Getting to CHS Field

Saints Trade For Former First Rounder Burgess, Add Infielder Gilmartin

ST. PAUL, MN March 4, 2016



ST. PAUL, MN (March 4, 2016) – The right-field Spire Credit Union Home Run Porch may get a workout this season at CHS Field.  The St. Paul Saints grabbed another big left-handed bat, completing a trade with the Somerset Patriots of the Atlantic League for former first rounder, outfielder Michael Burgess.  They also found a versatile infielder who is familiar with the American Association, Mike Gilmartin.


The Saints received Burgess, for a player to be name later, from the Patriots and get a left-handed bat who has at hit 15 or more home runs in six of his nine professional seasons.  The 27-year-old Burgess spent most of last season with the Somerset Patriots of the Atlantic League and hit .251 with 15 homers and 59 RBI in 84 games.  In 338 at bats he scored 46 runs, crushed 23 doubles and had a .292 on base percentage and .453 slugging percentage.  He finished fifth in the league in home runs.  Burgess began the season with the Baltimore Orioles Double-A affiliate in Bowie and played 21 games before being released.


      “Michael is a nice addition for us,” said Saints Manager George Tsamis.  “He is a nice left-handed power bat that is a good fit for us in our ballpark. He hit cleanup in Somerset last season and came up big for them in the playoffs. He played a big part in them winning the championship.”


          Burgess was a force to be reckoned with in the Atlantic League playoffs hitting .391 with three homers and seven RBI as the Patriots knocked off the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs for the title, three games to one.


          Burgess was a first round supplemental pick (49th overall) by the Washington Nationals in 2007 out of Hillsborough High School in Tampa, FL.  He began his career by tearing up the Gulf Coast League in 2007 hitting .336 with eight homers and 32 RBI in just 36 games.  He finished first in the league in on-base percentage (.442) and slugging percentage (.617), second in HR/AB ratio (1/16.00) and sixth in batting average.  He was selected to the Post-Season GCL All-Star Team and to the Baseball America Rookie All-Star Team.  His tremendous numbers earned him a promotion to Low-A Vermont where he hit .286 with three homers and 10 RBI in 19 games.


          In 2008 the power numbers continued to impress as Burgess finished fifth in HR/AB ratio (1/22.28) in the South Atlantic League, crushing 18 at Single-A Hagerstown.  His defense, however, may have outshined his offense finishing first among outfielders with 26 assists.  He was once again promoted towards the end of the season and finished at High-A Potomac where he helped the Nationals win a championship finishing tied for second in runs scored (6) and tied for third in RBI (6).  Between the two stops Burgss hit a career high 24 home runs.


          Burgess spent all of 2009 at Potomac and finished third in the league in home runs with 19, fourth in HR/AB ratio (1/25.26) and made his first mid-season All-Star team.


          In 2010 Burgess made his second Mid-Season All-Star team at High-A with Potomac.  His season was highlighted by reaching base safely in 21 consecutive games from April 28-May 19 and was promoted to Double-A Harrisburg for the final 21 games of the season where he hit .284 with six home runs and 15 RBI.  He made the playoffs for the second time in his career with the Senators.  He was selected as an Organizational All-Star and played in the prestigious Arizona Fall League where he was named a Rising Star.


          On January 17, 2011 Burgess, along with right-handed pitcher A.J.Morris and left-hander Graham Hicks, were dealt to the Chicago Cubs in exchange for left-handed starter Tom Gorzelanny.  In 122 games at High-A Daytona he whacked 20 home runs and 24 doubles and was named an Organizational All-Star.  Burgess won his second championship, going 5-9 in the three games he played as the Cubs swept the St. Lucie Mets in a best-of-five game series.


          Following the 2012 season the Houston Astros claimed Burgess off waivers and he spent one season in the Astros organization, where he made the playoffs for the fourth time in his career while playing at Double-A Corpus Chriti of the Texas League in 2013, before signing as a free agent with the Orioles in 2014.  While spending 83 games at High-A Frederick he had one of his best seasons hitting .315 with 15 home runs and 68 RBI.  He roped a career high 32 doubles and finished first in the league in slugging (.579), second in extra base hits (51) and fifth in home runs and doubles while being selected a Carolina League Post-Season All-Star.


          The 28-year-old Gilmartin spent the last two seasons with the Lincoln Saltdogs in the American Association.  Last season he hit .252 with two home runs and 28 RBI in 78 games.  In 286 at bats he scored 30 runs, had 14 doubles, a .252 on base percentage and a .322 slugging percentage. 


          “Mike has been a solid shortstop in Lincoln the past two seasons,” said Tsamis.  “It's nice to have another left handed bat. He’s shown he can make all the plays on the infield."


          Gilamrtin was selected in the 27th round of the First Year Player Draft in 2009 by the Oakland Athletics out of Wofford College. He steadily rose through the system and had one of his best seasons in 2011 at High-A Stockton in the California League.  He hit .264 with career highs in home runs (14), RBI (75), runs (71), triples (9) and slugging (.437).  He was rewarded with a mid-season All-Star selection at second base.


          After another solid season at the Stockton in 2012 the Cincinnati Reds claimed him off waivers in December of that year.  He played 34 games between High-A Bakersfield and Double-A Pensacola before being released and wasvsigned by the Washington Nationals and finished the season at High-A Potomac.


          In 2014 he began the season with the Bridgeport Bluefish in the Atlantic League before being released and signing with the Saltdogs.  Gilmartin hit .262 with seven home runs and 37 RBI in 88 games.


          Gilmartin has reached the playoffs in three different seasons.


          The Saints have signed six players, five position players and one pitcher. 


          The 2016 season begins on Thursday, May 19 at CHS Field with a 7:05 p.m. game against the Gary SouthShore Railcats.