

Parent Club: Baltimore Orioles

Position: 2B

2018 Highlights: Just 12 games into the 2018 season, with an average of .230 over 61 at bats, Schoop ended up on the 10-day DL with an oblique strain. Those days added up and, before he knew it, Jonathan had taken a trip around the minors and back before finally returning to the O’s roster on May 8th. That recovery time accounts for his mere 22 games since April. Jonathan was placed on the DL on April 14th after an injury during April 11th’s game with Boston. There he remained through May 4th before his first assignment to Bowie, the O’s A-ball team. The next day, he was moved up to AAA International with the Tide in Norfolk. There he hung out with big bro Sharlon for 2 games. Finally, he was sent down the shore to the Frederick Keys Advanced A-ball where he spent a night before being reactivated by the club on May 8th. In total Jonathan spent 4 nights in the minors. Through his minor league tour he had 13 at bats with 2 hits, 2 RBIs, a walk and 6 strikeouts finishing with a .154 average. Over his 31 at bats since his return, Jonathan has had 6 runs off 9 hits, including 2 solo home runs on the 12th, 9 RBIs, a walk and just 2 strikeouts. Hitting .290 following your return from an oblique injury? Not a bad week. 

 

Sharlon Schoop, Willemstad, Curaçao

Team: Norfolk Tides

League: International League - AAA

Parent Club: Baltimore Orioles - AL

Position: Utility

2018 Highlights: Sharlon is hitting just .208 in Norfolk through 23 games and 72 at bats. He’s had 8 runs off 15 hits, including 5 doubles and a dinger. He’s also been walked 6 times. So far, Schoop has had 18 strikeouts. Last season, over 26 games with the Tide, he hit .193 with 19 missed opportunities, so his average appears to be at least maintaining, if not improving. In the field he’s definitely filling in the gaps. Sharlon has played 1B, 2B, 3B, short and he’s even pitched a game. The only spot on the infield he hasn’t copped a squat, ironically enough, is behind the mask. In the field, he’s just about perfect. He’s got an unblemished fielding percentage at 2B, 3B and SS where he’s spent 22 games in total and he’s fielding .933 at 1B, where he’s spent another 2. On the mound Schoop has thrown a single inning where he left with a 9.00 ERA after giving up an earned run off 2 hits without striking out a batter. This is just the second time in his career Sharlon has put up stats as a pitcher. His last outing was for the same team back in 2015 where he again pitched 1.0 inning of work and also finished the game with no strikeouts and an ERA of 9.00. Eery no? In that game he gave up one earned run off as many hits but walked 2 as well.   

 

Andrelton Simmons, Mundo Nobo, Curaçao

Team: Angels of Anaheim

League: National League

Parent Club: Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 

Position: SS

2018 Highlights: Simmons’ average has risen to a whole new level in May. Over 152 at bats he’s hitting .342. That’s .024 higher than last month and .053 higher than his career best back in his rookie season in 2012, where he only made a total of 182 plate appearances all season. At the moment, over 170 appearances, he’s had 26 runs off 52 hits, including 10 doubles, 2 triples and 3 homeruns, as well as 23 RBIs. He’s struck out just 9 times while taking 16 free rides to 1st. At short his fielding percentage is down from perfect to .971 this month after 40 games in the slot. He also made a single appearance at DH this season.  

 

Chadwick Tromp, Oranjestad, Aruba

Team: Louisville Bats

League: International League - AAA

Parent Club: Cincinnati Reds – NL

Position: Catcher

2018 Highlights: On May 12th, Chadwick was assigned to the AAA Louisville Bats. After a non-roster invite to spring training by the big club, he returns to the team where, in 2015, he made a single game appearance. Tromp’s made 3 appearances this week. Over 8 at bats, he’s hitting just .125 with 1 hit and 3 strikeouts. 

 

Jonathan Willems, Willemstad, Curaçao

Team: AZL Reds

League: Arizona League

Parent Club: Cincinnati Reds - NL

Position: 2B

 

2018 Assignment: Willems’ season begins on May 18th. He will return to the AZL Reds for his second season with the team and his third MiLB season overall. 

 

Russia

 

Anton Kuznetsov, Moscow

Team: GCL Phillies East 

League: Gulf Coast League

Parent Club: Philadelphia Phillies - NL

Position: RHP

2018 Highlights: Currently sitting on the roster once again for the GCL Phillies Anton begins his season on June 18th. 

 

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