While one former Wabash Valley College pitcher celebrates landing a spot with a major league team, another remains hopeful as the hours remaining in spring training dwindle.
Aaron Barrett, was named to the Washington Nationals opening-day bullpen Wednesday. Barrett, a 6-foot-3, 225-pound right-hander who turned 26 on Jan. 2, did not allow an earned run all spring.
On his Facebook page, Barrett wrote: “Words can’t describe how I feel right now. I give all the glory to God. Been waiting for this moment my who life.”
A closer at Class AA Harrisburg, Penn. last year, Barrett’s two main pitches are a slider and a fastball that clocks as high as the mid-90s.
The Evansville Central graduate played at Wabash Valley for one year before departing in 2007 for Ole Miss. He was drafted by the Nationals in the ninth round of the 2010 June amateur draft.
Last year at Harrisburg, Barrett was 1-1 with 26 saves and an ERA of 2.15.
The Nats open the season in New York Monday against the Mets at 12:10 CDT.
With St. Louis closer Jason Motte not ready yet, Butler has been in a spring-long battle with Jorge Rondon and Sam Freeman to fill the vacancy.
Neither has been impressive in March, which led the Cardinals to sign 32-year-old David Ardsma to a minor league contract Wednesday.
Ardsma began the spring in Cleveland’s bullpen before being released two days ago.
Butler, a 25-year-old righty, began last year in AAA Memphis after being invited to spring training. He was called up twice to the Cardinals during the season, pitching a total of 20 innings in 16 games. He did get a decision in any games and wound up with an ERA of 4.05.
Another ex-Warrior hurler, Ross Wolfe, pitched last year for the Texas Rangers last year, but was assigned outright to AAA Round Rock, Tex. on Nov. 4, 2013. The 31-year-old righthander from Effingham then agreed to a minor league contract, and was not listed on Round Rock’s roster announced
Wednesday by the Rangers.
Wolfe was 1-3 in 22 appearances with the Rangers, three as a starter. He pitched 47.2 innings. He also pitched in 14 games with Florida in 2007 and 11 games with Oakland in 2010.