Several Revs in winter ball

York starter Chris Cody (above) threw 6.1 innings of scoreless ball Sunday to lead York to an 8-0 win. He held Camden to just three hits.

LHP Chris Cody.

A total of 13 former York Revolution players are currently on rosters in three different winter leagues (well, I’ll assume they are former Revs considering they are all technically free agents at this point until York begins to announce 2014 signees). Below is a collection of how the baker’s dozen is performing thus far (all stats through Oct. 23):

Aguilas (Dominican Republic): Former Revs’ pitchers Lorenzo Barcelo (one start, 1-0, 3,60 ERA, 5 IP, 3 Ks, 0 BBs), Chris Cody (one start, 4.50 ERA, 4 IP, 3 Ks, 0 BBs), Ricardo Gomez (2 appearances, 3 IP, no runs, 1 K, 0 BBs) and Edward Paredes (has not pitched) are teammates on Aguilas. Former Revs’ third baseman Andy Marte (four games, .333, 4 RBIs, 4 runs scored) is also seeing action for Aguilas. They are all teammates with former Atlantic League pitchers Gary Majewski and Dustin Richardson.

Licey (Domincan Republic): Former Revs’ catcher Salvador Paniagua is listed on the roster but has yet to play. Also on the team are former Atlantic Leaguers Greg Aquin and Wilson Valdez.

Toros (Dominican Republic): Former Revs’ center fielder Ruddy Yan is listed on the roster but has yet to play. Also on the team are former Atlantic Leaguers Pedro Feliz and Willis Otanez.

 

RHP Omar Javier

RHP Omar Javier

Estrellas (Dominican Republic): Former Revs’ pitcher Omar Javier allowed two runs on four hits in 4.2 innings in his only start to this point, striking out five and walking two. Former Atlantic League outfielder Felix Pie is also on the roster.

Mazatlan (Pacific League): Reliever Mike Wuertz is listed on the roster but has yet to pitch.

Caracas (Venezuela): Only diehard fans might remember former Revs’ reliever Victor Garate, who lasted all of one game with York in the middle of the 2012 season. In two starts so far for Caracas, Garate has been tagged for six runs on eight hits in 3.1 innings of work, striking out five and walking one. He’s teammates with former Atlantic Leaguers Raul Padron, Daniel Mayora and Wladimir Sutil. Also on the roster is 39-year-old former Phillies’ slugger Bobby Abreu, who last played state-side in 2012.

Aragua (Venezuela): Former Revs’ reliever Justin Hampson has not allowed a run in three appearances, giving up just three hits in 1.2 innings while striking out two and walking one. He’s teammates with former Atlantic League pitcher Erik Arnesen in Aragua.

Lara (Venezuela): Former Revs’ infielder Joe Thurston is batting .333 with four RBIs and four runs scored in 10 games played for Lara.

There are dozens of other former Atlantic Leaguers playing across the winter leagues if you care to dig hard enough. But I’ll try my best to provide updates on the performances of former Revs’ this winter.

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Burgamy signs with St. Paul

1B Brian Burgamy

1B Brian Burgamy

Brian Burgamy might still return to York at some point this season. The Revolution are just going to have to wait a little bit longer. Out of work since his Mexican League team finished playing Aug. 3, the former Revs slugger signed over the weekend with St. Paul in the independent American Association.

St. Paul is still mathematically alive for the post-season, although the Saints are sitting 10.5 games back of Fargo-Moorhead in the North Division and 5.5 games back of Gary SouthShore in the wildcard. The American Association regular season finishes Sept. 2. York’s final regular season game is Sept. 15, meaning Burgamy could come back to the Revs if St. Paul doesn’t make the playoffs.

York was hoping to bring Burgamy back after he finished playing in the Mexican League. Revs’ manager Mark Mason had said last week Burgamy told him he wanted to go home and rest briefly and then he’ll touch base with Mason on possibly returning to York.  The slugger left the Revs in early June for Campeche. At the time, he led the team lead in batting average (.345) home runs (nine), runs scored (38), total bases (98), walks (32) and triples (three). He was also second on the team in hits (57) behind Andres Perez.

