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MLB: Locals spring into Majors

Several SCV products could appear for big-league clubs in 2012

Posted: April 3, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: April 3, 2012 1:55 a.m.

Valencia graduate Danny Worth (pictured) could do more than just make the Detroit Tigers’ Opening Day roster. He could unseat veteran infielder Brandon Inge.

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The Santa Clarita Valley connection to the Major Leagues appears to be three for Thursday’s official Opening Day.
“Appears” being the key word.

Hart High graduate James Shields and Saugus High grad Tom Milone are already solidified on the Tampa Bay Rays and Oakland A’s rosters.

Valencia High graduate Danny Worth’s status with the Detroit Tigers is coming down to the wire.

Worth has had a great spring, and various media reports have the infielder on the cusp of unseating veteran Brandon Inge.

As the season goes on, the SCV could have more guys reach the big leagues.

Here’s how those guys, as well as Shields, Milone and Worth have done in Spring Training 2012.

Trevor Bauer, Hart High, Arizona Diamondbacks

It is not quite Hart High graduate Trevor Bauer’s time yet.

He had a good spring in his first big league camp, going 1-0 with a 3.60 ERA in four games, having struck out nine batters in 10 innings.

But Bauer, 21, was optioned to minor league camp on March 23 and will start his second professional season in Double-A Mobile, the same place he ended last season.

Zach Britton, Canyon High, Baltimore Orioles

The news for former Canyon High player Zach Britton is not good.

The 24-year-old left-hander has been bothered by left shoulder inflammation, which will likely cost him a spot on the Baltimore Orioles’ Opening Day roster.

Various reports have the pitcher missing up to six weeks of action.

He did not pitch in any big league games during Spring Training this season.

Dana Eveland, College of the Canyons, Baltimore Orioles

The news for another Oriole with a Santa Clarita Valley connection is also not good.

Former College of the Canyon pitcher Dana Eveland, 28, was designated for assignment last Thursday.

Eveland finished last season with the Los Angeles Dodgers, but was traded to Baltimore this offseason.

Eveland had a good spring, going 1-2 with a 3.46 ERA in six games (13 innings), but struggled in his final game last Wednesday, allowing three earned runs in four innings against Toronto.

The Orioles must trade, release or place the lefty on waivers by Saturday.

Tom Milone, Saugus High, Oakland A’s

Milone didn’t just make the Oakland A’s Opening Day roster, the first time in his career he’s made an Opening Day roster. He is the A’s No. 3 starter.

The left-hander went 1-1 with a 4.97 ERA in four games in Spring Training.

In his final spring tune-up, Milone pitched six perfect innings in an exhibition against the Sacramento River Cats, Oakland’s Triple-A affiliate, on Sunday.

“It’s what we’ve seen all spring,” A’s manager Bob Melvin told “When he misses, it’s usually by design. Great command, I mean, you see his mechanics. Real still head and really has a great feel for pitching and reading hitters. He can read swings real well.”

It would appear that the 25-year-old will make his season debut April 9 at home against the Kansas City Royals.

Mike Montgomery, Hart High, Kansas City Royals

Hart graduate Mike Montgomery pitched in only two games in big league Spring Training camp before being re-assigned to minor league camp on March 14.

He allowed six earned runs in 2 2/3 innings, with his biggest struggles coming in a March 11 outing against Oakland. In that game, he surrendered five earned runs in 2/3 of an inning.

Montgomery, 22, will start the season in Triple-A Omaha, where he ended last season.

Chris Seddon, Canyon High, Cleveland Indians

Canyon High graduate Chris Seddon made a run of making the Cleveland Indians Opening Day roster, but was re-assigned to minor league camp on Friday.

Seddon, in his first year in the Cleveland organization, started strong in Spring Training, but struggled down the stretch.
Overall, he was 0-1 with a 6.48 ERA in six games.

The 29-year-old left-hander didn’t allow a run in his first three outings, but allowed six runs in his final three games in just four innings of work.

It’s likely that Seddon will begin the season in Triple-A Columbus.

James Shields, Hart High, Tampa Bay Rays

For the fourth time in five seasons, Shields will be the Tampa Bay Rays’ starting pitcher on Opening Day.

He will oppose New York Yankees ace C.C. Sabathia on Friday in Tampa Bay.

Shields, a 2011 American League All-Star, finished third in last year’s A.L. Cy Young Award voting, just in front of Sabathia.

This spring, Shields, 30, was sharp — going 3-0 with a 2.08 ERA in five games, having struck out 23 batters in 21 2/3 innings.

Chris Valaika, Hart High, Cincinnati Reds

Chris Valaika made a loud argument that he should be on the Cincinnati Reds’ Opening Day roster, but on March 25, he was re-assigned to minor league camp.

The infielder tore the ACL in his right knee last September and worked hard to make a return.

He batted .391, going 9-for-23 with six RBIs in 14 big league spring games this season, yet the Reds sent him down anyway.

The 26-year-old could start the season in Triple-A Louisville.

Danny Worth, Valencia High, Detroit Tigers

Worth has been a hot news item in Detroit.

The Valencia High graduate is making his case to make the Tigers’ Opening Day roster, which has put the club in a predicament.

They have the veteran Inge, who is under contract this season at $6 million.

Worth, 26, and Inge have been battling all spring for a spot on the roster.

But Inge has a strained muscle in his side, which could land him on the disabled list to begin the season.

This spring, Worth has played in 22 games and is 11-for-38 (.289 batting average) with eight runs scored, five doubles, one home run and six RBIs.

By comparison, Inge is batting just .180 this spring (9-for-50) with a home run and two RBIs.

On March 28, the Detroit Free Press ran this headline in an online story: “If Danny Worth makes Tigers’ Opening Day roster, he could start at 2B.”

The Tigers open the season on Thursday at home against Boston.

D-Day on Worth could come any day until then.



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