Kane County Roster Shuffle

The Kane County Cougars are off to a slow start to the 2007 season. The Midwest League runner-ups in 2006 have started the season 1-9 while they have struggled with Mother Nature. The Cougars have also been hurt by injuries this early season. On Wednesday, they announced a series of roster moves, which include two players joining the team and two heading to the DL.

Kane County announced on Wednesday that right-hander Chad Lee and first-baseman/DH Haas Pratt would be heading to the disabled list. Lee has been sidelined for the entire season with right-shoulder tendinitis. Pratt's injury is undisclosed. He was hitting .100 with three hits in 30 at-bats for Kane County this season.

Lee and Pratt will be replaced on the roster by right-hander Craig Italiano and outfielder Larry Cobb. Italiano played briefly with the Cougars in 2006, while Cobb will be making his Cougar debut.

Italiano was one of the Cougars' most highly touted players coming into the 2006 season. Armed with one of the best fastballs in the A's system, Italiano was one of the three high school draft pick pitchers on the Cougars' 2006 Opening Day roster. He was a second round pick in 2005.

He started off the season well, posting a 3.50 ERA in the first month of the season. Unfortunately, he was sidelined by shoulder soreness in early May and eventually underwent shoulder surgery. Italiano spent the off-season rehabbing his injury and had been competing in extended spring training prior to his call-up to Kane County. He will likely join the Cougars' rotation.

Cobb was selected in the 27th round of last season's draft and he opened a lot of eyes with an impressive performance for short-season Vancouver. He led the Canadians in hits (74) and walks (27), while batting .292 with one homer and 14 RBI in 63 games. He spent the last week of the season with Triple-A Sacramento.

Cobb will join a crowded Cougars' outfield, which includes Matt Sulentic, Jermaine Mitchell, Toddric Johnson and Mike Massaro.

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