The Oklahoma native batted .335 with 15 homers and 35 RBIs in 48 games with Campeche.

While players have a better chance at getting picked up out of the Atlantic League by a major league club, some still leave for the Mexican League for the chance to make more money. That move made sense for Burgamy, 32, who was in his fifth-straight season in the Atlantic League and likely didn’t have much of a chance to get signed by a big league organization no matter how good his numbers were with the Revs.

For that same reason, it makes sense he opted to go to the American Association instead of return to York. Each team in the American Association has some sort of option where they can pay two veteran players a lot more money than the remaining players on the roster. Burgamy likely falls in that category for St. Paul.

Of course, this isn’t the first time something like this happened to York. During the off-season, former York closer R.J. Rodriguez signed with the American Association’s Lincoln ballclub.

“R.J. loves me to death. He told me it’s not personal,” Mason had said in an interview in March. “He needs a change of scenery. He’ll make a little bit more money than he did here.”

Burgamy is already doing a good job helping St. Paul in its push for the post-season. The first baseman is only 2-for-9 in three games so far, but both hits are homers, including a walk-off two-run homer in extra-innings Sunday night.

Revs win again: It feels weird to type those words. Yes. York won again Sunday night, defeating Lancaster in the series finale, 6-4, to win the three-game series, 3-to-1 and become the 2013 Community Cup champions. To check out the game story, click here.

With 32 games to play, York is still 10 games back of Sugar Land for first place in the second-half Freedom Division race. The wildcard picture is even worse, as the Revs are 13.5 back of Somerset in that category. Mason shares his thoughts on that in the game story.

Tomko leaves York: Click here to check out a blog post on Brett Tomko and his plans for the next steps in his career. The former Revs’ ace took time out to return my phone call Sunday afternoon while sitting in the Detroit airport waiting for a flight to Arizona, where he’ll begin an introduction to scouting camp Monday.

As for York’s plan to fill the hole in the rotation left by Tomko’s departure, Mason said he’s trying to bring a starting pitcher in “hopefully in the next three to four days.”

Perez, Hernandez out: Second baseman Andres Perez and outfielder Michael Hernandez did not see action Sunday night. Perez said he is recovering from a left shoulder injury suffered when he landed on the shoulder Saturday while trying to make a play in the field. He said he’s day-to-day. Hernandez left the club for personal reasons but is expected to return Tuesday, Mason said.

INF Jake Fox

INF Jake Fox

Somerset’s Fox signed by Diamondbacks: The Arizona Diamondbacks signed Somerset infielder Jake Fox on Sunday. MLBdailydish.com reporter Chris Cotillo broke the news first. This is the second year in a row Fox got picked up out of the Atlantic League by a major league club (last year it was the Phillies). A potential Atlantic League Player of the Year candidate, Fox leaves Somerset leading the league in homers (25) and RBIs (82) to go along with a .310 batting average (sixth league) and 62 runs scored (eighth league).

Fox will report to Class AAA Reno, where he’ll join former Sugar Land Skeeters’ pitcher Matt Wright. Fox is the fifth Somerset player signed by a major league organization this season. He’s also the third Atlantic League player picked up by the Arizona Diamondbacks this year, joining Wright and outfielder Dustin Martin (Sugar Land).

 

RHP Lorenzo Barcelo

RHP Lorenzo Barcelo

Veracruz advances: Veracruz won its best-of-five first-round playoff series over Carmen, 3-1, over the weekend. As a result, Veracruz now advances to the best-of-seven series semifinal round against Quintana Roo. Why is that important? Well, former Revs’ pitchers Lorenzo Barcelo and Ricardo Gomez play for Veracruz, which means the pitchers could return to York when Veracruz is finished playing. In the semis against Quintana Roo, Barcelo and Gomez will face a pair of former Atlantic Leaguers in pitchers Horacio Ramirez (Lancaster) and Kelvin Villa (Sugar Land).

