Ivan Melendez Homers for the First Time as a Pro
Ivan Melendez has spent the last two weeks getting his feet wet as a professional baseball player. The former Coronado High standout who was the best college baseball player on the planet in 2022 is currently playing for the Visalia Rawhide, the Diamondbacks Class A Affiliate. Saturday night, he homered for the first time since he was wearing a Texas Longhorns jersey.
Melendez only has a total of 38 professional at bats since he finished up summer school at Texas and joined the Diamondbacks organization. He spent two games in Rookie ball before joining Visalia. In 14 total games, he has played a pair of contests at Designated Hitter, two more at third base, and eight at first base. Saturday's long ball was his first extra base hit of the season, but he does have three singles and three walks with the Rawhide. He is also batting cleanup for the Rawhide since he joined the club on August 5th.
It will be interesting to see how well he adjusts to pro ball over the next month. Their regular season ends on September 11th and Visalia is currently five games back of first place Inland Empire in the Cal League South Division. It has been a long season already for Melendez, whose Longhorns went back to the College World Series for the second straight year earlier this summer. Hopefully Saturday's bomb is the start of a big finish for the El Pasoan.