Tuesday, February 9, 2016

2/9: Satchel, Oscar HoF Day; HBD Harry, Buddy; Leyland DD Honoree; Preacher's Fight

  • 1869 - Harry Pulliam, early Pirate exec, was born in Scottsburg, Kentucky. Originally a newspaper writer covering the Cubs for the Louisville Commercial, he was considered one of the leading authorities on the gamel. Pulliam, then the newspaper editor, met the owner of the Louisville Colonels, Barney Dreyfuss, who hired him away from the Courier, appointing him to the position of club secretary, then quickly moving him to club president; Pulliam negotiated an ownership position in the team. He followed Dreyfuss when he purchased the Pittsburgh Pirates as the team president, and convinced Hans Wagner to join the club, later talking him and his teammates from bolting to the AL during the 1900 raids. Pulliam was unanimously elected president of the National League in 1902. He acted as president, secretary and treasurer of the league from 1902 until 1907, when the stress, workload and occasional head bumping with owners who thought he favored Pittsburgh in his decisions caught up to him; he committed suicide. Harry was buried in Louisville on August 2nd, and for the first time in history, both NL and AL games were postponed in tribute.
Cigar Box Harry
  • 1946 - Talk about your off season mishaps! Bucco LHP Preacher Roe’s 148 strikeouts in 1945 led the NL and he was selected for the All-Star Game. But while coaching high school basketball after the season, Roe suffered a concussion in a fight with a referee. His pitching fell off a cliff, dropping from 27 wins in 1944-45 to seven in 1946-47, and his ERA doubled. He was traded to Brooklyn, where he lasted seven seasons, winning 93 games while earning four All-Star berths. Some credit the comeback to a return to health while others credited his new pitch - the spitter.
  • 1951 - RHP Ed “Buddy” Solomon was born in Perry, Georgia. The ten year vet worked the end of his career (1980-82) in Pittsburgh, splitting time between the pen and the rotation. He went 17-15-1 with a 3.58 ERA for the Pirates before being dealt to the White Sox in 1982, where he concluded his MLB run. He died two years later at age 34 in a car wreck.
  • 1971 - RHP Satchel Paige became the first Negro League star to be selected to the Hall of Fame. Satch pitched for both the Homestead Grays and the Pittsburgh Crawfords, and was inducted on August 9th. He finally broke the color line in 1948 at the age of 41, and tossed six big-league seasons, with a pair of All-Star berths and a World Series title with the 1948 Cleveland Indians.
Satchel Paige 1933 (photo via John Thorn/Our Game)
  • 1976 - The Hall of Fame Special Committee on the Negro Leagues selected OF Oscar Charleston for enshrinement. In 1932, Charleston became player-manager of the Pittsburgh Crawfords with a roster that included Hall of Famers Josh Gibson, Satchel Paige, and Judy Johnson. The team went 99-36, and Charleston himself batted .363 in what was one of the best Negro League teams ever assembled. He managed the Crawfords through 1937 and was also a player with the Homestead Grays. Oscar was inducted on August 9th.
  • 1991 - Jim Leyland was presented with the Dapper Dan Sportsmen of the Year award. Leyland led the 1990 Pirates to a 95-67 record and its first NL Eastern Division title in 11 years. He was named the NL Manager of the Year by both the Baseball Writers and The Sporting News. Jimmy hung around for 11 years with the Bucs (1986-96), winning 851 games and three division titles.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Notes: Biddle; Block; # Game; Previews; Cool Papa & Buck; Deal Gone Bad; MiLB & Ex-Bucs

