Revs release OF Tyler Graham
The York Revolution released outfielder Tyler Graham on Wednesday. The move is somewhat surprising considering Graham is just 29-year-old and made his big league debut at the end of last season with the Arizona Diamondbacks.
But it makes sense when figuring in Graham’s injury-plagued season so far this year and his lack of production at the plate. Graham played in 24 of York’s 33 games before being released. He missed an entire week of games after pulling something in his groin when rounding second base in York’s 11-9 win over Somerset on May 7.
Graham hit just .245 (23-for-94) with five doubles, nine RBIs, 10 runs scored and just two stolen bases. He struck out 22 times.
Revs’ manager Mark Mason moved Graham from the lead-off spot to the bottom of the lineup in the second week of the season, saying at the time that he and third-base coach Enohel Polanco were working with Graham to get his hands to be more calm at the plate. In particular, he wanted to see Graham keep his arms in a set position while at the plate instead of wagging the bat front and back while in a batting stance, similar to what retired big leaguer Gary Sheffield was known for doing at the plate.
“Mechanically, I think he needs (to be) a little bit more quiet with his hands,” Mason had said in an interview May 2. “I don’t think he gets into a hitting position a lot of times before the ball gets on him. He’s one of these guys (motions moving bat back-and-forth while in batting stance position), he still has some movement. I’d like to see him getting in more of a hitting stance sooner to see the ball and get into it. If you’re one of these guys you get here (bat is leaning forward) and the ball is here (halfway to home plate) and now you got to try to get back and it’s going to make it really tough to handle inside pitches. If you noticed they’ve been burying him in with fastballs.”
Majors: Graham had yet to reach the majors in his seventh year as a pro last season. He started last season with the San Francisco Giants’ Class AAA Fresno affiliate, where he fractured his right throwing shoulder when diving for a fly ball in the fifth game of the season.
The Giants placed him on the disabled list, which led to free agency and his signed with the Arizona Diamondbacks following four months of rehabilitation. Graham returned in time for the final two months of the season, spending a month at Class AAA Reno before earning a call up the D-Backs’ big league club in September.
He ended up playing in 10 games, but saw just two plate appearances. Graham underwent surgery to the shoulder shortly after the season to repair a bone spur and “clean up the labrum,” he said in an interview on the first day of the Revs’ spring training last month.
He said he also battled injures his senior season at Oregon State University in 2006, when the Beavers won the national championship. He returned near the end of that college season to help his club win it all.
He said last month that all of his injuries had come as a result of diving for fly balls.
“You’re going after a ball, you can’t back off. It’s the way I play and it’s cost me a lot of time,” Graham said. “But at the same time, if I didn’t play that way I didn’t think I could get there (to the big leagues).”
Roster: York’s roster is now at 26 active players, one below the league maximum, which is currently at 27 until it has to be paired down to 25 at the end of the month. The Revs also have five outfielders.