I want to answer a question by Stock, regarding Dan Kilgras. He left or was removed as president of the team on the 18th of February, and has since helped BC sports legend Joe Kapp create a website regarding the former BC Lions’ career.
Kapp’s site is informative on the former QB who wore #22 at Empire Stadium, but doesn’t mention Kilgras’ name. I do know he helped, because Greg Douglas ran a feature about it in the Sun a few months ago.
Back to the story. Last week I passed on info from the Oakland Clubhouse on the A’s minor league free agents, and now I can tell you the other teams’ players who will be available to every MLB team.
There are five former single-A C’s, and a pair of AAA Canadians who weren’t re-signed, as well as a few notables.
From the ‘99 Canadians, Chad Harville (Arizona) and Frank Menechino (San Diego) are done with their respective teams. Harville was pitching in AAA Tucson this season, going 6-4 with a 3.71 ERA in 47 appearances.
The Selmer, Tennessee native last reached the MLB in 2006, and was a PCL Mid-Season All-Star this year.
Menechino was a fan favourite back in his days with the team, but his age has to be a factor in whether he’ll play pro ball again.
The soon-to-be 37-year-old split the year between Colorado (AAA) and the Portland Beavers (also AAA). His season ended early on August 5th, no word on if he retired or was injured. He had a .375 average this season with 3 dingers and 16 doubles in just 38 games.
2007 was a rebound year for the 5′8 infielder, after batting .193 in what might be his shortest year ever - playing in 18 games.
Two original single-A Canadians are free agents, RHP Marcus Gwyn and IF Marshall McDougall.
Gwyn has bounced around between teams in his career, and played with the LA Angels this season (appearing 3 times, accumulating a 11.81 ERA). He had 47 chances in AAA, and he capitalized going 2-1 with an ERA of 3.79.
McDougall has appeared in the farm systems for the Texas Rangers, Oakland A’s and most recently the LA Dodgers. He is currently in the Mexican Winter League, playing for Naranjeros de Hermosillo. Sporting number 50, he is batting .316 after 19 games. In the season, with AA Jacksonville and AAA Las Vegas, he batted .283 in almost 140 games.
Marshall is married and has a son Mason, so retiring might not be the last thing on his mind.
Matt Allegra is a minor league free agent for the 2nd time, this time after being let go by the Minnesota Twins. He batted .241 in 106 games for the AA New Britain Rock Cats. Allegra was a home-run hitting champ with the C’s, picking up all-star honours in 2001. I’m sure Rob Fai, who was media relations manager here during Allegra’s tenure, would agree he was a top Canadian.
The final player who is ‘free’ is Eduardo Sierra. Known for allowing a lot of hits and having a high ERA, Sierra is in the Dominican Winter League where after two games he hasn’t allowed an earned run. He’s still young (25) but he’s been shuffled a few times which may be concerning for GM’s.
Jamal Strong, a former Everett Aquasox top prospect, and Erubiel Durazo who was released at the start of the year by the A’s, were released by the Bronx Bombers. Durazo should stay on with another MLB team.
And now to my favourite part of the post - Mark Kiger baby! Kiger was sent packing by the Mets, and this follows a huge ‘argument’ between NFTN and Kigers’ family a few months ago.
It was really fun to watch (I let Chris feed the story) and no offence to the Kigers - but this can’t be a surprise. He was battling with John McCurdy and Brant Colamarino with the Canadians and I can’t say he stepped up to the challenge. I’m going to make an assumption - within two days his wife will come over here and yell at us for talking about him getting released.
According to her, he left under his own terms from the A’s system last year and made it seem like our fault that we didn’t know. When I see "Released: Mark Kiger" I don’t know why he was released or how but forgive me for not knowing, geez.