Friday, January 29, 2016

Watching the Southern Arms Race

A few key movements down south this week with the St. Paul Saints and the Sioux City Explorers. These two teams were big rivals for the 2015 schedule and are looking for another battle in 2016. The Saints lose their third player to the MLB system with the signing of Anthony Phillips to the California Angels of Anaheim, while the Explorers have signed 2015 All-Star Ryan Court for 2016. So far the Saints appear to be losing troops for all the right reasons (Vinny DiFazio, Noah Perio Jr. and Phillips all deserve another shot), but the way players like Court and Michael Lang have been playing for the Xs, they could be getting another look from the majors as well.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Goldeyes trade King Luis to Lincoln

End of an era today as The Fish trade vet Luis Alen and OF Logan Vick to the Lincoln Saltdogs for lefties Kevin McGovern and Conor Spink. Alen was a key member of the Goldeyes 2012 championship season and holds many team records over seven seasons: base hits (714), doubles (130), RBI (347), and walks (232). Catcher Carlton Tanabe was also signed today, so he'll be the go-to for the departing Alen and retiring Ryan Babineau. Tanabe spent last year behind the plate for both the High-A California League’s Bakersfield Blaze and the Double-A Southern League’s Jackson Generals. Luis will definitely be missed in Winnipeg, as the face of this current era. Along with the departures of Matt Jackson and Nick Hernadez, it will be a different look to the 2016 edition of the team.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Xs re-sign All-Stars Lang and Perio Jr. for 2016

The Sioux City Explorers signed a key player from their record-breaking 2015 year today, securing all-star outfielder Michael Lang for the upcoming season. Lang ranked in the top 5 in 4 different AA stat categories. He led the entire league in triples (10), ranked second in stolen bases (45), scored the third most runs in the league (75), and earned the 4th highest batting average at .343. This comes on the heels of last week's inking of all-star short stop Noah Perio Jr. Both signings make a whole lot of sense as the Xs look to replicate their successes from last year.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Anderson signs back on with Fish for 2016

More pitching moves in the Goldeyes clubhouse, with LHP Kyle Anderson signing on for 2016; this marks his third season with the Fish. Anderson was 5-6 last year with a 4.77 ERA in 18 starts. IN 94.1 innings he had 60 strikeouts and a reasonable 19 walks. The Goldeyes added another lefty today with the signing of Chris Anderson, who logged time against the Goldeyes in a Sioux Falls uniform last year.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Digital Gum Wave 5: St. Paul Saints

They had a heck of an inaugural season at CHS Field...and here in all of their retro ball card glory are the 2015 St. Paul Saints. These shots reflect the roster no later than July 12, 2015. Missing a few pitchers, as with the usual luck of the draw on just catching a few road games. So alas, no Kramer Sneed. This team was a lot of fun to photograph--the Saints are not only a formidable ball club, they also have more than their share of characters on their roster. It will be interesting to see what their 2016 line-up looks like, with the Dodgers buying up the contracts of DiFazio and Songco.

Dodgers double down with Saints, DiFazio

The American Association's player of the year has been picked up the Los Angeles Dodgers organization. Vinny DiFazio, who slugged an impressive .361 with 17 homers and 82 RBI in 2015, is the second Saint to have their contract bought up by L.A. following Angelo Songco's purchase last week. DiFazio's had a hard road to get back to another shot with the majors, here's hoping he gets a long look from the Dodgers. See the Saints' official release here.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Casio Watch continues in 2016!

Good news for Fish fans with the announcement of Casio Grider's signing for the 2016 season. Grider hit .303 with seven homers and 38 RBIs in 2015. He also swiped 23 bases, which tied for 11th in the league last year. I know myself and the other photographers in the Goldeyes camp count Grider as a favourite subject to snap--and with good reason: the guy's a human highlight reel and always seems to make for an interesting photo.

MLB buys a few more AA contracts

A few more MLB signings to tell you about this week. The St. Paul Saints have sold the contract of 1B and All-Star Angelo Songco to the L.A. Dodgers. Meanwhile Kevin Hooper, who has skipped the Wichita Wingnuts for seven seasons, will be the minor league infield coordinator for the San Diego Padres this upcoming season. Both signings are a surprise at this stage of the game, and will certainly be felt in the Saints and Wingnuts' camps.

Goldeyes swap Pope for Dando

Continuing on from last week's pitching shake-up, the Goldeyes sent RHP/middle reliever Mark Pope to Texas in exchange for Zach Dando on Jan. 12. Dando's also a righty. It's also come to light that the releases of Hernandez, Jackson and Mincey last week were all due to retirements--something that makes the move a little easier to understand for the fans.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Major mound moves for the Goldeyes

What a week! The Winnipeg Goldeyes said goodbye to two veteran pitchers today with the release of LHP Nick Hernandez and RHP Matt Jackson; also released was RHP Brad Mincey, who joined the team midway through the 2015 campaign. Not sure what the future holds for these two aces, but they'll be missed by fans here in Winnipeg. Also this week, the Fish sold the contract of newly-acquired RHP Nestor Molina to the San Francisco Giants, while closer RHP Jailen Peguero signed with Veracruz (Mexico League). This flurry follows the signings of RHPs Brandon Shimo and Kevin Becker-Menditto on Dec. 17. Shimo split time between the Can-Am and Frontier Leagues last year, while Becker-Menditto spent his rookie season with the Can-Am's Garden State Greys. Expect more moves as the Goldeyes look to mix-up their bullpen.