Chronique: Robert Stock (NJ) au camp des majeures
Texte écrit par Bob Wirz (via www.canamleague.com)
The pitchers keep getting the call.
Robert Stock, who came out of USC with better catching credentials, is the fifth Can-Am League pitcher to get an invitation to major league spring training.
The right-hander, a two-way player for three seasons with the Trojans, moved to the mound after three seasons catching in the St. Louis Cardinals chain where he had been a second round draft choice in '09. But it was not until four more seasons had passed until the Westlake, CA native really got heavy mound work in 2016 while in the bullpen of the New Jersey Jackals.
He appeared in more than half of the Jackals' games and when the ink was dried on the 52 appearances he had struck out 73 hitters in 60 innings and posted a 2.85 earned run average. He also allowed 47 hits and 40 walks while going 1-2 with five saves and Cincinnati gave him a season split between Classes A and AA in '17.
San Diego stepped in to sign Stock, now 28, last month and the Padres have invited him to their major league camp in Arizona where if he was to make the Opening Day roster it would be without a single day of Triple-A experience. He did get added experience in Mexico during the offseason.
Some of the mound jobs appear to be open with San Diego, but Stock has an abundance of competition with 37 hurlers currently scheduled for the Peoria, AZ camp.
Could Font Start?
Robert Stock will be joined in major league camps by these additional former Can-Am pitchers (league affiliation in parenthesis): Steve Delabar of Texas (Brockton), Wilmer Font of the Los Angeles Dodgers (Ottawa), Luis Garcia of Philadelphia (Newark) and Jarret Martin of Oakland (Ottawa, Sussex County and Rockland).
While we forecast a possible bullpen role earlier for Font, the website Fansided.com points out the 2017 Pacific Coast League Pitcher of the Year's best option may be for spot starts since he has shown more ability as a starter in the past. He was 10-8, 3.42 and struck out 178 in only 134.1 innings for Oklahoma City. He has appeared in eight major league games with Texas and the Dodgers, but has not had any starts to this point.
From Sussex to Twins
Youthful Tanner Kiest, who pitched briefly at Sussex County two years ago, has signed a minor league contract with Minnesota. The Yucaipa, CA native does not turn 24 until September so he has time to develop.
About Bob Wirz
Previously the chief spokesman for Baseball Commissioners Bowie Kuhn and Peter Ueberroth, Bob Wirz has been writing extensively about Independent Baseball since 2003. He is a frequent contributor to this site, has a blog, www.IndyBaseballChatter.com, and a book about his life, "The Passion of Baseball", is available at traditional book-buying sites, or at www.WirzandAssociates.com.