There are plenty of steps necessary for a minor league baseball player to reach the majors. After signing that initial professional contract comes the first assignment, that's where two local pitchers currently reside on their road to the show.
Cartersville High graduate Elliott Anderson officially signed with the Kansas City Royals Friday. One day later, the Auburn product made his pro debut with the Burlington Royals, tossing a perfect inning.
As for Cartersville resident Luke Schiltz, coming out of Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland, Florida, he inked with the Texas Rangers on June 12. This past week, the former Cane joined the Rangers affiliate in the Arizona League, although Schiltz has yet to make his first appearance.
Elliott Anderson (Burlington Royals, Kansas City Royals organization; Cartersville) — Anderson made his professional debut Saturday in the eighth inning of a 6-3 loss at the Bluefield Blue Jays. Anderson recorded one strikeout, one groundout and one flyout. Burlington (5-6) is 1 1/2 games behind the Pulaski Yankees in the Appalachian League’s East Division. The 10-team league plays a 68-game schedule from mid-June through late August with the top two teams in each division qualifying for the playoffs.
Sam Howard (Albuquerque Isotopes, Colorado Rockies organization; Cartersville) — Howard made three, one-inning appearances last week with a pair of shutout performances last Monday at Reno and Thursday at home against Tacoma. He struck out two of the three batters he faced in the ninth inning at Reno and fanned one of three Thursday. He was saddled with a pitching loss Friday night at home against Tacoma after allowing a pair of 10th-inning runs (one earned) on two hits. It should be noted, the PCL places a runner at second base to begin extra innings. For the season, Howard is 1-1 with a 4.46 ERA in 30 relief appearances. He has 49 strikeouts in just over 38 innings pitched. Albuquerque (34-48) is fourth in the PCL’s Pacific Southern Division. The Isotopes are 16 1/2 games behind El Paso.
Connor Justus (Mobile BayBears, L.A. Angels organization; Cartersville) — Justus was 2-for-22 at the plate in seven games this past week. Both hits were doubles. He walked three times, scored three runs and had one RBI during the stretch of games that included a home contest against Jacksonville before a five-game set at Birmingham. Sunday’s game kicked off a series at Biloxi. For the season, Justus has a .188 batting average through 70 games and 207 official at-bats. He has one home run and 15 RBIs. Defensively, he has a .949 fielding percentage in 253 total chances. The infielder has 42 starts at shortstop, 16 at second base and 11 at third base. Ten games into the Southern League’s second-half schedule, the BayBears are 4-6 and trail Jacksonville by two games in the South Division.
Luke Schiltz (AZL Rangers, Texas Rangers organization; Cartersville native) — Schiltz has been assigned to the AZL Rangers of the Rookie Arizona League but hadn't made an appearance through Monday. Members of the 21-team Arizona League for newly signed rookies, the Rangers are 9-3 and in first place in the West Division. The league plays a 56-game schedule between mid-June and late August.
Anthony Seigler (Charleston RiverDogs, N.Y. Yankees organization; Cartersville) — Seigler saw action in five games last week and was 4-for-14 with six walks, three RBI and a stolen base. In Friday’s 12-5 home win over Asheville, the Yankees’ No. 6 overall prospect reached base five times, drawing walks in the first, third and sixth innings. He singled home two runs in the fourth and another in the seventh for his fourth multi-hit effort in 14 games with the RiverDogs. Entering Monday's game, Seigler has a .261 batting average with two doubles and four RBI. He has an on-base percentage of .452 in 46 official at-bats. In nine starts at catcher, he has a .989 fielding percentage with one error and 11 assists in 87 total chances. He has thrown out four of 14 base stealers. Charleston (5-6) is currently third in the SAL second-half standings and trails the Rome Braves by two games. The RiverDogs are 42-39 overall.
— Charles Wilson of Bartow Sports Zone contributed to this report.