Tuesday, September 2, 2014

A New Bull and a Tar Heel

I picked up three new autographs this weekend from two players with local connections to the Raleigh-Durham area.  Let's start off with a new player to my collection, new Ray and current Durham Bulls infielder Nick Franklin.  The second baseman came over to the Rays in the David Price trade and caused a little bit of disappointment amongst the Rays faithful.  I will admit that I had anticipated a huge haul of prospects for Price, but I think I am starting to finally wrap my head around what the team got in return.

Franklin actually appeared in Durham earlier this summer in the Triple A All-Star game playing for the Mariners Pacific Coast League affiliate the Tacoma Rainiers.  While his Major League stats leave a lot to be desired, Franklin has been a very successful player in the Minors and has remained a top 100 prospect throughout his career.  His overall career line in the minors stands at .284/.361/.450.  Throw in almost 200 extra base hits in 500 minor league games and you have a pretty good prospect. Perhaps a call up to Tampa this September?  I think so.

Nick Franklin has several autographs out on the secondary market and I managed to snag two copies of his Bowman Inception card from last year.  I have a huge chunk of this set, but no Franklin until this weekend.....





Now I have two.  The same person who was selling these Nick Franklin cards also had a Colin Moran autograph up that nobody was going to bid on.  He's a Tar Heel and he has not hit much of anything in the minors, but a $1 autograph is hard to pass by......



Let's change that statement a little bit.  Moran hit .296 with a .344 on-base at two minor league stops. The former Heel also had a .397 slugging in both stops.  That's 7 home runs and 27 doubles from a player who was considered the "best power hitter" in the previous summer's amateur draft.  The Marlins, who originally drafted him, passed him on to the Astros at the trade deadline.

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