Results tagged ‘ Futures Game ’

Goldschmidt starts in Futures Game

Photo by Jordan Megenhardt

By Greg Dillard

Paul Goldschmidt’s hitting approach is simple. Execute good at-bats and good things will happen. That outlook has yielded eye-catching results throughout 2011.

Through the first half of the season, he’s batting .315 with a .630 slugging percentage. Goldschmidt’s also been a run-producing machine by crushing 25 homers and 18 doubles to go with 78 RBI.

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Beckham, Harper compete in Futures Game

Photo by Jordan Megenhardt

By Greg Dillard

Now in its 13th year, the XM All-Star Futures Game showcases the up-and-coming stars of America’s pastime. Top prospects from all 30 organizations go head-to-head in a battle of elite talent.

 The 2011 Futures Game was no different. Both the USA and World rosters were loaded with future Major League stars. The USA team featured a pair of former No 1 overall picks in Tampa Bay’s Tim Beckham and Washington’s Bryce Harper.

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Kipnis returns to Arizona for Futures Game

Photo by Jordan Megenhardt

By Greg Dillard

The Arizona State baseball program has long produced Major League caliber players. From Reggie Jackson and Barry Bonds to Ike Davis and Brett Wallace, many former Sun Devils have taken their talents to the next level.

In 2011, infielder Jason Kipnis is the latest former Sun Devil to be on the verge of big league success.

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All-Star festivities coming to Chase Field

Photo by Jonathan Willey

By Greg Dillard

In the spring of 2009, Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig announced that Chase Field would play host to the 82nd MLB All-Star Game. Now in 2011, All-Star week is just days away.

It’s bound to be an action-filled experience as many of baseball’s biggest stars gather in the Arizona desert, so D-backs Insider takes a look at some of the upcoming festivities at the ballpark.

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Goldschmidt, Skaggs to play in All-Star Futures Game

Photo by Jordan Megenhardt

By Greg Dillard

The 2011 XM All-Star Futures game at Chase Field will feature a pair of D-backs top prospects. First baseman Paul Goldschmidt and pitcher Tyler Skaggs have been selected to participate in this year’s event.

The 13th annual Futures Game will take place on July 10 and showcases many of baseball’s elite prospects on two teams: U.S. and World. In this year’s contest, Goldschmidt and Skaggs will be teammates on the U.S squad.  

After being drafted by the D-backs in the eighth round of the 2009 MLB Amateur draft, Goldschmidt has torn through Minor League pitching. In nearly three seasons, the hard-hitting first baseman has crushed 75 home runs, 83 doubles, and 231 RBI.

He batted .334 and .314 in his first two seasons, respectively. In 2011, Goldschmidt keeps on hitting and is enjoying a standout season at Double-A Mobile. Through 70 games, he is hitting .328 with 22 homers and 61 RBI.

Despite his recent success, Goldschmidt only wants to get better as his season continues.

“I just try to do my best every day and keep improving,” Goldschmidt said in Spring Training. “Listen to what the coaches are saying and the other guys on the team. Your teammates can help you out so much.”

Goldschmidt recently participated in the Southern League All-Star Game, where he launched a two-run homer in the first inning.

“All you’ve got to do is look at his numbers and wow,” D-backs Director of Player Development Mike Bell said in Spring Training. “I think the way he does it makes it really impressive, too. He’s got a lot of power to right field and right centerfield. The majority of his home runs come that way, which is the sign of a guy that knows how to hit.”

Then there’s Skaggs, who was acquired last summer in the Dan Haren trade with the Angels. Skaggs was a first-round draft pick by Los Angeles in the 2009 draft. With an electric arsenal of pitches and smooth mechanics, the southpaw has immediately become one of Arizona’s top pitching prospects.

As a member of Single-A Visalia’s starting rotation, Skaggs has a 3.36 ERA and 4-5 record in 14 starts this season. Following last year’s trade, he made four starts for South Bend, where he went 1-1 with a sharp 1.69 ERA. In Skaggs’ 83 innings of work, he has tallied 102 strikeouts, which leads the entire California League.

After a slow start to the season, Skaggs has found his groove in recent weeks.

“I’m just attacking hitters,” Skaggs said, “using my fastball inside outside, my curveball, and then I really worked on my changeup. (It’s) just going out there thinking the best, and you can’t be hit. You’ve just got to go out there and go pitch by pitch.”

Skaggs was also a recent Minor League All-Star when he started for the California League in the Single-A All-Star game against the Carolina League on June 21.

Goldschmidt and Skaggs are the latest D-backs to suit up for the Futures Game. Shortstop Stephen Drew, pitcher Daniel Hudson, and outfielders Justin Upton and Chris Young were all participants in past Futures Games.

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