Results tagged ‘ Brian Bixler ’
Another sunny day in Goodyear as camp winds down…
Wes Hodges (Bats Right, Throws Right), 25 years old, 6-2, 205 lbs, Chattanooga, TN
This is a make or break season for Hodges as he makes the switch from third base over to first. He struggled in 2009, playing only 86 games because of wrist and shoulder injuries.
His injury problems started when he suffered a stress fracture in his right leg during his final season at Georgia Tech (2006) and then a strained hamstring and broken toe hampered him in 2007. Wes’ only healthy pro season came in Double-A in 2008, when he batted .290 with 18 HRs and 97 RBIs in 133 games, earning the Eastern League Rookie of the Year award.
Hodges’ offense is his ticket to the majors, but he’ll need to show he can adapt to first base and stay healthy if he wants an opportunity this year. The road becomes tougher at first because Wes is blocked by Matt LaPorta.
Brian Bixler (Right, Right) 27, 6-1, 195, Sandusky, OH
An off-season trade acquisition from the Pirates, Bixler serves as infield insurance for the Indians. The former Eastern Michigan star is a two-time International League All-Star (2007 & 2008) that needs a fresh start with new surroundings. With Pittsburgh, Bixler played 68 major league games over the last two years, batting just .178.
Bixler was molded into a utility role last season, playing two games at third base and 15 in center, in addition to his regular stops at second and shortstop. He is a better second baseman because his range is slightly below average at short. Bixler possesses excellent footwork around second base and provides outstanding speed. In 2007, he was clocked at a remarkable 4.1 seconds from home to first.
He will primarily play second base for the Clippers.
Jason Donald (Right, Right) 25, 6-1, 190, Clovis, CA
Donald was scooped up last year from Philadelphia in the Cliff Lee trade, but only played ten games with the Clippers because of a strained lower back. Prior to the trade, he underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his right knee. He entered the 2009 season as the #4 overall prospect in the Phillies organization, according to Baseball America.
The Indians see Donald as a possible major league utility player in the future, the same role that Mark Grudzielanek has to begin the season. Donald can play second, shortstop or third, but he isn’t dominate at any one position. Offensively, he holds a good approach with good gap power for an infielder.
The key for Donald is to stay healthy and produce like he did in 2008, when he batted .307 with 19 doubles, 14 HRs and 54 RBIs for the Phillies Double-A club in Reading. That year he was the starting shortstop in the Futures Game at Yankee Stadium and competed for Team USA in the Beijing Olympics.
Brian Buscher (Left, Right) 28, 6-0, 220, Jacksonville, FL
The Indians signed Buscher to a minor league contract in December, two weeks after he was
granted free agency by the Twins. Last year Buscher made Minnesota’s opening day roster for the first time and stayed on the roster until August 1st. He was recalled in September, batting .235 with 2 HRs and 12 RBIs in 61 total games.
Buscher is a strong left-handed hitter with a consistent approach at the plate. He doesn’t have much power, but can hit line drives to the gaps. Buscher was the 2007 Twins Minor League Player of the Year.
Others: Luis Rodriguez and Anderson Hernandez are not going to make the Indians 25-man roster as camp breaks, so they could land in Columbus. Hernandez is currently on the 40-man roster, but may be designated to make room from Austin Kearns, Jamey Wright and Mark Grudzielanek, the three non-roster invites that made the Indians opening day squad. If Hernandez is designated, he’ll need to clear waivers and accept an assignment to the Clippers.
The Indians sliced the major league roster to 38 players after optioning RHP Jess Todd to Columbus and reassigning LHP Mike Gosling, RHP Frank Herrmann, RHP Josh Judy, RHP Yohan Pino, CA Damaso Espino, INF Brian Bixler and OF Shelley Duncan to minor league camp.
Most, if not all of those players will begin the season with the Clippers.
Also, Clippers design/graphics guru Yoshi Ando has released his 2010 Clippers desktop wallpaper… get’em while they’re hot:
The Indians reduced their spring roster by seven today, assigning four players to the Columbus roster: CA Carlos Santana, OF Jordan Brown, RHP Jeanmar Gomez, and RHP Hector Rondon.
INF Carlos Rivero and OF Nick Weglarz were optioned to Double-A Akron. INF Beau Mills was assigned to minor league camp.
In addition, INF Brian Bixler has cleared waivers and been outrighted to the Clippers roster. Bixler was designated for assignment Wednesday to make room for newly acquired Anderson Hernandez. Hernandez was claimed off waivers from the Mets.
Top catching prospect Carlos Santana headlines the group of reassignments. Santana is expected to be the Clippers starting catcher on Opening Day. He was 4-for-16 with two doubles and one RBI in big league camp.
Reigning International League batting champ Jordan Brown is expected to be a key cog in the Clippers lineup once he recovers from a torn meniscus in his right knee. Brown underwent surgery after injuring the knee during outfield drills two weeks ago.
Jeanmar Gomez, only 22 years old, will find a spot in the Clippers starting rotation after posting a 10-4 mark (22 starts) and a 3.43 ERA in Akron last season. Gomez threw a perfect game on May 21, 2009 against Trenton.
Hector Rondon will be a top-of-the-rotation starter for the Clippers this year. He is considered a top pitching prospect and posted a combined 3.38 ERA between Akron and Columbus (25 starts).
I’m headed to sunny Goodyear this weekend. Look for daily spring training audio reports, blog entries, video interviews and much more!
The Indians announced they’ve claimed INF Anderson Hernandez off waivers from the New York Mets. To make room for Hernandez on the club’s 40-man roster, INF Brian Bixler has been designated for assignment.
Hernandez, 27, combined to hit .251 in 123 games with Washington and the Mets. He started the 2009 season on the disabled list and played one game at Triple-A Syracuse before heading to the Nationals. The Santo Domingo, DR native was traded on August 6 to New York.
Hernandez owns a career .245 Major League average with 4 HR and 57 RBI over five seasons (186 games).
Bixler was acquired from Pittsburgh on January 18 after splitting the 2009 season between Triple-A and the majors. He was 4-for-16 (.250) with 1 RBI in 11 Cactus League games this spring.