Minor League Transactions: March 30-April 5

Players listed with an asterisk (*) signed minor league contracts, replacing major league pacts with the same organization.

• Members of the 40-man roster who are on optional assignment in the minors must sign minor league contracts, with their salaries determined by the Collective Bargaining Agreement.

• Players outrighted off the 40-man roster for the first time have no recourse—assuming they clear waivers, they must sign a minor league pact with the same organization. For each subsequent removal from the 40-man, they may elect free agency or accept the minor league assignment and sign a new contract.

Arizona Diamondbacks
Signed:
RHP Esmerling Vasquez*, LHP Jordan Norberto*, 1B Brandon Allen*, 2B Tony Abreu*, SS Josh Wilson
Released: RHP Jeff Dietz, RHP T.J. Hose, RHP Kip Wells, C Sean Coughlin, C Errol Hollinger, C P.J. Pilittere, 1B Bryan Byrne
Removed from 40-man: 2B Tony Abreu (outrighted to Triple-A)
Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Esmerling Vasquez, 1B Brandon Allen

Atlanta Braves
Signed:
RHP Scott Proctor (re-signed), 2B C.J. Retherford, SS Diory Hernandez*, OF Joe Mather*, OF Hilton Richardson
Released: RHP David Francis, RHP Amable Nin, RHP Nate Russ, 1B Barbaro Canizares, 1B Chris Garcia, 1B Michael Jones, 2B Ivan Marin, 3B Chris Curley, OF Brent Clevlen, OF Daniel Falcon, OF Yasser Gomez, OF Jake Hanson, OF Cole Miles, OF Beau Torbert
Acquired: OF Marcus Lemon from Rangers for future considerations
Recalled: LHP Mike Minor

Baltimore Orioles
Signed:
RHP Rick VandenHurk*, C Craig Tatum*
Released: RHP Daurin Tavarez, LHP Chad Thall, C Freuny Parra, 1B David Anderson, 2B Gary Helmick, 2B Anyi Tejeda, OF Danny Figueroa, OF Joe Gaetti
Placed on disqualified list: 2B Alexander Zorrilla
Recalled: LHP Zach Britton
Added to 40-man roster: RHP Josh Rupe
Removed from 40-man: RHP Rick VandenHurk (outrighted to Triple-A)

Boston Red Sox
Signed:
RHP Chris Martin (Grand Prairie (American Association)), LHP Hideki Okajima*
Released: RHP Adam Mills, LHP Matt Phillips, LHP Itsuki Shoda, 3B Ryan Khoury, OF Aaron Bates, OF Willie Holmes, OF Jason Place
Traded: RHP Pedro Perez to Tigers for future considerations
Traded: OF Bubba Bell to Indians for cash considerations
Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Alfredo Aceves, LHP Hideki Okajima, C Michael McKenry

Boston selected Jason Place 27th overall in the ’06 draft, one spot ahead of Daniel Bard. Intrigued by Place's athleticism and power/speed potential, the Red Sox signed the South Carolina prepster for $1.3 million, but did not receive suitable return on investment. He peaked at the high Class A level from ’08 through ’10, batting .246/.321/.418 with three times as many strikeouts (239) as walks (78) in 894 plate appearances.

Chicago Cubs
Signed:
RHP Justin Berg*, RHP Robert Coello*, RHP Thomas Diamond*, RHP Ramon Ortiz, C Max Ramirez*
Released: RHP Chris Huseby, RHP Alex Maestri, RHP Mike Perconte, RHP Aaron Shafer, LHP James Leverton, LHP Marcos Perez, LHP Chris Siegfried, LHP Polin Trinidad, OF Alvaro Ramirez
Added to 40-man roster: OF Reed Johnson
Removed from 40-man: C Max Ramirez (outrighted to Triple-A)

As John Manuel tweets, the Cubs confounded pre-draft expectations in ’06 by doling out $1.3 million to 11th-rounder Chris Huseby and a $10 million, major league pact for fifth-rounder Jeff Samardzija. The Shark made the big league bullpen (largely because he's out of options), while Huseby earned his release for totaling just 75 innings over the past three seasons (he also dabbled as a right fielder last season in the Northwest League).

