Cuts Clear Space on Minor League Side

With just 11 days before the home opener on April 5th against the Birmingham Barons, things are slightly clearing themselves a bit in minor league camp. As was said to me many times on my recent visit to Peoria, this is the most crowded minor league camp in recent history. Cut days are no fun. This week several cuts were made on the minor league side.

As reported by Rick Randall of SeattleClubhouse of the scout.com network, here were the cuts made this past week on the minor league side. A couple of former Generals were included. You get to know some of these guys personally and it is tough to see them go.

  • ANDREAS, Chris (1B)
  • ANSTON, Robert (OF)
  • BUTLER, Tony (LHP)
  • CERIONE, Matt (OF)
  • COLINA, Edilio (INF)
  • COOPER, Daniel (RHP)
  • CRUZ, Danny (RHP)
  • FLORES, Jose M (C )
  • HESKETH, Jonathan (LHP)
  • KASPAREK, Kenn (RHP)
  • MARKOWITZ, Jason (LHP)
  • McOWEN, James (OF)
  • MORRIS, Tim (1B)
  • PENNEY, Stephen (RHP)
  • PERIARD, Alexandre (RHP)
  • REED, Nathan (LHP)
  • SOTO, George (INF)
  • STRAUS, Ken (OF)
  • VERSNIK, Benjamin (RHP)
  • WOOD, James (OF)

Cooper, Kasparek and McOwen are the most notable on my end from that list, spending time in Jackson last season. James McOwen will always be known for his break-out season in 2009 with High Desert. He hit .340 with ten homers, 82 RBIs and 13 stolen basses. He had a 45 game hitting streak that year. It was the eighth longest hitting streak in Minor League Baseball history. He had just a .261 average and .665 OPS last year in 72 Double-A games.

Kenn Kasparek got off to a brilliant start last year, but ran into arm problems after the first month-and-a-half. He was 4-2. with a 3.45 ERA before the injury and 1-3, with a 5.88 ERA when coming back in August. His nice start earned him a Southern League All-Star game selection. Kenn did not throw hard for his 6-10 build, but had nice command of the strike zone. Hope he lands on his feet somewhere.

Daniel Cooper made just nine appearances in August and September after a call-up from High Desert. The former USC Trojan was 1-1, with a 4.24 ERA and one save. He walked seven and threw four wild pitches.

So, how does this change my projections of the Generals roster.

Starting Rotation:

  • LHP Danny Hultzen
  • RHP Taijuan Walker
  • LHP James Paxton
  • RHP Yoervis Medina
  • RHP Andrew Carraway

Other Considerations: RHP Jandy Sena,  RHP Taylor Stanton, RHP Jarrett Grube, LHP Steve Garrison, RHP Brandon Maurer, LHP James Gillheeney, LHP Roenis Elias

Connor Glassey of Baseball America tweeted this last week.

Got a tip that Hultzen, Paxton & Walker will start the season together at Double-A for the

So, with that said, nothing changes the top three on that list. I did replace James Gilheeney with Andrew Carraway.

Bullpen:

  • RHP Steven Hensley
  • RHP Moises Hernandez

    Steven Hensley

  •  LHP Brian Moran
  • RHP Stephen Pryor
  • RHP Taylor Stanton (left Saturday’s game with a bicep contusion)
  • LHP Jose Jimenez (had a 6.44 ERA in High Desert, but lefty with good stuff could thrive in SL)

Other Considerations: RHP Chris Sorce, RHP Austin Hudson, RHP Aaron Heilman, , LHP Bobby LaFromboise, LHP Philippe Valiquetter, RHP Jonathan Arias, RHP Brian Sweeney

Hensley has converted to a reliever solely. Do not see him starting in the pen with Tacoma, but could happen. He has had a nice spring and good Fall League.

Catchers:

  • Jesus Sucre
  • Brandon Bantz

Other Considerations: Ralph Henriquez, Angel Salome, Christian Carmichael, Trevor Coleman

Infielders:

  • Nick Franklin

    Rich Poythress

  • Scott Savastano
  • Rich Poythress
  • Francisco Martinez
  • Eric Campbell (would be playing for his third SL team in 2 years)

Other Considerations: 1B Luis Jimenez, Util Leury Bonilla, SS Gabriel Noriega, 2B Bradley Miller, 2B Shaver Hansen, 3B Nate Tenbrink (injured), 3B Mario Martinez

Francisco Martinez has been phenomenal lately. With Vinnie Catricala likely playing third everyday in Tacoma, Martinez should start in Jackson but may not be here long. One, Catricala will be in Seattle before you know it and two, Martinez is a stud. In his last two spring games he is 5×10 with a double, triple and an RBI. Plus he hit a 2-run homer against Danny Hultzen in the intrasquad on Thursday. I would imagine Mario Martinez could be the next in line to play third base. He has looked very good as well.

Outfielders:

  • Johermyn Chavez
  • Jake Shaffer
  • Brandon Haveman
  • Joe Dunigan
  • Daniel Carroll

Other Considerations: Denny Almonte, Kuo Hui Lo (injured), Chih-Hsien Chiang, Mike McGee

I replaced James McOwen with Brandon Haveman and Denny Almonte with Jake Shaffer. With Almonte and Dunigan possibly in the same lineup, that is a lot of strikeouts. Dunigan has showed well this spring including 4×8 w/ a homer and 3 RBI in his last two spring games for Tacoma.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: