Fisher Cats have star power
- Updated: June 24, 2019
MANCHESTER – Santiago Espinal , Nash Knight , Zach Logue and Forrest Wall have been voted Eastern League All-Stars, and will represent the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (Blue Jays Double-A affiliate) at the 2019 All-Star Game in Richmond, Virginia on July 10.
All-Stars are voted on by Eastern League managers and media personnel. As defending league champions, the Fisher Cats coaching staff will lead the Eastern Division All-Star Team, and manager Mike Mordecai will participate in the Celebrity Home Run Derby on July 9.
Second baseman Santiago Espinal, who was acquired from the Red Sox organization in the trade for Steve Pearce last June, is ranked No. 28 among Toronto prospects by MLB.com. Born in Santiago, Dominican Republic and raised in Miami, Florida, the 24-year-old helped lead the Fisher Cats to their third Eastern League Championship in 2018.
In his second season with New Hampshire, he’s hitting .263 with four home runs, six stolen bases and a team-high 37 RBIs. Espinal drove in six runs on April 17 in Binghamton, and earned Eastern League Player of the Week honors on April 21.
His signature moment came on June 8. With the Fisher Cats and Richmond Flying Squirrels tied 4-4 in the bottom of the 10th inning, Espinal pulled off a two-out, two-strike steal of home before reliever Sam Moll could throw his next pitch. Espinal, who has two separate nine-game hitting streaks this season, was also a 2018 All-Star with the Salem Red Sox of the Advanced-A Carolina League.
A shining example of perseverance, third baseman Nash Knight has progressed from an undrafted free agent to an Eastern League All-Star. The 26-year-old from Denton, Texas excelled in the month of May, hitting .356 with a .985 OPS. Knight also strung together a 13-game hitting streak from May 16 to June 7.
He earned a championship ring with the Fisher Cats last season, and made headlines during his time in Advanced-A Dunedin, playing all nine positions for the D-Jays on September 2. The switch hitter is currently batting .265 with four home runs, and has gone deep from each side of the plate at Delta Dental Stadium. Knight’s terrific defense, including a lunging catch into the stands on Saturday, has helped earn him the All-Star nod.
Center fielder Forrest Wall will also play in his first MiLB All-Star Game. The 23-year-old from Winter Park, Florida is hitting .277 with four home runs, nine stolen bases and an OPS of .800. Wall earned Eastern League Player of the Week honors on June 3. His seven-day tear included a .571 batting average, six doubles, two home runs, and a four-hit game.
In May, Wall ranked fourth in the league in both batting average (.327) and on-base percentage (.409). He was acquired from the Rockies last July 26 in the Seunghwan Oh trade, which also brought current Fisher Cats Bryan Baker and Chad Spanbeger to the Blue Jays organization. Colorado selected Wall with the 35th overall pick in the 2014 MLB Draft.
During last year’s playoff run, he provided a pivotal hit in New Hampshire’s Game 1 win over Akron in the Eastern League Championship Series. His two-run single in the top of the 10th inning broke a 1-1 tie, and led the Fisher Cats to a 3-1 victory.
Zach Logue, a left-handed pitcher, has managed to stand out in a season dominated by pitching, and earns his first career All-Star selection. Taken in the ninth round of the 2017 Draft out of Kentucky, Logue enjoyed a breakout season in Single-A last year (12-4, 3.15 ERA) and has continued his success in New Hampshire. The 23-year-old from Mason, Ohio is 3-3 with a 3.14 ERA in 13 starts with the Fisher Cats.
In three outings this month, Logue has allowed just three earned runs in 19 innings (1.42 ERA) with 16 strikeouts. He started his Double-A career with five perfect innings against Binghamton on April 6, and most recently held the Rumble Ponies to one run while matching a season-high seven innings on Wednesday.
The Fisher Cats begin a 10-day, 11-game road trip tonight, and return home on July 4 for an Independence Day Weekend series against the Portland Sea Dogs (Boston Red Sox Double-A affiliate) at Delta Dental Stadium. For tickets, visit NHFisherCats.com.