  • The Bucs picked up LHP Jesse Biddle, 24, from the Phils. Biddle had TJ surgery in October, so this will be a lost year for him. He was a first round draft pick in 2010 and at one time a Top 100 prospect with a four pitch mix, but was cut from Philly's 40-man for Bobby LaFromboise after a couple of so-so MiLB seasons and the visit to the chop shop. The Pirates sent RHP Yoervis Medina to Bro Town for Biddle, then DFA'ed RHP AJ Shugel to open a 40-man roster spot. He cleared waivers and was outrighted to Indy; he still has a camp invite as a NRI.
  • Jon Neise will wear #18; seems fitting that he takes The Kid's old number (Jon was #49 for the Mets). Ryan Vogelsong will get #14 (Ryan wore #28 in 2001 & #22 from 2003-06 for the Bucs; #32 for the Giants) and John Jaso #28, the same number JJ wore at Tampa Bay.
  • Matt Wojciak of Baseball Essential recaps the Pirates off season moves and gives them a C grade while Nick Delahanty had the BE Bucco spring training preview.
  • Neal Huntington told Robert Pace of Fox Sports that (doh!) the Jay Bay trade was the one he made with the "worst outcome," and it prompted the FO to beef up both Pirate scouting and analytics.
  • Richard Justice of MLB.com looks at what winning organizations - and the Bucs are among them now - have in common. 
  • Sam Dykstra of MiLB.com thinks Tyler Glasnow's time is just around the bend... In another article, he tells Josh Jackson how he rebounds from a rough day at the office.
  • RHP Yoervis Medina has cleared waivers and been outrighted to Indy.
  • Mike Ryan, Bradenton manager & former big league OF'er hailing from Indiana, PA, is featured in Matt Burglund's Indiana Gazette article.
  • Milwaukee's Joe Block was hired to replace Tim Neverett as the Pirates play-by-play guy.
  • The KC Royals signed OF Travis Snider to a minor league deal w/camp invite.
  • The Reds inked LHP Jonathan Sanchez to a MiLB contract w/invite. He hasn't tossed in the majors since that disastrous 2013 start with the Bucs.
  • Phillies signed LHP Jeremy Bleich, 28, who had five saves and a 2.88 ERA in three levels (High A, AA, AAA) of Bucco minor leaguedom last year.
  • C Steve Lerud signed to minor league deal with camp invite with the Mariners. He was a 2003 Bucco third-round draft pick that toiled in the system through the 2009 season and has bounced around since (this is his sixth club), getting a couple of MLB calls from the Phils in 2012-13.
  • Homestead Gray's Hall of Fame 1B Buck Leonard was featured on MLB Tonight earlier this week; here's a little taste of his history and short vid.They also had a piece on ol' Grays & Crawford star Cool Papa Bell.

2/8: Frankie Signs; Josh & Buck Enter the Hall; HBD Cookie & Monty; The King

  • 1918 - LHP Arthur “Cookie” (we assume a play on his last name) Cuccurullo was born in Asbury Park, New Jersey. He spent his three year MLB career as a Pirate from 1943-45, with a record of 3-5-5 and 4.55 ERA in 62 games, nine of which were starts. Cookie was one of many ballplayers who filled in during the war years and returned to the minors afterward.
  • 1922 - 2B Romanus “Monty” Basgall was born in Pfeifer, Kansas. Monty was a yo-yo player for the Bucs from 1948-51, hitting just .215 as he went back and forth from the minors to the show. He was in the Pirate system until 1958, ending his pro career as a player/manager at Waco, Beaumont and Lincoln. He went on to become a successful scout and coach for the Dodgers.
    Monty Basgall makes the turn 1949 (Acme Telephoto)
  • 1967 - Eddie Feigner, headliner softball pitcher of the King and his Court, appeared in a charity softball game at Dodger Stadium and struck out six MLB players in a row, including Roberto Clemente, allegedly tossing a 114 MPH underhand heater.
  • 1972 - C Josh Gibson and OF Walter “Buck” Leonard were selected for the Hall of Fame by the Special Committee on the Negro Leagues. Gibson, the “Black Babe Ruth,” played for the Homestead Grays and Pittsburgh Crawfords. His statue is at Nationals Park, where the Grays often played, and Ammon Field in the Hill District was renamed after him. The Grays’ Leonard batted behind him and was called the “Black Lou Gehrig.” The “Thunder Twins” were inducted on August 7th.
  • 2013 - LHP Francisco Liriano was signed as a free agent. The Cisco Kid had agreed to a two-year contract worth $12.75M on December 21st, 2012, but broke his arm before the physical, voiding the deal. A new two-year agreement was reached with lots of incentives based on starts that would allow him to reach the original contract figures. Frankie came back May 11th, finishing 16-8 with a 3.02 ERA and was the NL Comeback Player of the Year. He followed that with a 7-10 slate in 2014 with a 3.38 ERA, netting a three-year contract during the off season.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

