Rochester, Minn. – Former La Crosse Logger Kevin Kramer, made his Major League debut for the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday, September 5, 2018. Kramer is the 206th former Northwoods League player to reach the Major League level.
Kramer, who played collegiately at UCLA, played for the La Crosse Loggers in 2012. He was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 2nd round of the 2015 MLB draft.
In 36 games with the Loggers during the 2012 regular season, Kramer hit .308 with five home runs, four doubles and 17 RBI. He also stole five bases and walked 18 times. In the Northwoods League playoffs he hit .529 over five games and had two doubles and four RBI as the Loggers won the Northwoods League Championship.
Kramer began his minor league career in 2015 with the West Virginia Black Bears of the Short-Season A New York-Penn League. After 46 games in West Virginia he moved up to the West Virginia Power of the Lo-A South Atlantic League. Between the two clubs he hit a combined .291 with four triples, nine doubles and 20 RBI. He also stole 12 bases and walked 30 times.
Kramer spent the 2016 season with the Bradenton Marauders of the Hi-A Florida State League. He played in 118 games and hit four home runs, 29 doubles and drove in 57 runs while scoring 56 times.
For the 2017 season, Kramer spent time with three different teams. He began the year with the Altoona Curve of the AA Eastern League. He then also had stints with the Pirates Rookie level team in the Gulf Coast League as well as three games with the West Virginia Black Bears. For the season he hit .290 with six home runs, three triples and 17 doubles. He also stole eight bases and walked 17 times.
Prior to being called up by the Mets, Kramer had played in 129 games with the Indianapolis Indians of the AAA International League. He was hitting .311 with 15 home runs, 35 doubles and three triples. He had driven in 59 runs and stolen 13 bases.
In his Major League debut against the Cincinnati Reds, Kramer entered the game in the seventh inning as a pinch-hitter for former Willmar Stinger Steven Brault. He would fly out to center field in his only plate appearance of the game before being replaced the next inning.
The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. The 25-year old summer collegiate league is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 22 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, over 200 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champions Ben Zobrist (CHC) and Brandon Crawford (SFG) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET) and Curtis Granderson (MIL). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. For more information, visit www.northwoodsleague.com or download the Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play.