Shorebirds announce current roster

Here is a press release from the Delmarva Shorebirds:

Salisbury, Md. - In conjunction with the Baltimore Orioles, the Delmarva Shorebirds are excited to release the "Break Camp Roster" for the 2012 season. Headlining the roster is Dylan Bundy, the Orioles first round selection in 2011, and the top overall prospect in the farm system according to Baseball America. The Shorebirds roster features four of the top ten prospects in the system according to Baseball America; RHP Dylan Bundy (#1), RHP Parker Bridwell (#4), INF Nicky Delmonico (#6) and INF Jason Esposito (#8). Further, eight of the Orioles top ten round selections in 2011 will start on Delmarva: Dylan Bundy (1st), Jason Esposito (2nd), Matt Taylor (5th), Nicky Delmonico (6th), Trent Howard (7th), John Ruettiger (8th), Devin Jones (9th) and Tyler Wilson (10th).

The 2012 "Break Camp Roster" features eight players ranked among the top 30 prospects in the system. In addition to the four mentioned above, OF Glynn Davis (#19), LHP Tim Berry (#20), C Gabriel Lino (#21) and LHP Eduardo Rodriguez (#30) will also start the season with the Shorebirds.

Two Maryland natives are scheduled to open the season with the Shorebirds. The local players are OF Glynn Davis (Baltimore, MD, Catonsville Community College) and Joe Velleggia (Monkton, MD, Old Dominion).

The roster also features eight players that have played at least one game for the Shorebirds in prior seasons. The list includes: OF John Ruettiger, OF Brenden Webb, RHP Jake Cowan, INF Mychal Givens, RHP Parker Bridwell, OF Mikey Planeta, LHP Tim Berry and INF Sammie Starr.

Below is a position-by-position breakdown of the 2012 "Break Camp Roster".

PITCHERS

The Shorebirds will break camp with 14 pitchers, nine right-handers and five left-handers. RH Dylan Bundy, the tenth best prospect in all of baseball according to MLB.com, will open the season with the Shorebirds. Bundy, the younger brother of former Shorebirds pitcher Bobby Bundy, becomes the 15th first round draft pick to suit up for the Shorebirds. The 19-year old was a three-time recipient of the Oklahoma Gatorade Player of the Year and was recognized as the Gatorade National Player of the Year following the 2011 high school season. During his senior year at Owasso High School, he posted an 11-0 record with a mind-numbing strike out to walk ratio of 158 to five in 71 innings pitched. RH Parker Bridwell, the Orioles 9th round selection in 2010, will help anchor the pitching staff. Bridwell made five spot starts for the Shorebirds last season and went 0-3 with a 7.06 ERA. In 11 starts for the Aberdeen Ironbirds, he went 2-5 with a 4.53 ERA. LH Tim Berry is another top 30 prospect that joins Bundy and Bridwell. The 21-year old was selected in the 50th round of the 2009 draft. Berry was a full-time starter for the Shorebirds last season. In 26 starts, he posted a 3-7 record with a 5.17 ERA. Eduardo Rodriguez, the 30th best prospect in the Orioles system, went 1-1 with a 1.81 ERA in 10 starts for the GCL Orioles.

The Shorebirds pitching staff will also feature numerous players from the 2011 draft class. LHP Matt Taylor was selected in the fifth round out of Middle Georgia College. Taylor made ten relief appearances for the Ironbirds last season and went 2-1 with a 6.88 ERA. LHP Trent Howard, the Orioles seventh round selection out of Central Michigan, also pitched for the Ironbirds last season. In 11 appearances (nine starts), he went 3-2 with a 3.48 ERA. RHP Devin Jones, the Orioles ninth round pick out of Mississippi State, came out of the bullpen last season for Aberdeen. He went 2-4 with a 6.08 ERA over 14 appearances. RH Tyler Wilson, the tenth round pick out of the University of Virginia, made six appearances for the Ironbirds last season and went 0-0 with a 2.10 ERA. Wilson was the recipient of the 2011 Lowe's Senior Class Award for baseball, given annually to the nation's most outstanding senior student-athlete at the Division I level. RH Zach Davies, the 26th round draft pick out of Mesquite High School, did not pitch last season. Davies had a strong commitment to Arizona State but decided to sign with the Orioles in mid-August. LH Zach Fowler, the 34th round selection last season out of Texas Tech, made 13 appearances for the Ironbirds. He went 2-0 with a 1.85 ERA. He surrendered just 16 hits in 24.1 innings pitched.

Jake Cowan, a tenth rounder in 2009, made six starts for the Shorebirds last season and went 0-3 with a 4.46 ERA. The San Jacinto JC product went 3-1 for the Shorebirds in 2010 with a 3.51 ERA in seven starts.

The Shorebirds pitching staff will also include RH Williams Louico, RH Jose Nivar and RH Miguel Chalas. Louico is in his fifth year in the Orioles organization out of Thomonde, Haiti. He has pitched in the Dominican Summer League all four years in the system. Nivar, a former outfielder in the system, made 16 appearances for the GCL Orioles last season. He posted a 2-0 record with a 1.83 ERA. Chalas, from Seibo, Dominican Republic, pitched predominantly for the GCL Orioles last season. In 11 appearances, he earned a 2.83 ERA.

