The Dayton Dragons posted their 2015 rosters early on Monday, which for most minor league teams is pretty dang early. The Dragons are always a good draw, holding the record for most consecutive sell outs in professional sports and hosting many of the Reds top rising stars. Almost all of your favorite Reds players played in Dayton at one point in time, and this year the Reds are putting 14 players from the 2014 Pioneer League Champions Billings Mustangs on their squad.
When talking about a minor league roster we first look at what ranked prospects will be playing where. The Dayton roster isn't the brightest in the farm system, but it does have some names to watch. Out of the Baseball America's Top 30 prospects, the Dragons will showcase five of them (Aristides Aquino #9, Gavin LaValley #17, Wyatt Strahan #23, Tyler Mahle #26, and Jeremy Kivel #29). If you follow our Farmers Only prospect updates you will see several other names you should recognize. The roster currently sits at 26 and a player will have to be dropped or moved before their Opening Day.
Garrett Boulware, Julio Morillo, Jose Ortiz.
Maybe we'll see Jose Ortiz get some more playing time and make improvements this season? He was a former high CPR pick because of his power, but he had an awful 2014 season.
Brian O'Grady (1B/CF), Ty Washington (2B), Luis Gonzalez (SS), Gavin LaValley (1B/3B), Avain Rachal (1B/2B), Ronald Bueno (utility), Wendell Soto (2B/SS).
The big surprise for me is seeing Gavin LaValley on the roster. I figured we'd see him in Dayton some time this year, but it seems he'll start on the roster right away. I thought he might start in extended Spring Training, but with him getting at bats with the Reds in Spring Training, I should have known better. You should recognize names like Brian Beef O'Grady, Ty Washington, Luis Gonzalez (LOL YANKEES), and Avain Rachal. Ronald Bueno seems familiar, but he also has a cool name.
Aristides Aquino, Jimmy Pickens, Narciso Crook.
Heiress Titties Aquino will be leading the pack for prospects to watch. Narcisist Crook???
Wyatt Strahan, Tyler Mahle, Tejay Antone, Seth Varner, Mark Armstrong.
Strahan was a 2014 draft pick out of USC who has some solid upside, and I'm pretty high on Tyler Mahle who has shown some kick ass K/BB ratios. You should recognize Te-hee-hay Antone from last year's Billings roster.
Alejandro Chacin, Nolan Becker, Brennan Bernardino, Jake Ehret, Brian Hunter, Jeremy Kivel, Conor Krauss, Jake Paulson.
A couple things of note from the relievers. Alejandro Chacin will be starting his third season in Dayton where he has been really freaking good every year. I don't get it. Maybe it is a mistake and he is the one guy that will be moving? I hope so. Jeremy Kivel was a starter in Billings last year,and he has tremendous upside. His production hasn't lived up his potential, but he's still a young guy and I'd hate to see the Reds giving up on him so soon. Maybe it is just a precaution to keep his innings down?
The 2015 Dragons will be led by manager Jose Nieves, pitching coach Tom Browning, hitting coach Luis Bolivar, and and the greatest person ever Corky Miller.
Dayton will play their first game Thursday at West Michigan.