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Even in Triple-A, Vladimir Guerrero still swings at and makes contact with almost everything.

You'd think the Pacific Coast League would be filled with players who hadn't learned how to take a walk. You'd also think that PCL pitchers would be so intimidated to see Vladimir Guerrero that they'd pitch around him. Because of both of those things, you'd probably think that at some point in his first 30 appearances for the Blue Jays' Triple-A affiliate, the Las Vegas 51s, Vladimir Guerrero would have walked, and that he wouldn't have the lowest walk rate of any PCL player who'd made that many trips to the plate.

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January 29, 2007 12:00 am

The Ledger Domain: Q&A with Branch Rickey III


Maury Brown

Running the Pacific Coast League is how this third-generation baseball man continues the family tradition of service to the game.

The name "Rickey" evokes a strong place in baseball history with Branch Rickey Jr.'s signing of Jackie Robinson to break the color barrier, as well as the same man's introduction and development of the farm system.

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The PCL is famous for its pinball scores but there are other, better reasons to pay attention to it this year.

Pacific Coast League Profile

BATTERS PITCHERS AVG OBP SLG REQA ERA H/9 BB/9 K/9 K/BB .275 .345 .432 .791 4.52 9.5 3.2 7.0 2.2 COMBINED RUNS PER GAME: 9.9

The Cubs, Padres, Astros, Giants, and A's are among the best-run and best-stocked minor league operations in baseball and they each have an affiliate in the Pacific Coast League. It's not too much of a stretch to say that the two best hitting prospects in the high minors will play in the PCL this year, as will the game's two best pitching prospects. The minors' most extreme pitcher's park is here, along with Colorado Springs, among the minors' top three hitters' parks. Inspired by an episode of The Simpsons, baseball in Albuquerque has been revived after a couple years' hiatus. The PCL is famous for its pinball scores but there are other, better reasons to pay attention to it this year.

American Conference, East Division

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(Ed. note: Chris Kahrl is still getting set up in his new D.C. digs, so Keith and Joe share pinch-hitting duties.)

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Optioned infielder Hanley Frias to Tucson of the Pacific Coast League (AAA); recalled pitcher Bobby Chouinard from Tucson. [5/22]

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Optioned pitcher Mark Wohlers to Gulf Coast League Braves (Rookie League). [6/20]

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