Minor League Transactions: March 11-17
Arizona Diamondbacks Released: RHP Max Duval, RHP Ethan Elias, RHP Johnny Omahen, LHP Alex Gunn, 1B Trevor Mitsui, OF Joey Armstrong, OF Myles Babitt, OF Jason Heinrich, OF Logan Soole, OF Stryker Trahan Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Enrique Burgos, RHP Jimmie Sherfy, LHP Anthony Banda, 2B Ildemaro Vargas, SS Jack Reinheimer Optioned to Double-A: 3B Dawel Lugo, SS Domingo Leyba A first-round pick out of high school in 2012, Stryker Trahan moved off catcher in 2016 but didn't rediscover his batting stroke as a full-time right fielder. The 22-year-old finished each of the past two seasons at low Class A, and in 181 career games in the Midwest League he hit .210/.264/.396 with a 33 percent strikeout rate. Trahan's tenure in the organization dates back to general manager Kevin Towers and his front office.
Atlanta Braves Signed: RHP Andres Santiago (New Jersey (Can-Am)), RHP Karl Triana (Gary (American Association)), LHP Michael Kirkman, LHP Joe Rogers (released by Tigers, March 16) Released: LHP Matt Marksberry, 2B Gerald Chin Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Aaron Blair, RHP Akeel Morris, RHP Lucas Sims, 2B Johan Camargo Optioned to Double-A: LHP Max Fried Lefthander Matt Marksberry made four appearances for the Braves last season (after making 31 in 2015) but he endured a harrowing offseason. In October, doctors placed the 26-year-old reliever in a medically-induced coma to treat a serious health issue. The Braves signed 24-year-old Colombian righthander Karl Triana after he pitched for his home country in the World Baseball Classic. He made one three-inning relief appearance with four hits allowed, two strikeouts, one walk and zero runs allowed.
Baltimore Orioles Signed: RHP Andrew Bellatti, 1B Pedro Alvarez (re-signed) Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Joe Gunkel Pedro Alvarez mashed 22 home runs and slugged .504 for the Orioles last season, but the 30-year-old corner infielder had to settle for a minor league deal this season. Baltimore intends to play him in the outfield at Triple-A Norfolk.
Boston Red Sox Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Kyle Martin, RHP Brandon Workman, LHP Brian Johnson, LHP Henry Owens, LHP Luis Ysla
Chicago Cubs Released: RHP Maikel Cleto Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Aaron Brooks, RHP Pierce Johnson, RHP Felix Pena, RHP Jose Rosario, LHP Jack Leathersich, C Victor Caratini, OF Jacob Hannemann Optioned to Double-A: RHP Duane Underwood
Chicago White Sox Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Chris Beck, RHP Tyler Danish, RHP Brad Goldberg, LHP Giovanni Soto, OF Willy Garcia Optioned to Double-A: C Alfredo Gonzalez
Cincinnati Reds Released: RHP Hawtin Buchanan, RHP Deunte Heath, RHP Johnny Hellweg, RHP Jake Johnson, RHP Keenan Kish, RHP Jordan Ramsey, LHP Michael Sullivan Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Lisalverto Bonilla, RHP Jackson Stephens, 2B Dilson Herrera Optioned to Double-A: RHP Luis Castillo, RHP Ariel Hernandez, RHP Keury Mella, RHP Nick Travieso, OF Aristides Aquino
Cleveland Indians Signed: LHP Daritzon Feliz Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Perci Garner, LHP Tim Cooney Optioned to Double-A: RHP Dylan Baker, C Francisco Mejia
Colorado Rockies Released: LHP Daniel Koger, C Zach Taylor, OF Terry McClure, OF Daniel Suero Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Shane Carle, RHP Miguel Castro, RHP Rayan Gonzalez, RHP Zach Jemiola, LHP Sam Moll Optioned to Double-A: RHP Yency Almonte
