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Atlantic League News & Notes
ALPB Showcase: The ALPB Professional Showcase was another success. Over 160 prospects registered and took part in two days of evaluation in front of ALPB managers and coaches. RHP Hector Guances (Pena) was the first player picked in the draft and went to Staten Island. The 6-6 native of the Dominican Republic has six years of experience in the Washington and Baltimore organizations. Other notable picks included C Alexis “Scrappy” Hopkins and 1B Alex Wemple, each selected by the Kentucky Wild Health Genomes. Hopkins is the first woman drafted by an ALPB team and just the second in baseball history selected for an on-field role. Wemple, 41, and a native of Kentucky, has criss-crossed the country in pursuit of his professional baseball dream. He was the 12th player taken in the first round.
MLB Experimental Rules: MLB announced on March 15 the two experimental rules that will be in play for the ALPB this season. Teams will continue to use the “double-hook” rule with a change providing that if the starting pitcher goes five innings, the team will not lose the DH for that game. In addition, the ALPB will return to the 2019 rule regarding the dropped pitch which allows a batter to take off for first base at any time during an at-bat. The 2022 version will credit those with reaching first successfully with a base hit.
Signings: Long Island has re-signed Johnni Turbo for his third season with the Ducks… Turbo has been an ALPB All-Star and earned a league championship with Long Island… Also returning to the Ducks will be RHP Scott Harkin who was 5-0 with the club in 2021 and INF Vladimir Frias who will start his third season with Long Island… Lancaster signed former Cubs OF Mark Zagunis and RHP Ben Wanger … Wanger is returnee who also played for Team Israel in the 2021 Tokyo Olympics… Southern Maryland added a pair of former ALPB Relievers of the Year to the roster… Mat Latos (2019 Reliever of the Year) is back for his third season with Crustacean Nation while Endrys Briceno (2021 Reliever of the Year) returns for a second season with SMD… York has signed slugger Carlos Castro and C Lenin Rodriguez for return seasons with the Revs while newcomer OF Zach Racusin has also joined the club… High Point has signed RHP reliever Junior Rincon and versatile INF Diego Goris… Rincon hurled for Lancaster and Charleston in the ALPB in 2021 while Goris has played at the AAA level… Gastonia is returning Josh Skole from the 2021 club… Skole pounded 23 homers and stole 30 bases for the Honey Hunters and was the only ALPB member of the 20-20 Club in 2021… Southern Maryland has added reliever Dylan Brammer and C Austin Re as well as SS Michael Baca… Returning to the Lancaster Barnstormers from 2021 will be RHP Cameron Gann and OF Devon Torrence… Torrence has a unique background, having played football at Ohio State and spending time with several NFL team.
Coaching: Lancaster has added former Detroit Tigers minor league coach and former MLB hurler Mark Johnson to its staff. The ‘Stormers will return hitting coach Jeff Bianchi and first base coach/director of baseball operations Troy Steffy as well.
Community Relations: Charleston donated 10 cents of every dollar of merchandise sold in March to the local March of Dimes campaign… The Ducks will hold their media day on Saturday, April 16… The Legends are partnering with VirtCh to deliver professional quality in-house and broadcast production which will elevate the fan experience… Lancaster’s Opening Night on April 29 will be a celebration of the 80’s.
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