Revs signings: York re-signs Tracy, Penney, adds RHP Martinez
Infielder Chad Tracy and relief pitcher Stephen Penney will be returning to York in 2014 while right-handed pitcher Jorge Martinez will make his Atlantic League debut for the Revs, the team announced Friday.
The signings bring York’s 2014 roster to 26 players, one short of the league maximum of 27 players that teams are allowed to carry through the first month of the season.
The other Chad Tracy: Not to be confused with big leaguer Chad Tracy who was recently released by the Los Angeles Angels, this Chad Tracy has never reached the majors in eight pro seasons and was recently released by the Baltimore Orioles.
The son of former Colorado Rockies’ manager Jim Tracy, the 28-year-old Chad Tracy batted .289 with nine homers and 37 RBIs in 59 games with the Revs last season in what was then his Atlantic League debut. He came to York after playing in 45 games with the Kansas City Royals’ Class AAA Omaha affiliate, where he posted a .187 average with four homers and 18 RBIs.
Click here to check out a small feature on Tracy from last season shortly after he arrived in York. The Revs now have six infielders signed.
Penney: Penney, a 27-year-old 6-foot, 7-inch right-hander and former Seattle Mariners‘ prospect, first came to York in 2012 and proceeded to put together an impressive 3.20 ERA and 2-1 record in 60 relief appearances that season. He returned in 2013 and went 5-2 with a 3.35 ERA in 57 games, striking out 52 and walking nine. (Check out old features on the charismatic Penney here and here). It’s a wonder why Penney hasn’t received much interest from big league ball clubs the last two years. I get that he posted an unimpressive 4.25 ERA in 38 games in his only season at the Class AA level in 2011. But he’s only 27, has been healthy his entire seven-year pro career, has put together solid numbers against triple-A level batters in the Atlantic League each of the last two years and has never played above double-A. Plus, he’s a great locker room guy with a positive outlook on life.
Martinez: From what I could find browsing online, Martinez pitched in Cuba as recently as last season for a team called Matanzas. If this is the same guy, Martinez over the off-season played winter ball in Puerto Rico, going 3-3 with a 2.49 ERA in 11 games (nine starts), with 36 strikeouts and 11 walks in 47 innings of work for Santurce, alongside former Revs pitcher James Houser, current Somerset pitcher Dave Harden, current Long Island pitcher Eric Niesen and former Camden pitcher Jon Velasquez. According to baseballreference.com, Martinez, now 30, in 2009 tossed a no-hitter and went 9-6 with 4.58 ERA for Matanzas.
Other Atlantic League-related items: Other signings across the Atlantic League from Wednesday and Thursday (April 2 and 3):
Long Island: The Ducks signed infielder Cody Puckett, a 27-year-0ld who reached the Class AAA level last season in his sixth pro season. A career .259 hitter in 239 games at the Class AA level, Pucket will make his Atlantic League debut with Long Island. The Ducks now have 20 players signed.
Bridgeport: The Bluefish signed former big league outfielder Brandon Boggs and infielder/outfielder Cody Overbeck. Boggs, 31, has a career .209 average in 130 major league games, playing for the Texas Rangers and Milwaukee Brewers in spurts from 2008 to 2011. Overbeck, 27, has spent his entire six-year pro career in the minors with the Phillies, spending the last two and a half seasons at Class AAA Lehigh Valley, where he was a career .257 average in 323 games. Boggs and Overbeck will make their Atlantic League debuts with the ‘Fish. Bridgeport now has 22 players under contract for the 2014 campaign, including a league-high 10 former big leaguers and another five players with Class AAA experience.
Lancaster: The Barnstormers re-signed former big league outfielder Greg Golson and added infielder Jim Negrych. Golson, 28, played in 40 big league games over four separate seasons from 2008 to 2011 with the Philadelphia Phillies, Texas Rangers and New York Yankees. Golson had a very brief stay with the Barnstormers in 2013. After being released by the Colorado Rockies, the outfielder flew from his home in Austin, TX., to Lancaster on July 26. He led off the July 28 game against Southern Maryland with a home run. That would be his only contest with the Barnstormers in 2013, as the Atlanta Braves purchased his contract two days later. Golson batted .265 with seven steals in 23 games (16 at the Class AA and seven at Class AAA) over the remainder of the season in the Braves’ organization. Negrych, 29, will make his Atlantic League debut with Lancaster. The University of Pittsburgh product is a career .280 hitter in 247 games at the Class AAA level, having spent time in the minors with the Pirates, Marlins, Nationals and Blue Jays over eight pro seasons. The ‘Stormers now have 24 players inked for the upcoming season, including nine with big league experience.
Somerset: The Patriots signed a pair of utility players in Nate Spears and Steve Nikorak. Spears, 28, played in a combined seven big league games with the Boston Red Sox in 2011 and 2012. A fifth-round draft pick of the Baltimore Orioles in 2003, Spears is a career .244 hitter in 405 games at the Class AAA level. Nikorak, 24, played for the White Sox rookie ball teams in 2012. Both Spears and Nikorak will make their Atlantic League debuts with Somerset. The Pats’ now have 23 players signed, including four former big leaguers.