Tag: Clint Robinson

Meibrys Viloria named Pioneer League MVP


Idaho Falls Chukars catcher Meibrys Viloria, who batted over .400 for most of the season, won the Pioneer League’s 2016 Ralph Nelles Award as the league’s most valuable player.

Viloria, a 19-year-old catcher from Cartagena, Colombia, through Monday led the Pioneer League in batting average (.381), doubles (28) and RBIs (54). And one season after not having an extra-base hit for the Burlington Royals, Viloria is second in the league with 37 extra-base hits. He is also second with 53 runs and third in on-base percentage (.442) and slugging (.619).

The international free agent owns the Pioneer League’s longest hitting streak of 2016 at 20 games from July 7 to Aug. 7.

“It’s a great credit to him and the year he’s had,” Idaho Falls manager Justin Gemoll said in a news release. “He does a lot of good things blocking balls, controlling the running game and leading the pitching staff, and offensively he’s had a great approach and been consistent all year long. He’s one of those kids who comes ready to play and wants to play every day. His energy is infectious for our team and he got after it all season long.”

Viloria is the third Chukar to win the award since Idaho Falls became affiliated with the Royals. Clint Robinson, currently with the Washington Nationals, won the award in 2007, while Ryan O’Hearn, now at Double-A Northwest Arkansas, was honored in 2014.

Viloria, Olloque honored

Idaho Falls teammates Meibrys Viloria and Manny Olloque were named to the 2016 Pioneer League end of season All-Star team, the league announced late Monday. The award is voted on by the league’s managers and honors the best players at each position.

Viloria, who was named the league MVP Tuesday, leads the league in batting average, doubles and RBIs through Monday.

Olloque, in his third minor league season, was hitting .319 through Monday with 15 doubles, seven homers, 49 RBIs and 50 runs scored.

Tuesday’s game

CHUKARS 6, OWLZ 5: At Orem, Utah, Idaho Falls built a 5-1 lead and then held on late to beat Orem the day after it was eliminated from the Pioneer League playoffs.

Idaho Falls starter Alex Luna was solid again, allowing two runs on seven hits with one walk and four strikeouts over six innings. The 6-foot-5, 205-pound right-hander improved to 5-1 and saw his ERA drop to 3.90.

The Chukars scored single runs in the first and third innings and plated two in the fourth to go up 4-1. I.F.’s lead went to 6-2 after single runs in the sixth and seventh. Orem, which rallied in the eighth, ninth and 10th innings Monday to win, scored three times in the eighth to cut the lead to one. But Christian Flecha worked a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth to close it out.

Idaho Falls shortstop Ricky Aracena had one of his best offensive games of the season, going 3 for 3 with two walks, a double and three RBIs. He also stole a base and was error-free in the field. Rudy Martin was 2 for 4 with two runs scored and Luke Willis was 2 for 4 with a run and an RBI.

The Chukars (38-36 overall, 16-21 second half) return to Melaleuca Field for the final two games of the season. Idaho Falls and Orem will play Wednesday and Thursday, with first pitch scheduled for 7:15 p.m. both nights.

Duffy nearing MLB return; June 30 ex-Chukar update

The Kansas City Royals reinstated left-handed pitcher Danny Duffy (2010 Chukar) from the 60-day disabled list Tuesday and he threw five shutout innings for the Royals’ Triple-A affiliate, the Omaha Storm Chasers, later in the day. He had made three previous rehab starts while recovering from Tommy John surgery. Duffy made 20 starts for Kansas City in 2011 and six starts for the Royals in 2012 before his injury.

… Right-handed pitcher Santiago Garrido (2009-10 Chukar) threw one scoreless inning for the North Division All-Stars on Tuesday in the Texas League All-Star Game. Garrido was the second pitcher of the night for the North Division and induced a ground ball, a fly ball and a lineout in nine pitches during a perfect inning.

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Ex-Chukar updates, July 15

Kansas City Royals designated hitter Billy Butler (2004 Chukar) competed in his first MLB All-Star Game on Tuesday.

Butler — the lone Royal selected for the All-Star Game, which was hosted by Kansas City — caught the ceremonial first pitch from Hall of Famer George Brett before entering the game in the seventh inning.

Butler received a standing ovation when it was announced he’d led off the seventh against Philadelphia’s Cole Hamels. Butler grounded out to third base against Hamels and then struck out after working a full count in the ninth against Pittsburgh closer Joel Hanrahan to finish the game 0 for 2.

Butler had eight family members in the stands, including his wife, Katie, a Skyline High School graduate he met in Idaho Falls and who is expecting another child in January.

“In his big-league career, this is the biggest moment for sure,” Katie Butler told the Kansas City Star. “It’s an unforgettable experience, being around all the Royals fans, and our family, and where we’ve been since 2007. … Six years here, and this is the best we’ve ever seen Kansas City.” Continue reading “Ex-Chukar updates, July 15”

Ex-Chukar update, July 1

The Kansas City Royals called up LHP Everett Teaford (2006 Chukar) to make a spot start against the Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday. Teaford held down the Rays through five innings, surrendering two earned runs on four hits while walking three and striking out five to finish with a no decision. The appearance was Teaford’s 30th at the Major League level as he worked primarily out of the Royals bullpen last season. But he made three starts last year, and he will make his third start this year in Toronto on Monday.

