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DeCaster picked up by Yankees

The Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks lost one of the Northern League's top players on Monday. However, the league's defending batting champion could soon be on the way to help soften the blow.

The Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks lost one of the Northern League's top players on Monday. However, the league's defending batting champion could soon be on the way to help soften the blow.

The RedHawks sold the contract of standout third baseman Yurendell DeCaster to the New York Yankees organization, the club announced on Monday. DeCaster will immediately report to the Yankees' Triple-A affiliate Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

RedHawks manager Doug Simunic said designated hitter and third baseman Ruben Salazar could arrive to Fargo on Friday for the start of the RedHawks' three-game home series against Joliet at Newman Outdoor Field.

"He was the best player in the league," Simunic said of DeCaster. "It was beyond a doubt. You just have to enjoy watching them play, because it's just inevitable someone is going to pick him up.

"He's a polished player."

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DeCaster, 29, was hitting .344 with a league-high 13 home runs and 43 RBIs in 37 games. He broke into the major leagues in 2006 with the Pittsburgh Pirates. DeCaster has two big league plate appearances in his career.

He was named to the Great Plains team Monday for July's Northern League All-Star game. DeCaster received the most votes from Northern League officials and media members.

Salazar, 31, led the Northern League with a .378 batting average last season.

A fan-favorite, Salazar has played for the RedHawks since 2003. He has yet to join the team due to a problem obtaining his passport.

Fargo-Moorhead is 19-18 this season. The RedHawks open a three-game series at Gary SouthShore today at 7 p.m. at U.S. Steel Yard.

"If he does half of what he did last year, we'll take it," Simunic said of Salazar.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Heath Hotzler at (701) 241-5562.

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Hotzler's blogs can be found

at www.areavoices.com

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