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Revs bring in Atlantic League honors

Outfielder Michael Hernandez was a second-team selection. Randy Flaum file photo.

Revolution position players Chris Nowak, Andres Perez, Brandon Haveman and Michael Hernandez, starting pitchers Corey Thurman and Ryan Feierabend and reliever Ricardo Gomez earned Atlantic League post-season awards. In addition, Revs’ president and general manager Eric Menzer has been named the league’s co-General Manager of the Year. The league announced the honors last Friday.

Lancaster’s Blake Gailen took home the league’s Player of the Year honors a week after Baseball American named him the independent POY.

Nowak and Perez, whom were also selected to Baseball America’s All-Independent team, were first-team league all-star selections. Nowak had a club-record 34 homers (seven more than anyone else) while collecting 107 RBIs. It marks the league’s highest total in both categories since 2005. The slugger also batted .285 in 129 games played and finished second in the league in walks (71) and extra-base hits (63), and ranked third in on-base percentage (.391)

Perez finished fourth in the league in batting average (.314), homers (23), hits (161) and runs scored (86), tied for fourth in doubles (35), fifth in RBIs (86) and slugging percentage (.529), while leading the league in total bases (271) and tying third in extra-base hits (61). His total base and extra-base hit marks established Revs’ single-season records. The 23 homers were a career-high for Perez.

Hernandez and Haveman were second-team league selections. Hernandez finished the year batting .303 (the second-highest average on the team) and added 13 homers and 55 RBIs in 105 games played. Haveman joined York in late May after coming over from Lancaster. He went to bat .370 in his first 34 games with York and hit .290 overall in 106 games. York went 66-39 with Haveman as the lead-off man. The speedy outfielder also collected six homers, 48 RBIs and 21 stolen bases.

RHP Corey Thurman

Pitching: Thurman, Feierabend and Gomez were also second-team selections.

Thurman went 14-3 with a 3.82 ERA in 27 starts, tying for the league-lead in wins, while topping his own club record for wins in a season when he had 13 Ws in 2011. The Revs won 22 of Thurman’s 27 starts and are 41-11 in games started by the right-hander the last two years.

Feierabend established a new team record for ERA in a season at 2.71, which was the third-best in the league. The lefty went 9-5 in 18 starts. He was one of three Revs’ players to be picked up by an affiliated club mid-way through the season when the Cincinnati Reds purchased his contract and assigned him to Class AAA Louisville, where he made seven starts before returning to York.

Gomez emerged as York’s closer this season, assuming the duties over reliever R.J. Rodriguez. The right-hander went 4-1 with a 2.66 ERA in 46 appearances, earning 17 saves in 18 tries. He came within one of matching the Revs’ single-season saves record and held opponents to a .152 batting average over 47.1 innings of work.

Eric Menzer

Menzer: Menzer shares the league’s top executive award with his predecessor in York, Matt O’Brien of the Sugar Land Skeeters. The Revs drew 273,648 fans this year over 67 openiongs for an average of 4,084 fans per game. That’s up from the average of 3,904 fans in 2011. The Revs capped things off by drawing a playoff-record crowd of 6,437 fans Sept. 29.

Looking at the rest of the country, the Revs ranked 80th among 388 minor league teams according to rankings compiled by ballparkdigest.com. The list includes affiliated, independent, summer-collegiate and Mexican League teams. York has now drawn 1.6 million fans during the six seasons Sovereign Bank Stadium has been open.

League: Click here to read about Lancaster’s honors, which include Gailen getting POY and Butch Hobson being named manager of the Year. Below is the full list of league honors, in no particular order:

FIRST TEAM: 1B Chris Nowak (York), 2B Andres Perez (York), OF Blake Gailen (Lancaster), RHP Dwayne Pollok (starter, Lancaster), OF Fehlandt Lentini (Lancaster), DH Ryan Harvey (Lancaster), C Emerson Frostad (Lancaster), LHP Tim Hamulack (reliever, Lancaster), INF Ray Navarrete (Long Island), INF Dan Lyons (Long Island), LHP Paul Oseguera (starter, Bridgeport), LHP Rommie Lewis (reliever, Bridgeport), OF Prentice Redman (Bridgeport)

