You probably already know the story of Alex Reyes, so I will keep it brief. The New Jersey-born pitcher of Dominican heritage moved overseas for his senior season of high school to focus on baseball and to get noticed.
It worked, leading to an international free agent contract with the St. Louis Cardinals signed just under three years ago - in December 2012 – for a bonus of $950,000.
At the age of 18, Reyes made a strong professional debut in the 2013 Appalachian League before taking the full season Midwest League by storm in 2014, all the while rising on national top prospect lists. He began 2015 in the Florida State League, but had to miss the A-Advanced league’s All-Star Game as well as the MLB All-Star Futures Game due to shoulder soreness.
A promotion to Double-A Springfield occurred before Reyes celebrated his 21st birthday, followed by a stint in the prestigious Arizona Fall League, where the right-hander was recognized as the best pitching prospect in the league.
When this interview was conducted, Reyes had learned he was to be a starting pitcher in the AFL’s all-star contest, called the Rising Stars Game. It was literally hours before his suspension for a second positive drug test was disclosed, at which point he was pulled from competition.
Since then, Reyes publicly apologized for marijuana use, served the first 10 games of his 50-game suspension, and this Monday was named the Cardinals organization’s co-Pitcher of the Year for 2015.
While this bump in the road is a temporary slowdown to a fast-moving career that seemed on track for an MLB debut in 2016, Reyes still has everything going for him, including top of the rotation potential.
From the AFL, Reyes spoke about his 2015 progress on the mound.
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