Russ Canzler, a graduate from Hazleton Area, learned on Saturday that he was getting called up to the Major Leagues for the Cleveland Indians.
The 26-year-old Canzler spent the entire season playing for Triple-A Columbus batting .265 with 22 home runs, 79 RBI and 36 doubles. Canzler, who can play corner outfield and first and third base, led the Clippers in homers, doubles and RBI and currently leads the I.L. in doubles, while being third in the league in total bases with 237 and RBI. He's also sixth in the league in longballs.
The Indians started off the season as a surprise contended in the American League Central, but have fallen on hard times recently and are currently in fourth place in the division, 17.5 games behind division leader Chicago and just ended a 5-24 month in August.
Cleveland has also started a bit of a rebuilding process and Canzler appears to be a key piece in that system.
It's the second time in as many seasons that Canzler is a September call-up. Last year, he was promoted by the Tamps Bay Rays and picked up his first Major League hit and RBI in three at-bats after being named the International League Most Valuable Player for Durham. He's expected to see more playing time for the Indians.
Montrose grad Rich Thompson also learned on Saturday that he was getting a call-up and will report to Tampa Bay today. Thompson, who started the season in the Philadelphia organization before getting traded to the Rays, batted .311 with two home runs, 19 RBI and 22 stolen bases for the Bulls this season.