Tyler Callihan has played with some of the baseball's best young talent as a teenager, yet he's not shy about identifying one of his attributes."I'm pretty black and white when I play baseball," said the Greeneville Reds infielder. "I'm definitely old-fashioned when it comes to baseball."
Tyler Callihan has played with some of the baseball's best young talent as a teenager, yet he's not shy about identifying one of his attributes.
"I'm pretty black and white when I play baseball," said the Greeneville Reds infielder. "I'm definitely old-fashioned when it comes to baseball."
While there will be flashy moments, Callihan is content with trying to create consistency as he wraps up his first professional season. He was Cincinnati's third-round selection in June coming out of Providence School in Jacksonville, Florida.
Some projections had Callihan going earlier in the Draft, so he said he arrived for his first professional assignment with something to prove. He bypassed a college scholarship to South Carolina.
He also sensed the Reds would be a good fit.
"When the Reds called me, I had done the research," he said.
Pegged as a second baseman, there was an early adjustment for Callihan. He's played mostly as a third baseman with Greeneville, though probably not by design.
His role was tweaked when second-round pick Rece Hinds suffered a quad injury less than a week into the season. The decision was made a couple of weeks ago to shut down Hinds when his rehab with the team stalled.
That meant Callihan has been the primary third baseman, though he's played a couple of times each week at second base. With fourth-rounder Ivan Johnson mainly playing shortstop, it's given Greeneville a prospect-laden infield.
"We had to take our time with them," Greeneville manager Gookie Dawkins said. "They understand the game and play very, very hard. I love the fact that they love to ask questions. … There's going to be times they're going to be tired. You're going to have to grind some games out."
The good thing for Callihan, who was a shortstop in high school, is that he enjoys showcasing his defense.
"I think my glove is something that helped set me apart," he said of his amateur days. "I'm comfortable with all of [those infield positions]. I always thought defense was the best part of my game."
There's pop with the bat for the lefty swinger. It's been a process, with his first home run off a left-hander coming with his fifth long ball.
"Over the last three and half, four weeks, he's done much better against lefties," Dawkins said. "Not going to wait until Double-A ball for him to hit lefties. Got to start somewhere. You'll see him make in-game adjustments every at-bat."
There has been consistency because Callihan has gone consecutive games without a hit just twice this season.
Callihan's time with USA Baseball's national program introduced him to a variety of highly drafted players. His travel ball teammates in Florida included 2018 St. Louis first-round pick Nolan Gorman.
Now he has a different collection of teammates as he develops a pro background.
"Probably the whole experience, meeting a bunch of new guys. Now everybody is just one of the guys," he said of the impact of the first season. "With the speed of the game, you have to learn to be more patient. I've absolutely learned a tremendous amount these last couple of months."
In briefLooking to double up:
Pitcher A.J. Franklin
of the Burlington Royals joined the team after being a part of Vanderbilt's NCAA championship team in June. With the Royals headed to the Appalachian League playoffs, he'd like to be part of another title. "It would be something to get another one," Franklin said. "We won it all (in college) and three days later I'm out here in Burlington."Done for now:
Shortstop Anthony Volpe
, a first-round pick of the Yankees in June, won't be around for the end of the season with Pulaski. He came down with mononucleosis and hasn't played since mid-August, when he was amid a stretch of hits in seven of eight games to push his batting average to .215. He was sent home to recover. Pulaski manager Luis Dorante said Volpe is expected to take part in the organization's fall instructional league.A Danville repeat:
With Mitch Stallings
tabbed as Pitcher of the Year in the Appalachian League, it means a Danville Braves hurler has won the award in consecutive seasons. The 2018 winner was Dilmer Mejia
. A Danville pitcher has been selected for the honor six times in an 18-year stretch. Stallings isn't finishing the season with Danville as he was promoted to the Rome Braves, where he was the winning pitcher in his first two starts.
Bob Sutton is a contributor to MiLB.com.