FORT WAYNE, Ind. — After a record number of former Fort Wayne players appeared in Major League Baseball during the regular season, a pair continues to shine in the World Series. Max Fried, now with the Atlanta Braves, is set to make his second Fall Classic start on Tuesday night,
FORT WAYNE, Ind. — After a record number of former Fort Wayne players appeared in Major League Baseball during the regular season, a pair continues to shine in the World Series. Max Fried, now with the Atlanta Braves, is set to make his second Fall Classic start on Tuesday night, while Phil Maton of the Houston Astros has proven to be one of the most effective relievers of the postseason.
Fried and Maton were two of 58 former TinCaps/Wizards on display in MLB’s regular season. Out of that group, 10 appeared in these playoffs.
As a 19-year-old prospect, Fried made 24 starts for the TinCaps in 2013, plus a couple more the following year. Most notably, he started the only nine-inning no-hitter in Fort Wayne’s 28-season franchise history. Fried pitched 5 2/3 no-hit innings on May 9, 2013. He was later traded to the Braves in December of 2014. Meanwhile, Maton was a 23-year-old reliever for the ’Caps in 2016, pitching out of the bullpen eight times following a month on the injured list.
Since making his MLB debut with Atlanta in 2017, Fried has established himself as one of the best starting pitchers in the National League. He even won the NL’s Pitcher of the Month Award in September. Maton also made his big league debut in ’17, with the TinCaps’ parent club, the Padres. He was traded to Cleveland last year, and then to Houston at this year’s deadline in July. Going under the radar this postseason, Maton ranks third in games pitched (11) and fifth in leads held (3). His 0.82 ERA is second lowest among pitchers with more than 10 innings worked.
Additionally, 2014 TinCaps manager Michael Collins is a coach for the Astros. Beyond that, many other players in the World Series, like Houston’s All-Star shortstop Carlos Correa, previously competed in the same league as the TinCaps. Correa played at Parkview Field as a visitor with the Quad Cities River Bandits in 2013. Coincidentally, the 5-year-old son of Braves All-Star first baseman Freddie Freeman is currently playing for a little league team in Atlanta named after the TinCaps.
Fried and Maton are vying to join an exclusive list of just five other former Fort Wayne players who’ve won the World Series: Trea Turner (2019 Washington Nationals), Joe Ross (2019 Nationals), Jake Peavy (2014 San Francisco Giants; 2013 Boston Red Sox), David Freese (2011 St. Louis Cardinals), and A.J. Pierzynski (2005 Chicago White Sox).
Since the Fort Wayne Wizards were founded in 1993, a total of 199 players have ascended to the major leagues. (The team rebranded as the TinCaps in 2009.)
See below for a list of players in the World Series who’ve competed in the same league as Fort Wayne, plus umpires.
· DH Yordan Alvarez (Quad Cities, 2017)
· OF Michael Brantley (Lake County, 2016)
· INF Alex Bregman (Quad Cities, 2015)
· INF Carlos Correa (Quad Cities, 2013)
· RHP Yimi García (Great Lakes, 2012)
· RHP Luis Garcia (Quad Cities, 2018-19)
· INF Marwin Gonzalez (Peoria, 2008)
· RHP Kendall Graveman (Lansing, 2013-14)
· RHP Cristian Javier (Quad Cities, 2017-18)
· C Martín Maldonado (Wisconsin, 2009)
· RHP PHIL MATON (Fort Wayne, 2016)
· OF Chas McCormick (Quad Cities, 2017)
· RHP Jake Odorizzi (Wisconsin, 2010)
· OF Jose Siri (Dayton, 2016-17)
· RHP Ryne Stanek (Bowling Green, 2014)
· C Garrett Stubbs (Quad Cities, 2015)
· OF Kyle Tucker (Quad Cities, 2016)
· RHP José Urquidy (Quad Cities, 2016)
· LHP Framber Valdez (Quad Cities, 2016)
Note: Quad Cities was an Astros affiliate from 2013-20… The Midwest League evolved into High-A Central in 2021
· INF Orlando Arcia (Wisconsin, 2013)
· RHP Jesse Chavez (Clinton, 2004)
· LHP MAX FRIED (Fort Wayne, 2013-14)
· OF Joc Pederson (Great Lakes, 2011)
· OF Eddie Rosario (Beloit, 2012)
· OF Jorge Soler (Peoria, 2012)
· RHP Will Smith (Cedar Rapids, 2009)
Note: The Braves have never had an affiliate in a league along with Fort Wayne
· Dan Bellino
· Pat Hoberg (replay)
· Ron Kulpa
· Alfonso Marquez
· Mike Muchlinski