Detroit Tigers Released: RHP Emanuel Chavez, LHP Joe Rogers, SS Jared Reaves Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Victor Alcantara, RHP Myles Jaye Optioned to Double-A: LHP Jairo Labourt
Houston Astros Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Brady Rodgers, LHP Reymin Guduan, LHP Ashur Tolliver, OF Andrew Aplin
Kansas City Royals Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Miguel Almonte, RHP Andrew Edwards, RHP Jake Junis, RHP Kevin McCarthy, C Cam Gallagher, 2B Ramon Torres, 3B Hunter Dozier, OF Jorge Bonifacio, OF Bubba Starling Optioned to Double-A: 1B Samir Duenez
Los Angeles Angels Signed: RHP David Perez (released by Rangers, March 13), C Jeremy Dowdy (released by White Sox, March 4), C Marlon Marcano Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Keynan Middleton, RHP Brooks Pounders, RHP Daniel Wright, LHP Greg Mahle, LHP Nate Smith Optioned to Double-A: RHP Eduardo Paredes
Los Angeles Dodgers Released: RHP Chandler Eden Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Jacob Rhame, C Kyle Farmer
Miami Marlins Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Jake Esch, RHP Tayron Guerrero, RHP Drew Steckenrider, SS J.T. Riddle, OF Yefri Perez Optioned to Double-A: LHP Jarlin Garcia, SS Austin Nola
Milwaukee Brewers Released: RHP Junior Flores Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Damien Magnifico, LHP Josh Hader, OF Lewis Brinson, OF Ryan Cordell, OF Brett Phillips Optioned to Double-A: RHP Jorge Lopez, RHP Taylor Williams
Minnesota Twins Optioned to Triple-A: LHP Mason Melotakis, C Mitch Garver, SS Engelb Vielma Optioned to Double-A: RHP Felix Jorge, RHP Fernando Romero, LHP Randy Rosario
New York Mets Released: OF Kyle Johnson Optioned to Double-A: SS Amed Rosario Optioned to high Class A: RHP Chris Flexen, RHP Marcos Molina, C Tomas Nido, OF Wuilmer Becerra The Mets released 27-year-old outfielder Kyle Johnson right before minor league spring training games commenced. Johnson isn't particularly notable for his play in recent seasons—he hit .199 at Double-A Binghamton last year—but he is notable for speaking publicly about his attempt to join a lawsuit against Major League Baseball in which minor league players seek higher salary rates. Johnson spoke at length with Ted Berg of USA Today in January and said in part:
“I’ve talked to mentors that I’ve had around the game, and people who are coaches in the organization, and basically said, ‘Is this something that’s going to be held against me?’ It’s a funny line, because nobody can really give you a straight answer. Of course they’re going to say, ‘no,’ but it’s terrifying to think that my opportunity in baseball could change because I’m being outspoken about this.”
New York Yankees Signed: RHP Ernesto Frieri (did not play in 2016) Released: RHP Sean Carley, RHP Kyle Halbohn, RHP Cody Hamlin, RHP Tim Holmes, 1B Kane Sweeney, 2B Josh Gardiner, 3B Dan Fiorito, OF Nathan Mikolas Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Johnny Barbato, RHP Giovanny Gallegos, LHP Dietrich Enns, OF Mason Williams Optioned to Double-A: RHP Domingo German, RHP Ronald Herrera, RHP Yefry Ramirez, 3B Miguel Andujar Optioned to high Class A: SS Jorge Mateo Former Angels closer Ernesto Frieri made 22 appearances for the Rays in 2015 but did not play in 2016. He pitched briefly in the Venezuelan League in the offseason then suited up for Colombia in the World Baseball Classic. Frieri made one WBC relief appearance and tossed two scoreless innings with a strikeout and two hits allowed.
