By Adam Kline / Smokies Radio Network
KODAK, Tenn. – The Tennessee Smokies, Class AA minor league affiliate of the Chicago Cubs, announce today that LHP Austin Kirk and OF Rubi Silva will join the team in advance of today’s series opener against the Birmingham Barons. In corresponding roster moves, OF Nelson Perez has been sent to the Class A Daytona Cubs and RHP Yoanner Negrin has been promoted to the Class AAA Iowa Cubs. All moves are immediate, with Kirk and Silva being available for the team’s 8:05 p.m. EST game at Regions Park.
Tennessee’s roster is at 25 active players, which is the Southern League maximum.
Kirk, 22, was 7-3 in 22 outings (21 starts) for the D-Cubs in 2012. His 3.13 ERA (45 ER/129.1 IP) ranked second-lowest among Florida State League pitchers. In June, the left-hander was named the starting pitcher for the North Division in the 2012 Florida State League All-Star Game. The Owasso, Okla. native was drafted in the third round of the 2009 MLB draft out of Owasso (Okla.) High School.
Silva, 23, joins Tennessee for the first time in his three-year professional career. He began the 2012 campaign with in Daytona where he ranked in the top 10 in the Florida State League batting average (.302), hits (127) and led the league with 11 triples. The right-handed outfielder was signed by the Cubs as a non-drafted free agent in 2010.
Negrin, 28, was 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA (0 ER/ 5.0 IP) in one start for the Smokies this season. The right-handed pitcher joined the Smokies on August 9, after starting the season with Olmecas de Tabasco of the Mexican League. The La Habana, Cuba native was signed by the Cubs as a non-drafted free agent in 2011.
Perez, 24, hit .205 (26-for-127) with six doubles, two triples, five home runs and 17 RBIs in 43 games with the Smokies in 2012. He was signed by the Cubs as a non-drafted free agent in 2006.