Sunday, July 17, 2011

Touch 'Em All Time

Despite pitching well this summer in the Texas Collegiate League, it sounds like 47th rounder RHP Derek Vaughn will not sign:
"He's got a live fastball in the 90-92 (mph) range," said Rodriguez. "He gets ahead early in the count. He challenges hitters. He's a bulldog on the mound."

A converted catcher who didn't pitch until his senior year in high school, Vaughn was drafted in the 47th round of last month's baseball draft by the Tampa Bay Rays, but he said he's plannng to return to Texas Wesleyan for his junior season "to try to improve and get drafted even higher next year."

Another player who didn't want to be in the organization, former Durham Bull Chris Carter, describes tampering opting out of his contract with the Rays:
In the weeks before the deadline for his opt-out, Carter received input from other organizations. After one game in Durham, he said it had been a good day because he — or his representatives — had been contacted by two other teams.
“He has to have that right spot at the right time,” Bulls manager Charlie Montoyo a few weeks ago about Carter’s prospects. “He has got pop.” Yet when Carter’s time was done with the Bulls, he basically left unannounced. Montoyo said he found out by accident, figuring Carter didn’t intend to tell him.
“Just another player,” Montoyo said.
Outside the visiting clubhouse in Durham, Carter said he liked the players he spent weeks with on the Durham team. He also hinted that there might be more to the story and how it all came about.

Yesterday's off-topic was religion, today's is eye color:
As one of the roughly 16 percent of Americans with light-colored eyes (Kotsay’s are a soft blue), he is more affected by glare, experts say. And while acknowledgment of the issue varies from team to team and player to player, doctors say light-eyed athletes who frequently participate in day games — particularly baseball players — face increased obstacles, and even future health risks, as they repeatedly battle the sun.
The concerns for light-eyed athletes came into focus recently when Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton, who has struggled to hit as effectively during the day as he does at night, revealed that team doctors told him his eye color could be a contributing factor. With a reduced sensitivity to contrast, he has a harder time picking up the seams of the baseball — the part of the ball hitters use, in a fraction of second, to identify what pitch is coming.
But Baltimore Orioles Manager Buck Showalter said he had known about this issue “for years.” Showalter said that although scouts have a laundry list of axioms about a player’s body type — “Don’t draft a kid with a beard because it probably means he’s done growing,” Showalter offered as an example — anything that has to do with vision is important to a player’s success. “To this day, when I see a prospect or a kid we’re going to sign, I’ll look at his eyes,” Showalter said. “Anybody who tells you they don’t notice eye color when they’re evaluating a player probably isn’t a very good scout.”

Moves: OF John Matulia and RHP Ryan Reid promoted from Montgomery to Durham; RHP Paul Phillips activated off Montgomery's DL; Joe Davis placed on Montgomery's restricted list.

Oscar Watch: Hernandez went 2 for 3 on Saturday, both singles. Also walked and had 2 RBI in VSL Rays 4-3 win over the Reds. Hitting streak is now at five games, average up to .409 on the season.

Stat 'O The Day: Steals.
Player            Team(s)  G  AB SB CS
Tyler Bortnick        CHA 85 315 28  2
Ismel Antunez*    VSL/GCL 46 157 26  6
Hak-Ju Lee*           CHA 73 304 22 11
Cody Rogers*          BWG 83 318 22  6
Kevin Kiermaier*      BWG 79 264 20  6
Brett Nommensen*      CHA 77 272 19  4
Desmond Jennings      DHM 84 317 17  1
Taylor Motter         PRI 22  76 15  2
Shawn OMalley#        MTG 43 168 15  6
Brandon Guyer         DHM 81 294 13  5
Trivia: Without looking it up, who was the Charlotte Stone Crabs opening day starter this season?

Name That Minor Leaguer ===>

Hint #1: The hat is correct.

Hint #2: Played in the GCL last season.

Hint #3: Drafted in the first 15 rounds.


  1. Hmm... I thought Jake Thompson was the Crabs opening day starter?

  2. Yep, trivia answer is Jake Thompson, Stone Crabs opening day starter. Probably too easy.

  3. In case there is any confusion, Name That Minor Leaguer is a separate thing from the Trivia question. I'll format it differently in the future so it's more clear.

  4. Yes, Princeton catcher Jake DePew. Thought it might be good to get to know what some of the lesser known players look like.

  5. Ahh, okay, that definitely did throw me off.

  6. Just to back up your off-topic discussion, I was talking with an optometrist friend about the eye-color thing just the other day, I spent a month in Fiji and the locals were very adamant about us "blue-eyes" wearing eye protection in the sun. They say that the natives out there with blue eyes generally end up with severely impaired vision as they age.

    The baseball out there could use a boost, I mentioned to some at the Development Complex that it would be a great place to start another "baseball school" but they just laughed.