Former Anglers Get the Call
With the minor league season winding down, Major League teams are now allowed to expand the size of their active roster and invite several promising prospects within their respective systems to join them for the final month of the season. With these September Call-ups, young players get the chance to show off their talents in front of their teams' front office, and get a taste of what to expect from the sport's highest level of competition.
This year's call-ups featured some familiar names for fans in Chatham, with 2006 Anglers Danny Espinosa heading to the Washington Nationals and Vance Worley getting the call from the Philadelphia Phillies. 2005 Angler Alex Presley heads to the Steel City to spend time with the Pittsburgh Pirates. This actually marks the second debut for Worley, as he was called up in July to make one appearance out of the bullpen, pitching one inning of perfect relief with two strikeouts. Worley struck out five batters and allowed just two runs on two hits over five innings of work in his first major league start.
Espinosa also got his major league career off to an impressive start, collecting nine hits in his first sixteen at-bats, good for a .563 average with three home runs and 10 RBI. New York Mets fans will certainly remember the dynamic start to Espinosa's career, after the young shortstop collected four hits in five at-bats with two home runs and six RBI in a September 6th meeting between the division rivals at Nationals Park.
While both Espinosa and Worley came into the 2010 season listed among their organizations' Top 30 prospects, Presley earned no such distinction. He was in the lower ranks of professional baseball after finishing the 2009 season at just the Advanced-A level for the second consecutive season. Beginning the season with the Double-A Altoona Curve, Presley quickly silenced whatever critics he may have had, hitting for an impressive .350 batting average over 67 games with six home runs, 47 RBI, and an extraordinary .932 OPS, earning him a promotion to AAA Indianapolis on June 25. Looking to keep his momentum, Presley collected one hit over each of his first two outings with the Indians, before hitting for the cycle against the Toledo Mud Hens on June 26, collecting five hits overall. He finished his stint at the Triple-A level with a .294 batting average, six home runs and 38 RBI over 69 games. As if those numbers weren't impressive enough, Presley also earned historic distinction by becoming the first professional player to collect a hit in the regular season against Nationals' phenomenon Stephen Strasburg, in the right-hander's debut against Altoona.
It should come as no surprise to Chatham fans that these three young men have reached the highest level of competitive baseball. The Anglers' faithful will remember Worley's impressive showing out of the bullpen in 2006 when he posted a 3-2 record with a 3.03 ERA over 14 appearances, while Espinosa showed promise as a switch-hitting defensive threat, posting a solid .252 batting average with ten extra-base hits.
Presley outshined most of his teammates at the plate in 2005 with his .341 average, including current Tampa Bay Ray and 2008 American League Rookie-of-the-Year Evan Longoria, though Longoria posted a .299 average and led the league with eight home runs.
Be sure to follow the success and progress of these three young men as they continue to admirably represent Chatham on the Major League stage, and be sure to check www.ChathmAnglers.com during the offseason for the latest news and updates as we prepare for another outstanding season!