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The Orioles will rejuvenate the second-largest draft topic, Heston Kjerstad, in 2020 and make their professional debut with the Low-A Delmarva –Reading Eagle.

Two years after the Orioles were second overall in the 2020 draft, outfielder Heston Kjerstad will play in his first affiliate match on Friday.

After being activated from the injured list, Kjerstad will play Low-A Delmarva’s designated hitter in his professional debut, making a third hit and completing the first step in his long-term goal.

“In the meantime, what I learned most was how much I wanted to play a baseball game,” Kjerstad said in a video conference call on Friday. “It really gave me a perspective on how much I love the game and how I want to play it as much as I can. Well, I have to do the job and do it. Put whatever you want and it’s fun because that’s all I want to do. “

According to Baseball America, 23-year-old Kjerstad remains the 10th-largest prospect in the organization, despite not yet making his professional debut due to heart condition and hamstring injuries. However, in Baltimore’s 2020 draft class, two players ranked before him were chosen behind him.

Kjerstad, a left-handed slugger at the University of Arkansas, developed myocarditis shortly after being drafted, and as a result missed the Orioles fall coaching camp. He missed the entire 2021 season as the problem recurred.

Finally clearedKjerstad was expected to train in the off-season at the Orioles complex in Sarasota, Florida, and fully participate in the minor league spring training. However, in an in-team game on March 11, he suffered a terrible left. The hamstring strain chased a line drive from Adley Rutschman’s bat to the left fielder a year ago as Baltimore’s top draft topic.

“I was disappointed and frustrated because I attended the spring training and was clearly counting down the number of days before breaking the camp,” Kjerstad said. “Injuring isn’t fun. You don’t plan or think about them during your journey, but you have to stick with them because they’re part of the game.”

The next morning, Rutschman woke up with pain in his right elbow. This was a tension in his right triceps, delaying the start of the season.

After that, Mike Elias, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Orioles, said: Kjerstad will play for 8-12 weeks.. He participated in a recent spring training activity and attended Shorebird earlier this week before the official activation on Friday.

“It was a way to get there at this moment,” Kjerstad said.

Kjerstad continues to rehabilitate due to a hamstring injury, taking regular breaks and initially playing only a few innings at a time.

“You can DH the full game from today,” Kjerstad said. “I play in the outfield, but I do as many innings as they allow. And they grow me slowly in the next week or two and play a full game in the outfield. I After completing the two-week progress plan, there are no restrictions. “

In three seasons in Arkansas, Kjerstad scored .343 / .421 / .590 with 37 home runs in 150 games. Expected Top 10 Picks..Still, he Second unexpected choice overallSigned at $ 5.2 million, well below the pick slot value of $ 7.79 million. Savings allowed the Orioles to sign cross-slot deals with high school students Coby Mayo and Carter Baumler. Third baseman Mayo, Now their fifth outlookMeanwhile, right-handed pitcher Baumler is ranked 20th and 6th among pitchers, despite missing everything in 2021 after undergoing Tommy John’s elbow reconstruction surgery. increase.

Arizona’s first baseman Spencer Torkelson was the first player to be drafted overall ahead of Kelstad, as was Los Angeles Angels’ 10th overall pitcher Reid Detmers and 11th Garrett Crochet. , Has already reached the majors in the Detroit Tigers. According to the Chicago White Sox.

Kjerstad said he had a chat with Torkelson and congratulated him when he made his major league debut. Torkelson sometimes sends him a text of encouragement and tells Kjerstad to keep pushing to reach the highest levels — even after his peers.

“I hope we can play against him soon,” Kjerstad said.

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The Orioles will rejuvenate the second-largest draft topic, Heston Kjerstad, in 2020 and make their professional debut with the Low-A Delmarva –Reading Eagle.

Source link The Orioles will rejuvenate the second-largest draft topic, Heston Kjerstad, in 2020 and make their professional debut with the Low-A Delmarva –Reading Eagle.

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