Bo Schultz, who used the 2011 season as a reliever for the Grand Prairie (TX) AirHogs (4-3, 4.13 in 37 games, including four starts) as a springboard to get back to affiliated baseball and climb above Class A where he had plateaued with Oakland, gave up a leadoff single to Hanley Ramirez when he stepped on a regular-season major league mound (okay, it was the Sydney Cricket Ground) for the first time, then put down the next three Dodgers in order in the top of the eighth inning. (Adrian Gonzalez grounded to second, Andre Ethier lined to left and A. J. Ellis grounded to short.)
Now Schultz will have to sweat out whether he will be on the 25-man roster when play resumes stateside since both teams were allowed to have 28-man rosters for the early start to the new season. Even if the right-hander should be sent to Triple-A, he has a major league appearance on his record with the possibility of many more down the road for the 28-year-old former journalism student at Northwestern University since the D-Backs have been singing his praises.
Three Independent graduates pitched for Arizona in their two losses to the Dodgers with established relievers Joe Thatcher (River City, O’Fallon, MO, Frontier League) and Brad Ziegler (Schaumburg, IL, then in the Northern League and now in the Frontier) also working out of the Diamondbacks’ bullpen. It should be noted that non-roster spring training invitee Andy Marte, a corner infielder who has seen heavy action in spring training for Arizona, was not among the active players for the Australian games.
Schultz is the 188th Independent player to make it to the majors, according to records we maintain for our regular subscription column, the Independent Baseball Insider.
BRIDGER HUNT, CODY SATTERWHITE GET INTO MAJOR LEAGUE GAMES
Two players in Independent leagues as recently as last season are the most recent minor leaguers we have noticed who have appeared in major league exhibitions this spring.
Right-hander Cody Satterwhite, who posted a 0.65 earned run average and struck out more than a batter per inning in 19 appearances for Sioux City, IA (American Association), played for the New York Mets. Can-Am League batting champion Bridger Hunt, a brilliant .402 hitter for Newark, NJ, made a brief appearance with San Diego. He is an infielder.
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