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Johnny Monell

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Johnny Monell

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[edit] Biographical Information

The son of minor leaguer Johnny Monell Sr., catcher Johnny Monell made his major league debut with the San Francisco Giants in 2013.

Monell was selected by the Giants out of high school in the 27th round of the 2005 amateur draft (a round before they picked Sergio Romo) but did not sign, opting to attend college instead. He was then taken by the New York Mets in 49th round of the 2006 amateur draft but again did not sign. After being chosen by the Giants in the 30th round of the 2007 amateur draft (the scout was Glenn Tufts), he began his pro career, playing for the AZL Giants that year. He hit .240/.376/.427. In 2008, he played for the AZL Giants (.405/.479/.643, 13 R, 10 RBI in 11 G) and the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes (.267/.330/.466 in 43 G). He threw out 46% of attempted base-stealers but had 13 passed balls in 40 games.

Monell batted .273/.355/.427 for the 2009 Augusta Greenjackets, had 18 passed balls and gunned down 42% of would-be base thieves. He led the South Atlantic League's backstops in caught stealing percentage. He split 2010 between the San Jose Bees (.273/.350/.487, 19 HR, 70 RBI, 16 PB) and Fresno Grizzlies (3 for 15, 2B, 3B, 2 BB). He was third in the Giants chain in dingers, behind Brandon Belt and Chris Dominguez. He led California League backstops in fielding percentage (.994). His production fell with the 2011 Richmond Flying Squirrels, hitting .249/.334/.394 with 10 home runs. He only threw out 17% of attempted base-stealers and had an Eastern League-worst 20 passed balls. He did go 11 for 23 in the postseason.

In the 2011-2012 Puerto Rican League, Monell hit .295/.377/.508 for the Criollos de Caguas; only Jorge Padilla had a better OPS for the league champs' regulars. He was 0 for 5 with a walk and a run for the Indios de Mayagüez in the 2012 Caribbean Series. He had a crucial error in a loss to the Yaquis de Obregón but scored the winning run in the bottom of the 9th in the rematch with the Yaquis, drawing a Luis Ayala walk and coming home on a hit by Luis Figueroa.

Monell was back with Richmond for 2012 and fared better (.257/.345/.449, 27 2B, 15 PB, Opp. 34 SB%, .995 fielding percentage at catcher). He led the team in slugging and tied for third in the Giants farm system in doubles, behind Gary Brown and Ricky Oropesa. In winter ball, he hit .276/.382/.552 for Caguas, leading the Puerto Rican League in slugging and OPS and tying Carlos Rivera for the home run lead (7). In the 2013 Caribbean Series, he was 7 for 20 with a double, home run and two walks for Caguas. The homer was a two-run jack that provided all the offense in a 6-2 loss to the Leones del Escogido, but he also had a couple passed balls that day. He had better offensive numbers overall than tournament All-Star catcher Francisco Peña.

Monell spent the 2013 season with the Fresno Grizzlies of the Pacific Coast League. In 121 games, he hit .275/.364/.494 with 27 doubles, 20 homers and 64 RBIs. He tied Brad Nelson for 4th in the 2013 PCL in home runs. He failed to make the league All-Star team as Stephen Vogt was picked at catcher. He was called up to San Francisco when rosters expanded in September and made his major league debut on September 5th as a pinch-hitter, flying out for P Sandy Rosario in the 9th nning of a 4-2 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks.

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