Dear Diary, As the high school sports seasons come to a close this spring, all eyes will continue to gaze up the various sports fields that will be filled by athletes this summer.
I’ll have more than 60 days to travel around Southern Saratoga County and beyond to follow a summer full of baseball, softball, Soccer Classic and whatever else may cross my e-mail in a timely fashion to work into my schedule (hint, hint to parents and organizers), so here is a quick look at some summer athletes who graced our sports pages and are now playing on a bigger stage.
Shenendehowa graduate and right-handed pitcher Murphy Smith is currently twirling for the Midland RockHounds in the AA Texas League as part of the Oakland A’s organization. Smith is one of only a handful of locals who are continuing their dream of playing at the big league level.
I was fortunate to spend a few summers covering the Saratoga Phillies at East Side Rec as part of the New York Collegiate Baseball League prior to the team’s departure to Oneonta where they currently play under the Oneonta Outlaw banner in the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League. Nine different players from the Phillies are playing professionally and four can be seen as part of the MLB Extra Innings package on Time Warner Cable.
J.D. Martinez has 10 RBI and five runs while batting .326 over the last 14 days for the Houston Astros,cu rrently patrolling left field. The hot-hitting outfielder tore up the NYCBL as well as the Sunshine State Conference before being drafted by the Astros. He was on the Tri-City Valleycats 2009 squad where he batted .326 over 56 games locally.
Pitcher Mike Fiers made his major-league debut just two weeks ago, earning the win on May 29 for the Milwaukee Brewers. The Nova Southeastern hurler also recorded a no-hitter when pitching for the Saratoga Phillies several years ago. He’s currently sporting a 1-1 record.
Left fielder Darin Mastroianni was drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays and signed in 2007 and was selected off waivers this year by the Minnesota Twins, currently on the MLB club roster and appearing in 13 games this year.
Things can move quickly for the professional ball player as former Saratoga Phillies pitcher Miles Mikolas was optioned on Monday from the San Diego Padres parent organization to the Tucson Padres in the AAA Pacific Coast League.
There is good news, right-handed pitcher Mike Schwimer was recalled by the Philadelphia Phillies last Saturday, pulled back up the parent club and is available to see National League East action at any time.
Loudonville product Greg Holle is playing for Class A Advanced Brerard County Manatees for the Milwaukee Brewers organization, Mark Lamm is pitching for the Mississippi Braves in the AA Southern League, Casper Wells was just optioned to Seattle from Milwaukee and is playing outfield for the AAA Tacoma Rainiers. Donnie Webb, a fan favorite with the Saratoga Phillies is playing outfield for the Jacksonville Suns in the AA Southern League for the Miami Marlins organization.
Another Saratoga Central Catholic alum, Tim Stauffer, remains with the San Diego Padres organization and is currently on the 15-day disabled list. He had one start earlier this year against the Washington Nationals, going five innings, striking out five batters and walking three in the loss.
Queensbury product Brendan Harris is signed with the Colorado Rockies organization after spending a year with the Tampa Rays before spending three seasons with the Minnesota Twins and last year with the Baltimore Orioles. He is currently assigned to the Colorado Springs Sky Sox in the AAA Pacific Coast League.
Newly drafted Christian Garcia, who graduated from Saratoga Central Catholic was drafted today by the Houston Astros, joining LaSalle graduate Zach Remillard as two locals drafted by the Tri-City Valley Cats parent club. Remillard is expected to continue to Coastal Carolina for school, while Garcia is expected to sign a professional contract.
Good luck to all our past local and future stars, whether they were home grown or just visiting for the summer.