Aaron Shafer, an ’08 second-round pick, fared well overall after a switch to the bullpen last season (8.6 strikeouts, 2.2 walks per nine innings), but Double-A batters seemed a bit less baffled by his fringy stuff and short-arm delivery.

Chicago White Sox
Signed:
RHP Jeff Marquez*
Added to 40-man roster: OF Lastings Milledge
Removed from 40-man: RHP Jeff Marquez (outrighted to Triple-A)

Cincinnati Reds
Signed:
RHP David Johnson
Released: RHP Ricky Bowen, 3B Miguel Chacoa, 3B Oliver Santos, OF Alex Oliveras, OF Cameron Satterwhite
Recalled: RHP Jordan Smith
Option transferred: RHP Daryl Thompson (Triple-A to Double-A), C Yasmani Grandal (Double-A to High-A)

Cleveland Indians
Signed:
2B Luis Valbuena*
Released: RHP Ryan Gardner, RHP J.D. Goryl, RHP Brian Grening, RHP Alex Kaminsky, 3B Matt Cusick, OF Preston Mattingly
Acquired: OF Bubba Bell from Red Sox for cash considerations
Added to 40-man roster: RHP Justin Germano, 3B Jack Hannahan, SS Adam Everett, OF Travis Buck

With the release of Matt Cusick (and Andy Shive before him), the Indians have nothing left to show for last July's Kerry Wood deal—unless you count a heftier wallet.

Cleveland's array of minor league free agents made good—Justin Germano, Jack Hannahan, Adam Everett and Travis Buck—rivals last year's collection of Jamey Wright, Mark Grudzielanek, Austin Kearns and later Shelley Duncan.

Colorado Rockies
Released:
RHP Craig Baker, RHP Chris Sampson, LHP Greg Smith, C Johnny Bowden, C Ben Petralli, C Josh Powers, C Brandon Yarbrough, 1B Jason Botts, 1B Logan Parker, 2B Eric Duncan, 2B Tug Hulett, 3B Ryan Peisel, OF Nathan Hines, OF Gabe Suarez
Added to 40-man roster: 1B Jason Giambi

A fourth-round pick in ’06, Craig Baker pitched well at the Class A level in ’08 and ’09, notching 145 strikeouts in 119 innings and leading the minors with 33 saves in ’09. But the injury bug that plagued him early in his career came back with a vengeance last season, when Baker stumbled to a 9.16 ERA and 2.14 WHIP in 20 Double-A appearances.

Detroit Tigers
Signed:
RHP Sergio Berihuete
Acquired: RHP Pedro Perez from Red Sox for future considerations
Recalled: SS Audy Ciriaco
Added to 40-man roster: RHP Enrique Gonzalez
Removed from 40-man: 3B Audy Ciriaco (outrighted to Double-A)
Option transferred: RHP Lester Oliveros (Triple-A to Double-A)

Florida Marlins
Released:
RHP Brent Allar, RHP Brandon Cunniff, RHP Zach Dials, RHP Shawn Hill, LHP Jeff Gogal, LHP Zach Robertson, 2B Mike Pasek, OF Dewayne Wise
Traded: C Carlos Paulino to Pirates for 2B Jim Negrych
Added to 40-man roster: 3B Greg Dobbs, SS Donnie Murphy

Houston Astros
Released:
RHP Bubbie Buzachero, RHP Jailen Peguero, LHP Mike Modica, OF Freddy Parejo
Elected free agency: LHP Ryan Rowland-Smith
Added to 40-man roster: OF Joe Inglett
Removed from 40-man: LHP Ryan Rowland-Smith (outrighted to Triple-A)
Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Henry Villar
Option transferred: RHP David Carpenter (Triple-A to Double-A), RHP Jorge De Leon (Triple-A to Low-A), RHP Arcenio Leon (Triple-A to Double-A), 2B Jimmy Paredes (Triple-A to Double-A)

Outrighted off the 40-man roster, Ryan Rowland-Smith elected free agency but ultimately re-signed with Houston (not reflected here). It's probably a wise decision. Some innings are bound to shake loose with the Astros' combination of seasoned No. 5 starter (Nelson Figueroa) and inexperienced bullpen (Wilton Lopez, Mark Melancon, Enerio Del Rosario, Fernando Abad and Rule 5 pick Aneury Rodriguez).

