Fernandez, Capuano earn final MLB Draft League weekly honors

Adan Fernandez and Christian Capuano named Draft League Hitter and Pitcher of the Week, respectively

NEW YORK -- The MLB Draft League announced that West Virginia’s Adan Fernandez and Trenton’s Christian Capuano were named Hitter and Pitcher of the Week, respectively, for the period of Aug. 29 to Sept. 4.

Fernandez, 23, earns his second straight Hitter of the Week nod after batting .364 (8-for-22) with two home runs, three doubles and five RBI in six games for the Black Bears. He paced all MLB Draft League-qualified hitters during the period in home runs, extra-base hits (5) and total bases (17) and finished inside the top five in both slugging (.773; 3rd) and OPS (1.235; 4th).

Fernandez had a pair of multi-hit games while hitting safely in five of six contests for West Virginia. After beginning the week with a 2-for-4, two-double performance against Frederick, he recorded his second multi-homer game in as many weeks on the penultimate day of the regular season, going 3-for-5 with three RBI against Mahoning Valley on Sept. 3.

Fernandez batted .400/.509/1.000 with seven home runs, six doubles and 16 RBI over his final 12 regular-season games to finish with a .357/.464/.670 line in 33 games. He led all hitters in slugging, OPS (1.134), extra-base hits (20) and total bases (77) during the second half of the season, totaling 32 runs and 27 RBI over 140 plate appearances. The Miramar, Fla., native played three seasons at Nova Southeastern University before joining West Virginia in the MLB Draft League. As a Sharks senior this past spring, he batted .307/.411/.570 in 49 games, setting career highs in home runs (12), doubles (13) and RBI (45).

Capuano, 25, recorded 10 strikeouts over six scoreless innings, both season-high totals, as he led the Thunder past State College, 9-0, on Sept. 2 in his final regular-season start. He scattered five hits and did not issue a walk, throwing 60 strikes on 86 pitches. Capuano retired seven consecutive Spikes hitters twice in the outing, with only a pair of one-out singles in the third inning separating the respective streaks.

Capuano (1-1) pitched to a 5.25 ERA and 1.25 WHIP in nine outings (seven starts) for Trenton during the professional portion (second half) of the 2022 MLB Draft League season. He compiled 45 strikeouts against nine walks in 36 innings while limiting opposing hitters to a .252 average. Including Capuano’s four first-half appearances (two starts) with the Thunder, the right-hander was 2-1 with a 4.78 ERA and 54 strikeouts in 43.1 innings.    

A native of Vernon, N.J., Capuano went 6-4 with a 2.33 ERA in 17 games (15 starts) as a Farleigh Dickinson-Florham University graduate student this past spring. He established a new single-season program strikeout record (101) and issued just 10 walks in 85 innings, earning MAC Freedom First Team, ABCA/Rawlings All-Region IV Second Team and D3Baseball.com All-Region IV Third Team honors.

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