With Josh Rainwater hitting the disabled list with an oblique strain, the Erie Seawolves appeared to be back to five starters for five slots, that is until Luis Marte was promoted to Erie to fill the vacant roster spot. Marte has been dominating the Florida State League and he will leave Manager Tom Brookens with a tough decision on how to handle his rotation. Some of his guidance may come from above, as the Tigers may view Marte as a potential bullpen option later this season.
Filling in for Marte at Lakeland will be the resurgent Ramon Garcia. Garcia has been extremely effective at West Michigan, as he returns from a lengthy absence due to arm troubles. Garcia will finally get his true crack at the Florida State League, and it will be interesting to see how he handles it. Also leaving the West Michigan squad will be reliever Kelvin Cedano. Cedano has been inconsistent this spring, and will head back to extended spring training to try and work things out.
Making their season debuts for the 'Caps will be supplemental first rounder Brandon Hamilton and reliever Mauricio Robles. Hamilton was in line for a job at West Michigan on Opening Day, but an oblique strain kept him in Lakeland to rehab and get back on track. Hamilton has electric stuff and showed promise last fall and this spring. He should be an exiting addition to an already dominating West Michigan pitching staff. Robles will be taking on his first assignment since coming over from Venezuela in February. After two excellent seasons in the VSL, Robles will bring his 87-90 mph fastball and two solid off-speed pitches to the Midwest League.
The news looks worse and worse for reliever Brett Jensen. With his second trip to the DL for elbow problems, Jensen underwent an MRI, and while results are available, nobody is talking. The images from the MRI were sent to a doctor in Detroit for further analysis. It is not far-fetched to believe that Jensen may be heading for the operating table.