Kansas City Royals
Signed:
RHP Jeff Suppan, C Lucas May*, OF Gregor Blanco*
Released: RHP Josh Worrell, LHP Ben Swaggerty, SS Jake Eigsti, OF Patrick Norris, OF Hilton Richardson
Placed on restricted list: C Drew Robertson, 1B Geoff Baldwin, SS J.D. Alfaro, OF Patrick White
Loaned to Mexican League: RHP Federico Castaneda (Mexico City)
Added to 40-man roster: LHP Tim Collins
Removed from 40-man: C Lucas May (outrighted to Triple-A), OF Gregor Blanco (outrighted to Triple-A)

Hilton Richardson, and ’07 seventh-rounder, showed off fine wheels (77 steals in 100 career attempts) but hit just .231/.304/.340 in four seasons, topping out in low Class A. The Braves quickly scooped him up.

Los Angeles Angels
Signed:
RHP Matt Palmer*, LHP Horacio Ramirez, C Orlando Mercado, 1B Marcus Nidiffer
Released: RHP Tony Pluta, RHP Jeremy Thorne, LHP Starlin Feliz, C Kevin Arendse, OF Rich Cates, OF Mike Turner
Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Matt Palmer, RHP Francisco Rodriguez, SS Andrew Romine

Los Angeles Dodgers
Signed:
RHP Javy Guerra*, RHP Travis Schlichting*, RHP Ramon Troncoso*, LHP Scott Elbert*, 1B John Lindsey*, 3B Russ Mitchell*, OF Jamie Hoffmann*
Released: RHP Juan Rincon, LHP James Adkins, LHP Antonio Castillo, C Orlando Mercado, 1B Steven Caseres, SS Michael Richard
Added to 40-man roster: RHP Lance Cormier, RHP Mike MacDougal, 2B Aaron Miles
Removed from 40-man: RHP Jon Link (outrighted to Triple-A), 1B John Lindsey (outrighted to Triple-A)
Optioned to Triple-A: LHP Scott Elbert
Option transferred: RHP Luis Vasquez (Double-A to High-A)

The Dodgers shifted James Adkins, the 39th overall pick in ’07 as Tennessee's all-time strikeout leader, to the bullpen last season in the hopes that his quality breaking stuff (and fringy fastball) would play up. Adkins' strikeout rate spiked at Double-A (9.9 per nine innings) as he held lefty batters to a 12-for-65 (.185) showing, but unfortunately his walk rate held steady (4.6) and righty batters battered him for an .828 OPS—and all six home runs allowed.

Milwaukee Brewers
Signed:
RHP Justin James*, OF Brandon Boggs*
Released: RHP Rigoberto Almonte, RHP Ryan Bernal, RHP David Johnson, RHP Chad Robinson, RHP Jose Sanchez, LHP Dexter Bobo, LHP Chris Cody, LHP Evan Frederickson, LHP Marques Kyles, LHP Brandon Ritchie, LHP Travis Stortz, C Mike Melillo, C James Skelton, C Austin Stockfisch, OF Peter Fatse
Placed on restricted list: SS Michael Marseco
Added to 40-man roster: 1B Erick Almonte, OF Jeremy Reed
Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Brandon Kintzler

Evan Frederickson wowed the Brewers with high-90s velocity at a pre-draft workout in ’08, prompting Milwaukee to reach to take him with the 35th overall pick, behind only Brett Lawrie and Jake Odorizzi. Signed for $1.01 million despite a checkered three-year, two-school college career that included 139 walks in 132 innings, Frederickson's walks-per-nine rate never fell below 7.6 in any of his three pro seasons. Last year, the 23-year-old issued 76 free passes in 68 innings.

The Brewers have Shaun Marcum and Zack Greinke, respectively, to show for ’08 draft picks Lawrie and Odorizzi, but that draft may not produce much else. Second-rounder Seth Lintz has a 7.35 ERA through three pro seasons, all in short-season ball, while fellow second-rounders Cutter Dykstra (traded for Nyjer Morgan) and Cody Adam (released) already have left the system. Fourth-rounder Josh Romanski got released but has latched on with the Yankees. The best bet for redemption may be third-round center fielder Logan Schafer, who has played well when healthy—but he's out for at least a month this year after missing virtually all of ’10.

