Central grad Barrett makes Nats, Castle grad Carroll released


Central High School graduate Aaron Barrett landed a spot in the Washington Nationals’ bullpen while Castle grad Jamey Carroll was released on Tuesday.

Selected in the ninth round of the 2010 amateur draft, Barrett will be making a Major League Opening Day roster for the first time. Washington will open at the New York Mets on Monday.

Barrett, 26, was considered one of the surprises of camp after recording a 2.15 earned run average and earning 26 saves in 51 relief appearances for Double-A Harrisburg last season.

He threw 92/3 scoreless innings this spring, allowing five hits and striking out seven without issuing a walk for the Nats.

“When it came down to it, Aaron showed us that he’s able to compete at this level, certainly, and he’s attacked guys, and he’ll be a valuable piece to our bullpen and get in a lot of games for us,” Nationals manager Matt Williams told MLB.com.

Carroll, 40, appeared to be a strong contender for a backup infield position after signing a minor league deal in the offseason. However, Williams did not see the 12-year veteran getting enough playing time to justify a roster spot. He said he wanted to give Carroll enough time to find an opportunity with another ballclub in the next few days.

“That was the toughest one I’ve had so far,” Williams said of the Carroll decision.

After playing seven years in the minors, Carroll pondered his future in 2002. Managers loved his team-first, unselfish attitude, but he had yet to make The Show.

That all changed when he made the Montreal Expos in September of that season, beginning a lengthy ride as a utility infielder, which included the World Series with the Colorado Rockies in 2007.

Carroll snapped a tie in the 2007 Wild Card game on Oct. 1, 2007 with a sacrifice fly to right field, scoring Matt Holliday with the winning run, giving the Rockies a 9-8, 13-inning victory over the San Diego Padres.

Once a 14th-round draft choice after earning all-America honors at the University of Evansville in 1996, Carroll joined the 1,000 career hit club in 2013 and made more than $18 million. Not bad for someone who wasn’t considered the best player on the Newburgh American Legion’s state championship team in 1992.

Here’s hoping Jamey will find a spot with another team for at least one more season.


–Gordon Engelhardt

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About Gordon Engelhardt

Many moons ago, I was a semipro baseball pitcher and my love for the grand old game continues unabated. I was lucky enough to cover the White Sox in the 1983 ALCS and the Cubbies in the 1984 NLCS while living in northern Illinois. I have covered several Cardinals games, but never in postseason.

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