March 2 - As he attempts a return to the Major Leagues, former Colonial Forge and University of Virginia standout Jarrett Parker has had an impressive start as a non-roster spring training invitee with the Los Angeles Angels.
Parker, 30, entered the weekend 4-for-8 with five walks, two doubles and a home run in five games. He’s posted a .692 on-base percentage and has hit in the middle of the Angels’ lineup when he’s been penciled in by first-year manager Brad Ausmus. The outfielder hit a solo homer off Milwaukee reliever Bubba Derby on Monday, then went 2-for-3 with an RBI double as Los Angeles’ cleanup hitter the following day.
After beginning 2017 as the Giants’ starting left fielder, he had his season cut short when he broke his collarbone crashing into the outfield fence at Oracle Park in San Francisco. He was out of baseball last year while continuing his recovery and rehab and was signed to a minor league contract by the Angels this winter.
Parker is considered a candidate for the club’s fourth outfield spot and as a left-handed option off the bench. Los Angeles has incumbent starters Mike Trout, Justin Upton and Kole Calhoun as well as Michael Hermosillo on its 40-man roster. Calhoun, who also hits left-handed, hit just .208 but had 19 homers in 137 games last year.
Justin Bour (Westfield), another free agent signing by the Angels this offseason, will make his spring training debut today after missing the first two weeks with a hamstring injury. Bour is expected to platoon with Albert Pujols at first base and serve as an option at designated hitter and as a left-handed pinch hitter. He is hitting third and starting at DH in today’s game against Cincinnati.
Snyder’s Early Success Against Lefties Helps in Bid for Nationals Roster Spot
Brandon Snyder (Westfield) entered the day having appeared in each of the Nationals’ seven spring training games, seeing the majority of his time in right field and also playing the second half of a game at first base.
Signed in the offseason to a minor league contract, the 32-year-old was the lone non-roster invitee in the lineup for Washington’s first game on Sunday. Snyder is 3-for-12 with a double, homer and two RBI and all three of his hits have come off left-handers, which is notable as he competes for one of the club’s bench spots.
Snyder appeared in two games last year with the Tampa Bay Rays and is attempting to reach the Major Leagues with his sixth team since being drafted in the first round by Baltimore in 2005.
Area Players Begin Reporting to Minor League Spring Training
Minor league players have begun reporting to spring training with their respective organizations, including several from Northern Virginia.
Some clubs opened minor league camps yesterday, and others will begin to do so over the next week. Minor league spring games will begin in mid-March, with opening day across the various levels scheduled for Apr. 5.
News & Notes: Brandon Guyer (Herndon) hasn’t played since going 0-for-3 in the White Sox’ first game of camp on Feb. 23 against the Dodgers. The former Rays and Indians outfielder is battling a sore right elbow, according to SoxOn35th.com. … In his first outing of the spring, Taylor Clarke (Broad Run) started and struck out two over two scoreless innings in Arizona’s game on Wednesday against the Padres. … J.B. Bukauskas (Stone Bridge) has fanned three and permitted just two base runners over four scoreless innings in two relief appearances with the Astros. In his most-recent outing on Thursday, the 2017 first-round pick fanned three over two innings against the Marlins.
Sponsor: The magazine’s Pro Notebook is sponsored by the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs. For more information on the Blue Crabs, visit their website at www.somdbluecrabs.com.
Photo of Jarrett Parker courtesy of Associated Press