With the 10-Year Anniversary season around the corner, the IronPigs are enlisting fans to help assemble a 10-Year Anniversary Team. This All-IronPigs squad will be featured in team publications and on select promotional items during the 2017 season.
Each week, the IronPigs will host an "election" for a different position via Twitter. The player with the most votes will be named to the team. There will be four candidates for each position. Each candidate has been selected in advance and must meet certain requirements - first, and foremost, that each played his listed position as a primary position for at least one season with Lehigh Valley. Some players will appear at multiple positions throughout the voting process.
A summary making a case for each candidate will appear in a position feature on www.ironpigsbaseball.com. It is encouraged that votes be cast for each player's performance as an IronPig as opposed to prospect status or later success in Major League Baseball.
Dec. 27-Jan. 1: Third Base
Click here to vote!
THIRD BASE (L to R in photo above):
Cody Ransom, Cody Asche, Mike Cervenak, Maikel Franco
Cody Ransom (2010)
Career Stats: .261-18-63 in 110 G, 25 2B
Bacon Bits: A one-year IronPig, Ransom provided significant offense from the "hot corner" position. The Mesa, Ariz., native tied for the 2010 team lead in doubles (25) while finishing second on the team with 18 home runs - a total that ranks eighth in franchise single-season records. For his production, Ransom was named to the International League midseason All-Star Team and received a promotion to Philadelphia from July 3 to Aug. 5. In fact, at the time of his promotion, he ranked third in the IL in home runs (16) and runs scored (48) and tied for fourth in RBI (51). He also finished the season strongly, hitting safely in 21 of his last 25 games with Lehigh Valley (.352-2-13, 8 2B). Ransom also displayed a knack for clutch hitting, as 21 of his 42 (50%) plate appearances that produced an RBI either tied the game or put the IronPigs ahead.
Cody Asche (2013-16)
Career Stats: .297-23-90 in 150 G, 36 2B
Bacon Bits: "Solid" and "consistent" are two words to accurately describe Asche over his time in Lehigh Valley. After starting 2013 slowly as a 22-year-old in his Triple-A debut, Asche caught fire in May - and didn't cool off. The sure-handed third baseman batted .327 with 10 home runs and 37 RBI over his final 55 games before his contract was selected by Philadelphia on July 30. He departed for the Phillies ranked second in IL in hits (119), third in total bases (196) and fourth in RBI. A native of O'Fallon, Mo., Asche did enough damage in his first year as an IronPig to be named to both the IL midseason and postseason All-Star teams - making him just one of four IronPigs all-time to receive both accolades in a season (Andy Tracy '09, Tyler Cloyd '12, Cesar Hernandez '13). In 2016, he joined the IronPigs in August and was a significant part in their successful push to postseason - batting .279-6-15 in 29 games overall and .350-3-8 over his final 11 affairs. Over parts of four years with Lehigh Valley, Asche ranks fourth in batting average (.297) and tied for sixth in home runs (23) among franchise career leaders.
Mike Cervenak (2008-09)
Career Stats: .308-19-143 in 234 G, 66 2B
Bacon Bits: The offensive numbers posted by Cervenak in his two years as an IronPig are eye-popping - especially considering the fact he missed nearly one month with a fractured wrist in 2009. The Dearborn, Mich., native is the franchise career leader in batting average (.308) while ranking fourth in hits (283), runs (131) and RBI (143), fifth in doubles (66), tied for eighth in games played (234) and tied for 10th in home runs (19). He also holds team single-season records for average (.311 in 2008) and doubles (36 in 2009). One of very few positives during the IronPigs inaugural season, Cervenak was a 2008 IL midseason All-Star and his .311 average placed fifth in final IL ranks. In fact, he was leading the circuit in hits (124) at the time of his second promotion to Philadelphia on July 29. He was again selected to the IL midseason All-Star Team in 2009 - making him one of just two IronPigs all-time (Andy Tracy) to appear in multiple midsummer classics. Cervenak finished the 2009 season ranked tied for second in the IL in doubles (36), fifth in hits (141) and ninth in average (.305). *Cervenak will also appear in the voting for the Utility spot on the 10th Anniversary Team.
Maikel Franco (2014-15)
Career Stats: .302-5-73 in 166 G
Bacon Bits: Easily one of the most feared IronPigs hitters all-time, Franco took about one month to get familiar with IL pitching before exploding. From July 2 on, the 21-year-old finished his first Triple-A season batting .324 with 11 home runs and 47* RBI in his final 55 games (*led IL during span). By season's end, he led the IronPigs in home runs (16), RBI (78), doubles (33) and total bases (223) while finishing third in the IL in RBI and extra basehits (53) and fifth in total bases. The Dominican Republic native continued his torrid finish in 2014 into the 2015 campaign, when he hit a mind-numbing .355-4-24 in 33 games before being recalled to Philadelphia for good on May 15. At that time, Franco was leading the IL in hits (50), doubles (12), total bases (76), extra basehits (17) and RBI (24) while ranking second in average (.355) and slugging percentage (.539). Over his final 88 games in the IL (2014-15), he dominated offensively with a stat line of .336-15-71 and a .924 OPS. He finished ranked ninth among franchise career leaders in both HR (20) and RBI (102). Additionally, Franco backed his bat with impressive defense -- as he committed just 12 errors in 333 total chances over parts of two seasons at the hot corner.
Catcher: Erik Kratz (68%)
Other Nominees: Andrew Knapp (28%), Jason Jaramillo (5%), John Suomi (3%)
First Base: Andy Tracy (49%)
Other Nominees: Darin Ruf (34%), Cody Overbeck (9%), Russ Canzler (8%)
Second Base: Cesar Hernandez (43%)
Other Nominees: Kevin Frandsen (40%), Tyler Henson (14%), Josh Barfield (3%)
Shortstop: Freddy Galvis (42%)
Other Nominees: J.P. Crawford (39%), Chase d'Arnaud (13%), Andres Blanco (6%)
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.