Dustin Fowler

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Dustin Ryan Fowler

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Biographical Information[edit]

Outfielder Dustin Fowler was an 18th round choice by the New York Yankees in the 2013 amateur draft. He was injured in the first inning of his first major league game in 2017.

After being draft by the Yankees out of high school, Fowler began his professional career with the GCL Yankees 1 in 2013, hitting .241 in 30 games. In 2014, he played 66 games for the Charleston RiverDogs of the South Atlantic League, hitting .257/.292/.459, slugging 9 homers and driving in 41 runs. He then had a break-out season in 205, split between Charleston and the Tampa Yankees of the Florida State League. In 123 games, he hit .298/.334/.394 with 5 homers and 70 RBIs, while also stealing 30 bases and scoring 64 runs. After playing all three outfield spots his first two season, he was a regular in centerfield that year.

In 2016, he continued his progression with a solid for the Trenton Thunder of the AA Eastern League, hitting .281/.311/.458 in 132 games, with 30 doubles, 15 triples and 12 homers. He drove in 88 runs and stole 25 bases. In 2017, he moved up to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders of the International League and adjusted well to AAA ball, hitting .293 and slugging .452 in 70 games, with 19 doubles, 8 triples and 13 homers. He was called up to the Big Apple on June 29th, when Tyler Austin was injured. He started in right field against the Chicago White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field. He did not bat in the top of the 1st - the inning ended with him in the on-deck circle - then in the bottom of the frame, he raced to the foul line to attempt a catch of a ball hit by Jose Abreu and crashed against a small fence, suffering a gruesome injury as he ruptured a tendon in his knee. He had to be carted off the field to undergo surgery immediately. His season was over, and his abbreviated career - to that point - drawing comparisons to that of Moonlight Graham. The injury was apparently caused by an exposed electrical box which was sticking out of the padding in the fence. While he was recovering from the injury, on July 31st, he was one of three prospects sent by the Yankees to the Oakland Athletics in return for P Sonny Gray. Ironically, one of the other prospects involved, P James Kaprielian was also out for the year with an injury at the time of the trade.

On December 16th, it was reported that Fowler had filed a suit against the White Sox and the company in charge of managing the installations at the ballpark, claiming that his injury was due to negligence on their part as the exposed box created a "hidden and undetecteable hazard". He claimed that he had suffered “severe and permanent” internal and external injuries as a result. he started the 2018 season n the minors, but on May 9th was called up to Oakland and he got his delayed initial major league at-bat that day, lining out as a pinch-hitter against the Houston Astros. In 30 games for the AAA Nashville Sounds, he was hitting .310 with 18 runs and 16 RBIs. On May 11th, he obtained his first major league hit; it came against his former team, the Yankees, and the man he was traded for, Sonny Gray. His first major league homer was a solo shot off Marco Estrada of the Toronto Blue Jays on May 18th.

Further Reading[edit]

  • Ted Berg: "After gruesome injury in MLB debut, A's outfielder has no plans to be another Moonlight Graham", "For the Win!", USA Today Sports, March 19, 2018. [1]
  • Pete Caldera: "Dustin Fowler suffers season-ending leg injury in Yankees defeat", USA Today Sports, June 30, 2017. [2]
  • Scott Gleason: "Dustin Fowler's Yankees debut conjures Moonlight Graham comparison", USA Today Sports, June 30, 2017. [3]
  • Jane Lee: "Fowler recovering well, excited to start with A's: Outfielder acquired last July says he'll be ready for Cactus League play", mlb.com, January 26, 2018. [4]
  • Jane Lee: "Now with A's, Fowler makes long-awaited return: Outfielder pinch-hits, expected to start Friday vs. Yankees; Cahill to DL", mlb.com, May 9, 2018. [5]

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