Glaesmann, Archer honored by Rays

Glaesmann, Archer honored by Rays

Glaesmann, Archer honored by Rays
ST. PETERSBURG -- On Wednesday, Chris Archer was named the Rays' Minor League Pitcher of the Year and outfielder Todd Glaesmann was named the organization's Minor League Player of the Year.

The Rays also announced a Most Valuable Player for each of their nine affiliates, as well as organization-wide awards for best baserunner, best defensive player and best relief pitcher.

This year's winners were honored during an awards ceremony prior to Wednesday night's game against the Red Sox.

Archer, 24, posted a 3.66 ERA in 25 starts for Triple-A Durham. He led the International League and all Rays Minor League hurlers with 139 strikeouts.

Acquired as part of the trade that sent Matt Garza to the Cubs, Archer has compiled a 3.89 ERA with 269 strikeouts over two seasons in the Rays' farm system. He has served two stints in the Major Leagues this year, pitching to a 3.22 ERA with 28 strikeouts in four appearances (three starts).

"Chris turned his season around," farm director Mitch Lukevics said. "He got an opportunity to go to the big leagues, threw two wonderful games. I think he took those lessons up here down to Triple-A, and when he got back he really finished up strong. They say it's not how you start, it's how you finish. To see how he was last year in Double-A Montgomery, and then where he is now, he's on the verge of making an impact in the big leagues."

Glaesmann led all Rays farmhands with 21 home runs in 127 games between Bowling Green and Charlotte. The third-round pick in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft entered the season with only eight homers over his previous three seasons combined.

The 21-year-old hit .293 from May to July with Bowling Green and ranked tied for second with 165 total bases and was tied for third with 13 home runs in the Midwest League before being promoted on July 24.

After injuries limited his 2011 season, Glaesmann combined to hit .285 with 21 homers and 75 RBIs between two levels this season.

"This year was the first year I stayed healthy, and I think that had a lot to do with it," Glaesmann said.

The following players were named Most Valuable Player for their respective Minor League teams: Leslie Anderson (Triple-A Durham); Alex Colome (Double-A Montgomery); Derek Dietrich (Class A Charlotte); Drew Vettleson (Class A Bowling Green); Jeff Ames, (Class A Hudson Valley); Blake Snell (Advanced Rookie League); Ben Kline (Gulf Coast Rookie League); Alexander Simon (Dominican Summer League); and Jose Paez (Venezuelan Summer League).

Outfielder Kevin Kiermaier was named best defensive Player, while shortstop Hak-Ju Lee was named the organization's best baserunner and right-hander Chris Rearick was named best relief pitcher.

In addition, right-hander Joe Cruz was named the winner of the 2012 Erik Walker Community Champion Award. The award annually recognizes one of the organization's Minor League player who exemplifies teamwork, sportsmanship and community involvement, attributes exhibited by Rays Minor League pitcher Erik Walker, who died tragically in October 2006 in a canoeing accident.

Lukevics called all of the award winners "a very well-deserving crew."

"All of our staff, player development, scouting, front office, baseball operations has a say in the vote," Lukevics said. "[When you are one of the winners], that's saying something. You stand out among your peers. We all know important that is."