SoxProspects News

July 30, 2007 at 9:21 AM

Scales perseveres for big league dream


For the past nine years, Bobby Scales has rode buses from place to place playing professional baseball. From the Pioneer league, to the International League, through three different organizations, Scales has yet to get a taste of the major leagues despite demonstrating solid success in the upper minors. But by the end of 2007, that may change.

Scales’ journey to his big league goal started at the University of Michigan - just a short drive from his hometown of Southfield, Michigan. “The reason I went to Michigan was for the academics,” said Scales, “I didn’t receive a baseball scholarship but I ended up walking onto the team.” Regardless of being a walk-on, Scales not only graduated from Michigan with a degree in Sports Management, but as the Wolverines’ Team MVP and an All Big-Ten Selection.

He was eventually drafted in the 14th round of the 2001 draft by the San Diego Padres. Over the next six seasons, Scales would make stops in Idaho Falls, Fort Wayne, Lake Elsinore, and Mobile, where he was mostly a part time player. In 2005, Scales played in 120 games for AAA Portland (OR), hitting .274 with 14 home runs. After the 2005 season, Scales signed with the Philadelphia Phillies organization on a minor league contract and played the 2006 season with the AAA Scranton Wilkes-Barre Red Barons, hitting a respectable .291 with a .820 OPS.

However, Scales again found himself a minor league free agent after the 2006 season despite two successful stints at the AAA level. In November of 2006, the Red Sox inked Scales to a minor league contract with an invite to big league Spring Training. According to Scales, “One of the reasons I signed with the Red Sox is that if a player is doing a good job in Triple A, whether he is a prospect or not, then those players have gotten an opportunity in the big leagues the past couple years.”

Coming into the 2007 season, Scales was a long shot to win a job with the big club: “My standpoint was to go to big league camp to show them what I could do,” said Scales. He eventually was assigned to Triple-A Pawtucket to start the 2007 campaign. However, even in Pawtucket, he was unsure what his role would be: “They said I would have an opportunity to play - but I didn’t know if it would be as a consistent starter.”

When the season started, Scales was a super utility man for Ron Johnson’s PawSox. He got a few starts a week but it was not until he started hitting bullets that Johnson decided to start playing him every day. “The lineup starts with Bobby Scales now,” asserts Johnson. Scales has done nothing but hit for the PawSox, putting up a .304 average with 6 home runs and 40 RBI in 313 at-bats.

Scales has also enjoyed his time playing baseball in New England: “The fervor for the Red Sox is awesome. Growing up in Atlanta being in SEC country, it’s a little different down there than up here, but it’s an awesome environment to play in. The people at McCoy have been great.”

Coaches and teammates have nothing but good things to say about Scales. “He plays multiple positions. He works hard and gives 100% effort, and he is a great teammate”, said center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury, “he is a guy you want on your team.” “He’s a manager’s dream,” said Johnson, “Anytime you can get a multi-position guy that switch hits it's huge. He is always upbeat and has a great mentality. He’s a very impressive young man. He really has put himself in consideration for the majors.”

Many players would have given up their major league dream after five or six years in the minors, but Bobby Scales is still going strong after nine minor league seasons for one reason: “I know that I can play in the big leagues,” said Scales, “I know for a fact. San Diego gave me an opportunity to play pro ball and I’m grateful to them. But I didn’t quite get the opportunity I wanted over there but that’s life. I feel in my heart that I can go to the big leagues and help a team win games in some capacity whether it’s stealing a base or playing defense. “

What Scales has earned is a shot in the big leagues. After nine years, he has done everything he has been asked in hopes of fulfilling his major league dream. Come September 1st, we at SoxProspects.com are hoping there’s a spot for Scales on the Red Sox big league roster – not only because he’s earned the right, but because he can and will help the big league club down the stretch.

 
Copyright © 2003-2017 SoxProspects, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Email: info@soxprospects.com