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Rookies, veterans from Cape League among MLB’s 2014 NRIs

Mark Appel (Yarmouth-Dennis, 2011) with the Houston Astros

Spring training. Two words which are music to the ears of baseball fans everywhere.

     In just a few days, Major League Baseball’s 30 teams will begin arriving in Florida and Arizona, the centers of the baseball world for the next two months.
     It is an especially important time for the nearly 100 former Cape Cod Baseball League players who will be participating as NRIs, baseball shorthand for non-roster invitees – minor league youngsters hoping to impress and veterans trying to land one of the precious few big league jobs still available.
     Cape League Hall of Fame member David Aardsma (Falmouth, 2002; HOF class of 2010) is one of the more prominent players on this list. Aardsma, the former Seattle closer, pitched for the New York Mets last season after recovering from Tommy John surgery and a hip procedure. He recently signed a minor league deal with the Cleveland Indians that includes an invitation to spring training, where he hopes to earn a job in the Cleveland bullpen.
     Other veterans who are in similar positions include Scott Atchison (Wareham, 1996), also a Cleveland minor leaguer; Daniel Bard (Wareham, 2005), who just signed a minor league deal with the Texas Rangers after being cut by both the Boston Red Sox and the Chicago Cubs last summer; well-traveled middle infielder John McDonald (Bourne, 1995), who is hoping to win a job with the Los Angeles Angels, and second baseman Mike Fontenot (Wareham, 2000), who will be in camp with the Washington Nationals.
     Recent first-round draft picks from the Cape hoping to impress include Houston right-hander Mark Appel (Yarmouth-Dennis, 2011), who pitched in A-ball last summer and is projected as a future star for the Astros, and Chicago Cubs third base prospect Kris Bryant (Chatham, 2011). Appel and Bryant were the first two players chosen in the 2013 amateur draft last June.  
     As usual, January was an extremely busy month on the transactions front as organizations released players, signed others, completed trades, renegotiated contracts and filled holes on both their major league rosters and those of their minor league affiliates as they prepared for the championship campaign that will soon be under way.
     After scouring dozens of pages of reports since the 2013 season ended, we have compiled the following team-by-team list of transactions involving Cape League alumni: 
ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS
Invited non-roster SS Nick Ahmed (Bourne, 2010) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Jake Barrett (Brewster, 2010/11) to spring training.
Invited non-roster LHP Andrew Chafin (Orleans, 2011) to spring training.
Invited non-roster 2B Mike Freeman (Brewster, 2008) to spring training.
Invited non-roster 3B Jake Lamb (Y-D, 2011) to spring training.
Invited non-roster CF Evan Marzilli (Chatham, 2011) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Matt Stites (Falmouth, 2010) to spring training.
Signed LHP Joe Thatcher (Bourne, 2003) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
 
 
ATLANTA BRAVES
Invited non-roster 2B Philip Gosselin (Harwich, 2009) to spring training.
Invited non-roster 2B Tyler Greene (Orleans, 2004) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Mark Lamm (Brewster, 2008) to spring training.
Signed 3B Chris Johnson (Hyannis, 2005) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
 
BALTIMORE ORIOLES
2B Brian Roberts (Chatham, 1998) declared free agency.
Signed free agent RHP Zach Clark (Harwich, 2002) to a minor league contract.
RF Chris Dickerson (Brewster, 2002) refused minor league assignment, became free agent.
Signed free agent 1B Chad Tracy (Orleans, 2000) to a minor league contract.
Signed OF/DH Steve Pearce (Cotuit, 2004) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Traded 3B Danny Valencia (Orleans, 2006) to Kansas City for RF David Lough.
Acquired RHP Brad Brach (Cotuit, 2007) from San Diego for RHP Devin Jones.
 
BOSTON RED SOX
Selected the contract of RHP Anthony Renaudo (Brewster, 2010) from Pawtucket.
Announced that CF Jacoby Ellsbury (Falmouth, 2004) declined the team’s one-year qualifying offer.
Reinstated LHP Andrew Miller (Chatham, 2004/05) from the 60-day disabled list.
Signed free agent LHP Rich Hill (Chatham, 2000/01) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Signed free agent 2B Justin Henry (Bourne, 2005) to a minor league contract.
Signed free agent 2B Mike McCoy (Chatham, 2001) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Signed free agent OF Corey Brown (Chatham, 2006) to a minor league contract.
 
CHICAGO CUBS
Activated RHP Matt Guerrier (Y-D, 1997) from the 60-day disabled list.
Sent RHP Zach Putnam (Chatham, 2007) outright to Iowa.
RHP Daniel Bard (Wareham, 2005) elected free agency.
Signed free agent CF Mitch Maier (Harwich, 2002) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Signed3B Chris Coghlan (Chatham, 2005) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Invited non-roster 3B Kris Bryant (Chatham, 2011) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Kyle Hendricks (Brewster, 2010) to spring training.
Invited non-roster LHP Eric Jokisch (Harwich, 2009) to spring training.
Traded RF Brian Bogusevich (Falmouth, 2004) to Miami for CF Justin Ruggiano.
Signed free agent C John Baker (Y-D, 2000/01) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
 
CHICAGO WHITE SOX
Signed free agent LHP Scott Downs (Y-D, 1996).
Signed free agent RHP Scott Carroll (Falmouth, 2006) to a minor league contract.
Signed 2B Gordon Beckham (Y-D, 2007) for 2014, avoiding arbitration. Chicago White Sox signed free agent RHP Zach Putnam (Chatham, 2008) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Invited non-roster 2B Micah Johnson (Cotuit, 2011) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Chris Beck (Cotuit, 2011) to spring training.
Invited non-roster LHP Scott Snodgress (Y-D, 2010) to spring training.
Invited non-roster IF Andy Wilkins (Y-D, 2008) to spring training.
 
CINCINNATI REDS
Invited non-roster LHP Lee Hyde (Orleans, 2005) to spring training.
Signed free agent RHP Sean Black (Harwich, 2007/08) to a minor league contract.
Invited non-roster RHP Drew Hayes (Y-D, 2009) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Michael Lorenzen (Brewster, 2012) to spring training.
 
CLEVELAND INDIANS
Signed free agent 3B David Adams (Falmouth, 2007).
Signed free agent RHP John Axford (Hyannis, 2002; Cotuit, 20043).
Signed free agent RHP Shaun Marcum (Harwich, 2002) and invited him to spring training.
Invited non-roster C Luke Carlin (Chatham, 2001) to spring training.
Invited non-roster OF Matt Carson (Brewster, 2001) to spring training.
Signed free agent RHP Scott Atchison (Wareham, 1996) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Signed free agent RHP David Aardsma (Falmouth, 2002) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
 
COLORADO ROCKIES
Designated RHP Colin McHugh (Wareham, 2007) for assignment.
Sent CF Tim Wheeler (Orleans, 2008) outright to Colorado Springs.
 
DETROIT TIGERS
Invited non-roster C James McCann (Cotuit, 2010) to spring training.
Invited non-roster 2B Devon Travis (Bourne, 2010) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Drew VerHagen (Hyannis, 2010) to spring training.
Signed free agent RF Trevor Crowe (Y-D, 2003) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Signed C Alex Avila (Harwich, 2007) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
 
HOUSTON ASTROS
Invited non-roster RHP Mark Appel (Y-D, 2011) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Jake Buchanan (Cotuit, 2009) to spring training.
Invited non-roster CF George Springer (Wareham, 2009/10) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Nick Tropeano (Cotuit, 2010) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RF Preston Tucker (Orleans, 2010) to spring training.
Signed C Jason Castro (Y-D, 2007) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Claimed RHP Colin McHugh (Wareham, 2007) off waivers from Colorado.
 
KANSAS CITY ROYALS
Sent OF Chris Dickerson (Brewster, 2002) outright to minors.
Acquired 3B Danny Valencia (Orleans, 2006) from Baltimore for RF David Lough.
Invited non-roster LHP Scott Alexander (Brewster, 2009) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Kyle Zimmer (Cotuit, 2011) to spring training.
Signed RHP Luke Hochevar (Cotuit, 2003) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Signed OF Justin Maxwell (Cotuit, 2004) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Designated LHP Everett Teaford (Orleans, 2005) for assignment.
Signed RHP Aaron Crow (Falmouth, 2007) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
 
LOS ANGELES ANGELS
Signed free agent OF Brennan Boesch (Brewster/Bourne, 2005) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Signed free agent 1B Carlos Pena to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Invited non-roster C Jett Bandy (Y-D, 2010) to spring training.
Signed free agent LHP Mark Mulder (Bourne, 1997) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Invited non-roster LF Matt Long (Y-D, 2007) to spring training.
Invited non-roster 1B C.J. Cron (Cotuit, 2010) to spring training.
Invited non-roster SS Eric Stamets (Hyannis, 2011) to spring training.
Invited non-roster 2B Alex Yarbrough (Cotuit, 2011) to spring training.
Signed free agent SS John McDonald (Bourne, 1995) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
 
LOS ANGELES DODGERS
LHP Chris Capuano (Cotuit, 1997/98; Bourne, 1999) elected free agency.
Signed free agent RHP Brian Wilson (Hyannis, 2002).
Signed free agent SS Brendan Harris (Hyannis, 2000/01) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Sign free agent LHP J.P. Howell (Wareham, 2003).
Signed RHP Mark Pope (Falmouth, 2009/10) to a minor league contract.
Reassigned C Drew Butera (Orleans, 2004) to the minor leagues.
Invited non-roster C Chris O’Brien (Falmouth, 2009/10) to spring training.
 
