(Editor’s note: Helena Brewers media release)
HELENA — Wednesday the Helena Brewers, in conjunction with the Milwaukee Brewers, announced a majority of their opening-day roster. The current roster is comprised of 13 pitchers, five infielders, four outfielders and three catchers. Helena’s full roster will be finalized before Friday’s opening game in Great Falls.
Returning to Helena for a second season are infielders Chad McClanahan and Antonio Piñero as well as pitchers Brandon Presley and Roberto Delgado. McClanahan, an 11th-round selection in 2016, played in 63 games, splitting time between first base and third base. Piñero was the club’s primary shortstop in 2017 and hit safely in eight of his final 10 games. Presley and Delgado are 2017 draft picks who pitched exclusively out of Helena’s bullpen last year.
The rest of the infield is comprised of 2017 fifth-round selection Nick Egnatuk and Dominican natives Jean Carmona and Yeison Coca. Egnatuk is the earliest-drafted player from 2017 on the 2018 roster. Carmona is the 15th-ranked prospect in the Brewers system by MLB Pipeline.
Helena’s outfield is comprised of 2017 draftees Je’Von Ward and L.G. Castillo, along with Dominican native Pablo Abreu and Venezuela native Jesus Lujano. Ward, who originally committed to play baseball at USC, is the nephew of former NFL safety Mark Carrier. He is also the 26th-ranked prospect in Milwaukee’s system, per MLB Pipeline.
2018 seventh-round selection David Fry, 2017 38th-round selection Robie Rojas, and Venezuela native Jose Sibrian compose Helena’s catching corps. Rojas has seen time so far in 2018 with Triple-A Colorado Springs and Advanced-A Carolina.
There are five pitchers who spent time with the Arizona League Brewers last season (Justin Bullock, Max Lazar, Kody Rock, Austin Rubick and Wilfred Salaman). Blake Lillis is pitching for the first time since 2016, and Victor Castaneda comes to Helena from Tijuana of the Mexican League. Three 2018 draftees – J.T. Hintzen, Brady Schanuel, and Scott Sunitsch – fill out the current pitching staff.