Thursday, June 15, 2006

Transactions Bring RailCats Blast From The Past

Photograph By Niki Paton / Baseball Notions
"It's deja vu all over again" - Yogi Berra

SAINT PAUL, Minn.- I used this Yogi-ism almost a year ago to describe familiar faces from the Northern League during the Golden Baseball Leagues inaugural season at Long Beach, California.

Now it seems it is appropriate, "all over again."

It looks like a former RailCat, from the inaugural home season in 2003 will be returning as part of the RailCats 2006 pitching staff.

Manager Greg Tagert is working on the RailCats 2006 puzzle and the current pieces have been laid out.

Wednesday it was made public the bullpen would no longer contain RHP Ryan Burnau, who was released or former RailCats starting RHP Jeff Mault, who was traded to the Frontier Leagues struggling last place Windy City Thunderbolts of Crestwood, Illinois.

Next in the puzzle, the RailCats have signed two new arms for the currently second place Southern Division team bullpen. RHP Andy Carter and RHP Matt Petty who made back-to-back debuts in their first game for the RailCats against the Joliet Jackhammers Wednesday night.

Tagert is in the process of signing former starting RHP Anasazi "Sazi" Guthrie to the 2006 RailCats roster.

In 2003, after trying out for the Northern League, the former Ithaca Bomber graduate played for the RailCats under Manager Garry Templeton.

Guthrie and RailCats LHP Jake Upwood were picked up by the San Diego Padres organization that October.

Guthrie reported for spring training with the Lake Elsinore Storm (A+) before opening the season in Fort Wayne, Indiana with the Fort Wayne Wizards (A) in April of 2004.

Guthrie spent most of the 2004 season with the Wizards before being moved back up to Lake Elsinore in August of 2004.

Guthrie returned to the Padres organization in 2005 and was released during spring training.

After being approached by the Northern League leading Saint Paul Saints and Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks, Guthrie signed on to play ball closer to home for the inaugural season of the Golden Baseball League of California with the Long Beach Armada.

On January 20, 2006, Guthrie's contract was traded to the Brockton Rox (Goldklang Group who also own the Northern League Saint Paul Saints) of the Can-Am League.

On May 23, Guthrie was released from the Rox organization and found himself a free agent before trying out for RailCats Manager Greg Tagert Wednesday, June 7th, in Gary, Indiana.

Guthrie threw again Monday and “impressed,” Manager Greg Tagert and pitching coach Chris Mongiardo, according to a RailCats game notes release from June 13th.

If Guthrie was added to the roster, his first game for the RailCats could be this weekend against the Kansas City T-Bones.

Thursday night’s starting pitcher is Jason Shelley against his former Joliet Jackhammers.

*Update: June 16, 2006- The RailCats voided the trade of RHP Jeff Mault and placed him on the Inactive List.

No comments: