Independent Baseball Chatter – by Bob Wirz
The American Association was the first professional stop for two pitchers whose teams still are battling to reach the American League Championship Series and possibly the World Series although the stories of these relief pitchers have gone in two different directions this fall.
Luke Hochevar (pictured, Fort Worth ’06) has already pitched twice out of the Kansas City bullpen during the Royals’ first four games against Houston in the American League Division Series (2.2 innings, no runs, 2 strikeouts).
Texas’s Tanner Scheppers (St. Paul ’09) was not believed to be a strong candidate to be on the Rangers’ postseason roster anyway since he had only seen brief action during the season after an ankle injury during spring training got him off on the wrong path. But SportsDayDFW reports his fate was sealed when he had to have five stitches suffered, of all things, during the Rangers’ celebration when they qualified for the playoffs.
Brewers Add Guerra, Two Others Select Free Agency
A trio of right-handed pitchers out of the American Association who spent some time in the major leagues this season are in the process of changing addresses.
Milwaukee claimed Junior Guerra (Wichita ’11, ’13) from the Chicago White Sox, which keeps the 30-year-old on a 40-man roster. The Venezuelan went 4-7 with a 3.13 earned run average as a combination starter and reliever with the Chisox’s top two farm clubs and he got into three games (0-0, 6.75) with the parent team.
Brandon Kintzler (St. Paul ’09) and Angel Castro (Lincoln ’10) have elected to try free agency rather than stay with Milwaukee and Oakland, respectively.
Previously the chief spokesman for 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 as well as writing his blog, www.IndyBaseballChatter.com.