Atlantic League news, transactions April 30-May 6
YORK REVOLUTION: Signed RHP Shawn Hill, released RHP Santo Luis
Hill, 31, comes to the Atlantic League for the first time after last pitching in the big leagues in 2010 with the Toronto Blue Jays. He came back for spring training in 2011 but found out he needed surgery to repair a blood circulation issue. He missed the entire 2011 season as a result of the surgery. Hill worked out for a couple affiliated scouts this spring. For his career, Hill has started 44 games in the majors for three different clubs from 2004 to 2010, posting a 9-18 record and 4.74 ERA to this point. He was originally drafted in the sixth round in 2000 by the Montreal Expos.
The release of Luis isn’t much of a surprise, though his performance this season was a bit of a surprise considering what he did in 2011. Playing for the Lincoln Saltdogs (American Association) last season, Luis posted a 0.83 ERA in 21 appearances. The Revs liked him so much that he was among the first batch of players signed for the 2012 season. Luis, 28, tossed 2.1 combined innings of scoreless ball in his first two appearances. In his third and final appearance, he surrendered two hits, including a two-run homer, in 1.2 innings. In all, Luis had a 4.50 ERA, giving up two earned runs on four hits in four innings of work.
BRIDGEPORT BLUEFISH: RHP Dan Stange picked up by the San Diego Padres; Bluefish signed OF Collin DeLome
Stange appeared in three games out of the bullpen for the Bluefish in 2012, posting a solid 2.25 ERA, allowing three hits and four walks while striking out six in four innings of work. The 26-year-old was originally drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the seventh round in 2006 and later reached the big leagues in 2010 with the D’Backs, appearing in four games. His signing by the San Diego Padres is somewhat interesting considering Stange was released in mid-April by the Padres Class AAA Reno team. It’s unclear what level Stange has been assigned to play at.
DeLome, 26, was originally drafted by the Texas Rangers in the fifth round of the 2007 amateur draft. He spent his entire career with the Rangers’ organization before coming to Bridgeport. With Class AAA Oklahoma City in 2011, DeLome batted .256 with seven homers and 29 RBIs in 89 games. He began the 2012 season with Oklahoma City but was released on April 18 after he started out the year batting .176 in 10 games.
LONG ISLAND DUCKS: Signed RHP Wynn Pelzer
Pelzer, 25, comes to the Atlantic League for the first time in his career after spending his first five minor league seasons split between the San Diego Padres’ and Baltimore Orioles’ minor leagues. Originally drafted in the ninth round of the 2007 draft by the Padres, in 2011 Pelzer reached Class AAA Norfolk (Orioles), where he posted a 3.09 ERA in eight relief appearances. Looking at his numbers, it looks like he’s gone back and forth between being a starter and a reliever for most of his career. He began the 2012 season at Class AA Bowie (Orioles), going 0-2 with a 9.00 ERA in three games before being released on April 19.
SOUTHERN MARYLAND BLUE CRABS: Signed OF Brian Barton; Traded OF Bridger Hunt to New Jersey Jackets (Can-Am League) for a player to be named later
Barton, 30, returns to Southern Maryland for the second year in a row and his third in the Atlantic League. In 2011, the former major leaguer batted .304 with 12 homers and 42 RBIs in 87 games for the Blue Crabs. Barton reached the big leagues with the St. Louis Cardinals in 2008, batting .268 with two homers and 13 RBIs in 82 games.
Hunt, 26, is a former Los Angeles Dodgers prospect who split last season between the Blue Crabs and the Rockland Boulders, of the independent Can-Am League. With Rockland, Hunt batted .237 (14-for-59) with an RBI in 18 games. Hunt batted .281 (27-for-96) with two homers and 15 RBIs in 30 games for Southern Maryland. This year, Hunt had played in three games and went 0-for-9 at the plate before being traded to New Jersey.
SUGAR LAND SKEETERS: Signed INF Marcos Cabral and INF Victor Gutierrez
According to the transactions page on AtlanticLeague.com, the Skeeters signed and activated Gutierrez this week. He is listed on the team’s roster as well and he did play in a game this past week. Gutierrez, 34, was originally set to serve as a base coach this year for Sugar Land, but it looks like the former York Revolution player is now a player-coach for the Skeeters. Anyway, this marks his seventh straight season in the Atlantic League. Last season with the Road Warriors, he batted .289 with a homer and 27 RBIs in 67 games.
Cabral, 28, is a former prospect of the New York Mets, Florida (now Miami) Marlins, Washington Nationals, Toronto Blue Jays and Houston Astros who topped out at at Class AAA 2008 and 2010. He played for the Atlantic League’s Road Warriors in 2011, batting .280 with 31 RBIs and 49 runs scored in 109 games.
The recent additions now gives Sugar Land seven infielders on the active roster and 27 overall. Being that rosters have to be paired down to 25 players by the end of the month, it’ll be interesting to see what the Skeeters do with their players in the next few weeks.
LANCASTER BARNSTORMERS: Signed OF Brandon Haveman
Haveman, 25, is just three years removed from playing college ball at Division I Purdue. He joined the Seattle Mariners’ organization as an undrafted free agent in 2009 and later in 2011 reached Class AAA Tacoma, where he batted .200 with a homer and four RBIs in 16 games. For his career, Haveman is a .292 hitter in three minor league seasons.