SECOND TEAM: 1B Brandon Sing (Long Island), 2B Casey Benjamin (Southern Maryland), OF Brian Barton (Southern Maryland), OF Jeremy Owens (Southern Maryland), INF Eddie Rogers (Bridgeport), 3B Ofilio Castro (Sugar Land), OF Bubba Bell (Sugar Land), RHP Gary Majewski (reliever, Sugar Land)

 

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2012 Revs recap: Bullpen, catchers

Here it is, the fourth and final recap of the 2012 York Revolution squad, this time on the bullpen and catchers (sorry catchers, no separate post for perhaps the toughest position in baseball). My apologies on getting around to this late, been a little busy covering high school sports as we get into the time of the year for league titles, playoffs, districts and beyond, as well as catching up on reading all the Sports Illustrateds that have been laying around the house for weeks (seriously, who can read those things front to back each week?) and breaking my ankles jumping on and off the Baltimore Orioles’ bandwagon (don’t act like you weren’t doing the same). Anyway, before we get to that, wanted to point out a couple newsworthy items worth checking out:

- Atlantic League expansion…to the Caribbean?: YDR Revs’ beat writer Jim Seip did a good job reporting on Peter Kirk’s intentions of possibly expanding the Atlantic League to the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico or Cuba (yes, really, Cuba). This would make sense, considering at least a fifth of most Atlantic League rosters are made up of players from the Caribbean. A roster could easily be filled should the league want to travel far down south. And if it can be any kind of draw like Sugar Land, why not give it a shot? The only question mark would be travel costs. It makes no sense to do it if the league loses money.

- Camden front office: The Riversharks sent out a press release Monday announcing longtime general manager Adam Lorber is being promoted to general manager AND team president. Lorber has served as the team’s GM since 2003. In addition, Lindsay Rosenberg, who has spent the last four seasons in group sales has been promoted to the position of assistant general manager. Rosenberg earned a bachelor’s degree in Sports, Entertainment and Event Management from Johnson and Wales (Rhode Island) University in 2009. While attending school, she had opportunities to work at both Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, MA and at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia.

Now on to the recap….

 

As far as publicity goes, the guys in the bullpen have it tough. Position players and starting pitchers normally get most of the attention. On the rare occasion a reliever gets anything said about him, it’s normally because he’s been lights-out as a closer or a set-up man or he made an impressive spot start. So, if a reliever doesn’t fit that category, he’s probably left out on the street with the rest of the guys who don’t get much attention, even if they might have an interesting back-story. So, lets just say this blog post is my attempt at making up for all of that….

Righty Adam Thomas collected an 8-2 record and 3.65 ERA in 67 appearances. File photo.

At the start: At the start of the year, York’s bullpen consisted of right-handers Dumas Garcia, Ricardo Gomez, Omar Javier, Santo Luis, Stephen Penney, R.J. Rodriguez, Shaun Garceau and Adam Thomas and left-handers James Houser, Yunior Novoa and Ian Thomas. By the end Gomez, Novoa, Penney, Rodriguez and Thomas were all that were left of the original bunch. Newcomers on York’s year-end roster included right-handers Mike Benacka and Kris Regas and left-hander Wade Korpi.

Come and go: Garcia (1-0, 6.00 ERA, 27 games), Garceau (0-0, 7-71 ERA, 3 games), Houser (2-1, 5.50 ERA, 33 games), Javier (1-6, 5.66 ERA, 22 games) and Luis (0-0, 4-50 ERA, 3 games) were all released at some point in the season, while right-hander Andy Wells (0-0, 16.61 ERA, 3 games) and left-handers Matt Chico (1-3, 7.50 ERA, six starts) and Victor Garate (0-0, 5.40 ERA, 1 game) were on the short list of pitchers who joined York mid-season but would be released before the end of the year.

