Bridwell will be Aberdeen's opening night starter

When the short-season Single-A Aberdeen IronBirds begin a new season on Friday night at home against Hudson Valley, 19-year-old right-hander Parker Bridwell will be their starting pitcher.

Bridwell was a ninth-round draft pick last year out of Hereford High in Texas. Bridwell was at extended spring training before making a start June 4 for Delmarva where he gave up five runs in 4 2/3. He had another start for the Shorebirds over the weekend rained out after 1 1/3 innings.

Bridwell can pitch into the mid-90s with his fastball, and said his changeup has improved after he changed his grip on the pitch this season.

Here is the IronBirds preliminary roster released today:

Pitchers:
Orlando Alfonso
David Baker
James Brandhorst
Parker Bridwell
Angel Cespedes
Jake Cowan
Matt Drummond
Brandon Holloway
Enrico Jimenez
Jose Mota
Zach Petersime
Alex Schmarzo
Travis Strong
Samuel Tavares
Aaron Wirsch

Catchers:
Austin Goolsby
Wynston Sawyer

Infielders:
Austin Knight
Mike Mooney
Connor Narron
Sammy Starr
Joe Velleggia

Outfielders:
Chris Clinton
Kyle Hoppy
Jeremy Nowak
Martin Serrata
Cody Young

Leo Gomez is the manager of the IronBirds with Scott McGregor returning as pitching coach and Cesar Devarez and Moe Hill as field coaches.

Aberdeen's roster is expected to undergo changes between now and the first game. Some of the 2011 draft picks could be added, and, as reported here recently, Mychal Givens is expected to be Aberdeen's starting shortstop. He is not with the team now but could be added later this week.

Check back later on my blog and I will post some comments from Narron.

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