Giants release six minor league pitchers

Darren Sack in better times with San Jose

With more than 100 pitchers in their minor league camp, the Giants have far more candidates than minor league roster spots available. With that in mind, the organization made the first round of releases Monday, waiving six pitchers from the system.

"We didn't want to do this first round so early," said Director of Player Development Fred Stanley. "But we've just got so many guys in camp, we had to do it."

The first guys to go were right-handers Ricky Bauer, Ivan Herrera-Rusova, Gregorio Martinez, Alberto Montes, and Darren Sack, and lefty Josue Gomez.

A big-bodied hurler, Gomez missed all of 2006 following elbow surgery, then came back with diminished velocity in 2007.

Bauer, 25, signed as an undrafted free agent out of Hawaii in 2005. He appeared in Augusta and San Jose in 2006, but went backward to Salem-Keizer in 2007.

Rusova was born in Cuba but emigrated to Canada as a teenager. The Giants selected him in the 26th round in 2005 based mostly on a mid-90s fastball, but the lanky son of political exiles managed just 20 innings in two professional season.

Martinez had gone back and forth from the rotation to the bullpen in San Jose in parts of three stateside seasons. He originally signed out of the Dominican Republic as a 21-year-old in 2003 and spent two seasons pitching for the DSL Giants.

Montes was originally drafted in the 12th round in 2001, but had missed the last two seasons with arm trouble. "We brought him back to see what he had, but the arm strength just wasn't there." said Stanley.

An 11th-round selection out of Sonoma State in 2004, Sack had a stellar campaign for San Jose in 2006, posting a 1.94 ERA over 83.1 innings despite a 71/34 K/BB ratio. The Anaheim native got lit up, however, when he opened 2007 in Connecticut and never recovered when he was sent back to the Cal League. In his four-year Giants career, he posted a 4.82 ERA.

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