The Kansas City T-Bones have announced they’ve re-signed veteran outfielder Ray Sadler and relief pitcher Sean Toler, and traded Lee Cruz.
Sadler, 6-foot-1 and 210 pounds, spent most of the last three seasons with the T-Bones. After starting 2012 with a team in Italy, Sadler joined the T-Bones on May 31. He batted .278 in 85 games, with 16 home runs and 63 RBIs. On Aug. 4, 2012, he hit his 200th professional home run (he now has 205). Sadler will begin the 2013 season with 1,445 career hits and 296 doubles.
“It’s huge to have a guy of Ray’s caliber and character in our clubhouse and in our lineup,” said T-Bones manager Kenny Hook. “The other major factor, talking to Ray, is that he’s disappointed by his production last year and not helping lead us to the playoffs. So, he’s preparing hard this offseason in hopes of bringing another championship to Kansas City.”
The Chicago Cubs drafted Sadler, a native of Clifton, Texas, in the 30th round in 1999. He has spent time at nearly every level of professional baseball, including three games with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2005. Besides the Cubs and Pirates, he’s played in the minor leagues for Houston and Tampa Bay.
Toler, a 6-foot-5, 220-pound right hander, appeared in 29 games for Kansas City last season, ending the year with a 1-1 record, 2 saves and a 2.97 ERA. This winter he’s been pitching for Canberra of the Australian Baseball League. Heading into the championship series this weekend, Toler is second in the league in saves (11) with a 2.84 ERA in 22 appearances.
“I think last season was a learning process for Sean, mainly learning how to trust his stuff and not worry as much about the hitters,” Hook said. “He struggled with some confidence early, but then turned it around toward the end of the season. Obviously in Australia he’s been throwing great in some tough situations. I expect him to come in here with a lot of confidence.”
In addition to signing Sadler and Toler, the T-Bones have traded Cruz to Laredo for a player to be determined later.
The T-Bones are scheduled to open the 2013 season in Wichita on May 16.