Record Number of Former Players Make Major League Debuts

With seven different Major League Teams, Beloit has seen eleven more past players reach the Majors

By Garett Mansfield / Beloit Snappers | May 9, 2017 10:40 AM ET

A total of 109 players have debuted in the Major Leagues over the first half of the 2017 season. Eleven players among that group played for the Beloit Snappers on their way to The Show, tied for the most former Snappers to reach the Majors in a single season. As of June 16, 173 players have made their Major League debuts after playing with the Beloit Snappers.

Matt Chapman - INF, Oakland Athletics

MLB Debut: June 15, 2017 vs. New York Yankees

The Athletics first round selections (25th overall) in 2014 reached the Major Leagues for the first time in just his fourth professional season. Oakland's No. 4 prospect started at third base against the Yankees and went 0-for-3 at the plate with a pair of walks and run scored. Chapman played just three games for the AZL A's after the draft before joining the Snappers until September. He played the entire 2015 season with Stockton and split 2016 between Midland and Nashville. Chapman racked up All-Star accolades in the Texas League with the RockHounds at the mid-season and post-season markers while earning Texas League Player of the Year in 2016 with 29 home runs and 83 RBI in 117 games. He hit seven more homers for Nashville in just 18 games and cracked 16 homers in 2017 before being called up. 

Ronald Herrera - RHP, New York Yankees

MLB Debut: June 14, 2017 at Los Angeles Angels

After two separate trades moved Herrera to the Yankees organization after he played in Beloit, he reached the Big Leagues in June of 2017. Herrera started nine games for the Snappers in 2014 before he was dealt to the Padres organization where he pitched for a year and a half. The Yankees acquired Herrera in the 2016 offseason in exchange for Jose Pirela. He spent most of 2016 and began the 2017 season at their Double-A affiliate, Trenton. The Yankees recalled Herrera straight up from Double-A to bolster a depleted Bronx bullpen. He relieved Yankees starter Michael Pineda and threw the final two innings. The game was tied 5-5 when he was called upon by Yankees skipper Joe Girardi. After he retired the first two batters he faced before walking Luis Valbuena and Andrelton Simmons swatted the go-ahead two-run homer in the seventh inning to boost the Angels to the win. He was optioned back to Trenton on June 15.

Daniel Gossett - RHP, Oakland Athletics

MLB Debut: June 14, 2017 at Miami Marlins

The Athletics No. 5 prospect was elevated to the Major Leagues for the first time on June 14. Gossett made his debut at Marlins Park in an interleague matchup for Oakland. He worked a perfect first frame against the Marlins and got his first Big League strikeout against Miami slugger Giancarlo Stanton. The 2015 Snapper gave up a pair of home runs in the second inning and would allow a total of seven runs (six earned) to pass for Miami in the A's loss that afternoon. Gossett was the Athletics second round pick (65th overall) in 2014 and played in Beloit for the entire 2015 season. The former Clemson Tiger put up underwhelming numbers that year with a record of 5-13 to go along with an ERA of 4.73. However, Gossett skyrocketed through the Athletics Minor League system in 2016. He began last year with High-A Stockton and made nine starts before he moved up to Double-A Midland to start 16 more games. His sub-3.00 ERA earned him another promotion to Triple-A Nashville near the end of the 2016 season and earned him a playoff start for the Sounds. Gossett was assigned to the Sounds again to begin the 2017 season where he was Pacific Coast League Pitcher of the Week after he threw 14 scoreless innings with 14 strikeouts on May 22 and 27.

Jaycob Brugman - OF, Oakland Athletics

MLB Debut: June 9, 2017 at Tampa Bay Rays

Regarded by MLB Pipeline as the Athletics No. 21 prospect, Brugman was recalled by Oakland and inserted into the starting lineup on June 9 at Tampa Bay. Brugman was 0-for-4 in his first Big League game as the A's lost 13-4 to the Rays. He was a 17th round selection by the Athletics in 2013 and started the 2014 season with the Snappers before moving on to Stockton for the rest of the year. He spent the next year with Double-A Midland and helped the 'Hounds win their second of three straight Texas League titles. 

Jason Wheeler - LHP, Minnesota Twins

MLB Debut: May 30, 2017 vs. Houston Astros

A Midwest League All-Star in 2012 with the Snappers, Wheeler made it to the Major Leagues with the team that drafted him. He was an eighth round selection by the Minnesota Twins in 2011 and made his pro debut with the Snappers the following spring. Wheeler was spectacular with a 14-6 record over 27 Midwest League starts for Beloit. A starter for most of his career, he made his MLB debut out of the bullpen for the Twins and made two appearances before Minnesota designated him for assignment after they had to clear a 40-man roster spot. Minnesota then worked out a trade to send him to the Dodgers rather than an outright assignment to Triple-A Rochester.

