Pope Lands On The DL

Justin Pope is out with a sore shoulder

(Trenton, NJ) – The Trenton Thunder, the Double-A Affiliate of the New York Yankees, announced that RHP Justin Pope has been placed on the Disabled List with a sore shoulder retroactive to July 24th, and RHP Gerardo Casadiego has been promoted to the Thunder from Tampa.

Pope is 2-1 with a 2.16 ERA in 31 games for the Thunder, including 20 saves which is tied for first in the Eastern League. He started the 2006 season with Columbus and appeared in eight games with a 0-1 record and a 7.30 ERA.

Pope, acquired from the St. Louis Cardinals organization along with LHP Ben Julianel for LHP Sterling Hitchcock (8/22/03), set the Trenton single-season record for saves with 29 last year. Pope's 29 saves last year placed him second in the Eastern League. He tied Erie's Edwin Almonte for the "Rolaids Relief Man of the Year" award in the Eastern League. Pope was 29-34 in save opportunities in helping the Thunder to their first playoff appearance since 1999. In 2004, Pope split time as a starter and reliever for Trenton, going 4-3 with a 4.21 ERA, including a 1-hit shutout of Norwich (7/30/04).

Pope was originally selected by the St. Louis Cardinals in the first round (28th overall) of the 2001 draft. Pope was a 1st-Team All-American at University of Central Florida, where he holds nine single-season or career records.

Casadiego appeared in one game for Tampa since being transferred from Trenton on July 20th. Casadiego, who was promoted from Tampa to Trenton on July 3rd, appeared in 28 games for Tampa. He had a 1-1 record with a 3.51 ERA for the Tampa Yankees with 14 saves. He was 0-0 with a 2.00 ERA in six appearances for the Thunder. He struck out nine and walked two in nine innings with Trenton.

Casadiego was signed by the Yankees organization in the off-season and previously pitched in the Eastern League for Harrisburg from 2002-2004. Casadiego initially was signed as a non-drafted free agent to the Montreal Expos (currently Washington Nationals) in February of 1998, but was released May 20, 2004.

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