Friday, February 15, 2013

T-Bones add three players, including former minor-league catcher

The Kansas City T-Bones have announced the signings of Devon Pearson and Marquis Riley out of the California Winter League. They’ve also traded for former minor-league catcher Michael Thomas.

Pearson and Riley both played on the team that T-Bones manager Kenny Hook helped manage in the California Winter League.

Pearson, a 6-foot-1 and 210-pound left-handed pitcher from Reedsville, Penn., played four seasons at the University of Delaware, where he was used as both a starter and reliever.

Last season he was 6-1 with six saves and a 1.76 ERA. In the California Winter League this year Pearson was 2-2 with one save and a 2.25 ERA.

“Pearson has the makings of being a very good bullpen specialist in (the American Association),” said Hook. “Lefties in the California Winter League really struggled against him.”

Riley, a 5-foot-11 and 190-pound infielder from Efland, N.C., played four seasons at North Carolina A&T, where he was one of the toughest strikeouts in the NCAA. Last season he finished fifth in the nation, striking out nine times in 217 at-bats (56 games).

At the CWL, Riley didn’t strike out in 33 at-bats (15 games), while batting .364 with five doubles and seven RBIs.

“I have no doubt that Marquis will be a very good rookie left-handed hitter in our league,” said Hook. “He and Pearson both have a great shot at making our club out of spring training.”

Additionally, the T-Bones acquired Thomas, a 6-foot-4, 220-pound catcher, from Rockford of the Frontier League in exchange for a player to be determined. The Boston Red Sox selected Thomas in the 12th round of the 2009 MLB Amateur Draft.

He spent most of two seasons in the Red Sox system, reaching single-A Greenville, before being sent to Texas at the trade deadline in 2010. He played in 31 games last season for Rockford, batting .216 with one home run and 23 RBIs.