Traverse City Record-Eagle

Archive: Thursday

May 15, 2014

Notebook: Rob Benedict makes Great Lakes debut


Rohn anticipates using Rankin as a late-inning reliever.

PLAYOFF EXPANSION: The Frontier League playoffs have expanded from four to six teams for the 2014 season. The league’s postseason will feature the bottom four seeds (three through six) playing a one-game playoff to advance. The No. 6 seed will play at No. 3, and No. 5 at No. 4. The top two seeds are the division winners. The second round will then consist of a best-of-three series and the championship is best-of-five.

WOODWARD’S AVENUE: Scott Woodward arrived at training camp a little late due to an exam while finishing his college degree.

But the good news is the speedy outfielder is “100 percent” healthy, according to Rohn.

“He’s chomping at the bit,” Rohn aid. “He’s texted or called me every day, saying ‘What’s going on? What’s going on?’ He’s excited to get going.”

Last season, Woodward was a spark plug at the top of Traverse City’s batting order, hitting .360 in his first eight games with nine runs and four steals before a string of injuries derailed his season.

BARBER MAKES CUT: George Barber excelled in Australia this winter, putting him back on the prospect map.

Barber was drafted in the 43rd round by the Los Angeles Angels after two seasons at Broward Community College. He played just seven games for the Angels’ Rookie team, hitting .235 before taking two years off from baseball to go to medical school.

“If he doesn’t make it as a player, he’ll make it as a trainer,” Rohn joked.

Last year, he returned to the diamond and was signed by the Baltimore Orioles, playing in 46 games at three different levels. He hit .234 for Class A Delmarva and earned a promotion to AA Bowie, where he batted .333 in nine at-bats.

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