SALT LAKE CITY — With Angels' super prospect Mike Trout's promotion to the big leagues, the Bees will need to look for offensive production in new places. Los Angeles' No. 20 overall prospect and Trout's replacement in centerfield, Kole Calhoun, is among those looking to pick up the slack.
After a good rookie season with Orem in 2010, Calhoun skipped a level moving straight to High-A Inland Empire. With the 66ers, Calhoun hit for average, at .324, and power, leading the team with 22 home runs and 99 RBI. Following a good spring camp, Calhoun skipped another step moving straight past Double-A to Salt Lake, an accomplishment that wasn't lost on him.
"I was really expecting to go to Double-A. Not many people skip Double-A," said Calhoun. "… I'm just taking it and running with it."
Calhoun carried the production he had at Inland Empire to Salt Lake.
Despite going 0-3 with a walk in the Bee's 9-5 loss to the Reno Aces Sunday night, the Arizona State product is hitting a solid .315 with seven doubles, two triples and six stolen bases this season. Calhoun is still a work in progress, but credits playing winter ball in Venezuela to help ease the transition from High-A to Triple-A.
"I played there for two months and definitely learned a lot there," Calhoun said. "Learned that guys will throw whatever they want whenever they want.. It's been an adjustment that I was trying to make then and still trying to make now."
The Bees will play their next eight away from home with a four-game series at Fresno followed by four more at Las Vegas.
BEELINES: Attendance was 10,158 and was boosted by a large number of visitors from the DECA International Career Development Conference … The four game sweep by Reno was Salt Lake's first series loss of the season … Jorge Cantu and Ed Lucas both went deep for Salt Lake, only the third and fourth home runs for Salt Lake at home compared to 12 on the road … Manager Keith Johnson was ejected for the second time in four games after both benches emptied during an argument in the top of the sixth inning.