PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- Four players were cut prior to Wednesday night's game against the Pirates.
Pitcher Bradon Gomes headed the cuts, as he was optioned to Triple-A Durham. Catcher Chris Gimenez was reassigned to Minor League camp, while pitchers Marquis Fleming and Ryan Reid were told they were not going to make the team. Both will remain with the team to help with the load of exhibition innings facing the team the remainder of camp.
"I kind of figured it," Gomes said. "You could tell with the numbers, and having not thrown well during the spring. It only makes sense. I'm looking at it as an opportunity to get everything worked out and get back to where I need to be to help the team out when they need me.
"I'll go down there, and get back to where I was at at the end of the year. I need probably another couple outings. From watching video, I don't feel I'm far off."
Gomes had a rough outing on Tuesday against the Red Sox, when he allowed five of the six hitters he faced to reach base.
Gomes had minor back surgery during the offseason, but he has insisted all spring that he feels fine physically, even though his velocity has been down. The only thing the right-hander can pinpoint for a possible reason for his current state was being a little bit behind.
"That's the only thing I can think of, because physically I feel good," he said. "I probably started throwing three weeks to a month later [this year] than I normally do. So I think that's it right now. Mechanically, I'm not very good right now."
Gimenez, who was in competition to become the team's backup catcher, handled the news with optimism.
"I still think there's plenty of opportunity here," Gimenez said. "Just because it's not at the onset doesn't mean that it can't happen at any point in the season. You just have to kind of take that attitude into it. You can go down and be Bitter Bob about it, or you can go down and be your normal self ... I don't plan on being Bitter Bob."