Who do the Revs bring back?

foli-greatface

The topic comes up every year when the off-season months start to fade into spring: How many players from last year’s team do the York Revolution bring back?

It’s hard to say, really. Lancaster obviously is a great example of how this situation can backfire. The ‘Stormers relied heavily on their nucleus from the 2006 championship team in ’07 and that decision eventually ended up getting manager Frank Klebe fired.

So what does York do for 2009? Under Atlantic League guidelines the Revs have until Feb. 26 to negotiate with players who finished last year on the Revolution roster. That means your Matt Dryers, Corey Thurmans, Dan Folis (pictured above) and Jason Aspitos.

After that, players are free to negotiate with other teams. But it’s very likely that we’ll see a few familiar faces re-signed before that deadline.

gladstone“We’re in the process of finalizing a few of the guys we have knowledge of,” said Adam Gladstone, the Revolution’s director of baseball operations. “I think it will come in waves. A few guys I’ve been talking to have never played independent baseball. They’re weighing their options of going overseas.

“In a little while, guys will realize they’re not getting invites to spring training and they’ll want to have an opportunity in the Atlantic League.”

Gladstone said he would prefer not to discuss the potential returning players on a case-by-case basis. And obviously it’s hard to know what every player is thinking right now. But here’s my attempt to break up last year’s roster into three categories.

THE LIKELIES: Corey Thurman (RHP), Jason Aspito (OF), Wayne Franklin (LHP).

revs thurmanThurman and Aspito are really the only two locks, in my view, at this point. Both have spent time around York this off-season and both were at a recent news conference at Sovereign Bank Stadium. Sounds like pretty decent evidence to me. Franklin is not exactly a slam dunk. He’s stayed close to York this off-season and was at York Area Sports Night, but last year proved that he probably doesn’t have a shot at returning to affiliated ball again.

THE MAYBES: Kennard Jones (OF), Matt Padgett (OF/3B), Sandy Aracena (C), Luis Taveras (C), Dan Foli (RHP).

Jones and Padgett both showed great professionalism last year and they’re nowhere close to being Atlantic League lifers at this point. Aracena and Taveras have both been in the Atlantic League for several years, but they have also both made an All-Star team in the last two years. Foli proved dependable as a spot starter last year and you have to like his willingness to perform just about any role to help the team.

THE WHO THE HECK KNOWS/UNLIKELIES: Matt Dryer (DH/3B), David Maust (LHP), Kenny Perez (IF), Keoni De Renne (SS), Dave Gil (RHP), Jason Olson (RHP).

revs cam season openerDryer is obviously the most intriguing name on this list. He’s been a huge mainstay with the Revs, but he’s at the point where his return to an affiliated organization is doubtful. He still can be productive when healthy, but the decision to bring him back or not will be enormous for the Revs. If he isn’t offered a contract, it could mean an enormous culture change for the entire team.

Who remembers Maust’s one-game cameo last year? He should be recovered from labrum surgery by now, but it’s uncertain how much he has left in the tank. Meanwhile, De Renne said at the end of last year that he was leaning toward retirement and Gil and Olson would both be well beyond the popular “two years or get out” threshold. Perez played well enough to find an affiliated job last year — especially with his performance with the Rockies at Triple-A — but if he doesn’t have a job by this point, he must be contemplating another tour in indy ball.

SYNOPSIS: York will not have a ton of returning players. Gladstone said this year’s market resembles last year — where many players are looking to the Atlantic League for the first time — so there should be plenty of fresh available talent for the Revs to find. Expect the roster to take shape in the coming weeks.

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One Response

  1. Word is Kenny Perez is headed back to camp with the Rockies this spring. He should have an excellent shot at making the Triple-A club again. If not, he could come back, but he performed very well for Colorado Springs last season in the PCL.

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