Gioskar Amaya is just 19 years old, but hes already been named an all-star in the Dominican Summer League and the Arizona Summer League.
The Boise Hawks second baseman is well on his way to adding Northwest League all-star to his list of honors.
Amaya has been a sensation for the Hawks this summer. He leads the team and the league in several offensive categories. Hes shown speed on the bases (leads team in steals with eight) and power at the plate (tied for team lead with five home runs).
Hes been very consistent, hitting coach Bill Buckner said. Hes a leadoff hitter and second baseman whos leading the league in slugging percentage.
Said Amaya: Ive been working hard since spring training in preparation for this season. I feel good right now, and Im hitting good.
Amaya wasnt known for his power when he came to the Hawks. The 5-foot-11, 175-pounder had hit one home run in 121 games in the Dominican Republic and Arizona.
But, with Buckners help, Amaya has transformed himself at the plate. He said he used to struggle with inside pitches, but now he doesnt mind seeing a pitcher come inside.
Its good now, he said. Ive done a lot of work with (Buckner) on pitches inside, and now I can swing at inside pitches with some power.
He was hitting a few too many balls to right field, Buckner said. So we said, Hey, if the balls inside, youve got to pull it. Then he hit the ball out of the park a couple of times and kind of liked that.
The way Amaya has been playing this season, there isnt much not to like about his game.