Yanks in the ABL – Brandon Barnes
Roberto Angotti over at MLBblogger has been busy compiling a list of his top 20 Yanks in the ABL. Recently we listed his top #10 – now here is his #15 choice, Brandon Barnes who is this week’s ABD Hitter of the Week.
#15: During the recent World Series, news came out of the Houston Astros camp that they had re-signed Orange County, California’s Brandon Barnes to another Minor League contract with a Spring Training invite. Was it because the Houston Astros Player Development Department honored Barnes in May 2011 for his defensive excellence at Triple-A Oklahoma City after playing in 33 games and attaining an impressive .988 season fielding percentage? Or maybe it was because out of his 45 hits for the RedHawks, 26 of them (58%) were doubles or better? Better yet, perhaps it was due to the fact that he was originally a high school football player who tried out for the Cypress College team, only to become a Freshman All-American and is still learning the game? Regardless, the fact remains that Barnes was drafted in the 6th round of the 2005 MLB June Amateur Draft by the Houston Astros for a Big League reason. In his seven-year tenure with the rebuilding organization, he has put together a combined .250 batting average with 77 home runs and 300 RBIs.Brandon Barnes (on the far right) and friends lend a helping hand to local families during the holiday season while playing for the Corpus Christi Hooks.
The 2008 Baseball America Prospect Handbook Astros Minor League Depth Chart described Barnes as “a sleeper with limited baseball experience who became Tri City’s MVP after bashing 10 homers in 2007.” Since his first game in a Sydney uniform on December 1st, word is out in the ABL that this 25-year-old Blue Sox slugger is not sleeping in the batter’s box. His .386 batting average ranks third and his .455 OBP ranks fourth among ABL’s leading hitters. Beware…