D-backs Outright Romero, Release 5 Pitchers

The Arizona Diamondbacks have outrighted outfielder Alex Romero off of their 40-man roster and assigned him to Triple-A Reno. He will need to clear waivers before he can report to minor league camp. The club also released five minor league pitchers last week.

Alex Romero suffered a broken hand in Winter Ball, which limited his action to just three Cactus League games this year. He went 0-for-7 with an RBI.  Since Romero was out of minor league options, he would have needed to clear waivers had he not begun the season in the majors.  Since he needed to be exposed to waivers anyway, the Diamondbacks decided to outright him off the 40-man roster completely and open a spot for a healthier player, perhaps from outside the organization.  

The D-backs also released five minor league pitchers last week: Jailen Peguero, Matt Green, Kyle Wright, Jason Durst, and Forrest Cory.

Peguero was informed of his impending release on March 18th.  His contract required advance notice of his release, which became official on the 20th.

A former second-round pick of the Diamondbacks in 2005, Matt Green struggled through injuries and ineffectiveness through most of his minor league career.  His one good season came in 2007, when he went 12-6 with 128 strikeouts and a 3.95 ERA for the Mobile BayBears.  His career ERA was less impressive at 4.83.  Green had one of the more impressive sliders in the organization, but had a very hittable fastball and lacked a serviceable changeup.  He was 27 years old at the time of his release.

Kyle Wright pitched solidly in each of his four seasons withthe Diamondbacks, first as a starter, then as a reliever.  But aside from his impressive 103/17 K/BB ratio at South Bend in 2006, Wright did little to distinguish himself from other prospects, and he stagnated at Hi-A Visalia for two seasons.  The former 19th-round draft selection turns 26 in April, and while he locates each of his pitches well, none of them rates as a plus-offering.

Jason Durst was a 36th-round draft selection in 2006.  His release does not come as a shock, as Durst went 1-10 with a 7.70 ERA in his two pro seasons.

Undrafted free agent Forrest Cory was the lone southpaw released by Arizona last week.  Cory ranked as one of the top left-handed pitchers in the organization almost by default after his 2007 season in Visalia, his second straight impressive effort.  The Diamondbacks had depleted their stock of left-handed pitching to acquire Dan Haren, and Cory's results were hard to ignore.  The Diamondbacks front office were only cautiously optomistic, however, believing that Cory's marginal stuff would not be as effective against advanced hitters.  That proved to indeed be the case, as Cory, now 25, posted a 5.53 ERA at Mobile last season, averaging less than five strikeouts per nine innings. The D-backs really bolstered their stock of southpaws in the 2008 draft, making Cory expendable.  

Additionally, the Diamondbacks announced that they have reassigned catcher John Hester and outfielders Trent Oeltjen and Brandon Watson to minor league camp.  The D-backs have 38 players in camp. The breakdown includes 17 pitchers (17 roster/zero non-roster), four catchers (three roster/one non-roster), nine infielders (seven roster/two non-roster) and eight outfielders (four roster/four non-roster).


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