ONE STEP CLOSER: Ryan Krill
ONE STEP CLOSER: Ryan Krill
New York Yankees / Staten Island Yankees (Class A – Short)
Mequon, WI – Chinooks fans know Ryan Krill better than they know most other players who have spent time at Lakeshore. And those fans know that Krill is a big guy with an even bigger heart. The physically gifted first baseman from Michigan State never put up gaudy numbers as a ‘Nook, but he made clutch plays and was a leader in the clubhouse. The reputation as a powerful muscle man, though, led to a change in Krill’s approach as he returned to East Lansing for the 2015 season. By spending less time bulking up and spending more time focusing on balance and flexibility, Krill turned in his best season for the Spartans by leading conference hitters in Big Ten play in batting average (.451), slugging (.857), on-base (.545), RBI (36), and home runs (10). Those numbers looked good to the New York Yankees with their short right-field porch, as New York selected Krill in the 9th round (273rd overall selection) in the 2015 MLB Draft. Selected as senior, Krill’s stock improved from his previous 40th round selection by the Detroit Tigers after his senior year of high school in 2011.
Immediately after signing his contract, Krill was sent to Staten Island, NY to play the Class A short season for the Staten Island Yankees in the New York-Penn League. Playing as the everyday first baseman, Krill hit .247 with 25 RBI and one home run with a .619 OPS. As expected, Krill was upbeat and positive about his experience with high hopes for moving up in the organization as he made this comments:
1. The next step for me now that I have graduated, is to report to my first spring training and trying to make my way up to the Major Leagues. I will report for spring training and be down there for about a month and a half until the full season teams rosters are posted. I will hopefully be starting in single A this year in Charleston South Carolina. In order to get there and continue making my way up to the major leagues, I must continue to work hard and harder than everyone else in the organization to continue to get promoted. I need to have a good spring training and prove I have improved offensively and defensively so I can show the organization I can play at the highest level.
2. The best personal minor league moment for me was clinching the division and winning our first playoff series to move on to the New York Penn League championship.
3. The most fun promotion/prank I’ve seen was at the Lowell Spinners where their video board would show spoofs of videos that mocked the names of players from the opposing team. For example we had a kid named Kevin Cornelius and they played a clip from Rudolph about the prospector named Cornelius. We also had a kid named Thairo and they played a clip of a thigh master commercial. That was one of the more fun pranks I’ve seen.
4. The most difficult part of the minors is the elevated competition. The schedule isn't very grueling due to the fact I was used to it playing for the Chinooks, but the competition is just much better than college. Instead of seeing 91 all the time you are now seeing 94 consistently with everyone having better off speed as well. The competition is what I would say is the hardest part.
Krill, the first three-year player to play for the Chinooks, will be honored as the team’s first player to have his own bobblehead. The first 1,000 fans attending the July 10th game against the Green Bay Bullfrogs at 5:05 pm will receive this one-of-a-kind bobble. For tickets and information, call 262-618-4659.
Learn more about Krill’s minor league journey by following him at:
The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. The 22-year old summer collegiate league is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 18 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, more than 140 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Lucas Duda (NYM) and Ben Zobrist (KC). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League website. For more information, visit www.northwoodsleague.com.