RailCats prepare to cut roster with final exhibition game

2013-05-13T21:30:00Z 2013-05-15T17:32:08Z RailCats prepare to cut roster with final exhibition gameHillary Smith hillary.smith@nwi.com, (219) 933-3233 nwitimes.com

GARY | Heading into Monday's final exhibition game of the RailCats' spring training, the coaching staff had already started making cuts to the roster.

The team released pitcher Kyle Lindquist and infielder Brandon Gregorich, and sent pitcher Michael Oros to Florence as the player-to-be-named in the trade for pitcher Ian Durham.

On the other side of the field, the Schaumburg Boomers set their roster before the game even started, paring down to 22 including Griffith grad and pitcher Matt Kuna.

"You can always tell a club after the roster is set because they're refreshed. The Boomers look refreshed," RailCats manager Greg Tagert said. "This (RailCats) group has been great together and really pulled for one another. ... After (today) there will be a sense of relief out there."

The RailCats, who won 7-2 on Monday, can hold as many as 23 players for the first 10 days of the American Association season and then must cut to 22.

The final starting roster is due at noon today to allow any players put on the waiver wire a chance to be selected by another team before the start of the season. The RailCats open their 2013 season at 7:10 p.m. Thursday at home against the Lincoln Saltdogs and have tabbed Alain Quijano as the opening-day starter.

Four RailCats pitchers struck out 11 Boomers batters with five from starter Will Krout and two from non-rostered invitee Clay Zavada, who pitched 2/3 innings.

Zavada, a former Major Leaguer, is hoping to earn a spot on the roster.

"He was excited to be in this environment where he feels like he's part of the team instead of in a tryout situation," Tagert said.

The RailCats entered Monday's game with 26 players on the roster and must cut their final three before today's 12:30 p.m. final spring workout.

The Boomers cut nine before Monday's game. Kuna, who pitched as a reliever and a starter for Schaumburg last season, threw two innings against the RailCats struck out the first batter he faced and allowed a walk.

"As camp has been enjoyable from the standpoint of watching the competition, and I say that knowing that tonight and tomorrow are going to be that much more difficult," Tagert said. "It's going to be tough to tell players ... There are going to be a few guys left without jobs tomorrow. There were no extra bodies in camp of guys just to fill out a position, like an extra catcher. There was really nobody like that so that makes tomorrow more difficult, and I saw the waiver wire today and it makes it tough for a guy to get picked up at this time of the year."

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