Making sense of the Revs moves
OK. So, lets recap the moves made by the York Revolution in recent weeks. Gone is relief pitcher J.J. Pacella and infielders Mark Ori and Juan Martinez. Added are relief pitchers Geoff Geary and Ricardo Gomez and infielders Ramon Castro and Jose Herrera.
And while we’re at it, lets throw in the release of shortstop Tanner Townsend and the signing of shortstop Eric Eymann back in early June.
The moves have turned out to be big upgrades for York.
Short stop: Lets start with shortstop. Townsend batted .209 with a home run and four RBIs in 12 games for the Revs. Eymann, meanwhile, has gathered a .299 batting average (through Wednesday) with three home runs and 16 RBIs in 19 games.
Eymann’s production hasn’t gone unnoticed by Revs manager Andy Etchebarren, either.
“Not taking anything away from Tanner (Townsend), but (Eymann) has played in Triple-A for a little bit. Tanner never even played affiliate. Taking nothing away from Tanner (Townsend), but (Eymann) is just a higher caliber player,” Etchebarren said after Wednesday’s 8-1 win over the Road Warriors.
Second base: Next, lets take a look at second base, where Castro has started since Sunday. Liu Rodriguez had been York’s everyday second baseman for most of the year until Castro arrived, but he’s struggled at the plate, batting just .254 with eight RBIs in 42 games.
Castro has collected a .400 batting average in five games (through Wednesday), seemingly picking up where he left off from last year when he set Revolution records with a .339 batting average, a .437 on-base percentage and 37 doubles, ranking second in the Atlantic League in all three categories.
Designated hitter: Like Castro, Herrera is also putting up solid numbers just like he did for York a year ago, when he batted .337 with 10 home runs and 87 RBIs.
Herrera joined York on June 10 just days after being released from Southern Maryland, where he struggled at the plate with a .239 batting average in 29 games.
Herrera has returned to his 2010 form with York, though, batting .382 (13-34) in his last eight games in the designated hitter spot for the Revs.
And Etchebarren believes the combination of Herrera and Castro has had an impact on the rest of the lineup.
“We’re starting to hit the ball a little bit. I really believe having Herrera and Castro makes guys relax. That’s what I think. I can see it. I feel it,” Etchebarren said Wednesday. “Guys aren’t going out there saying ‘I gotta do it. I gotta do it.’ They’re getting five, six hits in a game. Everybody wants to do it.”
Since June 14 the Revs have won seven of nine games (through Wednesday), averaging just over 10 hits and nearly six runs in those nine contests.
Pitching: York got two solid right-handed relievers with the addition of Geary and Gomez to the bullpen. Gomez made his debut for York on Wednesday night, and pitched two scoreless innings in relief, collecting four strikeouts along the way.
Etchebarren said he will look to use Gomez this season as a multiple-inning relief pitcher.
Geary, a former major league reliever with the Philadelphia Phillies and Houston Astros, arrived in York on Thursday. Last year, he pitched in a total of 31 games at Class AAA last year at Oklahoma City and Albuquerque, going 4-6 with a 5.32 ERA. Geary, 35, has pitched in total of 287 games in the majors with the Phillies and the Astros.