Chukars announce opening-day roster

Chukars players watch as Chukars' Logan Gray hits a pop-fly against the Mustangs at Melaleuca Field in Idaho Falls, Tuesday, August 15, 2017. (Photo/ John Roark, jroark@postregister.com)

Chukars' Chris Hudgins celebrates after scoring against the Mustangs at Melaleuca Field in Idaho Falls, Tuesday, August 15, 2017. (Photo/ John Roark, jroark@postregister.com)

The Idaho Falls Chukars’ season is right around the corner.

It’s starts this Friday, to be exact.

With the club’s season opener in two days, here’s a look at the Royals’ advanced rookie-level roster.

Returners

Five former Chukars are slated to play opening day, including 2016 player Manny Olloque.

Olloque, who played nine games with the Omaha Storm Chasers in 2018, looks to replicate his solid 2016 campaign with the Chukars again. Before heading to Lexington in 2017, Olloque batted .330, with a .489 slugging and .378 OBP for Idaho Falls as a 20-year-old.

Four players from last year’s squad — Offerman Collado, Danny Hrbek, Freddy Fermin and Julio Gonzalez — also return to Melaleuca Field this summer. Collado, who hails from Santiago, Dominican Republic, batted .250 in 41 games for the Chukars last summer. He hit three doubles and two triples.

Fermin returns to Idaho Falls in his third season within the Royals’ farming system. He batted .282 in 47 games for the Chukars last summer. The righty hit five doubles, two triples and went yard once in 2017.

Gonzalez, who played 10 games with the Burlington Royals before suiting up for 44 with Idaho Falls last summer, will return as a solid contact hitter for the Chukars. The 22-year-old Puerto Rican batted .290/.399/,389 last time he played for Idaho Falls.

For Hrbek, the south paw will be one of 18 opening day pitchers for Idaho Falls. Hrbek, an Effort, Pennsylvania-native, went 0-1 with a 8.41 ERA during 12 games with the Chukars in 2017. He struck out 28 batters in 20.1 innings pitched last summer.

Also returning to the Chukars’ organization is manager Omar Ramirez. Ramirez managed the Chukars from 2012 to 2014 and won the 2013 Pioneer League championship during his previous stint with the advanced rookie affiliate.

Other notes

The highest Royals draft pick currently on the Chukars’ roster are left-handed pitchers JC Cloney and Joey Markus. Cloney was selected in the ninth round of the 2017 draft. With the Burlington Royals, Cloney went 3-1 in seven starts. He finished with an ERA of 3.77 and struck 35 batters out in 43 innings pitched. Out of University of Arizona, Cloney originally hails from Castaic, California.

The Chukars play their annual exhibition game against the Idaho Falls Bandits Thursday at Melaleuca Field. Idaho Falls season opens Friday at Melaleuca Field against the Ogden Raptors. First pitch is at 7:15 p.m.

The Chukars’ full, opening-day roster is below. Due to the fluidity of the MLB’s farming system, the roster is tentative.

Pitchers (18) (B/T, Height, Weight, DOB, Acquired, Hometown,Previous Team)

JC Cloney, L/L, 6-1, 226, 8/3/94, 9th Rd. ’17, Santa Clarita, CA, Burlington Royals

Daniel Duarte, R/R, 6-0, 170, 12/4/96, FA ’18, Huatabampo, Mexico, Tigres De Quintana Roo

CJ Eldred, R/R, 6-1, 225, 5/6/95, FA ’17, Mount Vernion, IA, U of Iowa

Jordan Floyd, L/L, 6-3, 240, 2/23/95, 10th Rd. ’17, Topeka, KS, Burlington Royals

Robert Garcia, R/L, 6-4, 225, 6/14/96, 15th Rd. ‘18 Modesto, CA, Lexington Legends

Stephen Greenlees, L/L, 6-4, 215, 5/7/96, FA ’17, Liberty Hill, TX, AZL Royals

Jaret Hellinger, R/L, 6-4, 170, 11/18/96, FA ’18, McDonough, GA Florida Fire Frogs

Danny Hrbek, L/L, 5-11, 195, 12/27/94, FA ’17, Effort, PA, Lexington Legends

Jackson Klein, R/R, 6-2, 185, 7/13/94, 34th Rd. ’17, San Francisco, CA, AZL Royals

Ismael Maldonado, R/R, 6-4, 170, 9/28/95, FA ’13 San Cristobal, DR ,AZL Royals

Joey Markus, R/L, 6-7, 220, 5/29/96, 9th Rd. ’15, Fort Pierce, FL, Burlington Royals

Marcelo Martinez, L/L, 6-2, 190, 8/10/96, FA ’18, Reynosa. Mexico, Sultanes De Monterrey

Connor Mayes, R/R, 6-2, 205, 5/23/96, 24th, Rd. ’17, Austin, TX, Burlington Royals

Mike Messier, R/L, 6-6, 205, 5/12/95, 15th Rd. ’16, Milton, GA, Burlington Royals

Domingo Pena, R/R, 6-2, 171, 4/7/98, Trade (Texas),Tenares, Dominican Rep., DSL Rangers

Jose Ramirez, R/R, 6-3, 220, 1/10/98, FA Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, Diablos Rojaos del Mexico

Garrett Suchey, R/R, 6-2, 215, 11/25/94, 26th Rd. ’17, Morris, AL, Lexington Legends

Nathan Webb, R/R, 6-2, 215, 8/20/97, 34th Rd. ’16, Lee’s, Summit, MO, Burlington Royals

Catchers (3) (B/T, Height, Weight, DOB, Acquired, Hometown, Previous Team)

Brady Cox, R/R, 6-0, 205, 10/24/94, 37th Rd ’17, Fort Worth, TX, AZL Royals

Freddy Fermin, R/R, 5-10, 185, 5/16/95, FA ’15 Puerto Ordaz, Venezuela, Idaho Falls Chukars

Nick Hutchins R/R, 6-1, 200, 11/17/95, 27th Rd ’17, Franklin, TN, Lexington Legends

Infielders (6) (B/T, Height,Weight, DOB, Acquired, Hometown, Previous Team)

Offerman Collado, L/R, 5-10, 140, 6/10/96, FA ’15, Santiago, Dominican Rep., Idaho Falls Chukars

Julio Gonzalez, L/R, 5-10, 185, 6/14/95, 17th Rd. ’17 Miami, FL, Idaho Falls Chukars

Jose Marquez, S/R, 6-0, 175, 10/7/97, FA ’15, Puerto La Cruz, Venezuela, Burlington Royals

Manny Olloque, R/R, 6-2, 165, 5/11/96, 16th Rd. ’14, Torrance, CA, Omaha Storm Chasers

Reed Rohlman, L/L, 6-1, 190, 1/5/95, 35th Rd. ’17, Duncan, SC, Burlington Royals

Rafael Romero, S/R, 5-10, 155, 11/14/98, FA ’16 ,Soplaviento, Venezuela, AZL Royals

Outfielders (4) (B/T, Height, Weight, DOB, Acquired, Hometown, Previous Team)

Jose Caraballo, R/R, 6-1, 180, 1/7/97, FA ’13 Sabaneta, Dominican Rep., AZL Royals

Tyler James, R/R, 5-10, 162, 9/14/96, 25th Rd. ’17, Slidell, LA, AZL Royals

Raymond Lopez, S/R, 6-1, 155, 12/4/98, FA ’15, Santiago, Dominican Rep., AZL Royals

Andres Martin, R/R, 6-0, 190, 2/14/97, FA’ 14, San Luis Rio Colorado, Mexico, AZL Royals

Coaching Staff (Position, DOB, Hometown, Previous Team)

Omar Ramirez, Manager, 11/02/1970, Santiago, Dominican Republic, Burlington Royals

Jeff Suppan, Pitching Coach, 1/02/1975, Los Angeles, CA, Idaho Falls Chukars

Damon Hollins, Hitting Coach, 6/12/1974, Vallejo, CA, Idaho Falls Chukars

Andy LaRoche, Bench Coach, 9/13/1983, Fort Scott, KS ,Sugar Land Skeeters

Luis Hernandez, Coach, 6/26/1984, Quibor, Venezuela, Bridgeport Bluefish

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