HANOVER, N.H. — Recent Dartmouth baseball alums are scattered throughout the minor leagues, making every effort to follow in the footsteps of Ed Lucas ’04, who was called up to the big leagues by the Miami Marlins back in late May after nearly a decade of toiling on the farms of major league organizations. Here is a quick update on the former Big Green players playing minor league baseball.
Kyle Hendricks ’12 — An eighth-round pick of the Texas Rangers back in 2011 after earning first-team All-Ivy honors as a junior, Hendricks was traded to the Chicago Cubs organization last year in a deal involving Ryan Dempster. Pitching for the Tennessee Smokies this year, the right-hander was named the Chicago Cubs Organizational Pitcher of the Month for May and was selected to start for the North Division in the Southern League All-Star Game on Wednesday, July 17. Hendricks enters the break with a stellar 9-3 record and 2.03 ERA in 106.1 innings while striking out 85 and issuing just 24 walks.
Joe Sclafani ’12 — A three-time All-Ivy First-Team selection, Sclafani was taken in the 14th-round of the 2012 MLB Draft by the Houston Astros. He began the year in the Midwest League before being promoted to the High-A California League after 19 games. He hasn’t stopped hitting for the Lancaster JetHawks since the promotion, sporting a .328 average with 12 doubles, six homers and 33 RBIs in 186 at-bats, plus has stolen 11 bases in 13 attempts. In addition, Sclafani has nearly as many walks (39) as strikeouts (40) and sports a stellar .445 on-base percentage.
Chris O’Dowd ’13 — The 2010 Ivy League Rookie of the Year signed a professional contract following his junior year when the San Diego Padres drafted him in the 23rd round. This spring he was picked up by the Colorado Rockies, and after a short stay in the South Atlantic League where he hit .306 in 36 at-bats, O’Dowd was assigned to the Short-Season A Tri-City Dust Devils in the Northwest League. Although his average is just .214 in 70 at-bats thus far, he does have a homer and a pair of triples to his name.
Mitch Horacek ’14 — One of three Big Green players drafted last month, Horacek was the highest pick among them in the ninth round by the Baltimore Orioles. After a rough first outing, the left-hander has been close to untouchable in the Short-Season A New York-Penn League, allowing seven hits and a walk but no runs over 15 innings while striking out 12. Overall Horacek is 2-1 in four appearances (three starts) with a 2.04 ERA in 17.2 innings. Last night he tossed six scoreless innings of relief for the Aberdeen IronBirds to earn the win in a 3-1 ball game.
Michael Johnson ’13 — An All-Ivy First Team pitcher this spring, Johnson was selected in the 14th round by the Los Angeles Dodgers in June. The southpaw had a brief stay with the Ogden Raptors in the Short-Season Rookie-Level Pioneer League before being sent to the Rookie-Level Arizona League where he has thrown two innings in two relief appearances, yielding two runs (one earned) on three hits and two walks with five strikeouts.
Cole Sulser ’12 — This 23rd-round pick of the Cleveland Indians has continued to show the control and dominance in the New York-Penn League for the Mahoning Valley Scrappers that he did for the Dartmouth Big Green. Sulser has made six trips to the mound with three starts and sports a 2.45 ERA spanning 18.1 innings. He has allowed 17 hits and four walks while striking out 21.
Kyle Hunter ’13 — Hunter signed a free agent contract with the Los Angeles Angels after graduating from Dartmouth in June and was assigned to the Rookie-Level Arizona League. The left-hander has one start among his five outings and has picked up a decision in each of those four relief appearances, going 3-1. In 12.2 innings, Hunter owns a 3.55 ERA having surrendered 15 hits and three walks with seven strikeouts.