JACKSON, TENN. (APRIL 4, 2012) - In conjunction with the Seattle Mariners, the Jackson Generals announced today the 2012 opening day 25-man roster. The Generals open the season tomorrow night against the Birmingham Barons at Pringles Park, with first pitch slated for 7:05 p.m. 25-year-old righty Andrew Carraway will make the opening day start for Jackson.
Generals Roster Breakdown:
Four top 100 prospects in baseball, according to MLB.com: LHP Danny Hultzen (16), RHP Taijuan Walker (18), INF Nick Franklin (52) and LHP James Paxton (77)
Five of the top six prospects in the Mariners organization according to Baseball America: (#1 being opening day catcher for the Mariners, Jesus Montero) Walker (2), Hultzen (3), Paxton (4), Franklin (5), INF Francisco Martinez (6)
Four players on the Mariners 40-man roster: Hultzen, RHP Yoervis Medina, OF Johermyn Chavez, OF Chih-Hsien Chiang.
18 of the 25-man roster spent at least some time in Jackson during the 2011 season.
Five countries represented: United States, Venezuela, Dominican Republic, Canada and Taiwan.
Danny Hultzen, the Mariners #2 overall pick in the 2011 MLB draft played three seasons at the University of Virginia. Hultzen is the first #2 overall selection to player for the Jackson franchise since Mark Prior in 2002. The 22-year-old Hultzen played for the Peoria Javelinas in the Arizona Fall League and went 1-0 with 1.40 ERA (3ER, 19.1 IP) in 6 starts. As junior at the University of Virginia, he went 12-3 with a 1.37 ERA (18 ER, 118.0 IP) with 165 strikeouts in 18 start and led Virginia to the College World Series.
19-year-old righty Taijuan Walker and 23-year-old lefty James Paxton join Hultzen on the pitching staff. Walker, the Mariners first round selection in 2010 was named Seattle's Minor League Pitcher of the Year in 2011 and honored as the top Midwest League prospect in 2011 by Baseball America. Paxton was the Mariners fourth round selection in 2010. Paxton combined to go 6-3, with a 2.37 ERA for Class-A Clinton and Jackson last year. He recorded 131 strikeouts last year - second-most among Mariner farmhands in just 17 starts.
Nick Franklin returns to Jackson and was rated this offseason by MLB.com as the No. 52 overall prospect and No. 6 shortstop in baseball.
Returning to Jackson for 2012: Pitchers Andrew Carraway, Steven Hensley, Bobby LaFromboise, Yoervis Medina, Brian Moran, James Paxton, and Stephen Pryor. Catchers Brandon Bantz, Ralph Henriquez and Jesus Sucre. Infielders Leury Bonilla, Nick Franklin, Francisco Martinez, Gabriel Noriega and Rich Poythress. Outfielders Johermyn Chavez, Chih-Hsien Chiang and Joe Dunigan.
Tickets for Generals home games can be purchased at the Generals Box Office at Pringles Park, online at www.jacksongeneralsbaseball.com or by calling 731.988.5299.
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