Angels sign former Braves prospect Kevin Maitan

Associated Press
0 Comments

The prospects the Atlanta Braves were forced to release in the wake of their international signing scandal are starting to find new teams. Two of the best joined new teams today.

Buster Olney of ESPN reports that the Angels have signed former shortstop Kevin Maitan. Maitan was the biggest name of the Braves former prospects, having received a $4.25 million bonus as the top prospect in the 2016 international class. He batted just .241/.290/.340 with two homers and 18 RBI over 42 games in rookie ball this season, which was seen as a bit of a disappointment, but the Angels will happily take a chance on his future.

Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com, the deal is worth $2.2 million, though the Angels can allocate that money from next year’s bonus pool, per MLB’s ruling on the Braves a few weeks back. That will leave them money in this year’s pool to continue their pursuit of Shohei Ohtani.

Sanchez also reports that the Royals have signed former Braves pitcher Yefri Del Rosario for a $650,000 bonus. Rosario, 18, pitched in the Dominican Summer League last year and posted a 1.80 ERA in two starts and for the Braves Gulf Coast League team, sporting a 3.90 ERA in 11 games. Del Rosario reportedly chose the Royals over teams offering more money because he idolized the late Yordano Ventura and wished to play for his team. Which, pardon me for a second, it’s gettin’ a bit dusty in here.

In all, the Braves lost 12 players they had under contract, and lost the rights to another with whom they had a tentative agreement. Expect all of them to soon sign with other clubs.

Pujols hits 701st career home run, connects for Cardinals

albert pujols
Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images
5 Comments

ST. LOUIS — Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols hit his 701st home run, connecting Friday night against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Pujols launched a slider from former teammate Johan Oviedo over the Big Mac Land sign in left field at Busch Stadium. The solo drive in the fourth inning made it 1-all.

Pujols faced Oviedo for the first time and made the 24-year-old righty the 456th different pitcher he’s homered against.

The St. Louis star hadn’t homered in a week since hitting No. 699 and 700 at Dodger Stadium last Friday. Pujols had gone 10 at-bats without a home run after two starts and one pinch-hit appearance.

The Busch Stadium crowd gave the 42-year-old Pujols a long standing ovation before he came out of the Cardinals dugout to tip his cap for a curtain call.

Pujols hit his 22nd home run this season for the NL Central champion Cardinals.

Pujols is fourth on the career home run list behind Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755) and Babe Ruth (714).