Winter Meetings Warm-Up
In less than a week, the baseball world will descend on Indianapolis, Indiana for the annual Baseball Winter Meetings, which also signifies the beginning of the Hot Stove League. So far, there hasn’t been too much to report with respect to Dodgers Minor League signings. In fact, the most notable move to date impacting Isotopes fans was the official completion of the John Garland trade, in which electrifying ‘Topes infielder Tony Abreu was dealt to Arizona on October 9. Many Albuquerque fans remember Abreu’s limbo status for a few days leading up to the PCL Playoffs while both the Dodgers and Diamondbacks decided on the parameters of the deal that sent Garland to Los Angeles on September 1.
The Dodgers also added a pair of players to their 40-man roster with ‘Topes ties. Kenley Jansen, a 6’6 native of Curacao, played eight games for Albuquerque at catcher last year before he was sent to Single-A Inland Empire and converted to a pitcher. In 12 relief appearances for the 66ers at the tail end of last year, Jansen went 0-0 with a 4.63 ERA and it’s certainly possible that he could see more time in a ‘Topes uniform in 2010. Infielder Ivan DeJesus was also added to the Dodgers’ 40-man after missing all of last season with a broken leg suffered in a Spring Training B-Game. Many believed DeJesus, who had a break-out season with Double-A Jacksonville in 2008, would break camp with the Isotopes last year before his injury. Rest assured, there will be many more moves to come. Los Angeles General Manager Ned Coletti has a track record of aggressively improving the Dodgers and those moves will no doubt impact the Isotopes.
‘Topes Tattler will be on location in Indy next week and will be giving updates throughout the Winter Meetings.
There have also been a couple of moves involving former Isotopes. Relief pitcher Ross Wolf, who pitched in Albuquerque from 2006-08, has re-signed with the Baltimore Orioles after going 4-2 with a 3.95 ERA and a save in 47 games with the Triple-A Norfolk Tides last year. Catcher, and long-time fan favorite Paul Hoover (an Isotope in 2003, 2006-08) has also re-upped with the Philadelphia Phillies. Last season Hoover played most of the season in Triple-A Lehigh Valley before getting called up at the end of the September and appearing in three games (one start) for the Phils. While he wasn’t on the post-season roster, Hoover did join Philadelphia on its run to the World Series. After their loss to the Yankees, the Phillies removed Hoover from their 40-man roster, but the catcher signed a Minor League contract and will get an invite to Spring Training in Clearwater next spring.