Canaries Sign Pitchers Seyler and Pollorena, Release Hellquist

Posted: 7/28/2018

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The Sioux Falls Canaries made two big additions to their pitching staff Friday, signing right-hander Mark Seyler and lefty Luis Pollorena ahead of their game with Wichita.

In a corresponding move, the Canaries released lefty reliever Bo Hellquist. Hellquist posted a 7.54 ERA in 10 appearances for the Birds this season.

Both newcomers impressed in their Canaries debuts on Friday. Seyler pitched 4.1 innings in relief of starter Dylan Thompson, allowing just one run on five hits while striking out seven. It was the most strikeouts recorded by a Canary in a relief outing this season.

Pollorena relieved Seyler, pitching a scoreless eighth inning.

The Canaries signed Seyler as a free agent after he spent the first part of 2018 in the United Shore Professional Baseball League, a four-team independent league in Utica, Mich.

"Having Mark Seyler here is huge, because he's been starting all year in the United Shore League," Canaries Manager Mike Meyer said. "He's a real big command guy; doesn't walk anybody. We're hoping his stuff plays at our level."

Seyler posted a 4.94 ERA in 11 appearances for the USPBL's Birmingham-Bloomfield Beavers in 2018, mainly working out of the rotation.

A 19th-round draft pick by the New York Yankees in 2015, Seyler made 29 appearances in the Yankees' farm system in 2015 and 2017, missing the 2016 season with an injury.

Pollorena's appearance on Friday was his first since 2016, when he played for the American Associatoin's Laredo Lemurs, when Meyer was on the Lemurs' coaching staff.

"He's a gamer. He's not afraid of anybody. He goes out there and pounds the bottom of the zone," Meyer said of Pollorena.

Pollorena went to the College World Series his senior year at Mississippi state before being drafted in the 23rd round by the Texas Rangers in 2013. He spent two years in the Rangers' system before moving to independent ball.

"The thing that we really love about Luis is that he can throw every day," Meyer said. "Realistically it wouldn't be far-fetched for him to throw every single game the rest of the year if needed. He's that type of kid."

The Canaries return to the Birdcage Saturday for their Decade Celebration Night game at 6 p.m. Fans can wear their favorite 60s, 70s, or 80s gear for a chance to win prizes, and fans 50 and over can purchase 50%-off tickets at the box office before the game. Fans who can't make the game can watch it on sfcanaries.com and listen on Sioux Falls Sports Radio 98.1 FM and AM 1230 KWSN.