Picked up: Thomas the only York reliever and one of three Revs’ players to earn a big league contract this season (all three were pitchers)  in 2012. The 25-year-old earned his first affiliated contract after putting together a 0.96 ERA in 9.1 innings of relief for York. He had spent his first three pro seasons with independent club Winnipeg (Northern League/American Association) before coming to York. In 26 relief appearances for Rome, the lefty went 5-0 with a 3.15 ERA, striking out 58 and walking 15 over 45.2 innings pitched.

8th/9th inning guys: Right-hander R.J. Rodriguez started off the year as the Revs’ closer but lost the job to Ricardo Gomez when he left for the Mexican League mid-season. Adam Thomas served as the Revs’ set-up man the majority of the first-half and then split the duties with Rodriguez when he returned. Rodriguez did fill in as the ninth-inning guy occasionally in the final couple months. Rodriguez went 2-3 with a 2.02 ERA and 13 saves over 55 appearances. Thomas had a 8-2 record and 3.65 ERA in 67 appearances (64 innings), striking out 42 and walking 15. Gomez collected 17 saves, 2.66 ERA and 4-1 record in 46 games (47.1 innings).

LHP Yunior Novoa

Middle relief: Left-handers Yunior Novoa (2-6, 4.71 ERA, five starts, 38 games), Kris Regas (3-2, 2.78 ERA, 44 games) and Wade Korpi (4-0, 2.26 ERA, 3 starts, 18 games) and right-hander Stephen Penney (2-1, 3.13 ERA, 62 games) had good seasons in the ‘pen.

Novoa went back-and-forth between the bullpen and starting rotation at the start of the year before serving mainly as a reliever in the final few months. Korpi ended up being a good mid-season pick-up for the Revs. The lefty was lights-out in his three spot starts, putting up a stellar 1.93 ERA in 9.1 innings.

One other middle reliever, Mike Benacka, joined York in the final month of the season and had a 1-0 record, 3.00 ERA and one save in six relief appearances. But he took the loss after giving up four runs on one hit and two walks in 2/3 of an inning in Game Two of the Freedom Division Championship Series against Lancaster. The Revs didn’t like what they saw, either, sending him back to the Laredo Lemurs (American Association) after the season.

C Travis Scott

Catchers: Instead of dedicating a whole blog post to the catchers, it’ll be included here as more an honorable mention (sorry Travis Scott and Salomon Manriquez). York started off the year with Scott and Salvador Paniagua behind the dish. Etch’ used the left-handed hitting Scott and right-handed hitting Paniagua as a platoon. York released Paniagua on July 19 and signed Manriquez the next day. It’s tough in the Atlantic League to find a solid defensive catcher who can also hit well. And when that rare guy comes along, he’s normally picked up right away by a big league club since that’s so rare. That’s why it’s tough to be hard on Atlantic League clubs about not finding a solid-hitting catcher. Plus, it has to be hard on catchers to have a good batting average considering they’re not playing every game for obvious reasons.

With all that being said, Scott had a .228 average with seven homers and 28 RBIs in 81 games while Manriquez finished with a .287 average, two homers and 16 RBIs in 32 games. Manriquez upped his batting average in his final 18 games, during which he went he hit .387. Paniagua departed mid-season with a .227 average over 40 games.

(Note*The following stats are through Game 2 of the FDCS) As far as how they performed behind the plate, Paniagua caught in 40 games (38 starts) and caught a total of 328.2 innings. York pitchers had a 4.11 ERA with Paniagua catching. Revs’ pitchers were about the same in the 601.1 innings with Scott behind the dish with a 4.12 ERA. Manriquez, meanwhile, made 32 starts to help Revs’ pitchers get a 3.63 ERA in his 275.1 innings catching. However, all three had trouble throwing out runners at second and third. Paniagua caught 5 of the 40 guys who stole on him, while Scott gunned 12 of 48 and Manriquez nailed down just three of 25 base-stealers. That’s a combined percentage of 17.7 (20 caught of 113 base-stealers).

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Revs’ wrap up first half, just in time to heal injuries

OF James Shanks (above) missed Sunday's game after injuring his left hamstring against Camden on Saturday.