Chris Bostick - INF, Pittsburgh Pirates

MLB Debut: May 8, 2017 at Los Angeles Dodgers

Traded three different times since the Athletics picked him in the 44th round of the 2011 draft, Chris Bostick found himself playing at Dodger Stadium in his first Major League game. During the Dodgers 12-1 rout of the Pirates, Bostick entered the game in the bottom of the fourth inning as part of a double-switch. He batted twice and struck out each time in his first Big League game. A Snapper in 2013, Bostick was a former top-30 prospect with the Athletics and hit a career-best 14 homers with 89 RBI in the Midwest League that season. He was traded that December to the Rangers who flipped him to the Nationals the next winter for Ross Detwiler. After two seasons in the Nationals system, Bostick was dealt to the Pirates near the end of the 2016 season. Bostick was off to a .320 start for Triple-A Indianapolis before getting the call up to the Pirates.

Bobby Wahl - RHP, Oakland Athletics

MLB Debut: May 3, 2017 at Minnesota Twins

Bobby Wahl was the first of this group to reach Beloit's current parent club. Bob Melvin handed the baseball over to Wahl in relief to replace another former Snapper, Liam Hendriks, at Target Field on May 3. Wahl's first outing was brief, only facing four batters. He gave up an RBI-single to Eddie Rosario and plunked Brian Dozier, also former Snappers. In 2014, Wahl was 0-4 in Beloit with an ERA north of five, but he still earned a promotion to Stockton at the end of July. Oakland took Wahl in the fifth round of the 2013 draft out of Ole Miss.

Boog Powell - OF, Seattle Mariners

MLB Debut: April 29, 2017 at Cleveland Indians

After two separate trades sent him from the Athletics to the Rays on to the Mariners, Boog Powell got the call in late April that he would be joining the big club. A 20th round pick by the Athletics in 2012, Powell was a Midwest League All-Star in 2014 with a .335 average with 85 hits in just 69 games. He also had one strange Major League debut. Mariners manager Scott Servais sent Powell up to the plate as a pinch-hitter, but the Indians turned to left-handed super-reliever Andrew Miller. Playing the matchups, Servais pinch-hit right-handed hitter Carlos Ruiz to face Miller instead of the left-handed hitting Powell. Boog would get his first Big League swings the next day against the Tribe as the Mariners starting left fielder. Powell was sent back down to Triple-A Tacoma on May 5 and called back up by the Mariners of May 16.

Danny Ortiz - INF, Pittsburgh Pirates

MLB Debut: April 29, 2017 at Miami Marlins

After playing nearly 900 Minor League games, Danny Ortiz got his chance to play in the Major Leagues. It was brief enough that he didn't even get an at-bat, but Ortiz made it in a Big League box score when he was entered as a defensive replacement in the seventh inning on April 29 in Miami. Ortiz returned to Triple-A Indianapolis the next day. Ortiz played for the Snappers was a Midwest League All-Star in 2011 with 33 doubles and 10 homers and also played the first month of the 2012 season in Beloit as well. Drafted by the Minnesota Twins in 2008 out of Puerto Rico, Ortiz latched on with the Pirates after his seven years of club control expired after to 2015 season. He has shown power after reaching Triple-A by hitting 42 home runs over the last four seasons in the International League.

Dylan Covey - RHP, Chicago White Sox

MLB Debut: April 14, 2017 at Minnesota Twins

The ride to the Major Leagues had a few twists and turns for Dylan Covey. After the Milwaukee Brewers drafted him 14th overall out of high school in 2010, Covey was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes and made the decision to play college baseball closer to home at the University of San Diego. The Athletics scooped him up in the fourth round of the 2013 draft. He moved up to Beloit after a month at short-season Vermont and pitched parts of two seasons with the Snappers. The White Sox claimed Covey in the Rule-5 Draft in December after playing four seasons in the Athletics organization and made the team out of Spring Training. His first start in the Big Leagues was a strong showing going five-plus and allowed just one run despite early postponements effecting the Chicago rotation. Covey has struggled a tad since then, but continues to eat up innings for the South Siders. Covey will have to remain on the Major League roster the entire 2017 season or the White Sox would have to send him back to the Athletics. 

Daniel Robertson - INF, Tampa Bay Rays

MLB Debut: April 4, 2017 vs. New York Yankees

Daniel Robertson made Tampa Bay's Opening Day roster and appeared in his first Big League game on April 4 as the Rays designated hitter. Robertson went 0-for-4, but he collected his first hit in the Majors in his next start against Toronto with a single off Francisco Liriano. Robertson clubbed his first of three home runs on April 20 at Tropicana Field against the Detroit Tigers. He was traded to the Rays in January of 2015 along with Boog Powell and John Jaso in exchange for Ben Zobrist and Yunel Escobar. After being drafted by the Athletics 34th overall in 2012, Robertson played on the first Snappers team fielded by A's farmhands. He hit .277 and played in 101 games along with 31 extra-base hits that season.

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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