Minnesota Twins
Signed:
RHP Jim Hoey*, 2B Luke Hughes*
Released: RHP David Gutierrez, C Jeff Howell, 1B Erik Lis
Voluntarily retired: RHP Chris Province

Reliever Chris Province (the haul for Boof Bonser in December ’09) worked around too many baserunners last season (1.59 WHIP), but it's hard to say how many of his 116 hits allowed in 97 innings could have been prevented with stronger defensive support. He's a strong groundball pitcher who pitched in front of Double-A and Triple-A clubs that finished with the worst records in their classifications, not to mention the highest ERAs and hit rates.

Younger brother of Twins prospect Carlos Gutierrez, David also attended Miami and entered pro ball as a Minnesota draft pick, albeit 17 rounds after first-rounder Carlos.

New York Mets
Signed:
LHP Pat Misch*, 1B Nick Evans*, SS Luis Hernandez*
Released: LHP Nelson Pereira, LHP Les Walrond, C Taylor Freeman, 1B Jeff Flagg, 1B Chris Shelton, OF Quintin Berry, OF Emmanuel Garcia, OF Cody Holliday
Loaned to Mexican League: 1B Japhet Amador (Mexico City)
Removed from 40-man: 1B Nick Evans (outrighted to Triple-A), SS Luis Hernandez (outrighted to Triple-A)
Option transferred: RHP Josh Stinson (Triple-A to Double-A)

Garcia was in the news this spring for coming back from testicular cancer, which was discovered after he failed a drug test. (John Manuel)

New York Yankees
Signed:
C P.J. Pilittere
Added to 40-man roster: RHP Luis Ayala, RHP Bartolo Colon, RHP Freddy Garcia, C Gustavo Molina
Optioned to Triple-A: OF Chris Dickerson

Oakland Athletics
Signed:
C Mitch Canham
Released: RHP Mathieu Poirier, OF David Thomas
Added to 40-man roster: 3B Andy LaRoche
Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Tyson Ross, C Josh Donaldson, 2B Eric Sogard
Option transferred: RHP Fautino de los Santos (Triple-A to Double-A)

Athletics special assistant to the general manager Grady Fuson originally drafted Mitch Canham when he ran the Padres' drafts from ’05 through ’09. (See Padres entry below.)

Philadelphia Phillies
Signed:
RHP Scott Mathieson*, RHP Drew Naylor*, 2B Ronnie Belliard, 2B Kevin Frandsen
Released: RHP Matt Anderson, RHP Edgar Garcia, RHP Julian Sampson, RHP Jon Velasquez, LHP Neal Davis, LHP Dan Meyer, 2B Luis Castillo, 2B Korby Mintken, 2B Cale Owen
Added to 40-man roster: 3B Pete Orr
Reinstated from inactive list: 3B Travis Mattair

Pittsburgh Pirates
Signed:
RHP Tim Wood, LHP Dan Meyer, C Rodolfo Pena
Released: RHP Craig Hansen, RHP Yeiber Sanchez
Traded: 2B Jim Negrych to Marlins for C Carlos Paulino
Outrighted to Mexican League: RHP Oscar Verdugo (Veracruz)
Added to 40-man roster: RHP Jose Veras
Designated for assignment: RHP Ramon Aguero
Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Chris Leroux
Option transferred: RHP Bryan Morris (Triple-A to Double-A)

With quick actions behind the plate and an above-average arm, Carlos Paulino could add value to the Pirates as an organizational catcher. He's not much of a hitter (.184/.214/.234 in low Class A) but he has four seasons to go before he qualifies for minor league free agency.

