One of the top hitters in York Revolution history is returning to the team for a third season.
Outfielder Melky Mesa, a 2019 Atlantic League Postseason All-Star selection, has been re-signed for the 2020 campaign.
The Revs' agreement with Mesa was announced Monday night by York manager Mark Mason on the season premiere of Revs Hot Stove Weekly presented by Shipley Energy on SportsRadio 98.9 FM and 1350 AM WOYK.
Mason also announced the signings of left-handed pitcher Brandon Fry and right-handed pitcher Jake Welch. They were the first 2020 signings announced by the Revs.
Mesa has had two strong seasons in York: Mesa finished the 2019 season fifth in the league in batting average (.298) and fourth in slugging percentage (.500), becoming just the second player in franchise history to own a pair of 20-homer seasons. Mesa finished in the league's top 10 in total hits (137), extra-base hits (49) and RBIs (70).
Mesa was named the Revs’ Player of the Year in 2018 after batting .337, while smashing 20 home runs and collecting 89 RBIs. His slugging percentage of .557 was the second-highest in single-season franchise history. Mesa was picked for the Atlantic League All-Star Game in each of his first two years with the team.
“We’re just so happy to have him back,” Mason said in a news release from the Revs. “He had a rough year last year, getting beaned a couple of times and had to miss some games, and I know he was frustrated. He pushed through that in the playoffs for us and did everything he could.
"Melky can do it all. He’s definitely a five-tool guy and an absolutely great clubhouse guy. He’s a great teammate and plays the game the right way, so we’re really excited to have him back.”
Mesa, 33, is entering his 15th season in pro ball. He gained major league experience in three games for the New York Yankees in 2012 and five more in 2013, combining to go 6 for 15 with a pair of doubles. Over his minor-league career, Mesa totaled 159 home runs, 599 RBIs and 133 stolen bases.
Brandon Fry: Fry enters his eighth season of pro ball and his fifth in the Atlantic League.
The Revs acquired the rights to the former New Britain Bee reliever by selecting him in the second round of the 2019 Player Dispersal Draft.
An 18th-round pick by the San Diego Padres in 2013, Fry made his debut for Single-A Eugene that same year. The 26-year-old lefty played four seasons for the Bees after leaving the Padres system in 2016. Last season, Fry went 1-1 with a 3.34 ERA, striking out 33 batters in 35 innings.
“Brandon was one of the more effective pitchers that came in out of their bullpen,” Mason said in the news released. “He seemed to always do well against us. I love the curveball, the fastball as well. He uses both pitches very well."
Jake Welch: Welch returns to the Revs after coming aboard in September of last season.
The 26-year-old right-hander was acquired from the Evansville Otters of the Frontier League. Across two seasons in the Frontier League, Welch was 15-11 with a 3.35 ERA. In 28 starts, the Spencerport, New York, native threw 234.1 total innings and struck out 205. Welch started three games on the mound for York in 2019 and struck out 20 in 17 innings with a 6.88 ERA.
“He showed a lot of promise,” Mason said in the news release. “Last year, that was the most innings he’s pitched in his career in one season. For younger guys, there’s an adjustment you have to make with that. I think that with having Jake here from the beginning of the year with a fresh arm, and getting him to fall into a different type of a routine that will be built more for longevity, I look forward to seeing the results that he’ll show with us.”
The Revs will unveil more signings each week on Revs Hot Stove Weekly. The next airing will be at 6 p.m. Monday, Feb. 17. York opens its 2020 season April 30 at Sugar Land.
Reach Steve Heiser at firstname.lastname@example.org. The York Revolution supplied information for this story.