Oakland Athletics Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Paul Blackburn, RHP Bobby Wahl, 2B Chad Pinder, 3B Renato Nunez, SS Franklin Barreto, SS Yairo Munoz, OF Jaycob Brugman, OF Matt Olson
Philadelphia Phillies Released: RHP David Whitehead, C Daniel Garner Traded: OF Joey Curletta to Mariners for RHP/LHP Pat Venditte Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Mark Appel, RHP Ben Lively, RHP Ricardo Pinto, RHP Nick Pivetta, C Jorge Alfaro, OF Dylan Cozens, OF Nick Williams Optioned to Double-A: RHP Drew Anderson, LHP Elniery Garcia Optioned to high Class A: RHP Alberto Tirado
Pittsburgh Pirates Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Clay Holmes, RHP Nick Kingham, RHP Dovydas Neverauskas, 2B Chris Bostick
St. Louis Cardinals Optioned to Triple-A: LHP Marco Gonzales Optioned to high Class A: 2B Eli Alvarez, SS Edmundo Sosa, OF Magneuris Sierra
San Diego Padres Released: LHP Nathan Foriest Optioned to Triple-A: LHP Keith Hessler, SS Jose Rondon Optioned to Double-A: SS Javier Guerra Optioned to high Class A: RHP Jose Ruiz
San Francisco Giants Signed: RHP Dylan Rheault (Sioux City (American Association)) Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Clayton Blackburn, RHP Kyle Crick, RHP Joan Gregorio, RHP Dan Slania, RHP Chris Stratton Optioned to Double-A: RHP Ian Gardeck, RHP Chase Johnson, RHP Reyes Moronta Optioned to high Class A: 3B Miguel Gomez
Seattle Mariners Signed: SS Joey Wong Traded: RHP/LHP Pat Venditte to Phillies for OF Joey Curletta to Mariners for Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Chase De Jong, LHP Paul Fry, 1B D.J. Peterson, OF Boog Powell Optioned to Double-A: RHP Thyago Vieira, LHP Zac Curtis
Tampa Bay Rays Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Jose De Leon, RHP Jacob Faria, RHP Taylor Guerrieri, RHP Chih-Wei Hu, RHP Ryne Stanek, RHP Hunter Wood, LHP Jose Alvarado, SS Willy Adames
Texas Rangers Signed: LHP Maikol Escalona Released: RHP Garrett Brummett, RHP Chris Dula, RHP Kevin Lenik, RHP Matt Milroy, RHP David Perez, RHP Jesus Pirela, RHP John Werner, LHP Tyler Stubblefield, C Sherman Lacrus, 1B Tripp Martin, OF Alexeis Bell, OF London Lindley, OF Connor McKay, OF Josh Merrigan
Toronto Blue Jays Released: RHP Starlyn Suriel, LHP Nate Abel, LHP Hunter Barnett, LHP Christian Cox, C Justin Atkinson, C Seth Conner, 2B Aaron Attaway, OF Jake Anderson, OF Kalik May Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Chris Smith Optioned to Double-A: SS Richard Urena, OF Anthony Alford, OF Harold Ramirez Optioned to high Class A: LHP Ryan Borucki, OF Lourdes Gurriel The Blue Jays identified a number of high school arms in the early 2010s who have graduated to the majors with honors. The list includes Aaron Sanchez, Noah Syndergaard and Justin Nicolino from the 2010 draft and Joe Musgrove and Daniel Norris from the 2011 class. The organization's track record with prep position players is not nearly so rosy, and outfielder Jake Anderson is only the latest example. The Blue Jays released Anderson, a 24-year-old corner outfielder from Chino (Calif.) High last week, after he had spent virtually his entire six-year career in short-season ball. Toronto signed him for $990,000 as a supplemental first-round pick in 2011, making him the top draft pick they signed that year. Other top prep picks from the 2010 and 2011 drafts who already have moved on from the Blue Jays include Kellen Sweeney, Chris Hawkins and Dickie Joe Thon from the 2010 draft and Anderson from 2011. Outfielder D.J. Davis, the club's 2012 first-rounder, is trending in the wrong direction. Note: A previous version of this entry incorrectly stated that Christian Lopes was no longer a member of the Blue Jays organization. In fact, he finished last season at Double-A New Hampshire, and in the offseason the Blue Jays traded for his brother Tim.
Washington Nationals Signed: RHP Johan Gomez, RHP Alejandro Vallejo Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Austin Adams, RHP Jimmy Cordero, RHP Austin Voth, 1B Matt Skole, OF Rafael Bautista Optioned to Double-A: