Photo by: Cristina Byrne-Sternberg/Rocket City Trash Pandas
By Chuck Richter, AngelsWin.com
September 20th, 2022
It didn't take Logan O'Hoppe long to make an impression with his teammates and the entire Southern league after the trade that sent Brandon Marsh to the Phillies in exchange for the Angels newly ranked top prospect. Since joining the Trash Pandas on August 4th Logan O'Hoppe ranked first on the team in Home Runs - (11), Runs Batted In - (33), On-Base Percentage - (.484) Slugging Percentage - (.707) and OPS - (1.191). He didn't stop there as in September O'Hoppe was named the player of the month as he led the way offensively for the Trash Pandas hitting .395 with 4 HR, 15 RBI, and a 1.294 OPS.
O'Hoppe finished the 2022 season with an impressive .283/.416/.544 (.960 OPS) slash line, a 159 wRC+, 26 HR, 78 RBI, 70 walks in 104 games between the Phillies & Angels minor league affiliates in Double-A.
After meeting with O'Hoppe in person and seeing him on the field doing pre-game drills; he reminded me a lot of a young Mike Trout. Great kid that puts in the work, that's also an incredible athlete, chiseled with lean muscle throughout. The 22-year old just looks like an MLB star in the making.
Here's O'Hoppe clubbing his 11th home run in 27 games for the Trash Pandas.
When I asked which what part of the game O'Hoppe took the most pride in, it wasn't his power or overall offense output, but being behind the plate and game management. O'Hoppe has managed an incredibly dominant Trash Pandas pitching staff since his first game with the Trash Pandas on August 4th. In the 27 games O'Hoppe has started at catcher, the Angels Double-A affiliate has won 22 games.
Before our interview with O'Hoppe, Rocket City Trash Pandas manager Andy Schatzley was doing some catch & throw drills with the Angels top prospect.
Check out O'Hoppe's in-game pop time earlier this season.
I asked O'Hoppe which player he modeled himself after growing up and which team he was a fan of. Find out if he's still a fan of that same team and well, here's a hint on which team that was that when as a fan in left field, he caught a home run ball off the bat of Manny Machado and threw it back onto the field.
In our interview O'Hoppe talked about the responsibility of being ranked as the Los Angeles Angels top prospect and how he's ready for it. He reflects on when he was that skinny kid drafted in the 23rd round by the Phillies out of high school, and how that will always be in his head.
On the topic of rankings, as of today on Sept 20th, 2022 take a look at MLB Pipeline’s Top 100 Prospects. Logan O’Hoppe has the highest OPS (.960) & wRC+ (159) of all the MLB top 100 prospect catchers based on 80 games or more played at the catching position in the 2022 season.
Rank 1st - Francisco Alvarez: (20 years old) .250/.360/.504 (.863 OPS) 26 HR, 75 RBI, 62 walks, 105 games, 75 at catcher.
Rank 7th - Gabriel Moreno: (22 years old) .315/.386/.420 (.806 OPS) 3 HR, 39 RBI, 24 walks, 62 games
Rank 9th - Diego Cartaya: (21 years old) .254/.389/.503 (.892 OPS) 22 HR, 72 RBI, 63 walks, 95 games, 64 behind the plate.
Rank 20th - Henry Davis: (22 years old) .265/.380/.472 (.852 OPS) 10 HR, 42 RBI, 21 walks, 59 games, 38 games behind the plate.
Rank 36th - Shea Langeliers (24 years old) .283/.366/.510 (.876 OPS) 19 HR, 56 RBI, 43 walks, 92 games, 79 behind the plate.
Rank 40th - Kevin Parada (21 years old) .275/.455/.425 (.880 OPS) 1 HR, 8 RBI, 12 walks, 13 games
Rank 50th - Tyler Soderstrom (20 years old) .265/ .324/.509 (.833 OPS), 28 HR, 99 RBI, 125 games, 47 games at C, 56 games at 1B.
Rank 66th - Drew Romo (21 years old) .254/.321/.372 (.693 OPS), 5 HR, 58 RBI, 35 walks, 101 games, 57 behind the plate.
Rank 67th - Logan O’Hoppe: (22 years old) .283/.416/.544 (.960 OPS) 159 wRC+, 26 HR, 78 RBI, 70 walks, 104 games *Second most games played at catcher with 85 from the top catching prospects.
Rank 68th - Harry Ford (19 years old) .274/.425/.438 (.863 OPS) 11 HR, 65 RBI, 88 walks, 104 games, 54 behind the plate.
Rank 78th - Bo Naylor (22 years old) .256/.388/.482 (.870 OPS), 19 HR, 61 RBI, 79 walks, 114 games, 95 games behind the plate
Rank 86th - Austin Wells (23 years old) .277/.385/.512 (.897 OPS) 20 HR, 65 RBI, 56 walks, 92 games, 65 behind the plate.
*Unranked - Edgar Quero (19 years old) .312/.435/.530 (.965 OPS) 17 HR, 75 RBI, 73 walks, 111 games, 80 games behind the plate
*Unranked - Endy Rodriguez (22 years old) .317/.406/.580 (.986 OPS) 24 HR, 87 RBI, 60 walks, 119 games, 72 games behind the plate, 17 at 2B, 13 in LF and 3 games at 1B.
An impressive list of talented catchers on MLB's top 100 prospects list. You could argue that O'Hoppe should be ranked somewhere between Cartaya & Davis and definitely ahead of Gabriel Moreno in their current rankings. It's also worth noting that Angels prospect catcher Edgar Quero who is not currently ranked as a top 100 prospect by MLB boasts the highest OPS (.965) based on the same games played at catcher criteria. Endy Rodriguez is most likely moving to another position.
Enough of stats and rankings, check out our interview below with the Los Angeles Angels top prospect Logan O'Hoppe, conducted by AngelsWin.com's own Chuck Richter.
Here's the full interview transcript for the hard of hearing.
AngelsWin.com: Chuck Richter, AngelsWin.com., here with Logan O’Hoppe. How’re you doing, Logan?
Logan O’Hoppe: Doing well. How are you?
AngelsWin.com: Good. First off, how awesome is it to be a part of this culture here, this winning culture here in this playoff run that you guys are on?
Logan O’Hoppe: Yeah, it’s been great. It’s something that I’ve wanted to be a part of for a while. So, I’m grateful I got signed here and grateful that we’ve got this group of guys here.
AngelsWin.com: Awesome. What will Angel fans come to learn about you, the player and the person?
Logan O’Hoppe: Yeah, as far as a player goes, I’m going to give everything I have and take pride in doing the little things the right way and giving everything I got every day. You know, I think it’s stuff I can control, and things I’ll continue to take pride in and work on.
And, as a person, I mean, it’s really baseball—I don’t know why I work so hard. But, you know, I’m just kidding—but, yeah, I feel like I just, again I want to do things that right way and be the best version of myself I can be. So, that’s what I’m going to continue to focus on.
AngelsWin.com: What part of the game do you take most pride in?
Logan O’Hoppe: Definitely, behind the plate and game management. It’s a part of my game I feel like that always needs the most work, and that hasn’t changed in my four-year, three-year career—however long it’s been. But yeah, that’s the part I enjoy the most, and the part that I feel like is the most important.
AngelsWin.com: Yeah. Are you left to your own devices as far as, like, workout, diet, anything baseball related? Or do the Angels have a plan in place for you?
Logan O’Hoppe: The Angels have a plan. And, obviously, we have our staff here to walk us through it. In the winter, I’ll do the stuff with my trainer back home; his name is Adam Belding [unintelligible 00:01:29]. Shoot, it’s going to be four years now, I think. So, Adam’s great, and he’s been a game changer in my career so far. So, I’m going to continue to work with him in the offseason, and then, hopefully, keep getting a lot out of it.
AngelsWin.com: Awesome. Do you see a difference in philosophy from the Phillies and Angels?
Logan O’Hoppe: I do; I do. Yeah, it’s stuff I had to get used to, and it was a—I don’t want to say culture shock; it wasn’t, because it’s still baseball. But it was definitely different, and yeah, I loved it here so far.
AngelsWin.com: Okay. Who’s impressed you the most here on the club?
Logan O’Hoppe: I mean, we got such a mixed bag of guys. You know, everybody is—we cover every box that you could imagine. You know, we got different guys with different stories. So, I’ve been impressed just hearing everybody’s story. I don’t want to say one guy in particular. As far as stuff goes on the mound, Chase Silseth’s been pretty eye-opening. He’s probably impressed me the most. And all these go about their work at a pretty professional way. So, I’ve been impressed with the consistency from everybody.
AngelsWin.com: Yeah. Who do you, kind of, model your game after, big leaguer?
Logan O’Hoppe: Yeah. I always liked Derek Jeter growing up. So, I still watch him and was all over his documentary when it came out. So, I try to pay attention to things he does. And then—I don’t want to say, ”Be like him.” I want to take things from him that I like to do and, kind of, make it my own. And then take it with me going forward. So, that’s it.
AngelsWin.com: Do you have a favorite team growing up?
Logan O’Hoppe: I rooted for the Yankees. But I played against them too much and got beat them too much in the past four years. So, I’m not a fan of them anymore.
AngelsWin.com: [laugh] Good. So, you mentioned Jeter. Who was your favorite team growing up?
Logan O’Hoppe: It was the Yankees growing up—
AngelsWin.com: Was the Yankees.
Logan O’Hoppe: —yeah, that was it. So, yeah. Then a huge Ranger fan—
AngelsWin.com: Ranger, okay.
Logan O’Hoppe: —hockey guy, too. So, those are—I mean, those were my two teams. Still a Ranger fan now, though.
AngelsWin.com: Okay. Tell us a little bit about your charity work with Alex’s Lemonade Stand.
Logan O’Hoppe: Yeah, it started in the beginning of the year. I talked with people in my agency over at Aces, and they were a game changer with helping me get that going. And yeah, today’s the last day. So, I wanted to make a difference as far as cancer as a whole, but specifically, childhood cancer; it’s super close to home. And I’m happy that we got a good thing going, and, I guess, today’s the last day. It’s, kind of, crazy and overwhelming to see the support, and yeah, the support from a bunch of people. I mean, we raised over 25 thousand dollars, so I know that’s not a small number. So, I’m super proud of that, and then just so grateful to have that many people helping and rally around it.
AngelsWin.com: That’s great. What do you feel like you need to work on to make it to the big leagues?
Logan O’Hoppe: Again, my game management, like I said before and all aspects behind the plate. I feel like I’ve got to really fine tune those. And at the plate, really, I’m not going to sit here and say, like, I got anything in the game figured out. I know I’ll never have it figured out. But just continue to work, overall, and try to fine tune and polish some things. And I feel like, I guess, I’ll never figure it out, so I’ll just keep working with that. And it will always be a work in progress.
AngelsWin.com: What’s been your most memorable game to date in your professional career?
Logan O’Hoppe: That is a tough one. Honestly, it was probably the other night when we clinched, because I know that felt like a playoff game the other night. So, I’m probably a little biased, because it’s so new in my head. And then I love this team here. But yeah, that’s probably the most memorable of the top of my head.
AngelsWin.com: Great. Okay, quick. Lightning round. Favorite movie?
Logan O’Hoppe: Bull Durham.
AngelsWin.com: Bull Durham, good. Favorite song or artist?
Logan O’Hoppe: Favorite song, I got so many, man. I don’t even have a set answer. I’d say Morgan Wallen, I love—
AngelsWin.com: I hear that a lot.
Logan O’Hoppe: —and [crosstalk 00:04:50] is another one. Yeah, Morgan [unintelligible 00:04:52].
AngelsWin.com: Favorite video game?
Logan O’Hoppe: I don’t play video games. Everyone’s an X-Box’er, PlayStation in my life.
AngelsWin.com: [laugh] I don’t either. What’s a perfect day look like for you away from baseball?
Logan O’Hoppe: Good question. I wake up; I try to get up pretty early. Then I go get breakfast with the family or girlfriend and hang out with them and sit by the pool. I did that on off-days a lot when I was in Pennsylvania. So, hung out by the pool with them and go get a nice dinner. I like to eat a lot, and I like to eat well. So, I’d say that and get to bed at a pretty early hour. I feel like I’m getting old quick. So, yeah, a lot of rest and a lot of food is my ideal day.
AngelsWin.com: [laugh] Okay, great. When you’re done playing baseball, have you thought about what your next career would look like?
Logan O’Hoppe: You know what? I haven’t. And I’m a little embarrassed to say I haven’t yet; I need to start thinking about that. I’ve been putting all my eggs in one basket here with this. So, hopefully, it works out because I haven’t thought about anything else, yet. But It’ll come; I’ll find something for sure.
AngelsWin.com: Just a last question. Circling back to baseball, what does it mean to you to be ranked as the number-one-rated prospect for the Angels?
Logan O’Hoppe: Yeah, I still don’t believe it, to be honest with you, because, like, like I said before, I think I got drafted in the 23rd round out of high school. And that will always be in my head, and I’ll always feel like that skinny kid coming in to the locker room, you know? So, it really hasn’t hit me yet; I haven’t felt much about it. But I do know that it comes with a lot of responsibility, and I’m ready for it and excited to deal with that. So, yeah, to answer your question, it really hasn’t really hit me yet, but I’m super honored.
AngelsWin.com: Awesome. Thank you for your time today, Logan.