Binghamton, NY – With their inaugural season opener just hours away, the Binghamton Rumble Ponies are proud to announce their Opening Day roster. Binghamton welcomes back 12 returning players from the 2016 season, while introducing 11 newcomers to the Southern Tier for their first taste of Double-A baseball.
The Rumble Ponies Opening Day roster is highlighted by five 2016 Mid-Season All-Stars, a first-round draft pick, and a league batting champion. One Rumble Pony, reliever Cory Burns, arrives in Binghamton with Major League experience.
Binghamton newcomer P.J. Conlon highlights the Rumble Ponies’ five-man starting rotation. Last year’s Mets Minor League Pitcher of the Year posted a 12-2 record with a 1.65 ERA in 24 games for Columbia (Low-A) and St. Lucie (High-A). The 23-year-old Irish-born lefty was a perfect 6-0 at home with the Fireflies in 2016.
Tyler Pill returns as Binghamton’s all-time winningest pitcher with 25 career victories in the Southern Tier. He’s joined by fellow right-handed returners Mickey Jannis and Casey Delgado. The three have combined to appear in 89 Binghamton games. Corey Oswalt rounds out the Rumble Ponies rotation in his first season in Binghamton.
Southpaw Alberto Baldonado begins his second season in Binghamton after an accolade-worthy 2016 campaign. The 24-year-old Panamanian was a Mid-Season All-Star in the Florida State League with a 0.93 ERA with St. Lucie. Right-hander Cory Burns prepares for his first season in Binghamton, bringing with him 27 games of Major League experience with Texas and San Diego.
Ben Griset, Corey Taylor and Scarlyn Reyes are set to make their Double-A debuts working out of the Rumble Ponies bullpen. Luis Mateo, Tim Peterson, Kyle Regnault and Kelly Secrest return with a combined 111 Binghamton games under their belts.
Florida State League batting champion Tomas Nido readies for his first taste of Double-A baseball. The 22-year old hit .320 and led St. Lucie in doubles, slugging percentage and OPS on his way to earning Mid-Season and Postseason All-Star honors. The 2012 eighth-round draft pick cut his strikeout rate in half, while ousting 42% of attempted base stealers. He will be joined by Colton Plaia in his second season with Binghamton.
Binghamton returns corner infielder Matt Oberste, highlighting an infield consisting of two All-Stars and three Double-A newcomers. Oberste was named an Eastern League Mid-Season All-Star, while also being crowned the ‘Top Star’ of the 2016 Eastern League All-Star game.
David Thompson makes his Eastern League debut after earning Mid-Season All-Star honors with Columbia last season. He hit .280 in 116 games with the Fireflies and St. Lucie Mets. The Rumble Ponies also add the services of Venezuelan middle infielder Luis Guillorme, a non-roster invitee to Mets Major League camp this spring.
L.J. Mazzilli returns for his third seasons in Binghamton, while J.C. Rodriguez and Jio Mier make their Eastern League debuts.
Binghamton welcomes back Champ Stuart for his third season in Binghamton. The 2013 sixth-round draft pick is the only outfielder on the opening day roster with any Double-A experience.
Speedster Patrick Biondi enters the 2017 season with 105 stolen bases in four professional seasons. The 26-year-old holds the University of Michigan’s all-time steals record and the Big Ten’s single-game stolen base mark. Kevin Taylor rounds out Binghamton’s outfield corps.
The Binghamton Rumble Ponies open their inaugural season on Thursday, April 6 at 6:35 PM at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats. The Rumble Ponies will kick off a new era of professional baseball in the Southern Tier with their home opener on Thursday, April 13 against the Erie SeaWolves.