2014 Richmond Flying Squirrels Opening Day Roster


Pitchers

  • LHP Bryce Bandilla
  • LHP Ty Blach
  • RHP Clayton Blackburn
  • RHP Jose Casilla
  • RHP Kyle Crick
  • RHP Austin Fleet
  • RHP Cody Hall
  • LHP Kelvin Marte
  • LHP Phil McCormick
  • LHP Adalberto Mejia
  • LHP Josh Osich
  • RHP Edwin Quirarte
  • LHP Jack Snodgrass
  • RHP Derek Law

Position Players

  • C Jeff Arnold
  • C Myles Schroder
  • C Eliezer Zambrano
  • IF Matt Duffy
  • IF Mario Lisson
  • IF Ricky Oropesa
  • IF Skyler Stromsmoe
  • IF Kelby Tomlinson
  • IF Angel Villalona
  • OF Tyler Graham
  • OF Brett Krill
  • OF Ryan Lollis
  • OF Jarrett Parker

Just for kicks, here's what I predicted in February: Starting Rotation PredictionPosition Player PredictionBullpen Prediction.


San Francisco's top pitching prospects move east to play in a pitcher friendly park. Could be dangerous in 2014 for any team facing the Flying Squirrels. For a group that finished second-to-last in ERA and last in WHIP in the Eastern League, the addition of Kyle Crick, Clayton Blackburn, Adalberto Mejia, Ty Blach, Bryce Bandilla, and Josh Osich should surely catapult the Flying Squirrels into one of the, if not the elite pitching squad in all of Double-A. Expect the starting rotation to be led by the No. 1 prospect Crick, followed by Blackburn, Mejia, Blach, and returnee Jack Snodgrass. 

Out in the bullpen, which will essentially be a re-creation of San Jose's "Dog Pound," Bandilla and Jose Casilla will join some of the better members of last year's Flying Squirrels group, like Cody Hall, Josh Osich, Edwin Quirarte, and Phil McCormick. Though Hall, who pitched the second half of 2013 in Richmond after dazzling in San Jose, could move up to Fresno by June or July. Austin Fleet and Kelvin Marte should get opportunities to start, as well, much like they did last year in San Jose.

UPDATE: Though Derek Law stayed with San Francisco until Saturday, he did not make the 25-man opening day roster, and will be assigned to Richmond, where he will surely be the Flying Squirrels' closer.

Wondering who Mario Lisson is? Me too. Turns out he's a 29-year-old corner infielder the Giants signed in December. The Venezuelan was originally signed by Kansas City in 2002 as a non-drafted free agent. Baseball America named him the "best defensive infielder" in the Royals system entering the 2009 and 2010 seasons. 

The only surprising names on the Double-A list were Jarrett Parker and Brett Krill, who I expected to start the year in Fresno. Stranger still, there are only three outfielders listed on the Grizzlies opening day roster. The fourth will either be Juan Perez or Tyler Colvin (if he clears waivers), but I anticipate a fifth, and I think Parker has to be that guy.

Here's how I see the Flying Squirrels starting lineup come April 3: C Jeff Arnold, 1B Angel Villalona, 2B Kelby Tomlinson, SS Matt Duffy, 3B Ricky Oropesa, LF Brett Krill, CF Ryan Lollis, RF Jarrett Parker.

Matt Duffy is a guy to watch if your a Virginia native. Probably some of the best defensive skills at shortstop in all of the system and an impressive bat. It'll be difficult to put up good power numbers in Richmond, but I still project Duffy to hit 10 or more dingers and keep a .275/.350/.435 batting line through the year. Also pay attention to Ricky Oropesa, who will likely split time playing first and third base. Originally drafted out of high school by the Red Sox as a third baseman before choosing to attend USC, Oropesa knows how to play both corners, but has only logged time at the professional level at first. I watched him play a smooth third base in spring training and spoke to him at one point where he mentioned that coaches were hinting to him that he'd be playing some third base in 2014. 

Myles Schroder will play just about anywhere on the field, and could end up being the "Mark Minicozzi" of 2014 for Richmond. Schroder can catch, play both corners, and play in left or right field, as well. When you talk to his teammates, they rave about his "cannon" for an arm, thus why he can be more than serviceable at all the aforementioned positions. 

Below are as many videos as I have, or could find, of the players.