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Joey Gallo

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Joseph Gallo

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[edit] Biographical Information

Third baseman Joey Gallo was a 2012 first-rounder.

Gallo hit .275/.403/.412 with 10 runs and 10 RBI as junior Team USA's first baseman in the summer of 2011. He fielded .992 and led the team with 15 whiffs in 51 at-bats but also tied for the lead with 10 walks. The US won the junior Pan American Games. As a high school senior the next year, he batted .509 with 21 home runs, 66 runs and 80 RBI. He set a Nevada single-season RBI record and also set the Nevada high school career home run mark (65).

He was selected by the Texas Rangers in the supplemental first round of the 2012 amateur draft with the 39th overall pick. The pick was compensation for the loss of C.J. Wilson. It was the second of three first-round selections for Texas, after Lewis Brinson and before Collin Wiles. He soon signed and made his pro debut with the AZL Rangers on June 20th. Not missing a beat in turning pro, he was hitting .292/.485/.771 with 6 home runs, 18 walks, 20 runs and 14 RBI after 15 games. One big problem was his defense, with 8 errors and a .784 fielding percentage at the hot corner.

In 2013, he led all minor leaguers in home runs with 40, earning the Joe Bauman Award. He played most of the season with Hickory Crawdads of the Carolina League, where he hit .245/.334/.610 with 19 doubles and 38 homers in 106 games. He added a couple more homers in a five-game rehabilitation assignment with the AZL Rangers, finishing with a grand total of 40, and also drove in a total of 88 runs while scoring 86.

He was again leading the minor leagues in home runs, with 31, when he was selected to play in the 2014 Futures Game at Target Field on July 13th. Starting at DH for the U.S. team, he struck out twice, as is his wont, but also connected for a two-run homer off Michael Feliz in the 6th inning that put the U.S. ahead, 3-2, which would turn out to be the game's final score. He was named winner of the Larry Doby Award as the game's Most Valuable Player in recognition of his performance.

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