The first phone call was easy.
In the moments after Jorge Bonifacio learned about his selection to the MLB Futures Game, the annual showcase of baseball’s top prospects, he picked up his cell phone and called his brother Emilio, a former Royals utilityman and current member of the Braves organization.
“The first guy I called was him,” Jorge Bonifacio said on Sunday, standing inside at clubhouse at Petco Park. “The first guy… he wanted me to get there.”
Bonifacio, a 23-year-old outfielder, earned his trip to the Futures Game after batting .290 with 13 homers and 15 doubles in 84 games at Class AAA Omaha. On Sunday, he joined a collection of top prospects here in San Diego, including Omaha teammate Hunter Dozier. Bonifacio reached base twice, drawing two walks while serving as the starting designated hitter for the World Team, which defeated the United States 11-3 at Petco Park.
The moment represented a career highlight, Bonifacio said. It was specia because he could share the accomplishment with his brother, who is close to eight years older and debuted in the big leagues in 2007.
Jorge Bonifacio is still waiting for his big-league debut, still waiting to follow in those footsteps of his older brother. But for now, at least, he has done one thing his brother has not: Play in the Futures Game.
“Sometimes, I’ll get something he didn’t do,” Bonifacio said. “And he tells me he loves me. He’s happy.”