Wednesday Winter Hot Stove – Edition 8

Opening-Day-Player-Line
The winter hot stove is certainly going to begin heating up around the Atlantic League over the next month or so, especially once the calendar flips from 2013 to 2014. Typically, the league’s teams begin re-signing players from the previous year and welcoming new additions following the holiday season and New Year. The Ducks have yet to announce any player signings for their 15th Anniversary Season, but it’s a sure thing that President/General Manager Michael Pfaff, Manager Kevin Baez and the rest of the Ducks player personnel department are already beginning to plan the roster as they seek a three-peat.

The 2013 roster certainly saw several players put together outstanding seasons while others who had previously done well struggled somewhat. Each season sees a plethora of players come through the league for each team. Many have players that get signed by Major League or outside organizations. Each team goes through injuries where players’ seasons end early and replacements for the wounded are brought in. Some get released, some get traded and some stay the entire year and help the team to a championship. Ultimately, one of the toughest tasks for anyone in a player personnel department is to determine which of the players from the previous year are worthy of a spot on the 2014 season.

Let’s take a look at the Ducks playoff roster from 2013, each of  whom the Ducks  own the Atlantic League rights to:

Pitchers:
Derek Blacksher* – RHP
Bobby Blevins* – RHP
John Brownell – RHP
Pete Budkevics – RHP
Nick DeBarr – RHP
Shaun Garceau* – RHP
Daniel Herrera – LHP
Jared Lansford – RHP
Josh Lansford – RHP
Leo Rosales – RHP
Josh Strawn* – RHP
Erick Threets – LHP
Bob Zimmermann – RHP

Catchers:
Ramon Castro
Ralph Henriquez

Infielders:
Josh Barfield
Bill Hall
Dan Lyons
Ray Navarrete
Bryant Nelson
Ryan Strieby

Outfielders:
Adam Bailey
Kraig Binick
Lew Ford
P.J. Phillips

*Player acquired from outside league. First rights for 2014 reverted back to outside league.

In addition to these players, the Ducks also have exclusive league negotiating rights to these players since they were either signed from the Ducks by an outside organization or on the team’s inactive list at the end of the season:

Signed Players:
Joash Brodin – IF (Diamondbacks)
Ben Broussard – IF (Royals)
Eric Niesen – LHP (Red Sox)
Danny Perales – OF (Mexican League/Angels)
Dontrelle Willis – LHP (Angels)

Inactive List:
Anthony Armenio – C
Matt Fleishman – OF
Bill Murphy – LHP
Eddy Ramos – RHP
Ian Snell – RHP
Matt Way – LHP
James Houser – LHP

So, we want your opinion fans. Which of these players, if available, would you bring back? We already know that Ralph Henriquez was signed by the Pirates, Ray Navarrete has decided to retire and the five players signed last year all likely have the opportunity to stay with the team they were signed by in 2013. Let us know which players you think deserve a spot on the 2014 roster by leaving a comment on this story. It’s likely we will once again see some returners from last year’s championship squad along with some new faces when Opening Night arrives on Friday, April 25 in Somerset.

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Posted on December 19, 2013, in Winter Hot Stove and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I’d like to see the following return:

    Pitchers: Blevins, Brownell, Garceau, Lansford & Lansford, Rosales, Zimmermann
    Catchers: Castro
    Infielders: Barfield, Hall, Lyons, Strieby
    Outfielders: Bailey, Binick, Ford
    If possible: Brodin & Broussard
    From Inactive List: Houser

  2. One of the home-ground stats I use to evaluate players offensively is Runs Contributed per Game (RPG).

    The formula is calculated by adding a player’s runs scored and RBI’s together; then subtracting Home Runs (because home runs result in both a RBI and a Run so you would be double counting if you didn’t) then divided by At Bats. Then I times this preliminary number by 4 (which is usually the amount of At Bats a player gets per game) to come up with how many runs does a player contribute per game via driving them in or scoring them themselves– a true measure of offensive worth.

    ((R+RBI-HR)/AB)*4

    Here are the Ducks’ players that contributed more than one run per game based on last year’s stats:

    Player/RCG

    Hall, B 1.17 RCG
    Perales, D 1.13 RCG
    Brodin, J 1.12 RCG
    Nelson, B 1.09 RCG
    Ford, L 1.04 RCG

    These are some players I would love to see back on Long Island (pending Brodin’s and Perales’ affiliated plans).

    On the starting pitching side, I like pitchers who give you 6+ innings per game (eat innings) with at least a 2.5:1 strike-out-to-walk ratio (good control). They don’t help the opposing club with free base runners. Brownell and Garceau would be high on the list to see again in 2014.

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