Class A Affiliate Intimidators Announce Opening Day Roster
Apr 05, 2016 04:09PM
● By Melanie Heisinger
Courtesy of the Intimidators' Facebook page.
The Chicago White Sox have announced the 2016 roster for the Kannapolis Intimidators, the big league club’s Class A Affiliate. Manager Cole Armstrong will oversee a squad that features 16 players from his 2015 Great Falls Voyagers team, including a trio of prospects rated in the White Sox Top 30 according to MLB.com. Corey Zangari, the organization’s #10 prospect according to both MLB.com and Baseball America, highlights the 2016 Intimidators roster. Zangari led the Arizona League with 40 RBI in 2015 before earning a promotion to Advanced Rookie Great Falls where he joined infielder Johan Cruz (#16, according to MLB.com), who ranked among Pioneer League leaders in hits (84) and average (.312). The two infielders join pitching prospect Luis Martinez (#30, according to MLB.com) – one of nine returning Intimidators including three members of last season’s starting rotation – as the three highly-touted player for Kannapolis in 2016.
Martinez, who made 24 starts for the Intimidators in his full season debut in 2015, is joined by fellow returning right-handed pitchers Yelmison Peralta and Zach Thompson as well as three left-hander – Tanner Banks, Johnathan Frebis, and Ryan Riga – who were drafted by the White Sox in the June 2015 First-Year Player Draft. Martinez will toe the rubber on Opening Night, followed in the 2016 rotation by Riga, Thompson, Banks, and Frebis.
The White Sox 2015 draft class is well-represented as 14 players selected by Chicago last June will open the 2016 campaign in Kannapolis, led by Zangari (sixth round), catcher Casey Schroeder (eighth round), and pitcher Ryan Hinchley (ninth round). Catcher Seby Zavala, the Sox 12th round pick in 2015, joined Zangari as Arizona League Postseason All-Stars while Banks, the 18th round pick, earned Postseason All-Star honors in the Pioneer League after going 5-5 with a 2.51 ERA in 14 starts.
In the field, Cody Daily is back with the Intimidators after appearing with 35 South Atlantic League games in 2015. Zach Fish, the 2014 Big XII Conference Player of the Year at Oklahoma State, will play both first base and outfield after appearing in 20 games for Kannapolis last season primarily at catcher. Outfielder Louis Silverio, whose father played for the Kansas City Royals from 1973-82, rounds of the returning Intimidators.
Tyler Sullivan (14th round) and Landon Lassiter (21st round) join Antonio Rodriguez in rounding out the outfield while Daniel Mendick (22nd round) and Grant Massey (26th round) comprise the rest of the infield.
Pitcher Drew Hasler, one of the 16 Voyagers to follow manager Cole Armstrong to the South Atlantic League, is the son of White Sox minor league pitching coordinator Curt Hasler. He joins fellow Great Falls pitchers Matt Ball, Taylore Cherry, Brandon Easterling, and Alex Katz in Kannapolis along with Intimidators pitching coach Brian Drahman, who oversaw the Voyagers pitching staff in 2015. Right-handed reliever Jaider Rocha rounds out of the 13-man pitching staff.
About the Intimidators
The Intimidators are preparing for the 22nd season of professional baseball in Kannapolis and 16th season as a Chicago White Sox affiliate. Since the team's inception in 1995, a total of 85 players have gone from Kannapolis to the Major Leagues. The team plays at Intimidators Stadium supported by Carolinas HealthCare System located off I-85, Exit 63 in Kannapolis. Single-game tickets are on sale for the 2016 season. Season tickets -- on sale for as low as $320 -- are available by calling the F&M Bank Box Office at (704) 932-3267or by visiting IntimidatorsBaseball.com.