The Revs dropped a 4-1 decision to the Camden Riversharks in front of 2,762 fans at Sovereign Bank Stadium on a muggy Sunday evening. It marked the final game of the first half for York (36-34), who officially finished in second place in the Atlantic League Freedom Division behind Lancaster (45-25) by nine games.

(To check out the full game story, click here).

And chatting with Revs’ skipper Andy Etchebarren after the loss, things don’t sound good on the health front for York. Outfielder James Shanks and third baseman Ramon Castro were out of the lineup on Sunday. Shanks, who has been battling tendonitis in his left knee all season, tweaked his hamstring at Camden on Saturday. Etchebarren said Castro is dealing with a health issue, too, but didn’t disclose further details. And he said the pair could be out of action when York begins the second half on Friday at home with the first of a three-game set against Lancaster.

“If you got to start the second half against Lancaster without those two guys, then you’re hurting a little bit. Do I gotta bring somebody else in? Probably,” Etchebarren said.

Outfielder Brandon Haveman will also miss time at start the second half. Haveman’s wife, Sarah, was recently named the new head women’s cross country and assistant track coach at Dayton (Ohio) University. Brandon Haveman said he needs to help his wife move from their old home in Indiana to their new home near Dayton. He still plans on playing in the 2012 Atlantic League All-Star game on Wednesday, but he’ll be out a total of six games for the Revs to start the second half, returning on July 19.

It’s unclear if Shanks or Castro will play in the All-Star game.

York’s poor start to the first half of the season (they began 3-10 and 8-16) made it even more difficult to catch Lancaster in the Atlantic League Freedom Division. And it sounds like the second half could off to a bumpy start as well.

Castro (.298 batting average, league-leading 50 RBIs), Shanks (.255, eight homers, 35 RBIs), and Haveman (.319, 31 runs, eight stolen bases) are three of York’s top hitters. Etchebarren said he might make a roster move in the coming days to make up for the possible absence of the three position players. He is also looking to improve the starting rotation.

“We got to try to improve the starting pitching somehow,” he said. “As for right now there’s nobody out there. Hopefully we can survive the first couple of weeks of the second half and we’ll have some pitchers the first week of August.”

Gomez named closer: On a lighter note, Etch’ said righty reliever Ricardo Gomez is officially the team’s closer. With a scoreless ninth inning on Sunday, Gomez has gone 13 scoreless innings in his last 12 games since returning from the disabled list on June 8.

“And he’s the closer when R.J. comes back, too,” said Etch’, referring to reliever R.J. Rodriguez, who had a 2.36 ERA and 11 saves when he was picked up on June 25 by Campeche (Mexican League). Rodriguez will likely return to York when the Mexican League wraps up its season in August.

“When R.J. left and went to Mexico, this guy (Gomez) has done a good job,” Etch’ said.

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Making sense of the starting rotation

LHP James Houser (above) could be a candidate for the starting rotation at some point this season. John A. Pavoncello photo file photo - jpavoncello@yorkdispatch.com

The Revs have finally found their offense. And just when that happens, York saw lefty starter Ryan Feierabend picked up by the Cincinnati Reds earlier this week.

As a result, the Revs are still looking for a fifth starter.

York is looking at a couple pitchers at the moment, but it’s unclear if either will join the Revs anytime soon.

In the meantime, the Revs’ starting rotation looks like this: 1. RHP Corey Thurman (4-1, 4.39 ERA), 2. RHP Omar Javier (0-3, 5.76), 3. LHP Chris Cody (2-5, 5.23), 4. LHP Jesus Sanchez (1-2, 4.44) and 5. RHP Shawn Hill (1-0, 4.32).

Thurman, Hill and Cody are the team’s three best starters at this point, while Javier and Sanchez haven’t shown enough to solidify a regular spot in the starting rotation.

And the Revs could be in even more trouble sooner than later given Hill’s dominance on the mound. Hill has now thrown 21.2 scoreless innings in a row after holding Camden to no runs on three hits in seven innings of work on Thursday night at Sovereign Bank Stadium.He has yet to give up a run in all four of his starts this year, and big league ball clubs are likely paying attention. There was a pro scout in the press box at Thursday’s game checking out Hill, who is a former major leaguer.

