My apologies on getting around to this a couple days later than normal. These past few days have been absolutely nuts with Revolution news and high school sporting events, especially since we’re in playoff season for high school.
Since this is coming out a few days late, I’ll preface this by saying the roster numbers may have changed since May 12. Since I’m short on time this week, I’m just going to skip over any news-related items and get right to the transactions. A total of five teams and 16 players were involved in transaction from May 6 to May 12, including three former big leaguers.
RHP Winston Abreu
BRIDGEPORT BLUEFISH: Signed RHP Winston Abreu and INF Iggy Suarez, released RHP Edward Rodriguez and RHP Josh Schmidt
Last season, Suarez spent time with the Sugar Land Skeeters, appearing in 107 games and batted .212 with 20 doubles and six home runs, while scoring 39 runs. The 31-year-old began his career with the Boston Red Sox organization after being selected in the 24th round of the 2003 MLB Amateur June Draft. He spent seven years with the Red Sox affiliates, and reached as high as Triple-A in 2009. The infielder recorded his best professional season in 2007 between Single-A Lancaster and Double-A Portland, where he batted .273 with 25 doubles three triples and four home runs while scoring 68 runs in 123 games. The infielder has had stops in Somerset, Southern Maryland, Lancaster and Sugar Land in his previous three years in the Atlantic League.
Abreu, 36, is a former big leaguer who comes to the Atlantic League for the first time in his 17th pro season. A Dominican Republic native, Abreu has 38 games of big league experience with four different clubs from 2006 to 2009, compiling a 7.36 ERA. He had an 8-5 record and 3.66 ERA in 53 relief appearances at Class AAA Las Vegas (Blue Jays) in 2011. Last year, the righthander was a member of Mexico City of the Mexican League. In 45 appearances, Abreu posted a 3.83 ERA and a 4-1 record in 44.2 IP. He also saved 15 games and struck out 38 batters. Abreu also pitched in the Mexican League earlier this season with Ciudad del Carmen and Veracruz, posting a combined 1.80 ERA in 11 games.
Rodriguez had a 12.15 ERA in five relief appearances for the ‘Fish. Schmidt had a 14.40 ERA in four games with Bridgeport.
The ‘Fish now have 28 players under contract (reliever Jeff Fulchino, starter Wardell Starling, outfielder Brian Anderson and infielder Brandon Chaves are inactive), including 12 former big leaguers.
3B Tommy Mendonca
CAMDEN RIVERSHARKS: Philadelphia Phillies signed 3B Tommy Mendonca; Camden signed RHP Jeff Farnsworth, released RHP Eric Gonzalez
Mendonca is a 25-year-old third baseman who came to the Atlantic League for the first time this season after spending the first four years of his pro career in the Texas Rangers’ organization. He has a career .278 batting average at Class AA, but batted .208 in 63 games at Class AAA Round Rock last season. The Fresno (Cal.) State product hit .292 with two RBIs, four walks, five strikeouts and no extra-base hits in eight games (24 plate appearances) for Camden. He has been assigned to the Phils’ Class AA Reading Fightin’ Phils affiliate. He is the sixth Atlantic League player to be signed by a major league organization this season.
Farnsworth, 37, comes back to Camden for the second straight season and the Atlantic League for the sixth time in the last nine years. He owns a career 11-18 record and 5.75 ERA in 116 Atlantic League games (26 starts). His only season in the majors came in 2002, when he posted a 5.79 ERA in 44 relief appearances for the Detroit Tigers. He had a 5.81 ERA in 40 combined games last season with the Sugar Land Skeeters and Riversharks.
Harris, 28, has spent nearly his entire pro career in the Atlantic League, returning to the league for the seventh straight year and to Camden for the fourth straight season. He has a career .155 batting average in 200 games which includes 21 games in the American Association 2007. Last season, the Texas native had a .159 batting average in 26 games with Camden.
Gonzalez had a 9.72 ERA in five relief appearances for Camden.
