Yesterday was a yucky day here in beautiful Greeneville. An ice storm paralyzed the town and made the Greeneville Astros reschedule their new look launch until Tuesday. However, the extra down time allowed me to finalized my plans to attend Spring Training this season.
I am looking forward to touching base with guys who have passed through Greeneville who are in both major and minor league camp. I will also have my eye out for players who might be coming to Greeneville this season when I get a chance to check out the back fields.
Last season, the Greeneville roster was made up of mostly players who had made at least an appearance in Greeneville in 2011 (12) and those drafted or signed in 2012 (11). There were only five players who were promoted to Greeneville to start the season. This was a significant departure from the previous year when only four players on the roster had been in Greeneville the year before and 14 were promoted from the GCL or the Dominican Summer League. This year will tell us if last year was an anomaly or if it is the way the new front office does things.
Here are the players from last year's GCL & DSL teams that I will be watching for in Spring Training because I think they could possibly wind up in Greeneville this season. Of course, final roster construction is heavily impacted by the players to be drafted in 2013 and injuries.
Brett Phillips - The center fielder was the 6th round pick from
last years draft won't turn 19 until May. He put up a solid 2012 in the
GCL hitting .251 with 13 extra base hits (7 2b, 6 3b, 0 HR). He had a
.720 OPS with an even .360 in both on base and slugging. He is one of
the guys I fully expect to wind up in Greeneville this season.
Samil De Los Santos - A 19 year old RHP from the Dominican
Republic. He fanned 63 batters in 57 2/3 IP in the DSL in 2012. He
walked 20 which is a bit high but when you consider that he walked 20 in
15 1/3 innings in 2011; you can see it is a vast improvement. Despite
the 20 walks, his WHIP was 1.075.
Pedro Coa - The 20 year old catcher from Venezuela made a strong
improvement in the DSL in 2012. His line from 2011 was .186/.263/.198.
Last year it was .256/.320/.311. He is a contact hitter who had just
eight walks and five strikeouts in 104 plate appearances. In the field,
he threw out 60% of base stealers (25 out of 42)! He also has some
versatility playing six games at 1B, two games at 2B and a game each at
3B and SS.
Agapito Barrios - The 19 year old RHP from Panama cut his walks
significantly in 2012. He went from 27 in 58 2/3 IP in the DSL in 2011
to just 8 in 49 1/3 IP in the GCL in 2012.
Alfredo Gonzalez - 20 year old catcher who hit .244 in 27 games with the GCL Astros last year. His average jumped from .172 in the GCL in 2011. He also improved in every defensive category as well last year.
Juan Santana - 18 year old middle infielder from the Dominican Republic. He hit .268 last season in the GCL. He played 33 games at 2nd and made just three errors. Struggled defensively at SS in 24 games, making 8 errors.
Wallace Gonzalez - He will be 20 when he reports this spring. The former 29th round pick in 2011 has spent two years in the GCL; though the 2011 season hardly counts because he only appeared in 18 games. He hit .256 in 41 games in 2012 and made just one error in the OF in 42 chances.
Enderson Franco - The 20 year old RHP from Venezuela also improved his control in 2012 while he repeated the GCL. He went from 17 walks in 2011 in 47 IP to just 8 walks last season in 50 IP. He also saw his strike outs increase from 26 to 37.
Luis Reynoso - The 18 year old from the Dominican Republic had a solid season at the plate in the DSL in 2012. He hit .281 with a .381 OBP. In the field, he struggled making 20 errors in 34 games at SS. He made three errors in 12 games at 2nd. I expect him to start in the GCL but could earn a spot in Greeneville depending on who is drafted or signed.
Former Player News:
Yesterday, Baseball America's transaction page reported that the Dodgers signed former G-Stro Victor Garate to a minor league deal.