FARGO, N.D. – The Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks picked eight players in Tuesday’s American Association dispersal draft. Those players who were on the rosters of the six AA teams that will not compete during the 2020 season (Cleburne Railroaders, Gary SouthShore RailCats, Kansas City T-Bones, Lincoln Saltdogs, Sioux City Explorers, and Texas AirHogs) were eligible to be picked up by teams that are playing this year. The teams that are not participating in 2020 and had players picked Tuesday will retain the rights to those players in 2021.
The eight players picked by the RedHawks are as follows:
Round 1: Cito Culver - IF (Kansas City T-Bones)
Round 2: Dario Pizzano - OF (Sioux City Explorers)
Round 3: Jake Cosart - P (Kansas City T-Bones)
Round 4: Dylan Kelly - C (Sioux City Explorers)
Round 5: Tyler Wilson - P (Cleburne Railroaders)
Round 6: Ryan Thurston - P (Gary RailCats)
Round 7: Mitchell Osnowitz - P (Kansas City T-Bones)
Round 8: Forrest Allday - OF (Lincoln Saltdogs)
Culver, 27, is a former Yankees 1st Round Selection in 2010 who played in the CanAm League last season for the Rockland Boulders and Sussex County Miners. He spent parts of the three seasons with the Yankees Triple-A club in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre before coming to independent baseball last year. In 88 games last season, Culver hit .229 with 10 doubles and 36 RBIs. Culver has played 996 career games as a professional.
Pizzano, 29, is a former Mariners prospect who also brings Triple-A experience. After playing college baseball at Columbia University, he spent the better part of eight seasons in the Seattle organization. He appeared in 121 games for the Tacoma Rainiers (AAA) in the Pacific Coast League between 2016 and 2017 before joining the Somerset Patriots of the Atlantic League midway through the 2019 season. In 13 games with Somerset, Pizzano hit .200 with nine hits and four RBIs.
Cosart, 26, spent six seasons in the Red Sox organization before signing with Kansas City prior to this season. He appeared in 25 games last season with an ERA of 1.72. Over 153 career appearances and 261.1 inning pitched, Cosart is 17-13 with a 3.27 ERA and 312 strikeouts.
Kelly, 29, is a name familiar to those who’ve been around the American Association and independent for the past few years. The former Missouri Tiger has appeared in 242 games over the past three seasons for the Sioux City Explorers and played parts of three seasons with the Normal CornBelters of the Frontier League prior to that. Kelly hit .287 in 97 games for the X’s last season with 29 RBIs.
Wilson, 31, is another former Red Sox pick who also brings extensive independent experience to the bullpen. He has spent the last seven years playing independent baseball with time spent in the CanAm and Atlantic Leagues, as well as the American Association. He joins the RedHawks after a career year with Cleburne last season.The Railroaders closer finished the year 3-2 with a 1.71 ERA in 41 appearances, covering 42 innings. He picked up 24 saves along the way, striking out 59 while issuing just 17 walks and allowing only 33 hits. He started and finished the year on a high note, beginning the campaign with 12 consecutive scoreless appearances and ending it with nine straight zeroes. He allowed an earned run in only five games during the season, and surrendered more than one earned run only once. Wilson was named a 2019 AA All-Star and the Railroaders relief pitcher of the year.
Thurston, 25, has spent the past two seasons in the AA after joining the Blue Jays organization for a brief stint after his college career at Western Kentucky came to a close. The former Hilltopper appeared in 34 games last season for Greg Tagert’s Gary SouthShore RailCats, finishing with a 3-1 record, a 2.73 ERA, 48 strikeouts, and 4 saves in 52.2 innings pitched.
Osnowitz, 28, is already familiar with red birds. He played in the St. Louis Cardinals organization the past two seasons after previously spending time in the Red Sox and Braves organizations. He appeared in 35 games in 2019 at High-A and Double-A, going 3-4 with a 4.89 ERA and 45 strikeouts in 42.1 innings of work. He enters his seventh year of professional baseball in 2020.
Allday, 29, is a former Boston draft pick who spent extensive time in affiliated baseball before coming to the AA last season. The University of Central Arkansas alumnus played in the Red Sox, Angels, and Padres organizations for six seasons, including 95 games of Triple-A experience, prior to joining the Kansas City T-Bones, and then the Lincoln Saltdogs, in 2019. He hit .305 with 20 RBIs in 210 at bats over 62 games in the American Association last season.
The RedHawks will begin the 2020 American Association Regular Season on Friday, July 3rd against the Winnipeg Goldeyes at Newman Outdoor Field. The six-team, 60-game regular season will feature teams playing in three hub cities (Fargo, Sioux Falls, and Milwaukee). Both Fargo-Moorhead and Winnipeg will play their home games at Newman Outdoor Field in Fargo.
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