Thorman, Bateman released (plus Triple-A OF note)
It’s a tough time of year to be a Triple-A player in search of a job, but that’s where Scott Thorman and Joe Bateman found themselves on Friday.
Thorman was let go after the Brewers claimed slugging first baseman Joe Koshansky off waivers from the Rangers and optioned him to Triple-A Nashville. Koshansky is younger than Thorman (26 vs. 27) and had a better 2008 season (Koshansky hit .300 with 31 homers and 121 RBIs at Colorado’s top affiliate while Thorman hit .251 with 19 homers and 56 RBIs for Atlanta’s Triple-A club).
A non-roster invitee to Brewers camp, Thorman batted .300 in Spring Training with three doubles and two RBIs in 30 at-bats.
Bateman had a strong 2008 season in the Brewers’ system, posting a 2.09 ERA in 49 games between Double-A Huntsville and Triple-A Nashville. But he did not impress in Spring Training, when he allowed five earned runs on four hits and two walks in four innings and the Brewers didn’t feel like they had a spot for Bateman on a deep Triple-A pitching staff.
UPDATE at 10:10 p.m. CT — Speaking of depth at Triple-A, I forgot to mention in this earlier post that Doug Melvin provided some details about the deep Nashville outfield. Tony Gwynn Jr. will obviously play a lot as the center fielder, and Melvin said Brendan Katin is ticketed for right field and newly-signed Jason Tyner will play left. Jason Bourgeois will “mix and match,” Melvin said. Cole Gillespie was supposed to start the year in Nashville, but he continues to have pain in his right elbow so he’ll go to Class A Brevard County for at least two weeks to serve as the designated hitter.
Katin is dealing with a swollen knee, Melvin said, so that’s something to keep an eye on at the start of the year.