Three Winston-Salem Stars Honored
Baseball America released its Top 20 Prospects ranking for the Carolina League, and three men who donned the Dash purple this season made the list.
Infielder Carlos Sanchez placed sixth, which was the highest ranking for a Winston-Salem player. Righty Erik Johnson is 11th on the list, while outfielder Trayce Thompson checks in at 18th.
The 20-year-old Sanchez led all Carolina League qualifiers with a .315 batting average. In 92 games with the Dash, Sanchez scored 58 times and drove in another 42 runs. A member of the World Team in the 2012 MLB Futures Game, Sanchez earned promotions to Double-A Birmingham and Triple-A Charlotte before the season ended.
Johnson joined the Dash July 21 and went 4-3 with a 2.74 earned run average in eight starts. He was the club’s Game 1 starter in their playoff run last month. Before his stint in Winston-Salem, the former California Golden Bear boasted a 2.30 ERA in nine efforts with Low-A Kannapolis.
Finally, Thompson slugged his way to a spot on this prestigious list. The former second-round pick finished tied for the league lead with 22 home runs, and he paced the circuit with 90 RBI. Like Sanchez, Thompson also made a stop in Double-A Birmingham before finishing the season with Triple-A Charlotte during its playoff run in the International League.
Only Salem and Myrtle Beach (four apiece) had more players on this list. Frederick’s Dylan Bundy finished atop the rankings, followed by a Salem triumvirate of Xander Bogaerts, Matt Barnes and Jackie Bradley, Jr. Myrtle’s Cody Buckel finished in fifth.
Interestingly enough, the only player on this list who never appeared in a game at BB&T Ballpark was Potomac’s Nathan Karns, who finished 15th overall.
Congrats to Carlos, Erik and Trayce!