San Diego Padres Grant 13 Minor Leaguers Free Agency


Thirteen San Diego Padre minor leaguers have been granted free agency, according a to a list released by The group includes right-handers Josh Geer and Michael Nix, left-hander Jason Lane first baseman Cody Overbeck, second baseman Benji Gonzalez, third basemen Alex Castellanos and Jonathan Galvez, shortstops Brian Bixler, Niko Gallego, Tyler Green and Jeudy Valdez as well as outfielder Travis Buck.

Primarily a starter, Geer, 31, a third-round pick at out of Rice, made five appearances with the Padres in 2008, going 2-1 with a 2.67 ERA. He pitched 27 innings, striking out 16. The following year the right-hander posted a 1-7 record with a 5.96 in 17 starts. Since then, he spent the last six years bouncing about Portland, Tucson and San Antonio.

Nix, a 31 year-old southpaw, is an Auburn product who never saw action in the Majors. He was originally drafted by the Braves in the 11th round in 2005, went 7-3 with 4.68 ERA at El Paso last season. Pitching mainly out of the bullpen, Nix walked 23 with 42 strikeouts in 59.2 innings.

Overbeck, 28, a first baseman by trade, who played both third and first was drafted in the 9th round by the Phillies out of the University of Mississippi. His best season came at triple-A Lehigh Valley, hitting .255 with 20 home runs and 55 RBIs. In 2014, he hit .235 with 13 home runs and 32 RBIs with San Antonio.

Gonzalez, 24, was signed out of the Puerto Rico Baseball Academy by Pittsburgh, spent one season in the Padres system, at Lake Elsinore, batting .306 with three homers, 41 RBIs (which were a career high) and 13 stolen bases.

Originally a 10th round pick by the Cardinals, third baseman Castellanos, 28,  was selected off of waivers by the Padres in March from the Texas Rangers. He saw Major League time with the Dodgers 2012 and 2013, hitting .174 and .167, respectively.

A utility player, Galvez, 24, spent his entire minor league career with the Padres; plaything the outfield, short and third. In 2011, at  Lake Elsinore Galvez played in 128 games, hit 13 home runs, drove in 86 RBIs and stole 37 bases. Last year, at El Paso, he hit .280 10 52.

A total of four shortstops in the system were granted free agency. Bixler, 32, who split time between San Antonio and El Paso in 2014. He hit .167 at El Paso

Gallego, 25, who split time between Florence and Lake Elsinore in 2014, hit .109 and .207

In 2014, at El Paso, 31, Greene, played in 114 games, hit .307, parked nine home runs, drove in 63 RBI and struck out 124 times

Last year,  Valdez, 25, split time between Tennessee and Lake Elsinore, played in 23 games in 2014 drove in seven hit and .197

Lastly, outfielder Travis Buck, 30, a former First Round Compensation pick by Oakland, hit three home runs and 21 RBIs in 54 games for the Chihuahuas.