Texas's full-season farm teams have announced their Opening Day rosters, though I'm sure we'll see a few late changes. AAA ROUND ROCK Pitchers:
Collin Balester, Jeff Beliveau, Richard Bleier, Lisalverto Bonilla, Neal Cotts, Justin Grimm, Evan Meek, Nate Robertson, Yoshinori Tateyama, Randy Wells, Johan Yan
Tateyama re-signed. The 2008 6th-rounder Bleier is making his AAA debut after three years (one injury-hampered) in Frisco. Bonilla is half of the return for Michael Young; he's also new to AAA. Moments ago, Texas announced that Brad Mills had cleared waivers and was outrighted to Round Rock. Catchers:
Juan Apodaca, Jose Felix, Eli Whiteside
Felix has a .248/.268/.336 line in 181 games at AA Frisco. He knocked a career-best seven homers and batted .260 last year but rarely walked (1 per 61 plate appearances last year.) Infielders:
1B Brandon Allen, 1B Chris McGuiness, IF Greg Miclat, 3B Mike Olt, SS Jurickson Profar, 2B/3B Yangervis Solarte
Rule 5 pick McGuiness returns from Cleveland. He played some outfield while with the Tribe. Allen and Solarte can also play in left. Olt and Profar, you probably have already heard of. Outfielders
: Jim Adduci, Engel Beltre, Joey Butler, Aaron Cunningham
Beltre has batted .247/.296/.360 in 302 AA games, although 2012 was easily his best year, when he set career highs in triples, homers and stolen bases. AA FRISCO Pitchers:
Jake Brigham, Cody Buckel, Ryan Feierabend, Wilmer Font, Randy Henry, Roman Mendez, Carlos Pimentel, Kevin Pucetas, Neil Ramirez, Jimmy Reyes, Ryan Rodebaugh, Ben Rowen, Tyler Tufts, Ross Wolf
The 20-year-old Buckel spent half of 2012 in Frisco but remains the youngest pitcher by nearly two years. When I spoke of some pitchers not being viable for AA yesterday, I had Feierabend and Pucetas in mind, as both have over 400 innings of AAA experience. I was also expecting some among Brigham, Font, Pimentel and Ramirez to be in AAA. Henry, Reyes and Rowen are new to the level.
Tomas Telis, Zach Zaneski
The contact-oriented Telis slumped to .247/.283/.331 in high-A Myrtle Beach last year. Infielders:
SS Hanser Alberto, 3B Alex Buchholz, 2B Odubel Herrera, 1B Brett Nicholas, MIF Guilder Rodriguez, 1B/2B Alejandro Selen
Alberto (20 years, 5 months) is the youngest RoughRider and ascends to Frisco after an impressive Arizona Fall League campaign. He, Herrera and Nicholas are jumping from Myrtle Beach. The 24-year-old Selen skipped low-A and can play a little outfield. Outfielders:
Chih-Hsien Chiang, Jared Hoying, Teodoro Martinez, Ryan Strausborger
Martinez steps up from Myrtle Beach, where he batted .271/.316/.364, while Hoying and Strausborger are holdovers. Chiang was an offseason signing.
HIGH-A MYRTLE BEACH
Pitchers: Alec Asher, Jon Edwards, Jerad Eickhoff, Ryan Harvey, Luke Jackson, Phil Klein, Will Lamb, Nick Martinez, Arlett Mavare, Nick McBride, Victor Payano, Randol Rojas, Joe Van Meter
Jackson stays in Myrtle Beach as expected, but he's a strong candidate for midseason promotion. Asher (2012 5th rounder) and Harvey (18th) have sidestepped Hickory. Eickhoff, Lamb, Martinez and Payano spent all of 2012 in low-A, while Edwards and Klein earned brief late-season promotions to the coast last year. Catchers:
Pat Cantwell, Kellin Deglan
2011 1st-rounder Deglan spent 2011-2012 in low-A Hickory. Cantwell is Texas's 3rd rounder from 2012 and batted .255/.342/.335 for short-season Spokane. Infielders:
1B Trever Adams, IF Edwin Garcia, 2B Rougned Odor, 3B Drew Robinson, SS Luis Sardinas, 1B/3B Kevin Torres
Hickory's 2012 starting infield of Adams, Odor, Robinson and Sardinas moves up together. Odor and Sardinas are only 19. Torres can also catch. Outfielders
: Royce Bolinger, Zach Cone, Chris Grayson, Jake Skole
Bolinger and Cantwell have bypassed low-A. Cone, a supplemental 1st rounder from 2011, batted .262/.326/.461 in Hickory last year. Skole, another former first rounder, is testing high-A for a second time.
LOW-A HICKORY Pitchers:
Eric Brooks, Alexander Claudio, CJ Edwards, Keone Kela, John Kukuruda, Jose Leclerc, Josh McElwee, Connor Sadzeck, Ryne Slack, Tyler Smith, Sam Stafford, Jose Valdespina, Kelvin Vasquez
Every pitcher is new to full-season ball except McElwee, who spent a few days in Myrtle Beach to close 2012. Stafford, a 13th rounder out of UT-Austin, has not pitched professionally, and Smith has all of 0.2 innings to his credit. Leclerc and Vasquez haven't pitched outside of the Dominican Summer League. Texas (and other teams) often hold back young hurlers to limit their innings, so someone you might have expected or wanted to see here could be promoted by May or so. Catchers:
Jorge Alfaro, David Lyon, Joe Maloney
Alfaro does indeed return to Hickory, perhaps only for a little while. Maloney can also play first base. Infielders:
3B Joey Gallo, SS Luis Marte, IF Luis Mendez, IF Ryan Rua
Mendez and Rua have experience across the diamond. Gallo and Marte will stick to one spot on the field. Outfielders:
Jordan Akins, Preston Beck, Lewis Brinson, Nomar Mazara, Nick Williams
A heady group. The latter three are teenagers, as are Alfaro, Gallo and Marte.
I'll save news on releases and the unassigned for tomorrow.
Newberg Report (newbergreport.com)