2/7: HBD Joe, Adrian & Humberto

  • 1927 - Coach Joe Lonnett was born in Koppel, Beaver County. He graduated from Beaver Falls High School and lived in Brighton Township for 45 years before passing away in 2011. He was a catcher for four seasons with the Phillies from 1956-59 before joining the coaching ranks. A long time bud of Chuck Tanner, he came to Pittsburgh with him from the AL - he was with Tanner when he managed the Chicago White Sox (1971-75) and Oakland Athletics (1976) - and was a part of the Pirates staff from 1977-84, serving as the third base coach for the Bucs during the 1979 World Series Championship season.
Joe Lonnett 1977 Team Photo
  • 1974 - OF Adrian Brown was born in McComb, Mississippi. A 48th round draft pick in 1992, he beat the odds by having a nine year MLB career, the first six (1997-2002) with the Pirates as a reserve. He hit .261 during his Pittsburgh stay. Though never a starter, Brown played for four clubs over his career.
  • 1979 - C Humberto Cota was born in San Luis Rio Colorado, Mexico. Cota was the Pirate back-up catcher for his entire MLB career of seven seasons (2001-07) with a .233 lifetime BA after coming over from Tampa Bay as part of the Jose Guillen deal. He became a free agent in 2008, but failed a drug test, was suspended for 50 games and never got another call to the show.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

2/6: HBD Glenn, Dale, Smoky, Richie & Pedro; Ralph Passes Away; Dappers Andrew & Clint; Comeback Kid Inked

  • 1901 - SS Glenn Wright was born in Archie, Missouri. He played five years (1924-28) for Pittsburgh, hitting .294, and was considered one of the league’s elite shortstops until a shoulder injury suffered in 1929. Wright was a member of the 1925 and 1927 World Series clubs, and was named a Sporting News All-Star in ‘25 while finishing fourth in the NL-MVP vote.
Glenn Wright 1925 (photo National Photo Company via Library of Congress)
  • 1926 - 1B Dale Long was born in Springfield, Missouri. Long played four seasons for the Pirates (1951, 1955-57), hitting 27 homers in 1956 and earning a spot on the All-Star team. He put his name in the record books that year by hitting eight home runs in eight consecutive games between May 19th and May 28th, still the MLB standard, tied but never topped. Long was one of the few lefties that caught (though not much) in the majors. The big guy had a choice of careers; he turned down an audition with the Green Bay Packers to focus on baseball.
  • 1927 - C Smoky Burgess was born in Caroleen, NC. He spent six years (1959-64) as Pirate platoon catcher, hitting .296 as a Buc and was a key part of the 1960 World Series club. People sometimes forget what a nice player Smoky was. Burgess was a six-time All-Star who led NL catchers in fielding percentage three times, while his MLB record of 145 career pinch hits (a late career specialty) wasn’t broken until 1979 by Manny Mota. Smoky also called every pitch during Harvey Haddix’s legendary 12 inning perfecto against the Milwaukee Braves in 1959.
  • 1949 - LF Richie Zisk was born in Brooklyn. A third round pick in the of the 1966 draft, he spent six years in Pittsburgh (1971-76), hitting .299 as a Buc before being traded to the Chicago White Sox as part of the Goose Gossage deal. He made post-season appearances with the 1974 and 1975 Pirates, batting .400 in the playoffs, and hit for the cycle against the Giants in 1974.
Richie Zisk 1975 Topps
  • 1987 - 3B Pedro Alvarez was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. El Toro, who played at Vandy, was drafted in the first round (second overall) of the 2008 MLB draft. A last minute signing, complicated by some posturing by the FO and Scott Boras along with a suit filed by the MLBPA, was resolved and he joined the club, ultimately receiving a $6.4M bonus. He’s developed into a middling average, high strikeout, middle-of-the-order boomer since his 2010 MLB debut. Pedro tied for the NL lead in homers in 2013 with 36, also netting an All-Star berth, but spent 2014 with a bad case of the yips at the hot corner, triggering a switch to first base in 2015. That didn’t work out, and he was non-tendered in the off season.
  • 2013 - Two-time All Star Andrew McCutchen was honored with the Dapper Dan Sportsman of the Year Award. He hit .327/.400/.533 with 31 home runs in a break out 2012 season. A total of 18 Pirates have received the Dapper Dan SOY honor, but McCutchen was only the second in the past 20 years, and the first since Jason Kendall in 2000.
  • 2013 - The Pirates signed free agent LHP Jonathan Sanchez to a minor league deal. He broke camp as the fifth starter, but was released on May 8th after posting an 0-3/11.85 line. Known as “The Comeback Kid,” he may be all out of bounce backs. He hasn’t pitched in the majors since, although he has inked a couple of minor league contracts.
Jonathan Sanchez 2013 (photo Dilep Vishwanat/Getty Images)
  • 2014 - Manager of the Year Clint Hurdle was honored as the Dapper Dan Sportsman of the Year. Hurdle joined Andrew McCutchen, Ralph Kiner, Danny Murtaugh, Roberto Clemente, Willie Stargell and Dave Parker as winners of the award. Cutch was the 2013 winner, and it was the first time Pirates had won back-to-back Dapper Dans since The Cobra in 1978 and Cap’n Willie in 1979.
  • 2014 - Pirate Hall of Famer Ralph Kiner passed away at the age of 91. He was the game’s greatest home run hitter following World War II, elected to six All-Star Games and led or tied for the NL lead in home runs in his first seven seasons in baseball. Kiner finished with 369 HRs, 1,015 RBIs, 1,451 hits, a .279 BA, and walked 100 or more times in six of his 10 MLB seasons. After his ball playing days, Ralph closed out his career with a 52 year gig calling NY Mets’ games.