Hansen is the biggest bust among the Red Sox's successful ’05 draft class (Jacoby Ellsbury, Clay Buchholz, Jed Lowrie), but he helped them land Jason Bay at the ’08 trade deadline. He had the best breaking ball in the ’05 draft class but was rushed to the majors, debuting the year he was drafted. He never threw consistent strikes in the big leagues, and then in 2009 was diagnosed with a rare nerve disorder. (JM)

St. Louis Cardinals
Signed:
LHP Sean Watson (NDFA—UC Davis)
Released: C Ivan Castro, 1B Francisco Rivera, 1B Curt Smith
Voluntarily retired: RHP Ian Snell
Added to 40-man roster: RHP Miguel Batista
Option transferred: RHP David Kopp (Triple-A to Double-A), 3B Zack Cox (Low-A to High-A)

San Diego Padres
Signed:
2B Pat McKenna
Released: RHP Mike DeMark, RHP Rob Gariano, RHP Nick Schumacher, C Mitch Canham, C Gregg Zaun, 2B David Newhan

San Diego selected Mitch Canham with the 57th overall pick in ’07 with visions of him developing into an offensive-minded starting catcher. His defense never really coalesced—opposing basestealers ran wild when he started—and he began seeing more time at less-demanding positions: left field, third base and first base. The Padres' new front office might have kept Canham around if he had hit, but through 670 Double-A plate appearances his batting line stands at .242/.322/.346.

San Francisco Giants
Signed:
RHP Doug Mathis
Released: RHP Francisco Cruceta, RHP Brian Lawrence, RHP Matt Sartor, RHP Jeff Suppan, RHP Craig Whitaker, LHP Jacobo Meque, C Matt Klimas, 1B Andy D'Alessio, SS Brad Boyer, OF Ben Copeland
Added to 40-man roster: RHP Guillermo Mota, 1B Brandon Belt
Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Steve Edlefsen, SS Ryan Rohlinger

Whitaker (’03 supplemental first round) is one of the rare power arms the Giants couldn't get to click. Copeland was the Giants' first draft pick in ’05, as a fourth-rounder. (JM)

Seattle Mariners
Released:
RHP Blake Nation, RHP Mumba Rivera, LHP Robert Rohrbaugh, C Henry Contreras
Added to 40-man roster: SS Luis Rodriguez, OF Ryan Langerhans

Tampa Bay Rays
Released:
RHP Justin Hall, LHP Ryan Fleckenstein, LHP J.R. Robinson, C Tomas Francisco, 2B Bennett Davis, 3B Scott Lawson, OF Alex Diaz, OF Bryan Fogle, OF D.J. Jones
Added to 40-man roster: RHP Juan Cruz, 3B Felipe Lopez
Designated for assignment: RHP Mike Ekstrom
Option transferred: RHP Chris Archer (Triple-A to Double-A), C Nevin Ashley (Triple-A to Double-A)

Texas Rangers
Signed:
SS Luis Cruz
Released: RHP Brennan Garr, RHP Danny Gutierrez, RHP Hector Nelo, RHP Tim Steggall, RHP Ty Taubenheim, LHP Starling de la Rosa, LHP Justin Earls, C Doug Hogan, C Johnathon Moore, C Alinson Perez, 1B Mike Ortiz, 2B Jake Kaase, OF Edward Alfonzo, OF Erold Andrus, OF Ed Koncel, OF Jason Kudlock, OF Travis Meiners, OF Cody Podraza, OF Cristian Santana
Traded: OF Marcus Lemon to Braves for future considerations
Placed on restricted list: OF Miguel Velazquez
Added to 40-man roster: RHP Dave Bush

Gutierrez ranked in the Rangers' Top 10 just two years ago, after being acquired from the Royals. Injuries, diminished stuff and a 2010 suspension didn't help his cause. (JM)

Toronto Blue Jays
Released:
RHP Vince Bongiovanni, RHP Ross Buckwalter, RHP David Sever, LHP Ryan Page, C Karim Turkamani, OF Leonard Davis, OF Eric Eiland, OF Joey Hage

Like the Red Sox's separation from Jason Place, the Blue Jays found themselves in a similar predicament with Eric Eiland, their second-round pick in ’07. A raw, athletic Texas prep product, Eiland stole bases efficiently (80 percent in four pro seasons) but batted just .221/.319/.290 in 1,121 plate appearances, none above low Class A.

Washington Nationals
Released:
RHP Adrian Alaniz, RHP Joe Bisenius, RHP Harvey Garcia, RHP Tim Wood, LHP Ron Villone, C Lou Santangelo, 2B Alex Cintron, 3B Dan Lyons, OF Robby Jacobsen, OF Jonathan Van Every
Added to 40-man roster: RHP Chad Gaudin, 2B Alex Cora, OF Laynce Nix, OF Matt Stairs

Minors | #Transactions

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