Gerald Robert Sands
Sands was drafted by the Dodgers in the 25th round of the 2008 amateur draft after setting school records for homers (61), walks (132), and slugging (.752). He was signed by scout Lon Joyce for $5,000 and made his pro debut that summer.
Sands started the 2011 season red-hot with the Albuquerque Isotopes of the Pacific Coast League. In his first 10 game, he was hitting .400 with 17 RBI, earning a call-up to the big club. The Dodgers were struggling at the plate in the early season, with 1B James Loney hitting a measly .150 and the three-man combination of Tony Gwynn Jr., Xavier Paul and Marcus Thames hitting .250 with no power in left field. Sands was inserted immediately into the starting line-up in left field in a game against the Atlanta Braves on April 18 and made his presence felt from the get-go. He doubled of Tim Hudson in his first major league at-bat, then hit a sacrifice fly later in the game as the Dodgers won, 4-2. He played 61 games for the Dodgers, hitting .253/.338/.389. He had 15 doubles and 4 homers, scored 20 runs and drove in 26 while mainly splitting his time between left field and right field. Not wanting to leave him on the bench, the Dodgers sent him back to Albuquerque when their starters were healthy, and he played a total of 94 games there, hitting .278 with 29 homers and 88 RBI. He was back in AAA to start 2012 and played 110 games with a .302 batting average and 103 RBI. He was in Los Angeles for two short stints, playing 9 major league games with a .174 average. On August 25th, he was one of the key prospects involved in a blockbuster trade with the Boston Red Sox that saw four established major leaguers with commensurate salaries - 1B Adrian Gonzalez, P Josh Beckett, OF Carl Crawford and IF Nick Punto head to Los Angeles. The Sox got 1B James Loney in the dela, but the key was youngsters Sands, IF Ivan DeJesus and Ps Rubby De La Rosa and Allen Webster. However, he never played a game in the Red Sox organization, as he was injured at the time of the trade and his name was only officially announced after the season ended, on October 4th. Then, on December 26th, he was involved in another big trade, this time joining the Pittsburgh Pirates. Joining him was DeJesus, once again, as well as Ps Mark Melancon and Stolmy Pimentel, while P Joel Hanrahan and IF Brock Holt headed to Boston.
Sands never played a major league game for the Pirates. He spent 2013 with the AAA Indianapolis Indians where he hit .207 with 7 homers and 34 RBIs in 106 games. The Pirates placed him on waivers after the season and he was claimed by the Tampa Bay Rays on December 23rd. It was back to the minors for Jerry in 2014, with 54 games for the Durham Bulls, where he hit .268/.352/.474. He managed to play in the majors also, but hit only .190 in 12 games for the Rays. He lost time to injury that year, as he had done in 2013. After the season, he joined yet another organization, this time the Cleveland Indians, as a free agent. 2015 saw him spend more time in the majors than at any point since his rookie year in 2011, as he got into 50 games. He hit .236 with 4 homers and 19 RBIs while playing the outfield and first base. he had more success in AAA, with a batting line of .287/.409/.538 in 66 games for the Columbus Clippers. He was placed on waivers again after the season, and this time the Chicago White Sox claimed him on December 23rd.