The Lowell Spinners are proud to release the first edition of the 2018 roster with the team set to open the season on Friday, June 15 in Norwich to take on the Connecticut Tigers.
The pitching staff consists of mostly new-comers with some familiar faces including LHP Rio Gomez, RHP, Francisco Lopez-Soto, LHP Yorvin Pantoja, and RHP Juan Perez. While most saw limited action near the end of the season, Pantoja started 15 games for the Spinners in 2017. The most interesting returning player may be RHP Danny Bethea, who played for the Spinners from 2013-14 as a catcher but is converting to pitching for the 2018 season. New faces include RHP Eduard Bazardo, LHP Brian Brown, RHP Alberto Franco, RHP Victor Garcia, RHP Hunter Haworth, RHP Alexander Montero, LHP Oddanier Mosqueda, RHP Andrew Politi, and LHP Tanner Raiburn. Also joining the squad is RHP Harrison Cooney who will begin the season with the Spinners as part of a minor league rehab assignment for the second season in a row.
Splitting time behind the plate to start the season will be Alan Marrero and Alberto Schmidt, a pair of 2016-draftees who have spent the last two seasons in the Gulf Coast League.
The infield sees the return of 2017 New York-Penn League All-Star third baseman Garrett Benge. Joining Benge is shortstop Andre Colon, first baseman Trey Ganns, second baseman Xavier LeGrant and recent draftees Jonathan Ortega (19th round) and Grant Williams (10th round).
The highlight of the roster lies in the outfield with several notable prospects on the roster. 2017 second round pick Cole Brannen returns to Lowell after beginning the season in Low-A Greenville. 2017 high school draftees Tyler Esplin and Tyler Dearden also make their Lowell debuts while Ramfis Berroa joins the squad after spending time in Greenville earlier this season. Returning to Lowell for his second season is speed-demon Nick Hamilton. To add to the mix, the Spinners also have sixth round draft pick Devlin Granberg out of Dallas Baptist and the power-hitting Kyri Washington, who returns to Lowell on a rehab assignment to start the season.
The Spinners are managed by first-year skipper Corey Wimberly, who won a South Atlantic League title with the Greenville Drive last season as an assistant coach. Also joining the staff is pitching coach Nick Green, who spent the last three seasons working in the Gulf Coast League. Former big leaguer Nate Spears returns for his second season as the hitting coach and former San Diego Padre and Framingham native Lance Zawadzki makes his professional coaching debut as an assistant coach.
The training staff is led by Joel Harris, returning for his third season with the team. He is joined by new-comers Tyler Boucher (Assistant Athletic Trainer) and Colin Feikles (Strength & Conditioning Coach).
The Spinners open their season on Friday, June 15th against the Connecticut Tigers with Opening Day at LeLacheur Park slated for Monday, June 18th against the Staten Island Yankees with first pitch scheduled for 6:35 p.m.
The team will be having an open practice/live scrimmage on Thursday, June 14th with FREE ENTRY TO THE PARK! Gates open at 5:30 p.m. with the festivities set to begin at 6:35 p.m.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.