Friday, February 5, 2016

2/5: HBD Tiger; Barney Passes On; Ted Simmons In As GM; Steady Freddy Signs

  • 1928 - 3B Don Hoak was born in the Potter County town of Roulette. The Tiger played four years for the Pirates (1959-62), hitting .281 and was renowned for his scrappy play on the diamond, living up to his resume as an ex-boxer and Marine. After his playing days ended, Hoak was a Pirates' broadcaster for two years and managed a couple of seasons in the Pirate farm system.
The Tiger 1960 Topps
  • 1932 - Longtime owner and one of baseball’s early pathfinders Barney Dreyfuss died at 66, leaving Pirate ownership to his widow Florence and his son-in-law Bill Benswanger. Not only was he influential in Pittsburgh, building a solid franchise and a signature park, but he was also a sturdy rudder for baseball as it sailed some stormy seas in its early decades. In Dan Bonk’s Story of Forbes Field, it was noted that “Between 1895 and 1932, Dreyfuss was in the middle of every important decision facing professional baseball including syndication, contraction, league conflicts, the Federal League, schedules, and of course, the scandal arising out of the 1919 World Series.”
  • 1992 - The Pirates hired Ted Simmons as General Manager. He served in that position for only a year, retiring after suffering a heart attack in June 1993. He was under a lot of job-related stress, as ownership wanted to trim payroll, resulting in a decidedly antsy locker room as the players waited for the next domino to fall.
Ted Simmons at 1992 Hiring (photo Gene Puskar/AP)
  • 2008 - 2B Freddy Sanchez inked a two year, $11M contract with an option for $8M in 2010. He was traded at the 2009 deadline to the Giants for RHP Tim Alderson. Freddy played only one full season for the G-Men, the 2010 World Series campaign, as knee and shoulder injuries eroded his career. Alderson never cashed in as a Pirate prospect and is in the Nat's system this season.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

2/4: Player Moves - Harris, Grantham, Bo, Darwin, Bronson; Arriba Award; HBD Possum

