The minor leagues are all about player development. That has always been clear. Yes winning a championship is nice but the priority is getting players ready to move on to the next level so they can eventually help the parent club.
Players want to climb the ladder as quick as possible and for most, playing in the High-A California League still seems like it’s pretty far from the big leagues.
But some promotions don’t seem to make sense. For example, pitcher JonMichael Redding of Rancho Cucamonga would seem to warrant a promotion. He pitched shutout ball against Inland Empire on Sunday and lowered his ERA to 2.00. He would be the top pitcher in the league when it comes to ERA if he had enough innings to qualify but has been used primarily as a reliever.
When the parent Dodgers had a chance to promote a starter earlier his month it chose to move up Garrett Gould, holder of a 2-7 record and 7.04 ERA.
Redding, 25, is in his fourth year in the Cal League and has been putting up good numbers this year. Gould, who turns 22 later this month, was in his second year and his numbers with the Quakes were worse than they were last year.
Well it’s all about money. Gould was a second-round draft choice so the Dodgers have more invested in him. The higher the draft pick, the more chances that player will get to prove himself. Not that Redding was a slouch. He was a fifth-rounder.
The same can probably be said for reliever Eric Cendejas of the Sixers. He has had two solid years in the Cal League. He had a 2.87 ERA in 47 appearances last year and has a 2.74 in 34 this season.
Yet two Sixers relievers have been promoted ahead of him. Granted both those players had numbers worthy of promotion, unlike Gould. But still Cendejas was a 33rd draft choice. He has to wonder when his shot will come.
Sometimes players have to hope if their numbers don’t them promoted in one organization, maybe another will take notice and they can get a shot elsewhere.