Anyway, should the Revs not find a starter out on the open market, I figured we’d take a look at who York might eventually look at to challenge Javier or Sanchez.

Houser: Back in spring training, Revs’ pitching coach Mark Mason talked about right-hander James Houser eventually being worked into the starting rotation later in the season. In 16 appearances out of the bullpen (through Wednesday), Houser has a 6.75 ERA, striking out 13 and walking four in 14.2 innings. Houser, a former 2nd round pick of the Tampa Bay Rays in 2003, had been a starter his whole career until the 2010 season, so he has plenty of experience in a starting role.

RHP Shaun Garceau

Garceau: Garceau might be a long shot, but he should be tossed into this discussion nonetheless.  The former St. Louis Cardinals prospect was a starter all of his career until coming to York in 2011. He went back-and-forth between the bullpen and starting rotation all of last year with the Revs, and he had a couple really good moments as a starter.

In 20 appearances a year ago, including 10 starts between June 29-September 11, the 24-year-old went 3-3 with a 3.41 ERA, allowing only 61 hits in 71.1 innings. He enjoyed the best month of July in Revolution history, posting a 1.71 ERA in eight games (three starts), and combined to go 2-0 with a 1.70 ERA from June 29 through August 10. Garceau came within two outs of a complete game shutout on August 10 in a 4-1 win at Camden. Two starts later, he did go the distance in just the second complete game shutout in Revs history, a four-hit, nine-strikeout effort against the Road Warriors on August 20.

However, the 24-year-old righty has been battling injuries all of the 2012 season. He made his first appearance out of the bullpen on May 4, Garceau tossed one scoreless inning. However, he went on the inactive list shortly after to recover from tendonitis in his throwing arm. Garceau returned to action on June 5, but gave up two runs on a hit and a walk in one inning of relief. If he were to start, it wouldn’t be anytime soon. First, he has to show he’s healthy and then York can focus on building up his arm strength.

Novoa: Left-hander Yunior Novoa is the likely candidate to get a spot in the rotation. Like Javier and Sanchez, Novoa has gone back-and-forth between being a reliever and a starter this season.

But he’s looked more impressive out of the bullpen. In seven appearances (12.1 IP), Novoa has yet to give up an earned run. In his five starts for York (21.1 IP), Novoa has a 9.70 ERA.

My take: If Hill gets picked up soon, which is likely to happen, York will be in a real conundrum with its starting rotation. Thurman and Cody have been solid most of the year, but after that? Javier, Sanchez and Novoa have been inconsistent. The Revs will need to bring some serviceable bodies in (and that could likely happen soon, too). Otherwise, they’ll have to hope the hot hitting as of late carries them for the next month-and-a-half until the first half of the season wraps up.

Bullpen: Until Thursday night, York’s bullpen had been the strongest and most consistent part of the team this year (Relievers Stephen Penney and James Houser combined to allow seven runs to Camden on Thursday night, which blew York’s 4-0 lead and proved to be the difference in the Riversharks’ 7-4 win). And with Garceau and lefty reliever Kris Regas recently returning, it’s likely even stronger.

As it stands now, the Revs have four right-handers and four left-handers in the bullpen, so York can flexible with who they send to the mound in the later innings.

Right-hander Ricardo Gomez (pictured left) could return soon as well. He’s been on the disabled list, dealing with bone chips, since early May after making three appearances to start the year, accumulating a 10.80 ERA over 3.1 IP.

Should he return, the Revs will have to figure out who to move off the active roster. York currently is at the Atlantic League maximum with 25 active players – 13 pitchers and 12 position players.

Either way, York likely wants to see if Gomez can return to his 2011 form, when he posted a 2.13 ERA in 21 appearances for the Revs.

Gomez pitched to York hitters during Thursday’s batting practice, and Revs pitching coach Mark Mason said earlier this week Gomez could see game action as early as Saturday.

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