Tag Archives: Stan Cliburn

The Atlantic League Draft Results, Kentucky Genomes Make History With Alexis “Scrappy” Hopkins

The Atlantic League held their annual player draft on Wednesday (March 23, 2022) where one team, the first-year Kentucky Genomes, made history.

With the 8th pick, the Genomes selected C Alexis “Scrappy” Hopkins.

“Hopkins is expected to become the Genomes’ bullpen catcher and is believed to be the first woman ever drafted by an American professional baseball team for an on-field role.” (MLB.com).

“I’m really excited for this,” Hopkins said. “About two or three years ago in one of my college classes, they said to write down a dream of yours. I was going to put down ‘professional baseball player,’ but I actually didn’t because I was like, ‘That’s never going to happen.’ But I guess here we are today, making a dream come alive.”

Hopkins played high school softball in Fort Walton Beach, Fla., before playing collegiately at Florida Tech in 2017. Her selection in the Draft followed the league’s two-day professional showcase.

“Scrappy handled the pitchers better than most of the guys here,” said Stan Cliburn, a former Major League catcher and current manager of the Atlantic League’s Southern Maryland Blue Crabs. “There were guys throwing 93 to 95 [mph], and she handled it just fine. And she was really good at blocking and picking the ball as well.”


Complete Atlantic League Draft Results Press Release

(March 23, 2022, Viera, Fla.) – The Atlantic League of Professional Baseball held its annual Player Draft on Wednesday at the USSSA Space Coast Complex in Viera, Fla. The draft occurred at the end of the two-day Atlantic League Professional Showcase presented by Prospect Dugout.

Hector Guance was the first overall pick, going to the Staten Island FerryHawks who will begin their first season of play in 2022. Guance is a 6-6, 200-pound righthanded pitcher who spent six years in professional baseball including five seasons in the Baltimore organization. A native of San Cristobal, Dominican Republic, the 26-year old Guance compiled a 22-21 record in the minors, primarily as a starting pitcher.

The second pick went to the Kentucky Wild Health Genomes, another first-year franchise in the Atlantic League. The Genomes traded the pick to Long Island in return for the rights to OF Chris Shaw. Long Island then drafted LHP Cody Beckman with the second pick of the first round.

As new entries to the Atlantic League, the FerryHawks and the Genomes alternated on the first 12 picks of the draft.  The third overall pick by the FerryHawks was RHP Jordan Simpson. Kentucky then selected C Robbie Kellerman with the fourth pick.

Staten Island’s other selections included LHP Anthony Rodriguez (No. 5) and RHP Yohn Zapata (No. 11). The FerryHawks traded away their seventh and ninth selections for players to be named later.

Kentucky selected utility player Will Decker at No. 6 before selecting C Alexis “Scrappy” Hopkins at No. 8.  Hopkins is believed to be the first female ever drafted by an American professional baseball team for an on-field role. In 2008, in a special supplemental Negro League draft to the MLB Draft, the Washington Nationals selected 72-year old Mamie “Peanut” Johnson to mark the first woman ever drafted.

Update: According to Baseball America, LHP Carey Schueler was a 43rd round pick of the Chicago White Sox in 1993. While she did not sign, she is believed to be the first woman drafted in a non-honorary role.

The Genomes are expected to offer Hopkins the position of bullpen catcher.

Kentucky added RHP Bradley Hines at No. 10 and 1B Alex Wemple at No. 12 to conclude their first round selections.

Southern Maryland made the ninth selection after obtaining the pick from Staten Island and chose RHP Junior Navas.

Gastonia used the 13th pick in the draft to select SS Kevin Lambert while York picked LHP Adrian Alarcon with the 14th pick. Lancaster chose LHP Josh Smith at No. 15 and was followed by Charleston which took OF Kyle Robinson. Defending Atlantic League champion Lexington picked LHP Darrien Ragins with the 17th pick overall. Southern Maryland added LHP Dario Polanco at No. 18 and High Point picked RHP Thomas Derer with the 19th pick. Long Island passed on the final selection of the first round and all teams passed on the second round.

