Minor League Notes

Minor League Notes

The Atlanta Braves released five minor leaguers Sunday as they continue to get their minor league rosters ready for completion before they break camp later this week.

  • The Braves released five minor leaguers on Sunday including pitchers Mike Mueller, Blake Cross, Roberto Nieves, Luke Franzenburg, and infielder Juan Downing.

  • Mike Mueller was the Braves 16th round pick in the 2002 draft out of Auburn University. He pitched in Rome and Myrtle Beach last season. The righty was 0-2 with a 5.57 ERA in 20 games for Myrtle Beach and 0-3 for Rome with an ERA of 5.64 in 15 games.

  • Cross was an undrafted free agent signed last summer out of the University of North Carolina - Wilmington. He spent the 2004 season in the Gulf Coast League and went 3-3 in 17 relief appearances and had a 2.96 ERA.

  • Nieves was a 7th round draft pick in 2001 draft out of Puerto Rico. He was 1-5 in 21 games for Rome last season, but had 40 walks in 33 innings pitched.

  • Franzenburg was signed as a non-drafted free agent last summer out of Mount Mercy College in Iowa. He pitched in 12 games between Rome and the Gulf Coast League and compiled a 3.50 ERA.

  • Downing had been in the organization for three years. He played in only 17 games last season between Rome and Myrtle Beach and had only 3 RBI in 56 at bats.

  • The AAA and AA teams played Houston's top two farm clubs Sunday at Disney's complex. Kyle Davies pitched for Richmond and allowed 3 runs on 3 hits over five innings, 4 walks, and 3 strikeouts. Lefty reliever John Foster pitched one perfect inning in relief.

  • In the AA game Jeff Francoeur and Carlos Duran both homered for Mississippi. Macay McBride, returning to the starting rotation, started for the Braves and allowed 3 runs on 4 hits over 4 innings with 2 walks and 3 punch outs. Rico Rodriquez got lit up in relief, but righty Ryan Basner pitched 2.1 perfect innings to relief Rodriquez.

Bill Shanks has a new book coming out next month on the Braves' scouting and player development philosophies called Scout's Honor: The Bravest Way To Build A Winning Team. He can be reached at thebravesshow@email.com.

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