CATCHERS

The Shorebirds "Break Camp Roster" features three catchers; Wynston Sawyer, Gabriel Lino and Adam Davis. Sawyer was an eighth round draft pick in 2010 out of Scripps Ranch High School. Last season, he batted .231 in 71 games for the Ironbirds. Sawyer hit three home runs and totaled 27 RBIs. Lino, the 21st best prospect in the Orioles system, will begin his third system in the Orioles farm system. In 2011, the 18-year old batted .282 for the GCL Orioles. Lino is the youngest player on the Shorebirds roster. Davis, the Orioles 11th round pick in 2011 out of the University of Illinois, played in Aberdeen last season. In 20 games, he batted .203 with a home run and three RBIs.

INFIELDERS

The Shorebirds infielder is stacked with high end prospects and top draft picks. Jason Esposito, the Orioles second round draft (64th overall) last season, will make his professional debut with the Shorebirds. He signed at the deadline (August 15) and did not play for an affiliate last season. Esposito was a star third baseman at Vanderbilt. In 2011, he batted .340 with nine home runs and 59 RBIs to help lead the Commodores to the College World Series. During his sophomore season, Esposito hit .359 with 12 home runs. Esposito started all 196 games in his three-year college career. Following his sophomore season, the 21-year old was named to the USA Collegiate Baseball National Team. He also played in the Cape Cod Baseball League for the Orleans Firebirds.

Nicky Delmonico, the son of former long-time Tennessee baseball coach Rob Delmonico, is another highly touted infielder. The 19-year also signed at the deadline and will make his professional debut. He was selected in the sixth round of the 2011 draft out of Farragut High School. Delmonico played on the 2010 18U USA National Team and hit .279 with two home runs.

Connor Narron, the Orioles fifth round draft pick in 2010, is the son of former major league catcher and manager Jerry Narron. The 20-year old hit .211 in 71 games for the Ironbirds last season. Narron played in 19 games in his professional debut back in 2010.

Mychal Givens returns to the Shorebirds after spending parts of the last two years with the team. The former second round pick in 2009 has played in 64 career games for the Shorebirds. Last season, he played in 57 games and hit .195 with 15 RBIs. Givens improved when moving to Aberdeen where he hit .279 over the final 74 games of the year. In the offseason, Givens helped the Perth Heat win the Australian Baseball League Championship. He finished third on the team with a .352 batting average and second on the team with 56 hits.

The other returning infielder is Sammie Starr. The Toronto, Canada native played in just nine games for the Shorebirds last season. In 23 games with the Ironbirds, Starr batted .284 with two homers. Starr was selected in the 34th round of the 2010 draft.

Joe Velleggia, the Orioles 40th round draft pick in 2010 out of Old Dominion, had a solid season in Aberdeen last year. The Monkton, Maryland native batted .257 with seven homers and 35 RBIs. Velleggia was also drafted by the Orioles in the 42nd round of the 2009 First Year Player Draft.

OUTFIELDERS

Three of the four Shorebirds outfielders are familiar names this season. Mikey Planeta, Brenden Webb and John Ruettiger have all played for the Shorebirds in prior seasons. The lone newcomer in the outfielder is Glynn Davis. Planeta will begin his third season with the Shorebirds. The Surprise, Arizona native batted .220 last season with two home runs and 23 RBIs. Planeta was selected in the 27th round of the 2009 draft out of Glendale Community College. Webb, the Orioles 30th round selection in 2009, also spent the entire 2011 season with the Shorebirds. He batted .218 with our homers and 29 RBIs. Webb played with the Givens on the Perth Heat this off season in the Australian Baseball League.

Ruettiger, the Orioles eighth round pick in 2011 out of Arizona State, played in 19 games for the Shorebirds at the end of last season. He batted .273 with three RBIs. Ruettiger is the nephew of Dan "Rudy" Ruettiger, who played football at Notre Dame and whose life is the subject of the 1993 movie, "Rudy". The Joliet, Illinois native had a stellar 2011 junior season at Arizona State. The First Team All Pac-10 performer hit .327 with 37 RBIs.

Davis, a non-drafted signee in 2010 out of Catonsville Community College, opened eyes in his professional debut. After going 10-for-23 in his first six games in the Gulf Coast League, he was promoted to the New York-Penn League. Davis batted .271 with 14 doubles, 14 RBIs and 23 stolen bases for the Ironbirds. He was named a NYPL All-Star. Davis was promoted to Frederick at the end of the season to help with their playoff push. The 20-year old was a First Team All Maryland JUCO selection and National Junior College Athletic Association All American after hitting .455 with a school record 86 hits in 2010 at Catonsville CC.

The Shorebirds open the season on April 3 with an exhibition game against Salisbury University at 7:05pm. The team will begin the season on the road against the Asheville Tourists on April 5. Following an eight-game road swing, the Shorebirds return to Arthur W. Perdue Stadium for the home opener on April 12 against Greensboro.

For tickets, contact the Shorebirds Box Office at 410-219-3112 or visit us online at www.theshorebirds.com.


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