PBL Transactions, 6/1/15 – 6/7/15

The following transactions occurred in the Patriot League over the last week:

California Sharks


California Sharks: Signed free agents 1B Jamal Gerke, SS Grant Knepper, CF Conrad Mojica, SP Kerry Lopez, and RPs Osvaldo Barret and Jason Richter.


Jackson Hammerheads

Jackson Hammerheads: Signed free agents C Carlos Asperzol, 3B Elmo Milliner, LF Monty Walcott, DH Dexter Jester, SP Nico Library, and RF Cortez Petrik.  Waived 1B Coy Tighe. Activated 1B Pete Ciancarulo from the 15-day disabled list.  Placed DH Alex Jaramillo on the 15-day disabled list.  Called up LF Monty Walcott.


Jacksonville Dragons

Jacksonville Dragons: Signed free agents 1B Neal B. Thomas, CF Rondei Isua, DH Isaias Miguel, SP Juan Pascos, and RPs Lauren Gilpatrick and Jamel Janke.



Knoxville Smokies

Knoxville Smokies: Signed free agents 2B Danny Kurland, CF Arnold Carranza, DH Jerome Arch, and RPs Rodolfo Darville, Oscar Madison, and Norman Sater. Claimed 1B Coy Tighe off waivers. Called up CF Arnold Carranza. Demoted SS Lorenzo Arias and RP Edgar Provenza.


Milwaukee Bear Claws

Milwaukee Bear Claws: Signed free agents 2B Quirico Rodriguez, RF Bruce Rew, DH Hans Coghill, and RPs Rodolfo Elmonte, Mike Manigault, and Antonio Schieber.



Orlando Calrissians

Orlando Calrissians: Signed free agents 2B Jeffrey Matter, LF Sang LeLeux, DH Casey Helmers, SP Ali Godari, and RPs Shab Mickolas and Courtney Vanepps.  Activated CF Glen Madden from the 15-day disabled list.


Salt Lake Samurai

Salt Lake Samurai: Signed free agents 1B Lawrence Briski, 2B Gabriel Montalvo, SS Dario Rickard, DH Lazaro Matherne, and RPs Jose Mariata and Bryce Sereno.  Traded RPs Rick Wilkins, Oliver Jones, and Jose Mariata to Knoxville for SP Grant Fore, DH Matthew Weigel, and RP Norman Sater.  (See story here.)  Placed C DeAndre Turnbull on the 15-day disabled list.  Called up RPs Jimmy Okamura and Norman Sater.


Silver City Outlaws

Silver City Outlaws: Signed free agents 3B Narciso Rodriguez, CF Sebastian Melora, DH Charley Ingraham, and RPs Irving Godlewski, Duke Newlin, and Ron Wall.




Owner Backs Dugan As Rumors Swirl

Johnny Dugan
Johnny Dugan

The Salt Lake Samurai have gotten off to a disastrous start to the season, posting a 5-26 record.  According to team sources, the Samurai front office is considering making major changes, including the firing of manager Johnny Dugan and the coaching staff.  According to the rumors, if Dugan were to be fired, the team would like to replace him with 1B Neal Thomas, who would take on a player-coach role with the team.

The same team sources say that the front office feels that the 35-year-old Dugan, who is in his first managerial job, is not up to the task of leading the team.  “We’re losing game after game, and he’s running around the locker room spouting happy talk like a damn cheerleader,” the source said.  “He doesn’t know what else to do.  He’s out of ideas.  Instead of running extra practices or trying a more aggressive strategy, he’s singing ‘The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow’.  No wonder the players don’t respect him.”

Neal Thomas
Neal Thomas

The source adds that the 37-year-old Thomas, who leads the team in home runs, has impressed both the front office and his teammates with his veteran poise and his willingness to mentor struggling players.  “He gives a damn, and he’s actually trying to make the team better,” said the source.  “The rest of the season would be an audition for him to get the job full time.  It’s not like anyone else would want the helm of this sinking ship.”  The source suggests that Thomas would work with the front office to identify which players should be kept for the future and which ones should be traded or released.  “No one is safe,” the source said.

Asked about the allegations, Samurai owner Sarah Buehler denied that she was planning to make a change, and stood behind Dugan.  “We are in no way looking to let Johnny Dugan go,” said Buehler.  “I have full faith in his abilities and we just need to work out the kinks.”

Buehler also denied that the team was planning wholesale roster changes.  “This season is a learning curve and I think we have all the right pieces,” she said, “but it’s taking us some time to put the picture together.”

Dugan said that no managerial switch had been discussed with him.  “I’ve never heard anything but support from Mrs. Buehler and the front office,” he said.  He also expressed gratitude for the owner’s faith in him.  “I know that it’s hard to feel secure when you’re having a season like this,” Dugan said.  “I know we’ve got to do better, and that I’ve got a lot to learn.  But I’m glad that there’s patience here, and we have a chance to work it out.”

Thomas denied being approached about taking over the team.  “No one’s talked to me about that, and if they did, I’d say no,” said the veteran first baseman.  “I’m a player, and I’m not looking to manage yet.  Someday, sure, but only after I hang it up.  Johnny’s our manager, and I hope it stays that way.”

Several Salt Lake players volunteered that they thought Thomas would make a fine manager.  “Neal is a great teacher, and he was born to lead,” said CF Lee Cosgrove.  “Everyone in the locker room looks up to him.  But we’ve got a manager, and we like him.”