State College Spikes third baseman Evan Mendoza has added another accolade to his ever-growing haul, as he was officially ruled the 2017 New York-Penn League batting champion. Mendoza, who was called up to Single-A Peoria on August 10, becomes the second Spikes player to win an NYPL batting title, following Steven Ramos's 2013 crown.
Mendoza, who hit .370 in his time in State College before his promotion, was awarded the title by Major League Baseball Advanced Media, the official statistician of Minor League Baseball, pursuant to Rule 9.22 (a). The rule states that a player who does not have the minimum amount of plate appearances to qualify as a league leader will still be awarded the title if he would still lead the league with the required amount of plate appearances charged to him.
Even with 23 additional at-bats without a hit, Mendoza would still have led Ben Breazeale of Aberdeen for the batting title.
The St. Louis Cardinals' 2017 11th-round draft choice out of North Carolina State, Mendoza was named the club's 2017 Most Valuable Player before the season finale on Thursday. Mendoza became the first Spikes player to win two NYPL Player of the Week awards as he captured back-to-back honors for July 24-30 and July 31-August 6. The Sarasota, FL native adeed 14 doubles, three triples, three home runs and 28 RBI over 41 games before his call-up to Peoria.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.