This offseason, like most offseasons, includes a number of former Valley Leaguers in pro ball who either sign with a new club, are released, or retire (and sometimes more than one of those options!).
So we still have a number of players who are looking for employment, even as transaction news creeps in. Today we have a quick look at three players who have an updated status: Scott Shuman (Winchester 2007), Collin Cowgill (Covington 2005), and Eddy Rodriguez (Luray 2005-06).
- Shuman, after one year out of baseball and three seasons in the Independent Leagues, has signed a minor league free agent contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Scott was a 19th round pick in the 2009 draft by Tampa Bay. He spent three years in the minors with the Rays, and then one with the San Francisco Giants (in 2013), before he was released. Scott was picked up by Toronto in early 2014, but was released before the minor league season started. Scott then started an odyssey that saw him play for four different Indy League teams and three different foreign league teams. One thing is for sure- Scott misses bats: In all of those stops, he struck out 501 batters in 340 innings. Hopefully Scott will make at least the Dodgers’ Triple-A team this spring!
- Cowgill, released by the San Diego Padres in August, has been signed by the Philadelphia Phillies. Collin has 689 major league at-bats over the years, mostly for the Los Angeles Angels in 2013-15. He will most likely start 2018 in Triple-A Lehigh Valley (where perhaps I can see him play at some point during the summer?).
- Rodriguez has hung up his cleats after 2,088 minor league at-bats… and 5 major league ones. Eddy got a surprise call-up in 2012 with the Padres, and promptly hit a home run in his first major league at-bat (and got a hug from former VBLer Yonder Alonso (Luray 2006) in the dugout afterwards). He played in two games, and was returned to the minor leagues. He didn’t get another chance. His twitter account now says “Retired professional catcher with huge fishing addiction.”