Minor Moves: Altoona Roster Changes, JaCoby Jones Listed Day-to-Day, Pitcher Released

The Altoona Curve had a bunch of roster moves on Sunday, mostly due to their involvement in a brawl on Wednesday. There is some news and non-news on two players that has missed the last two games and we tie up some loose ends with the Dominican League Pirates team.

Three players have served their suspensions already and returned to action on Sunday. Jarek Cunningham, Gift Ngoepe and Yao-Hsun Yang each served three game suspensions, with two of the games coming yesterday during a doubleheader.

On Sunday, Keon Broxton and Andy Vasquez began serving their three game suspensions. Both of them will return on Wednesday.

Altoona also made a roster move that wasn’t due to the suspensions. Pitcher Matt Benedict was sent to Bradenton and reliever Jason Townsend took his place. Townsend made two appearances for Jamestown, pitching an inning each time. Benedict had a 7.54 ERA in 37 innings with Altoona this year.

JaCoby Jones was scratched from Saturday’s lineup after he tweaked his knee during warm-ups. He missed Sunday’s game as well and is listed as day-to-day. A trip to the disabled list is unlikely at this point.

Alen Hanson has sat the last two games, including the second game of last night’s doubleheader and Sunday’s day game. I was told that it is just rest, nothing else.

In two pieces of DSL Pirates news that are a little old, but were never reported, the Pirates loaned infielder Carlos Esqueda to Veracruz of the Mexican League and pitcher Ramon Rodriguez was released. Esqueda joins pitcher Jovany Lopez, who is also on loan to Veracruz. Rodriguez has signed with the Astros and is currently pitching in the DSL. Rodriguez was one of the best pitchers for the DSL Pirates last year, but at age 21, he is a bit old for the league. The 6’4″ right-hander had a 2.86 ERA in 14 starts in 2013.

John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.

When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.

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