Salt Lake Bees’ Kole Calhoun: Looking for another ticket to the show
"We're a good team, man," said the 25-year-old prospect. "Top to bottom of the line-up, we’re getting it done. Every night it's a different guy stepping it up and our pitching has just been lights out lately. Those guys are keeping us in games, and that’s what it's all about."
That's the kind of good attitude you'd expect to get from a player like Calhoun — a guy who has had to prove himself at every level and continues to put team first while playing his heart out night after night.
Such is life in the minor leagues of professional baseball. Being a top prospect and playing well means you could be promoted at any time. That also means you could be taken away from the team you've spent the majority of two seasons with.
"Right now, I'm with Salt Lake. I’m with the Bees. I just want to help us win games,” he said. “It's something I don't think about much (getting called up to the Angels) because that kind of thing just works itself out."
The parent club in Southern California has been struggling this season. With high expectations coming into the 2013 campaign with their addition of slugger Josh Hamilton to their mix of young stars, the lack of success has placed a glaring spotlight on the Los Angeles club. A lot of that attention has gone towards Hamilton, but Calhoun doesn't think that affects his status with the organization, even though he is an outfielder like Hamilton.
“You know, I really try to stay away from it to be honest with you,” Calhoun said. "He's an All-Star, he’s an MVP, he’s going to come out of it,” Calhoun said. "They have to ride it out with him even though he's having a bad year or whatever. That doesn’t really change what I’m doing, or what we’re doing here. If something opens up, then great if not, we’ve got a job to do here.”
Besides just being a member of the everyday big league line-up someday, Calhoun said he would love the opportunity to play again for Angels manager Mike Scioscia. “Yeah for sure he’s a great baseball mind,” he said. “You don’t really come across too many like that. He’s very knowledgeable about the game. He knows it inside out. You kind of learn a lot just sitting there and watching him do his job. I look forward to that again if it comes.”
Currently, Calhoun is number five on the Angels' prospect list and their highest rated outfielder. Even though the Angels are eight games below .500 and currently 10 games back in third place in the AL West, outfield play is one of their strongest suits, so Calhoun, despite his consistently good play for Salt Lake, may have to wait until September call-ups to get another shot.
“For me, that’s all right,” the young outfielder said. “We’re playing good baseball right here, right now, and it’s a lot of fun. I just want to keep getting the wrist better and keep playing better and the rest will take care of itself.”
Kenny Bristow is the staff sports writer for the Wasatch Wave and contributes to the Deseret News high school coverage for the Wasatch region. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. To contribute to DNews Preps for your area, inquire at 801.237.2143.
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