Player Spotlight

An Underrated Career: Trace Loehr

Few CBL players are as polarizing on the field as Minneapolis Millers long-time shortstop Trace Loehr. A career .233 hitter with a .720 OPS is, some argue, worthy of being a first ballot Hall-of-Famer when he retires, and that drives some fans crazy. Offense is what seems to drive popularity, but Loehr’s body of work is impressive for it’s overall value and even more so for it’s uniqueness. Loehr has won four gold glove awards and likely had a few stolen away as well. After being given the starting shortstop job for good as a 26-year-old, Loehr played in more than 150 games for 8 straight seasons, constantly putting up league leading ZR as a SS. Combining outstanding defense with surprising power and a patient eye made Loehr one of the league’s most valuable players...

The Importance Of June 8th

This date is an important one for every CBL team, but more important is to understand the importance of rounds 2 – 7. Round 1 gets all the hype and glory but championships and teams are built in rounds 2 – 7.  There are hidden gems, long term projects and valuable trade pieces that come out of the later rounds. Most trades always involve a main piece, whether its a superstar, a future superstar or a talented player on one team that fills a valuable spot on another. These trades rarely happen on a 1 for 1 situation, most are filled with role players or future projects. These extra players are key to any successful team, whether used in a trade or grown through the farm system and most of these players are picked in rounds 2  to 7. Taking a look we can see what the power of havin...

Down on the Farm: Checking in on the Rest

For part three of our Down on the Farm series, we will be reviewing some of the elite seasons from rookie league to the A level, the Midwest League, the Arizona Summer League and the Florida State League. Part one covered the AAA level and can be read here, while part two covered the AA level and can be read here. Anibal Cardenas, Shortstop, San Diego Surf Dawgs Organization Originally signed out of Cuba in July of 2026, Anibal Cardenas has been a scouts favorite since. At 6’1, 170 pounds, his nickname “Chubby” seems odd, but he insists he was an incredibly fat baby and the nickname has just stuck. Cardenas began the season at the Low A level, where he put the league on notice that he was going to be a force in the future. In 50 games, the infielder hit .384/.421/.664 wit...

Down on the Farm: Checking in on AA

Today we continue our deeper look into this past minor league season by checking in on the AA level, the Southern League. Our first piece covered the AAA level, the Pacific Coast League, and can be read here. Art Wee-Bey, Catcher, Austin Bats Organization Originally signed as undrafted free agent out of the University of Louisville by Erie, Art Wee-Bey was traded as basically a throw-in along with Albert Perez to the Minneapolis Millers. Wee-Bey was then acquired by the Austin Bats from the Minneapolis Millers last June as part of the Alan Alexander, Jesus Arroyo trade. Wee-Bey is quickly emerging as one of the game’s best prospects, and scouts consider his make-up even more impressive than his talent. He projects as a future team captain, and his defensive ability should continue to...

Down on the Farm: Checking in on AAA

As we enter the final weeks of this long season, it might be a good idea to take a deeper look into the minor leagues of this wonderful CBL. Today, I’ll take a look at some of the top prospects at the AAA level, and over the next week or two I’ll work my way through each minor league level. Anyone who’s been promoted to the big leagues, even just recently, wasn’t eligible for the AAA list. Eric Pogue, Left Fielder, Traverse City Bullet Club Organization As the #1 overall draft pick just over a year ago, Pogue has proven the Traverse City organization made a great selection atop the draft. Last season, Pogue played 62 games at the High A level after being drafted, and he hit a very impressive .333/.386/.502. That performance and his work ethic over the winter led to ...

Draft Day in Pasadena

Pasadena, CA – A glance down the dimly lit high school hallway shows the light bouncing off plaques hanging near the baseball trophy case. The Pasadena Revolution logo painted on the adjacent wall is fading. Upon closer examination, it’s easy to understand why these stood out. SP Alfredo Hogan, Class of 2018. SS Ken Hill, Class of 2022. 1B Duane Kowing, Class of 2024. Hogan was one of the league’s best up and coming young starters, but after tearing his labrum he’s been moved to the bullpen for Manchester. At 26 years old there’s always a chance he could build his arm back up, but at this point he’s one of the league’s best young relievers which has plenty of value in itself. He’s the gem of the Pasadena Revolution baseball program. Ken Hill ...

