Friday morning, the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs signed a trio of players. Pitchers Junior Navas and Dario Polanco, and infielder Jared Walker will be coming to the Crabs for the first time.
Junior Navas, a right-handed pitcher, was the Blue Crabs’ first pick in the 2022 ALPB Showcase Draft powered by Prospect Dugout. The Venezuelan started off in the Dominican Summer League with the Minnesota Twins in 2017, at just 17 years old. That season, Navas held a 4-0 record with a perfect 0.00 ERA in 18 innings pitched. The relief pitcher moved up to the rookie ball in the Gulf Coast League for 2018 and 2019, adding 34.1 more innings of experience before taking two years off. At six-foot-four, Navas looks to be a big arm out of the bullpen for Manager Stan Cliburn. Dario Polanco, a southpaw, was also drafted in the ALPB Showcase, and also arrives in Southern Maryland’s bullpen after playing two independent seasons with four different teams. The Miramar, Florida native took four years off from baseball after graduating from Alderson-Broaddus University.
Jared Walker is coming to the Blue Crabs and the Atlantic League for the first time. The former fifth-round draft pick of the Los Angeles Dodgers spent six years with the organization that drafted him, peaking at the High-A level. In 2021, Walker spent a majority of his time with the Hickory Crawdads, the Texas Rangers High-A affiliate. Walker spent the end of 2021 with the Sioux City Explorers of the American Association where he held a .437 on-base percentage. The Powder Springs, Georgia product was a teammate of Blue Crabs pitcher, Dalton Geekie, at McEachern High School.
‘’We are excited to add these three new faces to the roster. Junior, Dario, and Jared will provide useful talent to compliment the players who got us to the Atlantic League playoffs last season,’’ said Southern Maryland General Manager Courtney Knichel.