Saturday, May 22, 2010

Minor Moves: Rafferty, Espinosa

Per the Charlotte Stone Crabs, RHRP Tommy Rafferty voluntarily retired following last night’s game. He made his last career appearance on Wednesday night when he picked up the win after throwing 2 2/3 innings of relief. He bookended his career with wins as he also took the win in his first professional appearance on June 19, 2008. Here are his final career stats with the Rays organization:
Year   Age            Tm W L  ERA  G GS SV    IP  WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2008    23 Hudson Valley 2 0 4.35 15  0  0  20.2 1.258 7.4  0.0  3.9 10.9  2.78
2009    24 Bowling Green 2 0 3.90 15  0  1  27.2 1.337 9.4  0.3  2.6  7.2  2.75
2009    24     Charlotte 1 2 3.38 26  0  1  42.2 1.219 6.8  0.4  4.2  8.6  2.05
2010    25     Charlotte 3 1 2.14 13  0  0  21.0 0.905 4.3  0.9  3.9  6.0  1.56
3 Seasons                8 3 3.46 69  0  2 112.0 1.196 7.1  0.4  3.7  8.2  2.22
Provided by View Original Table Generated 5/22/2010.

To replace Rafferty on the roster, the Stone Crabs added lefty reliever Sergio Espinosa, who was signed by the Tampa Bay Rays in April. He is the second Cuban defector to be signed by the organization along with fellow Stone Crabs player Leslie Anderson. Espinosa previously served as the closer for Isla de la Juventud and defected in late 2008.


  1. any scouting and stats with Cuba available on Espinosa?

  2. Any idea why Rafferty retired?

  3. From cubanballplayers: "He has been away from baseball for quite some time until he managed to escape. Espinosa was a closer. He throws over 90 MPH and also has a sharp breaking pitch which is his best weapon. His K/9IP in Cuba was 7.17. His BB/9 was 4.15 and his K/BB was 1.73."

    And I haven't heard anything on Rafferty, kind of a shock to retire at this point in the season.

  4. From milb on Espinosa:

    Born: 01/02/1986
    Birthplace: Cuba
    Height: 5' 10"
    Weight: 175
    Bats: L
    Throws: L

  5. If Rafferty hadn't retired, then who would have likely been moved to make room for Espinosa?

  6. He probably wouldn't have been activated just yet, but they could play games by de-activating (sending to Hudson Valley but not really ever leaving PC) a catcher, Spring or Vogt. Or an OF for a game or 2. Lots of ways to 'expand' the roster until HV starts play, and even then, they have a big 'roster'.

    Glad Espinosa had great defense behind him tonight to get him off to a nice scoreless start to his US career. Velasquez and Kang (disputed call on the catch, I don't know) made run-scoring plays in the OF. Leslie Anderson owes him a lunch after the 0-7!

  7. Espinosa worked himself into trouble in his first inning, but managed to get out of it and throw a couple more scoreless frames to keep it a tied ballgame.

    The catch in the outfield was definitely a trap, and Velasquez was about to gun the ball into the infield when the base umpire called it an out. Just about the whole Brevard County dugout was about to go fight the umpire, but it only ended up with their manager getting the thumb. #20 and #35 (position players) both should have gotten tossed but they got a little grace I guess. The next half inning, #17 got tossed for showing up the home plate umpire, not sure he even said anything but he flipped his arm up after a called third strike and immediately got run. No contest from Brevard County.

    There was definitely some shaky umpiring, I talked to Kentrail Davis (#20 on Brevard) after he struck out against Scelfo, I reminded him that Scelfo is an infielder and he said (with a smile) "Yeah I know, but I gotta swing at anything with this guy calling strikes".

    All in all a very crazy night in Port Charlotte. Biggest crowd of the year too, with over 6,500 in attendance.

  8. You sure you mean the Velasquez play and not Kang's catch/trap? Sounded like the Crabs played off as if it was a catch and ran off the field. Smart. Also sounded like the Manatees were ticked throughout the game, surprised Davis made it as long as he did.

    Good to see you around too, Nick.

  9. Surprised to see Rafferty retire. Good luck in your future endeavors, Tommy. My question is if Espinosa hasn't been assigned to Charlotte, which pitcher would have taken Rafferty's place? Someone from Bowling Green or Extended? (It seems like so many times when an opening on a roster occurs, some guy from who knows where steps into it, leaving those from the level below stuck there.) Baseball looks glamorous, but it's really a rough business for the minor leaguers.

  10. Now I see what you mean. Might of been Matt Bush off the DL, he supposedly won't be on it long, so expect another move soon.

  11. I'm not sure who it was.. it was either Velasquez or Kang. Either way, Brevard was ticked, and definitely weren't pleased with the umpiring crew. I'm heading to the early game here in an hour or so, should be interesting to see if there is any left over tempers from last night. It should also be interesting to see how the bullpen situation is tonight, with everyone except for Fleming and Satow seeing multiple innings of action.

    And yes Doug, glad to be around too.. been busy with wrapping up school and helping out with coaching football, but I should be able to get some contributions in soon, including some stuff from extended/GCL season.

    One last note, I didn't want to report it because it was first hand information, but I spoke to Will Kline yesterday and after pitching in a few games in extended, he's been shut down again because his shoulder is bothering him. He's supposed to be seeing a specialist (he said HOPEFULLY not Dr. Andrews) soon. Tough break for a guy who hasn't seen action since the 2007 season.