Mike Trout’s Father’s Once Promising Baseball Career Cut Short

Angels outfielder Mike Trout is considered by many to be the best player in baseball these days.  After being named the American League Rookie of the Year in 2012 and two seasons as runner-up for MVP, Trout finally captured his first MVP Award in 2014.  And by all accounts, it won’t be his last.

Mike’s baseball bloodlines include his father, Jeff, who was once a promising prospect in the Minnesota Twins organization.  The infielder had hit .519 as a senior at the University of Delaware in 1983, which is the fourth highest in NCAA history and then spent four seasons in the Twins system, compiling a batting average of .303. However, he walked away from the game at age 25 after the 1986 season due to the effects of several injuries and not wanting to play in the minors for several more years before being promoted to the big leagues.

Read more about Jeff Trout’s career at the link below from grantland.com:

http://grantland.com/features/2015-mlb-jeff-trout-mike-trout-father/

Johnny Monell Jr. Gets Major League Call Again

Johnny Monell, Jr. got a call-up to the big leagues in May with the New York Mets, after a brief stint with the San Francisco Giants in 2013.  At age 29, his opportunities in the majors have been slim.  Yet he accomplished what his father, Johnny Monell Sr., could not.  Monell Sr. toiled in the minors for fifteen seasons, but was never able to advance to a big league team.  He also played in the Mets organization for six seasons.

Monell Jr. remembers taking bus trips as a youngster with his dad and his team while in the minors.  One of his father’s teammates let him suit up as a catcher in the bullpen one day, and it was then that Monell Jr. decided he wanted to be a catcher.

Read more about Johnny Monell Jr. at the link below from pressofatlanticcity.com:

http://www.pressofatlanticcity.com/sports/local/phillies/new-mets-catcher-has-ties-to-atlantic-city-and-its/article_0a36287c-f9a9-11e4-b9ce-1b554d3ddc4b.html

Ollie Brown, One of a Trio of Brothers in Pro Sports, Dies at Age 71

Ollie Brown, often referred to as the “Original Padre,” died in May from complications of mesothelioma.  In 1968, the outfielder was the first player selected by the expansion San Diego Padres.  Ollie began his major league career with the San Francisco Giants in 1965 and played until 1977, also appearing for the Phillies, Brewers, Astros, and A’s.

Ollie’s brother, Oscar Brown, was a major league outfielder for the Atlanta Braves from 1969 to 1973.  Their brother, Willie Brown, played in the NFL and later coached as USC and in the NFL.

Read more about Ollie Brown’s career at the link below from The Fresno Bee:

http://www.fresnobee.com/sports/mlb/article21186375.html

Joe Blake, Father of MLer Casey Blake, Dies in Car Accident

Joe Blake, pitching coach for Simpson College, died in a car accident in May near his home in Indianola, Iowa.  He is the father of Casey Blake, a former major league player during 1999 and 2011, playing for the Indians, Dodgers, Blue Jays, Twins and Orioles.  Joe’s son, Ben, played one season of minor league ball in the Indians organization in 1992 and is currently the head coach at Simpson College.

Joe was an 8th round pick of the New York Yankees in 1971 and pitched in the minors for four seasons.

Read more about Joe Blake at the link below from the Des Moines Register:

http://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/sports/2015/05/26/iowas-first-family-baseball-loses-legend-joe-blake/27982373/

Mike Brenly Takes a Different Route to the Big Leagues

Mike Brenly, son of former major league player and manager, Bob Brenly, was playing for Double-A Portland in the Boston Red Sox organization this season, when he got called up to the big leagues.  However, his promotion was not as a player, but as the bullpen catcher for the Red Sox.

The Red Sox have determined Mike has the qualities to be a professional coach and made this role in the big league team’s bullpen his first assignment.  So, Mike effectively retired as a player to seize this opportunity.