  • 1890 - UT George “Possum” (he picked up his nicknamed because of his tales of backwoods possum hunting) Whitted was born in Durham, North Carolina. Possum played in Pittsburgh from 1919-21, hitting .286 while manning first, third and left field. But he could play anywhere. Possum was the first rookie in history to start at every position (except pitcher and catcher) during a season.
  • 1927 - The Bucs claimed veteran 1B/OF Joe Harris off waivers from Washington. He started in 1927, hitting .326 in 129 games and was batting .391 in June of 1928 when he was flipped to the Brooklyn Robins in what became the 37 year old’s last MLB campaign.
Joe Harris (photo via Out of the Park Development)
  • 1932 - The Pirates sold 31 year old 2B George Grantham to the Reds. Grantham was the Bucco second baseman for the 1925 and 1927 World series clubs and put up seven straight .300+ seasons for Pittsburgh, with a BA of .315 between 1925-31. The FO must have had a glimmer; his .300 streak ended at Cincinnati (.294). He then became a sub for the Reds and left the game following the 1934 campaign.
  • 1962 - Roberto Clemente was given the Dapper Dan Man of the Year Award after hitting .351 in 1961 to claim the NL batting title, his first of four crowns. Ex-Pittsburgh mayor and then Pennsylvania governor David Lawrence presented Clemente with his plaque. The Great One said on acceptance that “This award belongs to the fans and my teammates as much as it does to me."
  • 1970 - The Bucs sent noted playboy and so-so hurler Bo Belinsky to the Reds for RHP Dennis Ribant. Belinsky went 0-3 in eight games as a Pirate with a 4.58 ERA, and 1970 was his last MLB year; Ribant lasted a season for Pittsburgh, with a 9-8 record and a 4.08 ERA as a swingman before moving on to the AL.
Bo Belinsky (photo via Obscure Pittsburgh Pirates blog)
  • 1996 - RHP Danny Darwin signed with the Pirates after a couple of dismal seasons at Boston, Toronto and Texas. He went 7-9 with a sparkling 3.02 ERA and was flipped at the deadline to Houston for reliever Rick Loiselle. Darwin was dubbed "Doctor Death" by Houston's Nolan Ryan because of how ready to rumble Darwin was. He got into two publicized bouts with teammates Orel Hershiser and Barry Bonds, though Bonds was just a hot verbal altercation.
  • 2003 - The Red Sox claimed Bronson Arroyo off waivers from the Pirates. After three seasons and a 9-14/5.44 ERA for Pittsburgh, he’s quietly worked another decade in the show since then, winning 100+ games with a resume of an inning eater. After a stint with the Arizona D-Backs following an eight year run with the Cincinnati Reds, he’s now a Washington Nat.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

2/3: RIP Tommy; Billy & Willie Honors; Lincoln Joins Team, Angel Leaves

  • 1901 - Pirate utilityman Tom O’Brien, who was born in Verona, died from “consumption” (pneumonia) at the age of 27, complicated by drinking sea water, which he had been told would cure him. His untimely death left a void in the Buc lineup, filled capably by rookie Kitty Bransfield.
  • 1975 - The Special Veterans Committee selected 2B Billy Herman (Cubs, Dodgers, Braves and Pirates) for the Hall of Fame. He spent his final season in 1947 as a Bucco player/manager, getting into 15 games and hitting .213. Herman was inducted on August 18th.
Billy Herman & a couple of young Buccos 1947 (photo via The Pittsburgh Press)
  • 1980 - Willie Stargell was given the Dapper Dan Sportsman of the Year honor for 1979. Cap’n Willie was the World Series MVP and NL’s co-MVP (with the Cards’ Keith Hernandez) in ‘79. It was his second DD award - he shared the 1971 honor with Danny Murtaugh and Roberto Clemente.
  • 1982 - Minor league C Angel Rodriguez‚ 20, who played for the Pirates' Alexandria club (Carolina League), was suspended from organized baseball for one year for telling opposing Latino batters what pitches were coming, in Spanish. Rodriguez had been suspended by the Pirates during an August 19th game against Lynchburg, and baseball added its punishment after investigators had obtained written statements from eight umpires and several managers. He returned in 1984, but never got past the AAA level.
  • 2001 - RHP Mike Lincoln joined the Pirates from the Twins after being released by Minnesota in the off season. The Bucs converted the starter to a bullpen role, and in three years with them (20001-03), he went 7-9-5 with a 3.50 ERA, closing briefly in 2003. He had a bruised shoulder in his last season, working just 36-⅓ IP, and was non-tendered after the campaign. Lincoln went to the Cards, but had TJ surgery during the 2004 season. It took four more years for him to come back, but he did work three campaigns for the Reds from 2008-10 before retiring.
Mike Lincoln 2002 Topps Total

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

2/2: Hall Calls For Burleigh, Schoolboy, Freddie; HBD Manny, Ronny, Travis; Contract Clashes