OF Wil Myers (2009) and 1B Clint Robinson (2007) were named Triple-A all-stars Thursday. Myers and Robinson will travel to Buffalo, N.Y., for the July 11 game between Pacific Coast League and International League all-stars. Myers didn’t join Triple-A until May 16 after hitting .343 with 13 home runs and 30 RBIs in 35 games in Double-A. Since then, he’s hit .306 with 13 home runs and 38 RBIs in Triple-A. Myers, who leads all of minor league baseball with 26 home runs this season, will also compete in the Futures Game on July 8. Robinson earns his second straight Triple-A all-star berth after hitting .313 with 10 home runs in 71 games with a cup of coffee with the Major League club mixed in. Continue reading “Ex-Chukar update, July 1”

Former Chukar updates, June 24

The Kansas City Royals reinstated catcher Salvador Perez (2008-09 Chukar) from the 60-day disabled list Friday and he rewarded the club with a 2-for-4 performance that included a two-run, fourth-inning home run against the St. Louis Cardinals that night. The 22-year-old catcher had missed all of the Royals’ previous 67 games in 2012 until Friday after undergoing surgery to repair a lateral meniscus tear in his left knee March 16. The Royals signed Perez to a five-year, $7-million extension during the offseason but he injured his knee while warming up pitcher Jonathan Sanchez before a Cactus League game. The Royals gave him the day off Saturday but plan to have him catch again today.

Wil Myers (2009) was named to the Futures Game as part of Team USA this week. The game starts at 3 p.m. July 8 at the Royals’ Kauffman Stadium and is televised on ESPN2. The Royals bumped Myers up to AAA on May 16 and he’s hit 11 home runs in 35 games in Omaha with a .315/.407/.654 batting average/on-base percentage/ slugging percentage line. Continue reading “Former Chukar updates, June 24”

Ex-Chukar Clint Robinson called up to K.C.

Former Chukar Clint Robinson has done about all he can to earn a trip to the big leagues.

Needing an extra bat off the bench as they head into the interleague portion of their schedule, the Kansas City Royals turned to Robinson, calling him up to the big leagues for the first time Thursday night.

Nine of the Royals’ next 12 games are in National League parks, including a three-game series in Pittsburgh staring today. Losing its DH eliminates a potential starting spot for Robinson, a 6-foot-5, 240-pound, left-handed hitting first baseman. But pinch-hitting situations later are in the game are more common, and more necessary, in National League parks.

The 2007 Chukar and Pioneer League MVP Continue reading “Ex-Chukar Clint Robinson called up to K.C.”

Weekly ex-Chukar update

  • SP Greg Billo (2010 Chukar) is dominating the Midwest League after struggling in the homer-happy Pioneer League. Just one year removed from a 5.17 ERA campaign in Idaho Falls, Billo leads all of minor league baseball with a 1.38 ERA with the Royals’ Low-A affiliate, the Kane County Cougars. The next closest pitcher is the Brewers’ Tyler Thornburg with a 1.89 ERA between the Midwest League and the High-A Florida State League. Part of Billo’s success comes from a bump in his average fastball to 88 to 92 mph. He’s topped out at 94. In his last 10 appearances, he’s allowed more than one run just once. And on the season, he’s averaging 8.8 strikeouts per nine innings.

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Thursday’s links and notes

  • OF Wil Myers (2009 Chukar) was selected today to the 13th annual XM All-Star Futures Game on July 10 at Chase Field in Phoenix. The all-star game pits the best prospects in the minor leagues against each other on U.S. and World rosters as part of MLB’s all-star weekend. ESPN2 will air the July 10 game at 4 p.m. Mountain Time. The 20-year-old is hitting .295/.366/.418 (batting average/on-base percentage/slugging percentage) in AA this year as he makes the transition from catcher to right field. Fellow Royals prospect Kelvin Herrera, a pitcher, was also named to the team. He never played in Idaho Falls.
  • SP Danny Duffy (2010) will likely be bumped down to AAA after his next start with Bruce Chen and Kyle Davies set to return for the disabled list, the team’s website reports.In seven starts, he’s 1-2 with a 5.03 ERA.

Continue reading “Thursday’s links and notes”

Former Chukars inch closer to bigs

While Major League Baseball’s opening day was a full week ago, opening day for the full-season minor league clubs kicks off today around the country. And it kicks off with ex-Chukars dotting the rosters of the Royals’ affiliates.

In Triple-A, eight ex-Chukars are on the 24-man roster. In AA, it’s more than half, as 15 of the 26 players played in Idaho Falls. And in A-ball, it’s 11 of 28 in High-A and 12 of 25 in Low-A.

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