June 5 and 6
- Lugnuts 1 game, Chiefs 1 game
- Lugnuts are 27-33 (.450)
- Still in the cellar, seven behind the Whitecaps and one behind both the Battle Cats and the Silver Hawks.
A good game (for a loss) against one of the league’s best starters, then they won a rather strange game in extra innings. This is pretty good; the Chiefs are an excellent team. (I’ve lowered my expectations a bit; our team’s just not going to develop a good defense.)
[Emiliano] Escandon’s health is recovering, and so is his offense. That’s good.
The division (now minus our participation) continues to play intramural games, with some effect on the standings. West Michigan continues to lead, easily; the rest of the teams are just beating each other up. In a few days they’ll start over.
Since the Journal forgot we might be interested in the results of Kansas City’s draft, I’ll post what little I know:
- Dermal [Dee] Brown, OF, Marlboro Central HS, Marlboro, NY Brown’s reported to be an excellent athlete; has a football scholarship at Maryland (running back). May play both sports, at least for a while.
- Taylor Myers, RHP, Green Valley HS, Henderson, NV Same coach as Greg Maddux, and a similar pitcher. (That’s asking too much, really.)
- Chad Durbin, SS-RHP, Woodlawn HS, Baton Rouge, LA
- Corey Thurman, RHP, Texas HS, Texarkana, TX A big, strong thrower who needs lots of work.
- Jeremy Hill, C, W.T. White HS, Dallas, TX
- Jeremy Giambi, OF, Cal State Fullerton
- Scott Mullen, LHP, Dallas Baptist U
- Javier Flores, C, U of Oklahoma
- Jeremy Morris, OF, Florida State U A raw talent; former Seminole football player….
- Steve Houston [actually Hueston], RHP, Long Beach State U
My source for all of this is Baseball America.
We’ll certainly see some of these players over the next couple years, though most of them will probably get assigned to one of the short-season teams if they sign. None of these are obviously replacements for Doug Blosser; perhaps we’ll see Giambi.
This stuff is more interesting than it’s important. Don’t hold your breath waiting for these guys to show up in Lansing….
That Peoria starting pitcher was Britt Reames, at the time one of baseball’s brightest prospects. He’d injure his arm the next year, and spend two seasons recovering from Tommy John surgery before embarking on a lackluster six-year major league career. Before the injury, though, Britt was really something to see. And one of the cockiest ballplayers I’ve ever watched.
Reames is now the pitching coach at The Citadel
Overheard a scout in the ballpark a few days ago. He was telling tales, including a short one about a conversation that took place on an airplane a few years back:
That scout’s no longer working for the Royals.
That draft list can be cited as an example of the quality of the 1990s Royals scouting effort. Six of those players–Brown, Durbin, Thurman, Hill, Giambi, and Mullen–would eventually play in the majors, but Giambi didn’t prove to be his brother and Brown can only be called a disappointment. Matt Guerrier (drafted in the 33rd round) has probably had the best baseball career of the 1996 Royals draftees, though they’d not sign him. Guerrier signed with the White Sox in 1999, and has pitched in the majors for the Twins and Dodgers. He’s still playing in LA.
Myers, Durbin, Thurman, Giambi, Mullen, and Hueston would play for the Lugnuts, mostly in 1997.
The Britt Reames game brought me an email from Chelane Priller, who wanted a lineup change clarified. Chelane would begin a Lugnuts website (also more or less a blog), hosted on my site, shortly after I dropped my effort. We’ll try to remember to discuss that in September.
In the event you’ve just stumbled onto this entry, here’s an explanation of what I’m up to. With an index!