MIDLAND, Mich. - Infielder Corey Seager, the Los Angeles Dodgers' No. 18 overall selection in the 2012 amateur draft, will begin his first full professional season with the Great Lakes Loons, as announced by the Dodgers on Sunday afternoon.
Seager, rated by Baseball America as the Dodgers' No. 3 overall prospect, was the first position player since James Loney in 2002 to drafted by the Dodgers with their first selection. The brother of Mariners third baseman Kyle Seager, Corey will be the highest drafted position player to ever play for the Loons. He becomes the eighth first round draft choice to play for the Loons, joining 2011 NL Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw, infielder Preston Mattingly, and pitchers James Adkins, Bryan Morris, Ethan Martin, Aaron Miller and Zach Lee.
Seager joins a loaded Loons opening day squad that has six players currently ranked among the Dodgers Top 30 prospects, according to Baseball America. Those players are Seager, right-handed pitcher Scott Griggs (No. 18 prospect), right-hander Zach Bird (19), outfielder James Baldwin III (22), right-hander Angel Sanchez (25) and outfielder Jeremy Rathjen (29).
Guiding the Loons for 2013 is Razor Shines, who enters his ninth season as a Minor League manager and was the hitting coach for the Loons in 2012. Joining Shines' staff is former White Sox closer Bill Simas as pitching coach, hitting coach Mike Eylward and athletic trainer Matt Togno, as well as strength and conditioning coach Paul Sterrett.
Eight players will return to the Loons from their 2012 roster: Baldwin, Griggs, right-handed pitchers Ralston Cash, Daniel Carela and Arismendy Ozoria, left-handed pitcher Miguel Sulbaran, catcher Tyler Ogle and outfielder Devin Shines, who is the son of manager Razor Shines. Additionally, Sanchez played for the Loons in 2011.
The Loons' opening day roster includes 13 pitchers (Bird, Carela, Cash, Lyndsey Caughel, Cotton, Carlos Frias, Sawil Gonzalez, Griggs, Jonathan Martinez, Luis Meza, Ozoria, Sanchez and Sulbaran), six infielders (Alexis Aguilar, Bladimir Franco, Paul Hoenecke, Malcolm Holland, Seager and Jesus Valdez), three outfielders (Baldwin, Rathjen and Shines) and three catchers (Jose Capellan, Tyler Ogle and Eric Smith). Outfielder Pat Stover will begin the season on the disabled list.
The Loons will debut their new roster this Thursday at Dow Diamond as the team hosts the Fort Wayne TinCaps, the Single-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres. The Loons Opening Day Celebration, presented by Consumers Energy, begins at 4:30 p.m. with a parade through downtown Midland featuring Loons players and coaches. Game time is 6:05 p.m. and tickets are still available at Loons.com or by calling 989-837-BALL. It's a Chemical Bank Dollar Family Feast Night, featuring $1 prices on hot dogs, ice cream sandwiches and 16 oz. sodas, along with a Loons 2013 magnet schedule giveaway, presented by Farm Bureau Insurance.
The Great Lakes Loons are a seventh-year Single-A partner of the Los Angeles Dodgers and members of the Midwest League. For more information about the Loons, visit Loons.com or call 989-837-BALL.