The Indians called up Cord Phelps Wednesday morning, which in itself isn't earth-shattering news, except for him and his family.
Phelps was being used at multiple positions at Triple-A Columbus, moving around so that the Indians could focus on top infield prospects Jason Kipnis and Lonnie Chisenhall. Phelps wasn't one of the Indians' very top prospects himself, not even landing in the top 10 on Baseball America's winter list. He was hitting .299 at Columbus, with an impressive 40 RBI, and he's in the big leagues because second baseman Orlando Cabrera and third baseman Jack Hannahan have been struggling of late.
He's in the Indians' lineup in Cabrera's place for Wednesday's afternoon game against the Twins, and reports out of Cleveland say he'll likely play second base with some regularity against right-handed pitchers.
He's also the first Indians player from the 2008 draft to make it to the big leagues, and that's what caught my attention, because that '08 draft is starting to shape up as one of baseball's best.
Think of the players from the '08 draft who are already established in the big leagues: Buster Posey, Craig Kimbrel, Gordon Beckham, Eric Hosmer, Brian Matusz, Ike Davis, Alex Avila, Daniel Hudson, Danny Espinosa, Justin Smoak, Brett Wallace, Andrew Cashner, Pedro Alvarez, Aaron Crow -- and there are more, including Brandon Crawford, the shortstop just called up by the Giants, Jemile Weeks, the second baseman just called up by the A's, and Brett Lawrie, the third baseman expected to be called up by the Blue Jays any day now.
The 2008 draft included Smoak, who was traded for Cliff Lee; Lawrie, who was traded for Shaun Marcum; and Jake Odorizzi, who was traded for Zack Greinke.
It also included Gerrit Cole, who didn't sign with the Yankees, and went on to become the top pick in this week's draft.
Not bad for one draft. It doesn't yet match the 2005 draft, when the first round included Troy Tulowitzki, Justin Upton, Ryan Zimmerman, Ryan Braun, Andrew McCutchen and Jay Bruce. But give it time.
Phelps is also the third player from Stanford's 2008 team to reach the big leagues, joining Drew Storen and Jason Castro.