Saints Add Depth in Bullpen for Playoff Run, Sign Triple-A Righty Evan Mitchell
ST. PAUL, MN - The St. Paul Saints bullpen has been one of its strengths this season. With just 23 games left in the regular season and the Saints owning the second playoff spot in the North Division by just 0.5 game over the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks and trailing the Gary SouthShore Railcats by 1.0 for the top spot, the Saints added even more depth to their pen. They signed right-handed Triple-A reliever Evan Mitchell on Friday.
The 26-year-old Mitchell spent his entire six-year professional career in the Cincinnati Reds organization and spent most of this season at Triple-A Louisville. He was 1-1 with a 4.28 ERA in 29 games. In 33.2 innings pitched he walked 20 and struck out 26 while opponents hit .277 against him. Mitchell had five appearances of 2.0 innings or more and didn't allow a run in four of them. He began the season at High-A Pensacola and pitched in two games before being called up. He was 1-0 with a 1.80 ERA in those two games.
Mitchell was a 13th round selection by the Reds in the First Year Amateur Draft in 2013 out of Mississippi State. After pitching in just three games in the Rookie Arizona League in 2013, and allowing one run in 3.0 innings, he pitched a full season in 2014 at Single-A Dayton. He went 2-3 with a 4.22 ERA in 26 games. In 32.0 innings pitched he walked 13 and struck out 29 while opponents hit .252 against him. Mitchell began the season by not allowing an earned run in his first six appearances (7.0 IP) and did not allow a run in six straight appearances from August 17-30, a span of 8.1 innings. He struck out five in a 2.0 inning appearance on August 14 vs. Lake County.
In 2015 Mitchell spent the entire season at High-A Daytona in the Florida State League. He was 3-2 with a 3.84 ERA and eight saves in 46 relief appearances. In 58.2 innings he walked 33 and struck out 42 while opponents hit .272 against him. Mitchell was selected as a Mid-Season All-Star and finished tied for third in the Florida State League in appearances. He earned a win or save in his first seven decisions and recorded a win and three saves in his first four appearances. Mitchell went 13 consecutive appearances without allowing a run from June 4-July 16, a span of 17.0 innings. He also went another 8.0 consecutive innings without allowing an earned run from 7/22-August 11.
Mitchell began 2016 in Daytona and went 1-1 with a 3.38 ERA and one save in 12 games (one start). In 16.0 innings he walked six and struck out 18 while opponents hit .220 against him. He allowed a run in just one of his 11 relief appearances and went 2.0 or more innings of shutout relief four times. Mitchell was promoted to Double-A Pensacola on May 22 and was dominant going 4-1 with a 2.70 ERA in 33 relief appearances. In 46.2 innings pitched he walked 15 and struck out 32 while opponents hit .226 against him. He didn't allow a run over his final seven relief appearances, 12.2 innings, which included 3.0 perfect innings while striking out six in his last relief appearance of the season on September 3 at Birmingham.
In 2017 Mitchell began the season at Triple-A Louisville and was 2-4 with a 4.85 ERA and one save in 25 relief appearances. In 39.0 innings pitched he walked 12 and struck out 28 while opponents hit .347 against him. He allowed one unearned run in his first seven relief appearances, 13.0 innings pitched and had a 3.31 ERA before he landed on the disabled list on June 16. Mitched made rehab appearances in the Arizona League from August 2-13 and went 0-0 with a 1.59 ERA before rejoining Louisville on August 15. He pitched in three games allowing nine runs in 5.1 innings before landing back on the disabled list for the remainder of the season.
Mitchell has only given up seven home runs in 239.2 innings pitched, has given up a multi-homer game just once and has never given up a home run in back-to-back relief appearances. His ground ball/air out ratio is nearly 2.0 in his career.
In order to make room for Mitchell the Saints placed relief pitcher Ryan Schlosser on waivers and he was claimed by the Winnipeg Goldeyes. The Saints also placed left-handed pitcher Chris Nunn on the 7-day disabled list.
The Saints roster stands at 22, one shy of the league maximum, 11 pitchers and 11 position players.
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American Association Stories from August 11, 2018
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