It’s been a busy week for former CWL players, as three have been signed by affiliated organizations in the past seven days. Kevin Lenik (Royals) and Brady Muller (Diamondbacks) were both having successful seasons for the Windy City Thunderbolts and manager/CWL instructor Ron Biga. Lenik, who signed out of the 2016 CWL with the Texas Rangers, features an upper-90s fastball and had struck out 17 Frontier League batters in 10 innings of work this year. After being released by the Rangers, Lenik got in touch with Biga, who had worked closely with the pitcher at the CWL.At the time of his signing, Muller lead the Frontier League in wins (5), ERA (1.36) and WHIP (0.93). He ranked second in opponents’ batting average (.201) and seventh in strikeouts (41). He had thrown 16 consecutive innings without allowing an earned run over his final three starts and he struck out a career-high ten batters in his June 12th appearance against the Gateway Grizzlies.
Matt Pobereyko was the most recent CWLer to have his contract purchased by a MLB organization. The New York Mets signed the Florence Freedom right handed pitcher and his major league ready splitter on Wednesday. Pobereyko’s signing comes shortly after earning Frontier League Pitcher of the Week honors for Week 6 of the 2017 season. On Tuesday night, the right-hander recorded his tenth save of the season in a 2-1 win over the Normal CornBelters. Through a total of 18 innings this season, Pobereyko struck out 38 batters while walking only five and allowing just eight hits. He posted a 1-1 record out of the bullpen with a 1.00 ERA, and held opposing hitters to a .129 batting average. Like Lenik, Pobereyko went to an affiliated organization (Diamondbacks) after the 2016 CWL. He was later released but was able to find a home in the Frontier League after working with CWL instructor and Florence Freedom manager, Dennis Pelfrey.
These three join Shao-Pin Ho (Marlins), Danny Hoy (Mets) and Jarret Martin (Giants) as CWLers who have signed affiliated this year alone. They are all part of the larger group of nearly 600 players that have been offered contracts as part of the CWL program.
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