Pair of all-stars join Canaries
SIOUX FALLS – The Sioux Falls Canaries added two players with all-star honors and Double-A experience on Wednesday, outfielder Nick Van Stratten and right-handed pitcher Jordan Whatcott.
Van Stratten, 27, is well-decorated from his seven professional seasons in the Kansas City Royals organization. In 2009, he was tabbed as Player of the Year for Class A Burlington and as a Midwest League Mid-Season All-Star. He was the Royals’ Arizona Fall League Player of the Year in 2006. Van Stratten has also been a part of two league championships.
“Along with veteran experience, Nick brings speed and the ability to lead off,” Canaries manager Steve Shirley said. “He’ll be setting the table for our power hitters and plays the outfield well.”
Last year Van Stratten spent the bulk of last season with Class AA Northwest Arkansas, where he has been for 198 of his 518 pro games. Combined with a stint in Class A Wilmington, he hit .312 with 10 doubles, one home run and 27 RBI. He has a career .289 average with 107 doubles, 25 triples and 80 stolen bases.
The Royals drafted Van Stratten in the 10th round of the 2006 draft out of St. Louis Community College. He is a native of St Louis.
Whatcott, 27, was an Eastern League Mid-Season All-Star with the Class AA Reading Fightin Phils in 2012. He went 1-3 in 38 appearances with a 4.42 ERA, fanning 50 men in 71 1/3 innings. He began the year at Class A Clearwater and pitched 12 scoreless innings with 12 strikeouts before his promotion to Reading.
“I anticipate Jordan being part of our starting rotation,” Shirley said. “He has a good arm and will add depth to our starting pitching.”
In his lifetime, Whatcott has posted a 9-4 mark with a 3.80 ERA in 107 appearances with 132 strikeouts in 173 innings pitched. He signed with the Phillies as a non-drafted free agent in 2010. He was previously drafted by the Los Angeles Angels in 2009 but did not sign while at the University of Utah. Whatcott hails from Gilbert, Ariz.
The Sioux Falls Canaries begin their 21st season on May 16, 2013. Their home opener is May 17 against the Sioux City Explorers. Information about season tickets and advertising with the Sioux Falls Canaries is available by calling (605) 336-6060 or visiting www.sfcanaries.com.