High Rise Bubbles Rising High

On first glance Reginald “Bubbles” Cousins seems innocent and carefree. The young switch hitting secondbasemen on the Texas Tech ball club is highly regarded by many scouts among the league but his history is troublesome to many who have personally heard this young 19 year olds story… Reginald Cousins grew up in Baltimore, Maryland. His was raised by a single mother on a fixed unemployment income. The inner city of Baltimore can often times be dangerous and drug ridden. Reginald grew up in a well known drug apartment building called the “High Rise.” For much of Reginald’s youth his mother let the hard times get to her. She would leave Bubbles home while making money anyway she could on the streets of Baltimore. Bubbles was left to raise himself on his ow...

Norberto Roman Continues Improvement

Aiea, HI – CBL Winter League baseball is a big draw in the small town. The Aiea Angels, who are affiliated with the CBL’s Minneapolis Millers, draw an average of just over 5,000 fans a game. That of course is nothing compared to the large CBL crowds back in the continental US, but once you realize that the population of Aiea is just under 10,000, it’s much more impressive. The CBL Winter League has emerged as a Cape-Cod version league, but in the most tropical place the US can offer. Most players jump at the opportunity to spend the winter in Hawaii. Right handed starting pitcher Norberto Roman is no different. The 6’4, 190 pound Dominican has been turning heads here in Hawaii, thanks in large part to a fastball that has been clocked as high as 100 MPH this winter. ...

The Development of a Gigolo

Dallas, TX – The silhouette of an old baseball stadium is visible as you approach Dallas from Interstate 20, and immediately it’s clear that’s where Sterling Heights high school once stood. A long-time power in Texas high school sports, Sterling Heights boasted some of the state’s best collegiate prospects year after year in dozens of sports. However, as rough financial times hit the area in 2015, the school was forced to announce they’d be shutting down following the 2016 school year. Entering the school parking lot, the school is desolate and poorly kept up. Graffiti covers the brick structure nearly from head to toe, and the grass has grown so long it’s hard to believe anyone once played baseball here. Approaching from the north side of the school is ...

Future All-Stars of the CBL

Everyone knows the superstars in the CBL now, from the likes of older stars like the recently retired (and turned politician) Evan Longoria and Stephen Strasburg to the new stars like Oscar Cherry and Mason Templet. But, eventually these players will no longer be the players they are now. Injuries will hit them, political aspirations will outweigh their desire to continue playing and sometimes they were just a flash in the pan. When they move out, new players will have to take over as the faces of the CBL. Nothing is for sure, but these players have the best chance to pan out into the superstars of the future. C Pablo Garcia | Vallejo Admirals | Bats: Switch | Age: 26 | 5’10” – 190 lbs | Signing with the Miami Marlins (a team in the MLB for those of you too young to remem...

Chasing History – Edward Salcedo

“Home Runs are one of the many reason fans come out to the diamond, and I am just happy that I can put a smile on the fans faces as we try to improve here in STL.” words from Edward Salcedo when interviewed after his 3 home run game. “I tell you what, I was so shocked because I didn’t think the last ball had enough to get out,” he told BNN reporters in the clubhouse following the game. “I thought it was just going to be a long out.” Salcedo is tearing the cover off the ball this year and the Sultans love every ounce of his game and leadership on their very young offence. looking at the CBL history, Salcedo needs 10 more home runs to break the record for single season home runs, and current career home runs leader Miguel Sano, of the Richardson City...

2021 CBL Mock Draft

Round 1, Pick 1 (Connecticut Colonials): CF Ernesto Encarnación (Texas Tech University) If you took a caveman and put them at a field with all of the draft picks and had them watch them all play for 20 minutes, even he would know that Ernesto would go first overall. A 6’3″ 190 lb. centerfielder with terrific speed, great reads and a top notch arm. Even without considering his bat, he would be considered a top player in the league. But his strong wrists, leading to good bat speed profiles him as a potential perennial .330+ hitter, with the ability to get upwards of 30 or more homeruns. His one weakness is he does have the potential to be a high strikeout guy, chasing many off-speed pitches when behind in the count. Because of his unique skillset of elite defense combined with th...

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