Canaries Add To Bullpen With A Pair Of Signings
SIOUX FALLS, SD -
Birds Bullpen Gets Stronger With Acquisition of Upperman and Smith
The Sioux Falls Canaries bullpen just got deeper. The Birds have acquired right-hander Casey Upperman, and right-hander Jake Smith, the team announced Tuesday morning.
The Birds claimed Upperman, 27, off waivers from the Cleburne Railroaders. Upperman made 35 appearances for Cleburne in 2017, finishing with an excellent 2.19 ERA.
"I felt like Casey was a perfect fit for us to help at the back end of the bullpen," Canaries manager Mike Meyer said. "He's got some of the best stuff of any of the relievers that were in our league last year."
An Arizona native, Upperman is known for his hard curveball, which helped him strike out 31 batters in 37 innings last year. Meyer said adding Upperman is crucial for the team's bullpen depth.
"100 games in 110 days -- it takes its toll on your bullpen," Meyer said, adding he thinks this year's team is well-suited to the grind of the full season.
Meyer said he expects Upperman to take on a set-up role with the Birds in 2018.
Jake Smith, 22, spent the last two seasons in the Arizona Rookie league with the Milwaukee Brewers. Throwing a combined 30 innings, Smith showcased his swing-and-miss stuff, striking out 45 batters, while only allowing 17 hits.
“I’m pleased to add Jake Smith to our roster,” says Meyer. “Jake brings a mid-90’s fastball with sink. He has a big frame that has proven to be tough on opposing batters.”
The Canaries open the 2018 season on Friday, May 18th with a Fireworks Night game against the Chicago Dogs. For more information on season tickets, suites, group outings, and corporate opportunities, call the Canaries front office at (605) 336-6060, or visit www.sfcanaries.com.