Now in his eighth season as a pro baseball player, Val Majewski has learned it’s about more than just putting up good numbers when it comes to finding a job with an affiliated club
Even as he was tearing up the Atlantic League with the York Revolution (.317, 11 homers, 48 RBIs, 71 games), the 30-year-old Majewski continued to keep in close contact with those involved in the minor leagues.
He went about it much like a person does in search of employment. He placed phone calls and he sent emails.
“Throughout the season I let teams know if there’s a need, I’m available. It doesn’t always work out. But it doesn’t hurt that they’re on top of it. The worst that they can say is ‘No, sorry.’ But at least I tried,” Majewski said during an interview by phone last week.
One of those teams was the Texas Rangers. And Majewski’s persistence in keeping in touch with the club eventually paid off in late July, when the Rangers’ Class AAA Round Rock
affiliate was in need of an everyday position player because Chris Davis had been called up to the big leagues.
The Rangers picked up Majewski and sent him to Round Rock, where the outfielder-first baseman was plugged into the lineup immediately.
Majewski picked up where he left off with York. Starting out as Round Rock’s No. 8-hitter in his first week with the club, Majewski batted .440 with four doubles, two homers, 10 RBIs and five runs scored.
Majewski’s impressive numbers have moved him up in the lineup. He has batted cleanup in the majority of Round Rock’s games over the past week.
Though he has cooled off a bit, Majewski is batting a team-leading .369 with two homers
and 17 RBIs in 17 games through Sunday. He is making a good case to get called back up the majors for the first time since 2004, when he had two hits and an RBI in nine games with the Baltimore Orioles.
However, Majewski is in a tough spot when it comes to his chances of that hap´
pening. At this point in the season, major league teams that are playoff-bound, such as the Texas Rangers, are more reluctant to call up a prospect just to check out the talent
level of a player.
When the Rangers picked up Majewski in late July, Revs’ manager Andy Etchebarren liked Majewski’s chances of getting called up the majors.
“You never know, one injury to an outfielder and he’s the best guy they got, he might get a chance to go to the big leagues,” Etchebarren had said.
Though no one wants a player to get injured, at least the Rangers know they have a hot bat waiting to help if needed.
Here’s an update on former Revs’ players who were signed this season by an affiliated club. All numbers are through Saturday:
Chris Cody, RHP: Cody is 1-0 with 4.09 ERA in two starts at Class AA Mississippi (Braves).
John VanBenschoten, RHP: VanBenschoten is 1-4 with a 7.52 ERA in five starts at Class AAA Tucson (Padres).
Scott Rice, LHP: Rice is 3-3 with 2.08 ERA in 25 relief appearances at Class AA Chattanooga (Dodgers).
Mike DeMark, RHP: DeMark is 0-2 with a 2.05 ERA in 24 relief appearances at Class AA Mobile (Diamondbacks).
Jason Botts, 1B/DH/OF: Botts is batting .268 with three homers and 19 RBIs in 59 games at Class AAA Buffalo (Mets).
Chad Thall, LHP: Thall retired in late May after struggling at Class AA Montgomery (Rays), going 1-2 with a 5.74 ERA in seven relief appearances.
Andy Gonzalez, SS: Gonzalez’s .306 batting average in 44 games at Class AA Huntsville (Brewers) earned him a callup to Class AAA Nashville, where he is batting .250 through 15 games.