Greg Burke (Atlantic City, NJ, Atlantic League) made the best jump by first signing with the New York Mets, then being promoted to their 40-man roster. The rebounding righty is now at that level along with another hurler whose first pro pitch was in an Indy league, lefty Brandon Sisk (Bay Area, TX, Continental League) with the Los Angeles Angels. Southpaw Caleb Thielbar (St. Paul, MN, American Association) also got to the 40-man with Minnesota this fall.
MORE MAJOR LEAGUE SPRING TRAINING INVITATIONS
Add left-handed hurler Scott Rice, an Atlantic Leaguer at York, PA, Long Island, NY and Newark, NJ, and outfielder Felix Pie (Camden, NJ, Atlantic) as recent contract signees who have major league spring training invites. Rice will be with the Mets and Pie with Pittsburgh.
Pie is having a solid offseason in the Dominican Winter League.
COLABELLO ANOTHER STEP CLOSER
While we have not heard officially that the contantly productive bat of first baseman Chris Colabello (Worcester, MA and Nashua, NH, Can-Am League) will be in the Twins' big-league camp in Fort Myers, FL, Minnesota has bumped him up from its Double-A farm club to Triple-A. The last we checked Colabello was among the top three Mexican League hitters this offseason in batting, doubles, total bases, on-base and slugging percentage.
NEW DEALS FOR THIS TRIO
Catcher Shawn McGill (Lincoln, NE, American Association), third baseman C. J. Retherford (Fargo, ND, American Association) and pitcher Jarrett Grube (Southern Maryland, Atlantic League) have signed new contracts with their 2012 organizations. McGill remains with Atlanta, Retherford with the Los Angeles Dodgers and Grube with the Los Angeles Angels. All are in the minor leagues.
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