Rosters and Staff
The Hot Rods have several players worth watching, and it begins behind the plate with 2008 3rd-rounder Jake Jefferies and Mike McCormick. McCormick was a part of the Columbus team last year and really struggled, barely hitting over .200. Jefferies figures to be the main catcher, but the Rays will still want to get McCormick ABs and will take advantage of the DH spot.
The infield features four 2008 draft picks: Tim and Jeremy Beckham, Mike Sheridan, and Jason Tweedy. Tim Beckham and Sheridan figure to be everyday players while Jeremy and Tweedy may have to share time with Robi Estrada and Isaias Velasquez. Velasquez was acquired for Juan Salas in the off-season.
Bowling Green is starting the year with only three outfielders: Jason Corder, Anthony Scelfo, and Henry Wrigley, but they figure to add Kyeong Kang, who is beginning the season injured.
The rotation looks to be among the best in the Sally League, headlined by Matt Moore and, when he's healthy, Nick Barnese. It also includes Joseph Cruz making the jump from Princeton, as well as '08 draftee Shane Dyer. The bullpen doesn't have any real prospects, but it should get quality production from Josh Satow, Neil Schenk, and Marquis Fleming.
While the offense features some decent prospects, Bowling Green will rely a lot on their pitching to keep them in games. I'd expect Beckham, Barnese and Moore to spend all of 2009 with the club, but Mike Sheridan could get himself promoted to Port Charlotte with a strong performance.
RaysProspects Top 30 In Bowling Green:
3. Tim Beckham
9. Nick Barnese
10. Matt Moore
18. Joseph Cruz
20. Kyeong Kang
24. Jake Jefferies
25. Shane Dyer