MIAMI MARLINS
LF Chris Coghlan (Chatham, 2005) elected free agency.
Signed free agent CF Matt Angle (Cotuit, 2006) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Acquired RHP Carter Capps(Harwich, 2011) from Seattle for 1B Logan Morrison.
Invited non-roster SS Danny Black (Cotuit, 2008) to spring training.
Invited non-roster 1B Mark Canha (Brewster, 2009) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Anthony DeSciafani (Y-D, 2010) to spring training.
Invited non-roster LHP Andrew Heaney (Falmouth, 2011) to spring training.
Invited non-roster 3B Colin Moran (Bourne, 2011/12) to spring training.
Invited non-roster SS Austin Nola (Harwich, 2010/11) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Colby Suggs (Wareham, 2012) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Nick Wittgren (Hyannis, 2011) to spring training.
Signed free agent OF Aaron Rowand (Brewster, 1996/97) and invited him to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Elih Villanueva (Orleans, 2006) to spring training.
Invited non-roster LHP Rob Rasmussen (Orleans, 2008/09) to spring training.
Signed free agent OF Reed Johnson (Brewster, 1998) to a minor league contract.
Acquired RF Brian Bogusevich (Falmouth, 2004) from Chicago Cubs for CF Justin Ruggiano.
 
MILWAUKEE BREWERS
Activated RF Ryan Braun (Brewster, 2004) from the restricted list.
Selected the contract of 1B Hunter Morris (Falmouth, 2009) from Nashville.
Signed 3B Mark Reynolds (Y-D, 2002; Harwich, 2003) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Invited RHP David Goforth (Brewster, 2009) to spring training.
 
MINNESOTA TWINS
Signed free agent 2B Eric Farris (Cotuit, 2006) to a minor league contract.
Invited non-roster C Matt Koch (Orleans, 2009-11) to spring training.
Signed free agent RHP Matt Guerrier (Y-D, 1997) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
 
NEW YORK METS
Invited non-roster RHP Logan Verrett (Chatham, 2009/10) to spring training.
Invited non-roster LHP Jack Leathersich (Orleans, 2010/11) to spring training.
Invited non-roster catcher Kevin Plawecki (Hyannis, 2011) to spring training.
Invited non-roster 2B Daniel Muno (Orleans, 2009/10) to spring training.
Invited non-roster OF Cory Vaughn (Cotuit, 2009) to spring training.
Signed 1B Ike Davis (Wareham, 2007) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Signed RHP Bobby Parnell (Chatham, 2004) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Signed free agent SS Omar Quintanilla (Cotuit, 2002) to a minor league contract.
 
NEW YORK YANKEES
Activated 1B Mark Teixeira (Orleans, 1999) from the 60-day disabled list.
Non-tendered 3B Kevin Youkilis (Bourne, 2000), who became a free agent, then signed a one-year contract with the Rakuten Golden Eagles of Japan’s Pacific League.
Signed free agent CF Jacoby Ellsbury (Falmouth, 2004).
Signed free agent 2B Brian Roberts (Chatham, 1998).
Signed RHP David Robertson (Y-D, 2006) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Sent LHP David Huff (Chatham, 2004/05) to San Francisco for cash considerations
Invited non-roster C Peter O’Brien (Bourne, 2010) to spring training.
Signed free agent RHP Bruce Billings (Wareham, 2005) and invited him to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Danny Burawa (Harwich, 2010) to spring training.
Signed free agent RHP Antoan Richardson (Orleans, 2004) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Signed free agent 2B Scott Sizemore (Harwich, 2005) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Signed free agent RHP Chris Leroux (Falmouth, 2004) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
 
OAKLAND ATHLETICS
Designated OF Corey Brown (Chatham, 2006) for assignment.
Signed free agent 3B Alden Carrithers (Orleans, 2007) to a minor league contract.
 
PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES
Invited non-roster LHP Mario Hollands (Y-D, 2009) to spring training.
Acquired RHP Brad Lincoln (Bourne, 2005) from Toronto for C Erik Kratz and LHP Rob Rasmussen.
Signed OF Gaby Sanchez (Brewster, 2004) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Signed OF John Mayberry Jr. (Y-D, 2003) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Signed free agent INF Jim Negrych (Harwich, 2005) to a minor league contract.
Invited non-roster OF Tony Gwynn Jr. (Brewster, 2002) to spring training.
 