The Atlantic League teams open spring training on April 10 and Opening Day is slated for Thursday, April 21.

The complete draft follows:

2022 Atlantic League Draft  
Wednesday, March 23, 2022 
PickTeamSelection No. 
1Staten IslandHector GuanceRHP
2KentuckyTraded to Long Island 
 Long IslandCody BeckmanLHP
3Staten IslandJordan SimpsonRHP
4KentuckyRobbie KellermanC
5Staten IslandAnthony RodriguezLHP
6KentuckyWill DeckerUTIL
7Staten Islandtrade to York 
 YorkMatt MeyerLHP
8KentuckyAlexis “Scrappy” HopkinsC
9Staten Islandtrade to So. Maryland 
 So MarylandJunior NavasRHP
10KentuckyBradley HinesRHP
11Staten IslandYohn ZapataRHP
12KentuckyAlex Wemple1B
13GastoniaKevin LambertSS
14YorkAdrian AlarconLHP
15LancasterJosh SmithLHP
16CharlestonKyle RobinsonOF
17LexingtonDarrien RaginsLHP
18So MarylandDario PolancoLHP
19High PointThomas DererRHP
20Long Islandpass

Pioneer League Prospect Combine In Partnership with the CWL


November 6 Scouting Event at Mercer University in Macon, Georgia

Spokane, WA – October 19, 2021
The Pioneer Baseball League today announced that it will hold a Prospect Combine in partnership with the California Winter League (CWL) on Saturday November 6th at Mercer University’s Claude Smith Field in Macon, Georgia.

Prospective players can register at the below link:

“The Pioneer League is very excited to be partnering with the California Winter League for this combine camp,” said Pioneer League Vice President Henry Hunter. “We are looking forward to working with the CWL on a number of player development opportunities going forward, so this is a great first step for our relationship.”

The Atlantic League’s Stan Cliburn, Manager of the Maryland Blue Crabs, will run the combine. The coaching staff will include Pioneer League Managers Tommy Thompson of the Great Falls Voyagers and
Michael Schlact of the 2021 PBL Champion Missoula PaddleHeads.

“The CWL’s goal has always been to put players in front of decision makers. Working with the Pioneer League and managers like Stan Cliburn at this combine event creates another great opportunity for free agents to get on a professional team’s radar,” said Andrew Starke, CWL President.

The combine will start at 9:30 AM on November 6th. It will feature workouts and skills evaluations for players, followed by a simulated game for selected players. For more details on the tryout go to:

Claude Smith Field at Mercer University is located at 1501 Mercer University Dr, Macon, GA 31207. The nearest airports are the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and the Middle Georgia Regional Airport in Macon.

The preferred hotel for the Prospect Combine is La Quinta on 3944 River Place Dr, Macon, GA 31210. In order to get the reduced rate of $69 per night, use registration code: “LBMU Mercer Rate”.
Their phone number is 478-475-0206.

About the Pioneer Baseball League:
Since 1939, the Pioneer League has operated in the Mountain West
region. Beginning in 2021, the PBL became a Major League Baseball Professional Partner League with teams in Montana (Billings, Missoula and Great Falls), Idaho (Boise and Idaho Falls), Utah (Ogden) and Colorado (Grand Junction and Colorado Springs). The Northern Colorado Owlz, formerly the Orem Owlz, and an expansion team in Flathead County, MT will join the League for the 2022 season.
For more information go to www.pioneerleague.com.

About the California Winter League:
For the last 12 years, the California Winter League has been the premier competitive development league for free agent players. The CWL’s goal is to help recently graduated college players and professional free agents sign a pro contract before spring training begins. Now headed into its 13th season in 2022, the CWL has seen over 750 former players sign professional contracts at all levels. The 2022 season will take place January 19th through February 16th in Palm Springs, CA and will feature MLB scouts and managers from the four MLB Partner Leagues (Pioneer League, Frontier League, Atlantic League, American Association) in attendance every day looking to sign players. Players with college or professional experience can register now at californiawinterleague.com to secure their roster spot.