(SAN FRANCISCO) - Former Huntsville Stars pitcher Steve Hammond is going to the San Francisco Giants as part of a three-player deal sending veteran 2nd baseman Ray Durham to the Milwaukee Brewers.
Hammond was packaged with outfielder Darren Ford, who is 2nd in minor league baseball with 48 steals at Class A-Brevard County (Fla. St.). Hammond will be assigned to the Class AAA-Fresno (PCL) Grizzlies.
The Brewers figure the 36-year old Durham to start two or three games a week at second base and face tough right-handers while Rickie Weeks, who is hitting just .216, remains as their principle starter. Durham, who waived his "no-trade" clause to get the deal done, was leading the Giants in batting (.293) and on-base percentage (.385).
Durham, a former Southern Leaguer with the Birmingham Barons, has played regularly in the majors for 13 seasons, starting with the Chicago White Sox in 1995 and the Oakland A's before going to San Francisco in 2003.
Hammond, a Californian, was ranked 27th among the Brewers top 30 prospects by Baseball America, and appeared to be on the fast track after a 7-4 start and 3.45 ERA with the Stars this year. He was leading the Southern League in strikeouts when he was promoted to Nashville, but his development seems to have slowed after going 0-4 with a 7.41 ERA in four starts for the Sounds.
Overall, Hammond was 19-19 with a 4.06 ERA in 57 starts for Huntsville dating back to 2006, the season that many considered a breakout year for Hammond. He began that campaign in the Florida State League but was bumped up to Huntsville after going 6-5 with a 2.53 ERA in 14 starts with Brevard County.