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SALT LAKE CITY — First baseman, Efren Navarro has made amazing progress since his baseball start with the Salt Lake Bees. But one thing may still be standing in his way on making it to the pros.
Navarro was drafted from the University of Las Vegas in the 50th round when he first began his career. 1,449 players were selected before him in the 2007 draft. Not only is he still playing, but he is currently considered to be the best first baseman in the minor leagues.
"I'm 26, and I've come a long way," said Navarro. "It's been a journey. Being in the 50th round pick in '07, just having that chip on my shoulder drives me."
It's been a journey. Being in the 50th round pick in '07, just having that chip on my shoulder drives me.
–Efren Navarro, Bees First Baseman
But Navarro may have one road block keeping him from the Bee's parent club in Los Angeles. Albert Pujols was signed by the Angels last December as their first baseman. And Pujols signed a 10 year contract.
"I was like, I had a bigger window," said Navarro. "I'm happy for him. Worked with him in the spring. Great guy. Future hall-of-famer."
With Pujols at first base, there is no where for Navarro to go, unless he goes to another team when he becomes a free agent at the end of the season.
But General Manager, Marc Amincone is confident about Navarro's future. "He is in a situation at times he's playing for the other 29 organizations as well as ours," said Amincone. "He is right close. It's a great situation for him. He's already overcome a lot of hurdles."
Navarro feels that the next two months may be very telling about what his future holds. "I don't like to think about free agency much. I just have to do what I have to do to get there."