  • 1951 - Eight Pirates rejected contracts offered by Bucco GM Branch Rickey - pitchers Cliff Chambers, Murry Dickson and Vic Lombardi; catchers Clyde McCullough and Ed FitzGerald, 1B Jack Phillips, IF Pete Castiglione and OF Wally Westbook. They all settled before the season except for Lombardi, who had his salary offer cut by the 25% maximum allowed by the league, and instead signed with Hollywood of Pacific Coast League, never earning another MLB job.
  • 1956 - RHP Manny Sarmiento was born in Cagua, Venezuela. The Bucs purchased him from the Red Sox. He tossed a pair of strong campaigns in 1982-83, going 12-9-5 with a 3.25 ERA as a starter and reliever, but blew out his elbow during camp in 1984 and never pitched in the majors again.
Manny Sarmiento 1984 Donruss
  • 1964 - P Burleigh Grimes was selected for the Baseball Hall of Fame by the Special Veterans Committee and was inducted on July 27th. The 270 game winner began, ended, and played some during the middle of his career with the Pirates. Also chosen was OF Heinie Manush, who spent his last two seasons (1938-39) in Pittsburgh, getting 25 at-bats.
  • 1969 - RHP Waite "Schoolboy" Hoyt was voted into the Hall of Fame by the Special Veteran's Committee. He spent 4-1/2 of his 21 pro seasons in Pittsburgh between 1933-37, going 35-31, topped by a 15-5 record in 1934. He was inducted on July 28th.
  • 1976 - The Special Veterans Committee selected OF Freddie Lindstrom to the Hall of Fame. He played two of his 13 big league campaigns for Pittsburgh, hitting .302 and driving in 147 runs. He was inducted on August 9th.
Freddie Lindstrom 1933 DeLong
  • 1983 - SS Ronny Cedeno was born in Puerto Cabello, Venezuela. He manned the spot for Pittsburgh from 2009-11, hitting a streaky .254 but never showing any consistency in the field, flashing the good, the bad and the ugly with his leather. He last played for the Phils in 2013 and is now playing in the Mexican League.
  • 1988 - OF Travis Snider was born in Kirkland, Washington. He came to the Bucs from Toronto in the 2012 Brad Lincoln deal. After sputtering for a couple of years, he had a solid 2014 season with 13 HR and a .264 BA, which earned him a ticket to the Boston Red Sox for a pair of minor league prospects. Snider returned to the Bucs in August, 2015, before being released during the off season and signing with KC.

Monday, February 1, 2016

2/1: HBD Rosey, Bob, Cecilio & Stolmy

  • 1884 - Pirate announcer Rosey Rowswell was born in Alton, Illinois (although raised in Tarentum). In 1936, he joined KDKA as a Pirate broadcaster, and remained there until his death in 1955. His last on-air partner was Bob Prince from 1948-54, who called Rowswell his mentor. Rosey was an unabashed homer, and known for his home run call of “Open the window, Aunt Minnie, here she comes” followed by the sound of shattering glass. He also coined the term “Buccos” and “FOB” (when the bases were loaded, they were Full Of Buccos). Roswell died in Pittsburgh in 1955 at the age of 71 and was buried in Allegheny Cemetery.
Rosey Rowswell (uncredited photo; likely a KDKA promo shot)
  • 1931 - LHP Bob Smith was born in Woodsville, New Hampshire. The journeyman worked out of the Pirate bullpen from 1957-59, where he went 8-19-1 with a 3.74 ERA in 75 appearances. Smith’s everyday name played havoc with him. While with the Boston system, a similarly built lefty of the same name was often confused with him, and the Sox had to revert to using initials to differentiate the pair. In Pittsburgh, he suffered a more embarrassing fate - Smith’s 1958 Topps card, he claims, has the picture of Cardinal outfielder Bobby Gene Smith rather than his, and he has never autographed that particular card because of the mix-up.
Bob Smith 1959 Topps
  • 1960 - P Cecilio Guante was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The righty was a bridge guy for Pittsburgh for five seasons (1982-86) and went 13-17-20/3.06 in that role before being traded to the Yankees as part of the Doug Drabek deal.
  • 1990 - RHP Stolmy Pimentel was born in San Cristobal, Dominican Republic. He was a Buc from 2013-14, coming over from the Red Sox and going 2-1 with a 4.50 ERA. The old Sox Prospects scouting report on him held true: “Excellent overall stuff, but struggles with the consistency of his mechanics.” He was released and signed with Texas in 2015; he’s in the Mets’ system this season.