Lugnuts announce exciting 2012 roster

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Saturday, March 31, 2012
For Immediate Release
Contact: Jesse Goldberg-Strassler
( 517) 485-4500 ext. 233

Lugnuts announce exciting 2012 roster

LANSING, MI. – In conjunction with the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday, the Lansing Lugnuts announced a 2012 season-opening roster brimming with Major League talent.

Lansing’s starting rotation will be headlined by the dynamic Justin Nicolino, Aaron Sanchez and Noah Syndergaard, ranked by Baseball America as Toronto’s 5th, 6th and 7th best prospects respectively.

That promising trio will be joined in the rotation by 2011 sixth round pick Anthony DeSclafani, lefty Dave Rollins and Central Michigan University’s Jesse Hernandez.

The Lugnuts bullpen will be led by the 6’6 duo of Kramer Champlin and Ajay Meyer, accompanied by 6’5 Blake McFarland. Brandon Berl returns for his second season in Lansing, with newcomers Javier Avendano and Tyler Ybarra filling out the pen.

The starting lineup features familiar names in catcher Carlos Perez (Toronto’s #14 prospect), first baseman K.C. Hobson, third baseman Bryson Namba and outfielder Markus Brisker, all of whom were part of the 2011 Lugnuts team that reached the Midwest League Championship Series.

Speedy Kenny Wilson also comes back to Lansing to open 2012; the former 2nd round pick patrolled the outfield for the Lugs in 2009 and 2010.

New faces to the batting order include touted Kellen Sweeney (#19 prospect) and Chris Hawkins (#25 prospect), sluggers Kevin Patterson and Kevin Pillar, and infielders Jon Berti (Troy, MI), Andy Burns and Jorge Vega-Rosado. Pierce Rankin will serve as the Lugnuts’ backup catcher.

The 2012 Lugnuts first take the field at 7:05 p.m. on a Thirsty Thursday, April 5th, with the sixth annual Crosstown Showdown between the Lugnuts and Michigan State Spartans, presented by Auto-Owners Insurance. The first 2,000 fans to enter Cooley Law School Stadium will receive commemorative baseballs.

Purchase your tickets for the Crosstown Showdown or any of the Lugnuts’ 70 Midwest League home games either online at or by calling the box office at 517-485-4500.

2012 Lugnuts Roster

Pitchers: Javier Avendano, Brandon Berl, Kramer Champlin, Anthony DeSclafani, Jesse Hernandez, Blake McFarland, Ajay Meyer, Justin Nicolino, Dave Rollins, Aaron Sanchez, Noah Syndergaard, Tyler Ybarra.

Catchers: Carlos Perez, Pierce Rankin.

Infielders: Jon Berti, Andy Burns, K.C. Hobson, Bryson Namba, Kevin Patterson, Kellen Sweeney, Jorge Vega-Rosado.

Outfielders: Markus Brisker, Chris Hawkins, Kevin Pillar, Kenny Wilson.

Disabled List: pitcher Carlos Pina.

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