TULSA, Okla. – The Opening Day roster for the Tulsa Drillers has been set as the squad has completed spring training workouts in Tucson, Arizona. The roster is highlighted by starting pitcher Christian Friedrich, who is rated the 23rd best prospect in Minor League Baseball by MLB.com.
Twenty-seven players have broken camp with the Drillers, but only 24 will be on the active roster for Opening Night on Thursday, April 8.
Friedrich, a lefthander, was the number 1 pick of the Colorado Rockies in the 2008 June draft. In his two professional seasons, he has totaled 224 strikeouts in only 168 innings of work.
Joining Friedrich in the starting rotation will be right-handers Corey Riordan and Bruce Billings. Riordan was 12-7 for Class A Modesto, while Billings was 6-10 for the Nuts.
The other two starting spots will be filled by lefthanders Keith Weiser and Brandon Durden. Weiser spent all of last season in Tulsa, winning nine games in a team-leading 27 starts for the Drillers. Durden was a combined 10-8 for Modesto and Tulsa in 2009.
The bullpen will include three returnees from last year’s Drillers squad. Andy Graham, Alberto Alburquerque and Ching-Lung Lo all pitched for Tulsa last year. Graham recorded four wins in 33 appearances for the Drillers, while Alburquerque won once in 23 relief appearances. Lo was limited to a combined 43 innings with Modesto and Tulsa last season due to injuries.
Newcomers in the bullpen include Stu Pomeranz, Scott Rice and Nick Bierbrodt. All will be familiar to Tulsa fans, as all three have previously pitched in the Texas League. Pomeranz was with Springfield in 2005 and 2006, while Rice pitched for San Antonio last season.
The 31-year-old Bierbrodt pitched parts of three seasons with El Paso from 1999-2001. The lefthander has also spent time in the majors with Arizona, Tampa Bay, Cleveland and Texas.
The closer’s role on the staff will be filled by Craig Baker. Last year, the right-hander led the California League with 33 saves and 62 games pitched.
Another familiar name will fill the final bullpen spot. Sean Jarrett pitched for Oral Roberts University in Tulsa in 2006. Last season, he was 5-4 in 46 games with Modesto.
Tulsa’s initial roster will include catchers Dayton Buller, Johnny Bowden and Wilin Rosario. Buller and Bowden both spent time with the Drillers in 2009, but their seasons were limited due to injuries. Rosario is considered Colorado’s top minor league catching prospect, but he was also hampered by injuries last season, playing in only 58 games for Modesto in what was his first full season in professional baseball.
Kiel Rolling will be the Drillers first baseman. With Class A Asheville last season, he won the South Atlantic League batting title with a .331 batting average. He also led the Tourists with 20 home runs.
Returnee Daniel Mayora will play second base. He hit .286 with 7 home runs for Tulsa last year while playing three different infield positions.
Highly touted Hector Gomez will be the team’s starting shortstop. The 22-year-old has been ranked as the fifth best prospect in the Rockies minor league system by Baseball America. He hit .275 with 32 extra-base hits for Modesto in 2009.
Kenny Perez will play third base. A veteran of five seasons in Triple A, Perez hit .292 with 48 runs batted in for Colorado Springs last year.
Other infielders include Radames Nazario, Matt Repec and Jason Van Kooten. All three spent last season with Modesto.
Four outfielders complete the Drillers’ roster. They are returnees Ryan Harvey, Anthony Jackson and Jeff Kindel and newcomer Scott Beerer.
Harvey led Tulsa with 23 home runs and 83 runs batted in last year. Jackson hit two homers for Tulsa in last year’s season opening game, while Kindel finished with a .265 batting average in 128 games in the Texas League.
Beerer converted to the outfield in 2009 after spending his first four professional seasons as a pitcher.
The Drillers will get their first look at ONEOK Field in a pair of workouts this week before opening the season on the 8th. Tulsa will open with a six-game homestand that will run through April 13.
OPENING NIGHT SOLD OUT: All tickets for the ONEOK opener on Thursday, April 8 have been sold. Tickets for the other five games in the first homestand are still available.
$20 Coors Light Cold Zone Seats
During the opening homestand at ONEOK Field fans can enjoy all-you-can-eat seats from the comfort of the Coors Light Refinery Deck on April 9, 10, 11 and 12th. Coors Light Cold Zone Seats are $20 and include all-you-can-eat hot dogs, nachos, peanuts and popcorn. Plus your first drink (Pepsi, Coors Light or water) is on us.
Fans will enjoy sitting on the covered Coors Light Refinery Deck with great views of the downtown skyline and ONEOK Field from the first base side. “We’re excited to provide an all you can eat option for our fans at ONEOK Field. This is a great price and offers a tremendous value for our customers who are looking for a set price for entertaining their family and friends.” said Drillers Marketing Manager, Rob Gardenhire.
Coors Light Cold Zone tickets will be available for all games when the Coors Light Refinery Deck is not being used for a group hospitality event. These seats will be released prior to each homestand.
$20 all-you-can-eat Cold Zone tickets may be purchased online at TulsaDrillers.com, over the phone at 744-5901 or in person at the ONEOK Field ticket office located at 201 N. Elgin Ave.
Buy Cold Zone Tickets Today
Reasor’s $2 Tuesdays
The Drillers are proud to announce Reasor’s $2 Tuesdays. Reasor’s $2 Tuesdays will provide fans with the opportunity to purchase $2 general admission lawn seats along with select $2 concessions items. If a fixed seat is what you want you can receive $3 off all other individual ticket prices on any Reasor’s $2 Tuesday.
6 – $2 Tuesday’s during 2010 Season