Earlier this week, sports writer Joe Bailey wrote about the success of minor leaguer Jeff McNeil, who is prospering for the St. Lucie Mets, a Class A Advanced team in the Florida State League.
McNeil, a graduate of Nipomo High who went on to star at Long Beach State, was invited to play in the Florida State League All-Star game.
McNeil went 2-for-5 with a run scored batting leadoff for the South All-Stars, who beat the North 6-0.
This season, in 57 games, McNeil is batting .328 with 16 runs batted in and has scored 36 runs. He has eight doubles, two triples and one home run, while playing a solid third base.
McNeil was selected in the 12th round of the 2013 amateur draft by the New York Mets, one year after his brother Ryan was drafted out of high school.
Ryan McNeil, Nipomo High
McNeil was drafted in the third round of the 2012 draft after a stellar career with the Titans. He had Tommy John surgery and missed the 2014 season, but McNeil is now pitching for the South Bend Cubs, members of the Class A Midwest League.
In 12 games, all but one in relief, McNeil is 0-2 with a solid 3.38 ERA. In 21 1-3 innings he has registered 21 strikeouts.
River Stevens, Hancock College
Stevens also missed a season due to surgery, but is playing well for the Lake Elsinore Storm in the Advanced A California League.
A ninth-round pick by the San Diego Padres in 2012, the San Diego native is batting .314 in 32 games for the Storm, just up the road from his hometown. Stevens has scored 11 times, knocked in 12 runs and has 11 stolen bases.
Doug Bernier, St. Joseph/Oral Roberts
The ageless wonder is still a valuable member of the Minnesota twins organization. The 34-year-old has been called up for short stints to the parent club. He played four games for the Twins recently, batting .200 with a pair of runs batted in.
It was the second stint in the majors for the Twins and third overall to the show. A longtime member of the Colorado Rockies organization, Bernier came up to play a pair of games for the Rockies in 2008. Last season, the Twins promoted him in September and he played in seven games, batting .286.
Currently for Rochester, the Twins' affiliate in the Triple-A International League, Bernier is batting .250 with 11 RBIs and 26 runs.
Brian Gregory, Cabrillo HS/Cal State Dominguez Hills
After graduating from Dominguez Hills, Gregory played two seasons in the Independent Pecos League for the Raton Osos. In 2015 and this season, Gregory was an assistant coach at Cabrillo before leaving late in the season to play pro ball again.
Gregory signed with the Watertown Bucks, a member of the North Country Baseball League, a new league with teams in New York and one in Maine.
The catcher has played in five games so far, has three hits — two for doubles and has three RBIs. The stats on the team website are not updated, but through their first 16 games the Bucks were 9-7.
Paul Smyth, Atascadero/Kansas
The pitcher played six years in the Oakland A's system and had modest success as a reliever, but he was released by the A's after going 5-2 with a 3.05 ERA in 46 games.
This season, Smyth has signed on with the Somerset Patriots who compete in the Independent Atlantic League. In 12 games, Smyth is 3-0 with a 2.63 ERA. The Patriots are currently in first place in the Liberty Division with a 36-17 record.
Mickey Jannis, Arroyo Grande/AHC/CS Bakersfield
Jannis is pitching again this season for the Long Island Ducks from the Independent Atlantic League and owned by former Met Bud Harrelson.
In 13 games, Jannis has started in nine games and is 5-2. His ERA of 1.32 is number one in the league. In 68 1-3 innings, he has fanned 49 batters.
Jordan Sechler, St. Joseph/AHC/Cal State LA
Earlier this season we mentioned Sechler, a 19th-round draft choice of the Atlanta Braves in 2013, was released.
Sechler has popped up in Sauget, Illinois. He is pitching for the Gateway Grizzlies of the Frontier League and has appeared in five games. He is 0-1 with a 2.25 ERA. Sechler started the season with the Sioux Falls Canaries in South Dakota of in the American Association and pitched three games with no record in three innings and five strikeouts.
Duffy slated to start for Royals on Wednesday
Cabrillo grad Danny Duffy is done with his rehab assignment with the Royals' Triple-A affiliate in Omaha.
Early Saturday, Royals manager Ned Yost announced that Duffy is expected to start for Kansas City Wednesday against the Mariners in Seattle.
In two starts for Omaha, Duffy pitched 7 2-3 innings with an ERA of 2.35. The southpaw had 10 strikeouts with just one walk and did not factored in any decisions.
Duffy takes over the spot in the rotation vacated by Yordano Ventura's injury. Ventura went to the disabled list with irritation to his ulnar nerve in the right elbow
Who have we missed? If you have any updates for players we have missed, let us know and we will be happy to add them in.