The ‘Sharks have 28 players under contract, including first baseman/catcher Raul Padron, who played Saturday but is currently no on Camden’s roster for some reason (I’m assuming he’s inactive since the team nor the league has released any info on his status). With Farnsworth on board, the ‘Sharks now have five former big leaguers.
C Gustavo Molina
LANCASTER BARNSTORMERS: Signed RHP Jason Richardson and C Gustavo Molina
Molina, 31, is a former major leaguer who makes his Atlantic League debut with the Barnstormers in his 14th pro season. He is less than two years removed catching in the big leagues with the New York Yankees. He has briefly seen time in the majors over four different seasons since 2007, compiling 26 games of major league experience with five big league ball clubs. Last season, he played in 35 total games split time between the Yankees’ Class AA Trenton and Class AAA Scranton-Wilkes Barre affiliates. He has a career .214 batting average at the Class AAA level.
Richardson, 32, was putting up arguably his numbers of his career in 2011, going 4-0 with a 3.33 ERA in 19 relief appearances with the York Revolution, before the season was cut short due to injury problems, which later led to Tommy John surgery. The right-hander spent nearly all of last season in York rehabbing from surgery, with a locker next to pitcher Chris Waters – the two were high school teammates and later teammates again in the Atlanta Braves’ organization. Richardson has been looking for work since pitching earlier this year for the Long Island Sound, a team comprised of current and former Atlantic League players that scrimmages teams down in Florida during Major League Baseball’s spring training. Now in his sixth season in the Atlantic League, Richardson has also previously pitched for the Somerset Patriots and Southern Maryland Blue Crabs.
The Barnstormers have 28 players under contract (catcher Francisco Hernandez is inactive), including nine with major league experience.
SOUTHERN MARYLAND BLUE CRABS: Signed RHP Beau Vaughan and RHP Joe Gannon, released RHP Peter Sikaras
Vaughan, 31, returns for his second season in the Atlantic League and first in Southern Maryland after compiling a 5-0 record and 3.37 ERA in 50 relief appearances for Lancaster last season. A third-round draft pick of the Boston Red Sox in 2003, Vaughan has 41 games of experience at the Class AAA level, where he has a 4.66 ERA, last pitching there in 2010.
Gannon, 38, returns for his fifth straight season in Southern Maryland and eighth overall in the Atlantic League. The New York native pitched in just six games last year split between Lancaster and Southern Maryalnd. His best season in the Atlantic League came in 2008, when he had a 12-6 record and 3.17 ERA in 23 games (22 starts) for the Crabs.
Sikaras had a 7.26 ERA in nine relief appearances.
1B/OF Johan Limonta
YORK REVOLUTION: 1B/OF Johan Limonta signed by San Diego Padres; York signed UTL Ruddy Yan and OF James Shanks; LHP Dustin Pease retired
Limonta batted .295 with two homers, four doubles, 12 RBIs and eight runs scored in 16 games. He reported to Class AA San Diego.
Yan and Shanks were brought on to provide some depth to York’s outfield. Yan, 31, has been playing independent ball since 2008. His only other season in the Atlantic League came in 2011 with the Camden Riversharks, when he batted .281 with 26 steals in 99 games.
The Revs had released Shanks mid-way through last season after he batted just .249 in 77 games. It was a drop-off from the .325 average he carried in 2010 and .314 average he had in 2011.
Pease, 27, decided to retire after posting a 7.50 ERA in six games for the Revs this season. According to Revs’ play-by-play man Darrell Henry, Pease wants to spend more of his time to a baseball academy Pease runs in Maryland. The Maryland native played college ball nearby at Mount Saint Mary College through 2007. Pease was in the San Diego Padres’ organization the last two years, compiling a combined 3.52 ERA in 55 games at Class High Lake Elsinore in 2011 and 52 games at Class AA San Antonio in 2012. (Former Revs’ reliever Josh Judy is currently playing at San Antonio).