During the summer of 2006, while filming Touching the Game, Alaska, we were able to spend a day fishing outside of Fairbanks with a couple players from the Goldpanners, infielder Beau Mills and pitcher Chris Schwinden. Both players came from the the same home town of Visalia, CA. While Beau Mills, son of Houston Astros manager Brad Mills, was a highly touted prospect at Lewis-Clark State College, Schwinden was just starting to get on the radar at Fresno Pacific. In the 2007 MLB draft, Mills was the 1st round pick (13th overall) of the Cleveland Indians. His ’07 an’08 seasons in the minors were stellar as he was on the fast track to the Indians, but his batting average dropped in ’09. In 2010 while playing for the (AA) Akron Aeros, Mills continued to slump at the plate. He also had some off-field issues, as well as nagging injuries. Mills’ attempt to get off to a fresh start in 2011 was slowed by tendinitis in his Achilles heel, and he spent the first six weeks of the season in extended spring training in Arizona. This past week, Mills returned to the Akron Aeros on a mission to show the Indians that he is still a top prospect.
Chris Schwinden, who was drafted in 22nd round of the 2007 MLB draft, by the New York Mets, has been nothing but sensational in the minor leagues. This season, Schwinden started in AA pitching for the Binghamton Mets, but has already progressed to the AAA Buffalo Bisons. So far in Buffalo, Schwinden is 3-1 with a 1.82 ERA, and many are saying he could get a call-up to the Mets before years end.
You can see both Schwinden and Mills on the fishing trip, and playing for the Alaska Goldpanners in Touching the Game, Alaska, Order it on DVD today!