Mike had been selected by the Chicago Cubs in the 36th round of the 2008 MLB Draft and briefly played at the Triple-A level in the Arizona Diamondbacks organization, before being signed by the Red Sox in 2014.

Read more about Mike Brenly at the link below from the Portland Press Herald:

http://www.pressherald.com/2015/05/24/kevin-thomas-on-baseball-brenly-went-from-sea-dogs-to-red-sox-by-retiring/

Daniel Alfonzo, Son of Former Met Edgardo Alfonzo, is Budding High School Star

Daniel Alfonzo just completed his sophomore season of high school baseball in New York City, but he is already being touted for his potential as a power hitter.

Daniel is the son of former major league infielder Edgardo Alfonzo, who played eight seasons with the Mets and another four with the Giants, Dodgers and Blue Jays.  Edgardo was a National League All-Star in 2000 and compiled a career .284 batting average.

Read more about Daniel Alfonzo at the link below from the New York Daily News:

http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/mets/daniel-alfonzo-rising-start-bayside-high-school-article-1.2233693

Bengie Molina’s Memoir About Father in New Book “Molina”

Bengie Molina, one of three brothers who played in the major leagues, recently wrote a book entitled “Molina: The Story of a Father Who Raised an Unlikely Baseball Dynasty.”  Bengie attributes the brothers’ pursuit of pro baseball to their father, Benjamin, while being raised in Puerto Rico.

Bengie, Yadier, and Jose Molina were all catchers in the big leagues, and each has won two World Series.

Read more about Bengie Molina and the book at the link below from the Orange County Register:

http://www.ocregister.com/articles/molina-662922-baseball-says.html

Brandon Bossard Plays on the Baseball Field Groomed by his Father

Brandon Bossard plays shortstop for his Nazareth High School team in the Chicago area.  Recently, his team played a game at U. S. Cellular Field, the home of the Chicago White Sox.  One of the things that made that game special was that Brandon’s father, Roger Bossard, who is the head groundskeeper for the White Sox, prepped the field for the high school contest.

Roger Bossard is a member of a three-generation family with careers as major league groundskeepers.  Roger’s father, Gene, and his grandfather, Emil, both worked for the White Sox as well.

Read more about Brandon Bossard at the link below from the Chicago Tribune:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/western-springs/sports/ct-dws-baseball-nazareth-roger-bossard-tl-0514-20150512-story.html

Bengie Molina Writes Book About His Baseball Family

Bengie Molina, former major league catcher for thirteen seasons, and brother of current St. Louis Cardinal Yadier Molina and another former major leaguer, Jose Molina, recently wrote a book about his baseball-playing family.  But most of the focus of the book is on his father, rather than the three brothers.

Father Benjamin taught his sons to play baseball, while they were growing up in Puerto Rico.  Although Bengie Sr. was reportedly a good ballplayer himself, he had never had the opportunity to play professionally.  Instead, he turned his three sons into top-notch catchers, each of whom has won two World Series.

Read more about the book Molina at the link below from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

http://www.stltoday.com/entertainment/books-and-literature/reviews/gold-gloves-bengie-molina-writes-about-a-baseball-loving-family/article_041462cb-9c49-5346-bc25-12c54db401ca.html

A Big Year for the Biggio Family

Craig Biggio will be inducted into Baseball’s Hall of Fame in late July as a veteran of the Houston Astros, where he played for twenty seasons.  He was voted in this year, after coming within only a few votes of being elected in 2014.

2015 has also been a big season for two of Biggio’s sons.  Conor finished his college career at the University of Notre Dame, earning three letters, while Cavan completed his second season with the Fighting Irish.  They were both key players on the team.

Conor was drafted by his father’s team, the Astros, in the 34th round of this year’s Major League Draft.  Cavan had been a previous pick of the Philadelphia Phillies in 2013.

Read more about the Biggio family at the link below from baseballessential.com:

http://www.baseballessential.com/news/2015/05/12/summer-remember-entire-biggio-family/

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