ROUND ROCK, Texas – The Pacific Coast League today announced the 2011 All-PCL Team, led by a league-most three players from the Omaha Storm Chasers.
The Storm Chasers, currently the American Northern Division leader, are represented by second baseman Johnny Giavotella, designated hitter Clint Robinson, and right-handed pitcher Luis Mendoza. Giavotella, who was promoted to Kansas City on August 5th, leads all PCL second baseman with a .338 batting average while Robinson has hit 23 homers and driven in 97 runs in 130 games. Omaha’s ace, Mendoza, has won 11 decisions to accompany his league-best 2.15 earned run average.
The Sacramento River Cats and Reno Aces are the only other teams represented by more than one player. Catcher Anthony Recker (.287, 16 HR) and outfielder Jai Miller (30 HR, 77 RBI) helped power the River Cats to their fifth consecutive Pacific Southern Division crown. Reno’s Cody Ransom, who established new single-season franchise-records for Reno in home runs and RBI, and Collin Cowgill, the only PCL player to have more than 10 home runs and 30 stolen bases this season, were named to the squad as shortstop and outfielder, respectively.
The PCL’s home run leader, Bryan LaHair, was voted to the team as the first baseman. LaHair, 28, is enjoying a career-year with the Iowa Cubs, as he has posted new career-highs in home runs (36) and runs scored (89) while his batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage are the highest for a single-season in his career with eight games remaining this season. He currently leads the PCL in home runs, runs batted in, total bases and extra-base hits.
Along with Cowgill, Giavotella and Robinson, third baseman Taylor Green of the Nashville Sounds and outfielder Joey Butler of the Round Rock Express bring the total number of the first-year Triple-A players on the All-PCL Team to five. In his sixth professional season, Green leads the Sounds in batting average, OBP and doubles over his 120 games played. Drafted by the Texas Rangers in the 15th round of the 2008 June Draft, Butler is batting .326 with 27 doubles and 12 home runs for the American Southern Division champs.
Completing the All-PCL pitching staff, Dana Eveland of the Albuquerque Isotopes was selected as the left-handed pitcher, and Victor Marte of the Memphis Redbirds was named to the team as the top reliever. Eveland, who is one of seven players to be named to the PCL’s Mid-Season and Post-Season All-Star teams this year, has won 12 decisions, the second-most in the league, to go along with 107 strikeouts. Marte has made 51 appearances for Memphis, posting a 1.53 ERA and tallying a PCL-best 28 saves.
Storm Chasers Well-Represented on All-PCL Team
Giavotella, Mendoza, Robinson make up 25 percent of exclusive roster
OMAHA, Neb. — The Omaha Storm Chasers’ storybook inaugural season added another chapter Monday, as the Pacific Coast League named Johnny Giavotella, Luis Mendoza and Clint Robinson to its prestigious 12-member All-PCL Team.
Giavotella, the All-PCL second baseman, batted .338 with nine home runs, 72 RBI, 34 doubles and 67 runs scored in 110 games with the Storm Chasers this season. He was honored as the league’s All-Star representative at second base and was also named the PCL Player of the Month for June, during which he batted .398 (49-for-123). He was promoted to the Kansas City Royals on August 5.
Right-hander Luis Mendoza was one of three pitchers named to the squad. The 27-year-old has an 11-5 record with a league-leading 2.15 ERA for the Chasers, more than a full run better than his nearest competitor. He has dominated the league since May 26, compiling a 10-2 record with a 1.24 ERA over 108.2 innings pitched, including 9-0 with a 1.19 ERA in 10 road appearances. He threw a complete-game, one-hit shutout at Memphis on July 18.
Clint Robinson, honored as the designated hitter for the All-PCL Team, has been one of the hottest hitters in the league over the past two-and-a-half weeks, pushing his season numbers into awe-inspiring territory. The 6-foot-5, left-handed slugger is batting .478 with four home runs, 24 RBI and 11 doubles in his past 18 games, giving him a season average of .329 with 23 homers, 97 RBI and 35 doubles. His 35 doubles rank second on the all-time single-season franchise list, one ahead of Giavotella and two off of the record of 37.
Joining the Omaha trio are catcher Anthony Recker of Sacramento, first baseman Bryan LaHair of Iowa, third baseman Taylor Green of Nashville, shortstop Cody Ransom of Reno and outfielders Joey Butler (Round Rock), Collin Cowgill (Reno) and Jai Miller (Sacramento). Albuquerque left-handed starting pitcher Dana Eveland and Memphis closer Victor Marte round out the 12-member squad. Including Miller and Marte, five of the 12 players have played for Omaha during the past two seasons.
Each of the Storm Chasers’ three representatives were also named to the Pacific Coast League All-Star squad in Salt Lake, though that roster had 30 players and representation from each club.
The All-PCL team, which features players from just eight of the 16 PCL clubs, was voted on by the league’s field managers, general managers and media.