Wednesday, January 07, 2015


The Kansas City Royals must be happy with their recent signing of Balbino Fuenmayor out of the Can-Am League (Quebec) because the corner infielder is not only putting up great numbers in Venezuela, but they look even more impressive when compared to Arizona outfielder David Peralta, who made a big impact in his rookie season in the National League.

Fuenmayor has 10 homers and 38 runs batted in along with a .315 average in the 42 games he has played (45-for-143), while Peralta’s production is slightly lower in the same winter league. Peralta (Amarillo, TX and Wichita, KS, American Association, and Rio Grande Valley, North American League) is at .319 with 32 RBI and only a pair of homers in 55 games (67-for-210).

Fuenmayor won both the home run (23) and RBI (99) titles in the Can-Am and was runner-up in average (.347). Peralta played almost every day after the Diamondbacks brought him up last season, hitting .286 with eight homers and 36 batted in for 88 games.

In other winter league play, free agent catcher Jose Gil (Lincoln, NE, American Association) is showing some offensive punch in Venezuela with .328-6-24 numbers for 37 appearances and American Association (Grand Prairie, TX) grad Ryan Searle continues to set the pace in strikeouts in Australia (56 in 48.2 innings) although his ERA, mostly in a starting role, is only at 4.25. Two other American Association hurlers have much better ERAs in the same league, Jason Jarvis (Grand Prairie) is at 2.21 for 11 relief outings and Morgan Coombs (Gary, IN) has won six of seven decisions and has a 2.36 mark mostly as a starter.


Boston finally announced its re-signing of lefty reliever Craig Breslow today (Wednesday). Reports have had the onetime Can-Am League (New Jersey Jackals) hurler getting $2 million after the Sox earlier rejected his $4 million option.

An original Independent find, right-hander Chris Martin was designated for assignment this week by Colorado. The onetime Grand Prairie hurler, 28, got into his first 16 major league games last season, ending up 0-0, 6.75 out of the bullpen with 14 strikeouts in 15.2 innings.


Outfielder Justin Christian (Southern Maryland, Atlantic League, and River City, Frontier League) is another original Independent signee making news. While known primarily for his speed, the free agent has homered twice in four postseason games in Mexico. The occasional major leaguer only hit three blasts in 61 regular-season games.

THE INDEPENDENT BASEBALL INSIDER will resume in March. Request a free sample column from December in order to be automatically reminded when the column starts for 2015.

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