Leo: “Who is going where?”
It’s that time of the year. The signings are rolling in for all the clubs. Here are some of interest…
* The Indians signed RHP Dan Wheeler to minor league contract with an invite to big league camp. Wheeler, has a major league ERA of 3.88 ERA and 43 saves over 577 games with the Rays, Mets, Astros, and Red Sox. He debuted in the majors during the 1999 season and has appeared in two World Series’, 2005 with Houston and 2008 Tampa Bay. He spent all of last season, posting a 4.38ERA in 47 games (49.1 innings). He was shut down for the rest of the season on September 8th because of right forearm soreness
Wheeler will compete for a spot in the Tribe’s bullpen.
* The Tribe have inked RHP Jose De La Torre and INF Ryan Rohlinger to minor league deals, both will report to minor league spring training.
De La Torre, 26, was a combined 2-2 with a 0.98 ERA in 22 games, including five starts between the Gulf Coast League Mets, Buffalo Bisons, and the Brooklyn Cyclones of the New York-Penn League.
Rohlinger, 28, is a career .268 hitter in the minors. He split the 2011 season between the San Francisco Giants and Colorado Rockies organizations. He began the season with the Giants Triple-A club, the Fresno Grizzlies (33 games with a .174 average, 5 HR and 16 RBI). Rohlinger appeared in one major league game with the Giants and was claimed off of waivers by the Colorado Rockies on June 2nd, spending the remainder of the season with the Colorado Springs Sky Sox (70 games with a .284 average, 5 HR and 35 RBI).
* The Indians have also, according to several sources, signed 36 year-old infielder Julio Lugo. Lugo has recorded 12 major league seasons with Houston, Tampa Bay, Los Angeles (NL), Boston, St. Louis, Baltimore, Atlanta. He is a career .269 hitter over 1,352 games. Lugo won a World Series Championship with Boston in 2007. The native of the Dominican Rupublic is the older brother of for Toledo pitcher Ruddy Lugo, who once filled in as a television cameraman in the visiting dugout at Huntington Park.
* Former Clippers 1B/OF/DH Jordan Brown has signed a minor league contract with the Houston Astros. Brown, 28, was traded from the Clippers roster to the Milwaukee Brewers last May. He played 26 major league games with Cleveland in 2010, but not before compiling a stellar minor league resume. Brown was the 2006 Carolina League Player of the Year, 2007 Eastern League Player of the Year, and the 2007 Lou Boudreau Award Winner (the Indians Minor League Player of the Year).
Brown exploded onto the scene in Columbus during the 2009 campaign, batting .336 and winning the International League batting crown. He is a career .307 hitter over 694 minor league games.
* Former Clippers RHP Vinnie Chulk has signed a minors deal with Milwaukee. “Chulkamania” ran wild in Columbus in 2009, posting a 2.08 ERA in 18 games. He was with Oakland’s Triple-A club in Sacramento last season after pitching for the Hiroshima Carp (Japan) in 2010. Chulk has a 3.18 ERA in the major leagues over seven seasons with Toronto, San Francisco, and Cleveland. He was a 12th round draft pick by the Blue Jays in 2000.
* OF Austin Kearns, 31, has signed a minor league contract with the Miami Marlins. He was traded from Cleveland at the 2010 trading deadline for RHP Zach McAllister, but returned to the Tribe as a free agent in 2011. The Indians designated Kearns for assignment last August. Kearns has logged ten major league seasons with Cincinnati, Washington, Cleveland, and the Yankees. He played for the Clippers in 2008 as a member of the Nationals organization.
* RHP Tim Redding, a former Clippers pitcher (2006), has signed with Toronto. Redding, 33, last pitched in the big leagues during the 2009 season with the Mets. He is 37-57 with a 4.95 ERA over 179 games (144 starts) with Houton, San Diego, New York (AL), Washington, and New York (NL). Last season, the Churchville, New York native split his season between Lehigh Valley (Phillies) and Albuquerque (Dodgers).
* Registration for the Clippers MVP Kids Club begins on Wednesday. For just $30 ($20 for renewing members) your children can participate in a full schedule of events like a pre-game parade on the field at Huntington Park, a “meet and greet” with Clippers players and mascots, a special photo session, a game of catch on the field, end of season pizza party and could even be the “Kid of thr Game”!
All MVP Club members receive a club t-shirt, membership card, a ticket to “Meet the Team” night, and other special gifts throughout the season. Click here to read more details.
* The Indians have released the 2012 broadcast schedule. SportsTime Ohio will broadcast 151 games, WKYC-TV3 will simulcast 20 of those in Cleveland. Matt Underwood, Rick Manning, and Al Pawlowski will call the action.
STO will also have the ‘Tribe Report”, “Minor League Magazine”, and “Indians 1-on-1″ with Pawlowski, Jason Stanford, and Katie Witham.
Fox will air four Indians games to a national audience: April 28 vs. Los Angeles (AL), June 2nd vs. Minnesota, June 9th vs. St. Louis, and September 15 vs. Detroit.
The Indians Radio Network, with flagship station WTAM-1100AM, wil broadcast every game on 27 affiliate stations around Ohio and western Pennsylvania. Tom Hamilton and Jim Rosenhaus will call the action.
I’m out of info for now, but keep checking back!