PITTSBURGH PIRATES
Signed free agent LF Chris Dickerson (Brewster, 2002) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Invited non-roster 1B Matt Hague (Falmouth, 2007) to spring training.
Signed 1B Gaby Sanchez (Brewster, 2004) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
 
SAN DIEGO PADRES
Signed 3B Chase Headley (Cotuit, 2004) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Sent P Brad Brach (Cotuit, 2007) to Baltimore for RHP Devin Jones.
Acquired RHP Jesse Hahn (Chatham, 2009) from Tampa Bay as part of the Logan Forsythe trade.
Signed free agent LHP Tony Sipp (Cotuit, 2004) to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.
 
SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS
Invited non-roster RHP Adam Reifer (Hyannis, 2006) to spring training.
Invited non-roster 3B Chris Dominguez (Hyannis, 2008) to spring training.
Invited non-roster LHP Dan Runzler (Cotuit, 2006) to spring training.
Invited non-roster C Andrew Susac (Falmouth, 2010) to spring training.
Invited non-roster 2B Joe Panik (Y-D, 2010) to spring training.
Released 1B Brett Pill (Orleans, 2005), who then signed with KIA Tigers of Korean Baseball Organization.
Acquired LHP David Huff (Chatham, 2004/05) from the New York Yankees for cash considerations.
 
SEATTLE MARINERS
Traded RHP Carter Capps (Harwich, 2011) to Miami for 1B Logan Morrison.
Invited non-roster RHP Andrew Carraway (Hyannis, 2008) to spring training.
Invited non-roster LHP Nick Hill (Harwich, 2006) to spring training.
Invited non-roster RHP Dominic Leone (Chatham, 2011) to spring training.
Invited non-roster C Michael Dowd (Brewster, 2010) to spring training.
Invited non-roster C John Hicks (Harwich, 2010) to spring training.
Invited non-roster 2B Ty Kelly (Brewster, 2008) to spring training.
Invited non-roster SS Chris Taylor (Y-D, 2011) to spring training.
Signed free agent RHP Scott Baker (Orleans, 2002) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
 
ST. LOUIS CARDINALS
Signed OF Jon Jay (Brewster, 2005) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Invited non-roster RF Stephen Piscotty (Y-D, 2011) to spring training.
Invited non-roster C Cody Stanley (Cotuit, 2009) to spring training.
Selected the contract of LF Mike O’Neill (Falmouth, 2012) from Memphis.
RHP John Axford (Hyannis, 2002; Cotuit, 2003) elected free agency.
Signed free agent C Ed Easley (Chatham, 2006) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
C Rob Johnson (Y-D, 2003) elected free agency.
Sent LF Jermaine Curtis (Chatham, 2003) outright to Memphis.
Sent LHP John Gast (Harwich, 2009) outright to Memphis.
 
TAMPA BAY RAYS
Signed free agent LF James Darnell (Hyannis, 2006/07) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Acquired RHP Brad Boxberger (Chatham, 2008) from San Diego as part of the Logan Forsythe trade.
 
TEXAS RANGERS
Claimed RHP Shawn Tolleson (Y-D, 2008; Chatham, 2009) off waivers from the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Signed free agent RHP Daniel Bard (Wareham, 2005) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
DH/1B/OF Lance Berkman (Wareham, 1996) announced his retirement.
 
TORONTO BLUE JAYS
Invited non-roster C Mike Nickeas (Wareham, 2002) to spring training.
Sent RHP Brad Lincoln (Bourne, 2005) to Philadelphia for C Erik Kratz and LHP Rob Rasmussen.
Activated RHP Brandon Morrow (Y-D, 2004/05) from the 60-day disabled list.
Signed free agent 3B Andy LaRoche (Wareham, 2003) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Signed free agent 2B Steve Tolleson (Brewster, 2004) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Signed free agent 2B Chris Getz (Chatham, 2003/04) to a minor league contract.
Signed LHP Brett Cecil (Orleans, 2006) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
 
WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Signed free agent 2B Taylor Wrenn (Bourne, 2010) to a minor league contract.
Signed free agent 2B Mike Fontenot (Wareham, 2000) to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Signed free agent LF Joe Dunigan (Orleans, 2006) to a minor league contract.
Signed LHP Ross Detwiler (Falmouth, 2006) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Signed RHP Drew Storen (Cotuit, 2008) for 2014, avoiding arbitration.
Signed free agent LHP Zach Jackson (Hyannis, 2003) to a minor league contract.
Invited non-roster CF Brian Goodwin (Harwich, 2010/11) to spring training.