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Ems blend rookies, veterans for opener.

Byline: Steve Mims The Register-Guard

The Eugene Emeralds will feature mostly rookies on the mound with veterans at the plate to start the Northwest League season.

The players arrived in town on Wednesday, and a roster of 30 is expected when the Emeralds open Friday night at home against Boise. It features 14 players drafted earlier this month by the Padres and 16 with previous minor-league experience, but that could change as more drafted players sign with San Diego.

New manager Jim Gabella will put the team through a workout today at PK Park before the Ems stay home for three games against the Hawks this weekend.

The highest drafted player on the team is Bryan Verbitsky, a third-round pick out of Hofstra who split his time as a starter and reliever this spring. The bullpen could also include sixth-rounder Trevor Gott from Kentucky, ninth-rounder Adam Cimber from San Francisco and 10th-round pick Justin Livengood out of UNC Wilmington.

Left-handed starter Erik Schoenrock was the Conference USA pitcher of the year at Memphis, but the Padres often move college starters who had a heavy workload to the bullpen for the summer. Jeffrey Enloe of Central Arkansas, Brandon Fry from Pearl River Community College, Evansville's Kyle Lloyd and Josh Richardson of Liberty were other college starters sent to Eugene.

Three pitchers were sent down from long-season A to join the Ems as Erik Cabrera and Jairo Gomez pitched for Lake Elsinore earlier this year and Genison Reyes was at Fort Wayne. Yimmi Brasoban and Jorge Guzman will pitch above rookie-level for the first time, and Coby Cowgill was signed by the Padres after being released by Texas.

Eugene's outfield has five players age 21 or younger who were signed as nondrafted free agents out of the Dominican Republic. Henry Charles, Fabel Filpo, Edwin Moreno and Yair Lopez all played at rookie-level Peoria last season, and Franmil Reyes was in the Domincan Summer League.

Miguel Del Castillo is the lone veteran catcher as a fifth-year pro who began the season at Lake Elsinore. Also behind the plate are Michael Miller, a 20th-round pick from Dallas Baptist, and Ryan Miller, a 14th round selection from San Bernadino Valley College.

It appears that Eugene will be able to switch off between veterans and rookies in the infield as first baseman Cade Kreuter is up from Peoria to split time with Trae Santos, a 17th-round pick out of Troy. Michael Bass, a 27th-round pick from UNC Wilmington, can play second and third, and Reynaldo Brugeura is beginning his fourth year of pro ball.

The middle infield features Jalen Goree and Felipe Blanco, who are up from Peoria, along with Chase Jensen, a 22nd-round pick out of Houston.
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Title Annotation:Ems Baseball
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:Jun 13, 2013
Words:452
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