The Indians confirmed today that one of the organization’s top prospects, Francisco Lindor, will be one of many players on hand at Tribe Fest, presented by KeyBank, on January 19 and 20.
The 19 year-old shortstop prospect was named the Indians’ top prospect in 2012, and the no. 13 overall prospect in baseball by MLB.com. After being selected in the 1st round (8th overall) of the 2011 MLB Amateur draft, Lindor made his professional debut last season as an 18 year-old.
The switch-hitter showed both pop at the plate and speed on the base-paths with the Single-A Lake County Captains in 2012. In 122 games he posted a .352 OBP with 24 doubles, 6 HR and 27 stolen bases.
MLB.com prospect expert Jonathan Mayo offered this assessment of Lindor:
“Lindor has a very advanced approach at the plate as a switch-hitter, and should hit for average and power from both sides. He gets on base and is a heady runner. There’s no question about his defensive ability, with a plus arm and range. While Lindor is a teenager who spent the year at Class A Lake County, don’t be shocked if he’s able to move faster than most prepsters.”
In addition to Lindor, a large cast of current and former Indians will attend Tribe Fest, and fans will have an opportunity to interact with them on both Saturday and Sunday. A full list of Indians attendees is below:
Terry Francona, Jason Kipnis, Carlos Santana, Vinnie Pestano, Lonnie Chisenhall, Drew Stubbs, Carlos Carrasco, Zach McAllister, Francisco Lindor, Nick Hagadone, Corey Kluber, Cody Allen, Tom Hamilton, Jim Rosenhaus, John Adams, Katie Witham, The Cleveland Blues and Slider.
Tickets are still available for both days of Tribe Fest, and fans can get more information at Indians.com/TribeFest
Update: Two Indians prospects, catcher Alex Monsalve and pitcher Trey Haley have been selected to play in the Arizona Fall League’s Futures Game. The game will take place on Saturday, November 3 at 8:00PM ET and will be broadcast live on MLB Network and MLB.com.
Although the Major League season ended Sunday night, many young players will continue to play through the winter as they aim to speed up their development by playing extended seasons. The Indians have a number of young players currently working on their game in the Arizona Fall League, while several others will be participating in Winter Leagues across Latin America.
The Arizona Fall League (AFL) began its 2012 season on October 9 and eight players from the Indians organization are taking part by representing the Scottsdale Scorpions in the extended season. Several players, such as shortstop Ronny Rodriguez and left-handed pitcher T.J. House, have excelled in the AFL as they look to improve on strong 2012 seasons in the minor leagues.
Rodriguez, 20, is rated the No. 5 prospect in the organization by MLB.com after showing impressive power (19 HR and 66 RBI) with the Carolina Mudcats (Hi-A) in the 2012 regular season. He is hitting .273 through 11 games in the AFL, with six RBI and three stolen bases.
House is coming off a promising season in which he was promoted from Carolina to Double-A Akron, compiling a 10-5 record and 3.56 ERA between the two teams. He has built on his 2012 regular season campaign with several strong performances in Arizona, striking out 18 batters over 17 innings of work, and posting a 1.59 ERA.
Both Rodriguez and House hope to follow in the footsteps of a number of current Indians players who have spent time developing their game in the AFL in recent years.
Jason Kipnis excelled in the AFL in the fall of 2010, and Vinnie Pestano appeared in the league in 2009. Both players went on to make their Major League debuts the following season.
The Arizona Fall League schedule ends on November 15, but similar leagues in the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Puerto Rico and Mexico will take place throughout the fall and winter.
Notable current Indians have played in these leagues as well in recent years. Shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera played in the Venezuelan Winter League from 2007-2011, while catcher Carlos Santana and pitcher Rafael Perez each made appearances in the 2009 Dominican Winter League. Pitcher Esmil Rogers is expected to play in the Dominican this winter.
For more on the Indians prospects currently plying their trade in off-season leagues, read Tyler Emerick’s feature for MLB.com.
– TribeVibe Contributor Max Lom
– Article appears courtesy of Mike Brandyberry of DidtheTribeWinLastNight.com
Little Leaguers and boys in the backyard always dream of playing all over the field and having the ball hit to them all night long. Few get the opportunity, and even fewer get the chance to do it professionally.
For Cleveland Indians minor leaguer Justin Toole, Saturday night was a reward and tribute to his versatility.
“At the beginning of the season he and the Indians told me he could play everywhere,” Carolina Mudcats Manager Edwin Rodriguez said. “Originally, I thought, ‘yeah right,’ but after working with him, he really could play anywhere.”
Toole, a utility infielder in the Indians system playing most of his season with the High-A Carolina Mudcats, played all nine positions for one inning each on Saturday night during a 4-2 Mudcats victory against the Salem Red Sox. He has had brief stints this year at both Double-A Akron and Triple-A Columbus, but has played in 77 games in Carolina, hitting .236, while playing five different positions before Saturday evening. Toole’s chance to play all nine positions started with a promise from Rodriguez.