Alumni in the Pros
The 2015 baseball season was not only a successful one in the PGCBL, but a strong one for PGCBL alumni as well.
More than 140 former players from PGCBL teams played professional baseball this year, including more than 100 in the minor or major leagues. This year, the PGCBL also saw a record number of alumni taken in the First-Year Player Draft as 43 players were drafted.
Now that the minor league season is over and the major league season is in its final stretch, here’s the 2015 PGCBL Alumni All-Star Team.
C: Luke Maile (Amsterdam Mohawks 2011-12)
Luke Maile got his first call to the big leagues this year after a successful season with Triple A Durham. Maile clubbed five home runs and drove in 29 runs for the Bulls while posting an on-base percentage around .300. Here’s video of his first MLB at-bat and his first MLB hit, an RBI double to right-center field.
IF: Kane Sweeney (Newark Pilots 2012)
Kane Sweeney was drafted in the 29th round of this year’s MLB draft, but put up impressive numbers in the short season. The Morehead State product hit .320/.437/.562 in 45 games for Short-Season Rookie Pulaski. Sweeney posted an OPS of .999 and clubbed six home runs.
IF: Michael Pierson (Utica Brewers 2013)
2013 PGCBL Batting Champion Michael Pierson had one of the best seasons of PGCBL alumni. Pierson hit .395 with a .995 OPS with 17 stolen bases in 52 games for Short-Season Rookie Orem. Pierson also drove in more than 30 runs and reached base more than 46 percent of the time.
IF: Brandon Trinkwon (Albany Dutchmen 2011)
Brandon Trinkwon finished the season in the top five in home runs among PGCBL alumni with seven long balls and had an OPS of .730 across two levels. Trinkwon ended the season in Double A Tulsa and stole 12 bases while hitting .278 and driving in 43 runs.
IF: John Nogowski (Amsterdam Mohawks 2013)
2013 PGCBL MVP John Nogowski finished tied for the third-most RBIs among PGCBL alumni with 45. The Florida State product hit .274 with a .716 OPS and clubbed 20 doubles for Class A Advanced Stockton.
OF: Ross Kivett (Glens Falls Golden Eagles 2012)
2012 PGCBL MVP Ross Kivett drove in 50 runs and stole 28 bases this year for Class A West Michigan. Kivett, who hit .401 in his lone PGCBL season, hit .267 with five home runs and 28 RBIs this year. The 50 RBIs were the second-most among PGCBL alumni.
OF: Hunter Pence (Schenectady Mohawks 2002)
Despite limited action due to injuries this season, Hunter Pence had a strong season for the reigning World Series Champion San Francisco Giants. Pence hit .275 with a .806 OPS and 40 RBIs in 52 games for the Giants. While it’s unlikely he plays in the Giants’ remaining games, Pence is still top five among Giants players with nine home runs this year.
OF: Stefen Romero (Glens Falls Golden Eagles 2008)
Two years after being named the Seattle Mariners Minor League Player of the Year, Stefen Romero is still raking. Romero hit .292 with 17 home runs, 79 RBIs, 37 doubles and a .827 OPS for Triple A Tacoma before being called up by the Mariners. Since being called up by the Mariners, Romero has hit a home run and posted an OPS just over .640 in 11 games.
UTL: Dan Gamache (Amsterdam Mohawks 2009)
Across two levels this season, Dan Gamache impressed with a .312 batting average and a .768 OPS. Gamache finished the season with Triple A Indianapolis and had 48 RBIs in 104 total games. Before being called up to Triple A, Gamache hit .335 with a .835 OPS.
P: Mark Leiter (Amsterdam Mohawks 2011-12)
Across two levels, Mark Leiter won eight games this season with a 3.09 ERA and a 1.18 WHIP. Leiter was particularly tough in June, posting a 2.18 ERA, including a complete game. For Class A Advanced Clearwater, Leiter went 6-1 with a 2.26 ERA.
P: James Dykstra (Amsterdam Mohawks 2011)
James Dykstra etched himself into baseball lore this year, tossing a no-hitter on April 15. Not a single ball left the infield against Dykstra and he needed just 71 pitches to complete the gem. The only base runner he allowed was a walk to begin the fourth inning, but Dykstra promptly picked the runner off before the next pitch. For the season, Dykstra tossed 128.1 innings, finishing with a 3.51 ERA and a 1.18 WHIP for Class A Advanced Winston-Salem.
P: Nick Pivetta (Glens Falls Golden Eagles 2012)
While switching organizations in the trade that brought Jonathan Papelbon to the Washington Nationals, Nick Pivetta put up a successful season. The right-handed won nine games, tossed 129.2 innings and finished with a 3.96 ERA and 103 strikeouts. With Class A Advaced Potomac, Pivetta had a 2.29 ERA and went 7-4 for the Nationals affiliate.
The PGCBL is affiliated with Perfect Game, the largest independent scouting service in the country. Last year, more than 1,400 professional players were alumni from PGCBL teams and Perfect Game events.
For more information about the PGCBL, visit www.pgcbl.com.