Salem-Keizer’s Bryan Reynolds was advertised as one of the most polished prospects in the 2016 draft. And in his first season in the Northwest League, he’s shown why.
Reynolds, the San Francisco Giants’ 59th-overall pick in the 2016 draft, went 3 for 5 with three RBIs, and slugged a two-run home run that plunked the scoreboard in left field in the Volcanoes’ 12-4 thrashing of the Spokane Indians at Avista Stadium on Thursday night.
Many MLB draft pundits projected Reynolds as a late-first round pick, as ESPN’s Keith Law had him going 30th-overall to the Rangers and MLB.com’s Jim Callis had him being picked 31st-overall to the Mets.
But it didn’t work out that way on draft night, which according to Reynolds, was “very stressful.”
“Yeah, I fell a little bit, but I’m really, really happy with where I’m at,” Reynolds said. “I guess (the other teams) didn’t like me.”
For Reynolds, who grew up in Brentwood, Tennessee, playing at Vanderbilt was always a dream. He said he has fond memories of growing up watching Commodore games and players like David Price pitch.
“I love Vanderbilt,” Reynolds said. “It was really my dream school and to have the opportunity to go there was great.
“I don’t think you can script it much better than what I got to experience at Vandy. You don’t expect to win a National Championship and to win another one.”
Reynolds burst onto the scene after playing with Team USA as a sophomore and in the Cape Cod League in the summer before his junior season. He hit .330 and collected 52 RBIs as a junior.
After Thursday’s game, Reynolds raised his average to .395, which would be the atop the Northwest League if he had enough plate appearances — he didn’t join the Volcanoes until June 30.
But with only 11 minor league games under his belt, Bryan Reynolds isn’t going to get ahead of himself.
“It’s still early,” Reynolds said.
Every Salem-Keizer hitter recorded a hit, with Kevin Rivera and Ryan Howard finishing with two and Heath Quinn, Bryan Reynolds, Zack Bowers, Brusa and Chase Compton registering three.
Indians right fielder Preston Scott could only watch as Reynold’s two-run home run drilled the scoreboard in right field. It was third home run Luke Lanphere surrendered tonight and it gave the Volcanoes a 5-4 lead.
Kevin Rivera doubled to center field to score Compton in the fourth and Bowers ripped an RBI single under Xavier Turner’s legs in the fifth to push Salem-Keizer’s lead to 7-4.
Brusa’s RBI single and Quinn’s two-run double broke open the game even more in the sixth. Reynold’s groundout scored Brusa from third and gave the Volcanoes a 10-4 lead. Tyler Stubblefield, who was called up from the AZL Rangers on Thursday, was charged with all three runs his in first appearance with the Indians.
The Indians claimed their first lead in the second inning, as Alex Kowalczyk cut the deficit to one after he gapped a double to score Xavier Turner and Luis Terrero hit a two-RBI single with two outs. Josh Merrigan walked and Blaine Prescott reached on an error to keep the inning alive for Terrero.
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