Mejia Leading the Way for Struggling Gwinnett
Photo courtesy of Karl Moore
Ernesto Mejia is leading the way for the Gwinnett Braves this season, even as his team is entrapped currently in a 10-game losing skid, including dropping 22 of their last 27 contests. The first baseman has not let his team’s peeks and valley’s dictate the success of his season. For the 2012 season, Mejia would qualify for the Triple Crown of the G-Braves as he leads his team in the three major offensive categories; batting average (.312), home runs (15), RBI (53).
Last season while playing for the Double-A Mississippi Braves of the Southern League, Mejia burst onto the professional baseball landscape with an impressive .297 batting average, alongside 37 doubles, 26 home runs and 99 RBI. At 26 years old, the Venezuelan first baseman is just beginning to scratch the surface amidst his first season of Triple-A baseball.
Currently, Mejia is ranked fifth for first baseman in the 2012 Triple-A All-Star Game voting. The game, which Mejia would like to attend, will be broadcast live on the MLB Network between the International League and Pacific Coast League on Tuesday, July 10 in Buffalo, New York.
Photo courtesy of Karl Moore
When asked if he should represent his team at the 2012 All-Star Game in Buffalo, the humble G-Brave superstar raved about his teammates, who he believes are just as deserving of a nod.
“Julio Teheran is doing well, very well just like last year. He has more experience this year and I think he should be one of those all-stars,” said Mejia. ”Jordan Parraz was having a good year, but he is hurt right now, so he may have to wait a little more. Gartrell has a lot of RBI and home runs and has been helping the team a lot. Durango has a lot of stolen bases, he is leading the league (in stolen bases) so he deserves it too. We have a lot of good players.”
Photo courtesy of Kyle Hess
Indeed a majority of Mejia’s teammates are worthy of all-star consideration, but nobody moreso than the man himself.
“We’re having a great season this year as a team. I’m doing good right now too and I’m working hard. It’s every players dream to go to the all-star game and I hope I can make it. I would go of course,” Mejia said. “I’m excited because it’s my first year in Triple-A. It would be awesome. This year I feel like I have more experience. Last year in Double-A I had a good season and winter ball, too.”
A great deal of Mejia’s success this season is attributed to the Braves and gettting in better shape, not only during the off-season, but more importantly during the season. Mejia has worked tirelessly to make sure his body will not wear down as the season moves along. Therefore, the manchild is working and preparing for the first time in his career, during the season.
“Last year, I didn’t workout a lot during the season because it made me tired. But this year, I’m working with Matt (Parvis) in the gym and I think that is what’s keeping me healthy and stronger,” said Mejia.
Even Mejia’s teammate and close personal friend Christian Marrero couldn’t help but speak highly of the man.
“Since the beginning of the year to now, he looks a lot better hitting wise. He’s making adjustments and helping the team out a lot. He’s having great at-bats and almost every at-bat is unbelievable,” said Marrero. “He gets the job done. Mejia and Gartrell have put the team on their backs.”
Photo corurtesy of Leslie Watts
No matter what the question may be to the success of Ernesto Mejia, the answer is that the man is a dedicated hardworker. His effort is measured through his consistent play on the field and the admiration of his teammates off the field, making him different from other stars of the game. Mejia gets it and it’s only a matter of time before Atlanta gets him in a big league uniform.
By: Tony Piraro