Barnstormers Nab Two Big League Lefties
Smith, Albers Ink Deals for 2016
The Lancaster Barnstormers have signed left-handed starting pitchers Greg Smith and Andrew Albers to 2016 contracts, it was announced today by manager Butch Hobson. Both hurlers have experience at the Major League level.
Those signings bring the total number of players inked for the upcoming campaign, the 12th in franchise history, to nine.
Smith, 32, made 32 starts as a member of the Oakland A’s starting rotation in 2008 and went 7-16 with a 4.16 ERA. The southpaw completed two of those starts, both against the Los Angeles Angels. The second of those starts was a four-hitter in a 6-1 victory, June 30 of that season. Overall, he threw 13 quality starts for the A’s that season. He finished June with a 5-6 mark and highly respectable 3.44 ERA.
The product of Louisiana State University also made eight starts for Colorado in 2010, going 1-2, with his lone win coming against the New York Mets on April 13.
Since last appearing in the Majors, Smith has pitched at the Class AAA level with the Rockies, Yankees, Red Sox, Angels, Phillies and Braves. He was 6-7 with a 3.53 ERA with Gwinnett County last season, covering 119.2 innings. During the winter, he threw for Estrellas of the Dominican Winter League and was 2-1 with a 3.64 ERA.
Albers, 30, has two tours of duty in the Major Leagues as well. The southpaw from North Battleford, Saskatchewan went 3-5 with a 4.05 ERA in 10 starts for Minnesota during the 2013 season. His Major League career started in an incredible manner, as Albers fired back-to-back shutout efforts, allowing four hits to Kansas City in 8 1/3 innings on August 6 and a complete game, two-hit blanking of Cleveland six days later. Albers also tossed seven scoreless innings against Toronto on September 8 of that year.
The University of Kentucky product returned to the big leagues last season for one appearance with Toronto. He worked 2 2/3 innings against Cleveland on May 1, allowing one hit and one run. He was 2-11 for Class AAA Buffalo last season but had a strong winter, going 2-1 with a 2.05 ERA in five starts for Margarita in the Venezuelan League.
“Albers is a strike thrower and gives us a really good left-handed starter,” said Hobson. “Smith has been a starter in the big leagues and plenty of time in AAA. I think the two of them will give us a very strong presence from the left side of the mound in our ballpark.”
The Lancaster Barnstormers are entering their twelfth season as a member of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball. Home games are played at Clipper Magazine Stadium in downtown Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Please call 717.509.HITS (4487) or visit LancasterBarnstormers.com for more information.
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