A total of 117 former Kane County Cougars have now reached the game’s biggest stage.
Pitcher Pedro Figueroa, a member of the ’09 Cougars squad, made his Major League debut in last night’s game between the Oakland Athletics and Cleveland Indians, pitching one inning of scoreless relief. Figueroa becomes the 117th former Cougar to reach the Major Leagues, and the first former Cougar to make his MLB debut this season.
Figueroa, a 26-year old from the Dominican Republic, was on the Cougars’ Opening Day roster in 2009 and went 10-2 with a 3.23 ERA in 16 starts before earning a promotion to Class-A Advanced Stockton on July 10. Figueroa was named A’s Organizational Pitcher of the Year later that season after concluding the ’09 campaign with a 13-6 record and 3.38 ERA between Kane County and Stockton.
The Cougars organization, which began in 1991 and is presently affiliated with the Kansas City Royals, has had at least one former player make a Major League debut in each season, dating back to 1993. The list includes Major League All-Stars, World Series champions and former Rookie of the Year, Gold Glove and Silver Slugger award winners.