Cubs prospect third baseman Kris Bryant has been getting most of the attention this spring for his impressive power exploits, but as you’ll see below, Rangers prospect third baseman Joey Gallo is also capable of hitting baseballs very, very far. Here’s a three-run shot to right off Giants right-hander Jake Peavy yesterday:
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Listed at 6-foot-5 and 230 pounds, the 21-year-old Gallo hit 41 homers with a 1.009 OPS last season between High-A Myrtle Beach and Double-A Frisco. Baseball America recently ranked him as the No. 6 prospect in the game. Strikeouts are an issue for him, but new Rangers manager Jeff Banister put it best yesterday (via Richard Justice of MLB.com):
“This cat here, he touches the ball, he’s going to do some damage.”
Japanese League commissioner Atsushi Saito announced that Japan’s professional baseball season will open on June 19. Teams can being practice games on June 2. There will be no fans. Indeed, the league has not yet even begun to seriously discuss a plan for fans to begin attending games, though that may happen eventually.
The season will begin three months after its originally scheduled opening day of March 20. It will be 120 games long. Teams in each six-team league — the Central League and Pacific League — will play 24 games against each league opponent. There will be no interleague play and no all-star game.
The announcement came in the wake of a national state of emergency being lifted for both Tokyo and the island of Hokkaido. The rest of the country emerged from the state of emergency earlier this month. This will allow the Japanese leagues to follow leagues in South Korea and Taiwan which have been playing for several weeks.
In the United States, Major League Baseball is hoping to resume spring training in mid June before launching a shortened regular season in early July. That plan is contingent on the league and the players’ union coming to an agreement on both financial arrangements and safety protocols for a 2020 season. Negotiations on both are ongoing. Major League Baseball will, reportedly, make a formal proposal about player compensation tomorrow.