December 2010

Rattlers Alumni Report: Games of December 9, 2010


LaGuaira 5 @Caribes 3 (10)

Jose Escalona (’08): .1IP, 0H, 0R

Mike Wilson (’05): 1-for-4

@Caracas 8, Zulia 4

Asdrubal Cabrera (’05): 2-for-5, 2 RUNS, RBI
Carlos Maldonado (’99): 2-for-3, 2 RUNS

@Margarita 5, Lara 4

Luis Valbuena (’06): 0-for-3
Rene Cortes (’03): .2IP, 0H, R, 3BB, K

Puerto Rico:

Caguas 8 @San Juan 4

San Juan:
Rene Rivera (’03): 1-for-4, RBI

Ponce 2 @Carolina 0

Jeff Dominguez (’06): 0-for-3

Dominican Republic:

@Gigantes 4, Aguilas 2

Edward Paredes (’08): 0.1IP, 0H, 0R, K


@Brisbane 3, Adelaide 1

Jamie McOwen (’07): 1-for-3

Thursday Program cover post (1998)

The 1998 Timber Rattlers program cover featured the biggest name on that season’s team.  Ryan Anderson.  He was 18 years old, a #1 pick, and tall.

1998 TimberRattlersCover.jpg
He was tall. Very tall.

But, what I wanted to point out was the layout of the ballpark. Look at the outfield fence. Not a lot going on out there compared to now.

Hitting Background Complete

The new hitting background has been put in place.

Stadium 003.JPG

Stadium 001.JPGStadium 002.JPG

Rule Fiving!

The Rule 5 draft took place this morning on the final day of the Baseball Winter Meetings.  If you are unfamiliar with the workings of that particular draft.  Head over to this Wikipedia page.

There were four former Timber Rattlers taken in this draft.  Two were in the major league portion.  Two were in the minor league portion.

Here is the Baseball America list of all the selections.

The ex-Rattlers taken:

Major League Portion:
Adrian Rosario (’10) by the Orioles from the Brewers
Nathan Adcock (’07, ’08) by the Royals from the Pirates

AAA Minor League Portion:
Justin Dowdy (’03) by the Giants from the Rays
Travis Scott (’06) by the Pirates from the Angels

Rosario was the #4 pick and Adcock was the #5 pick in the MLB part of the draft.  Dowdy was a late first round pick in the AAA part of the MiLB draft.  Scott was an early second round pick in the AAA part of the MiLB draft.

There will probably be analysis of these picks later today.  There will be links to those in the morning on Rattler Radio of – if you can’t wait – at some time today @TimberRattlers or @CMehring

Season two of The Offseason

Season two of The Offseason starts today. Episode one is below.  Yes. That is Fang in a top hat with a lion statue.

Lawrie in the Sun

The Toronto Sun has this story on former Timber Rattlers second baseman and current Blue Jays farmhand.

Lawrie, rated the 26th best prospect in the minors by Baseball America, plans on being with the Jays opening day.

“I’ve told Brett we think it’s best for him to play a season at triple-A Las Vegas,” said Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos. “We’ll bring him to spring training, see how he plays, hopefully, he makes it a difficult decision for us.”

One scout compared Lawrie’s hitting ability to former Houston Astros slugger Jeff Bagwell.

“Never mind he had eight homers last year,” said the scout. “Most high school drafts spend their first year in Rookie ball and the next at a low Class-A club. He’s two steps ahead of where he should be.”

Lawrie had 36 doubles, 16 triples and eight homers — 60 extra base hits — and 63 RBIs for a .797 OPS. He was 30-for-43 stealing bases at double-A Huntsville.

There are the other stories, how he complained about being called to big-league camp during spring training and “only getting one at-bat.”

The Jays aren’t concerned about his make-up after talking to teammates, roommates and former coaches.

“We didn’t pick one or two people to talk to,” Anthopoulos said. “He’s a guy who works hard. It’s very clear he’s a confident kid. His work ethic is off the charts. Same for the way he competes.

“At his very core, he is a good person.”

Rattlers Alumni Report: Games of December 8, 2010


@Margarita 7, Lara 3

BOBBY! Livingston (’03): .2IP, 3H, 2R

Luis Valbuena (’06): 1-for-4, RBI
Edilio Colina (’08): 0-for-3

@Caracas 7, Magallanes 0

Asdrubal Cabrera (’05): 1-for-3, RUN

LaGuaira 4, @Caribes 3

Mike Wilson (’05): 2-for-3

Puerto Rico:

San Juan 13 @Mayaguez 8

San Juan:
Rene Rivera (’03): 1-for-5, RUN

Martin Maldonado (’09): 3-for-5, 2 RUNS, 4RBI, HR #1

@Carolina 6, Ponce 3

Jeffrey Dominguez (’06): 1-for-4, RUN

Dominican Republic:

@Estrellas 3, Licey 1

Bryan LaHair (’04): 1-for-3, RUN

@Escogido 10, Gigantes 3

Tim Harikkala (Foxes, ’94): 3IP, 3H, 2R, 3BB, 2K

Cody Scarpettas offseason

Cody Scarpetta pitched for the Timber Rattlers in 2009.  The Rockford Register-Star catches up with him this offseason.

Cody Scarpetta wants to be like his dad.

That means he wants to pitch, yes. But it also means he wants to teach others how to pitch.

“Being a professional baseball player is also doing stuff for kids and being part of your community,” said Scarpetta, an 11th-round draft pick by the Brewers in 2007.

“Milwaukee has special events for fans and community up there. A lot of kids look up to my dad and our family, so I’m glad to give back a little.”

The Scarpetta clan will hold their second annual pitching clinic Dec. 19. Scarpetta’s dad (Dan) and uncle (Dennis) are longtime area baseball coaches and former minor-league pitchers. Cody’s cousins Brett and Ryan also were star NIC-10 pitchers in high school. All five Scarpettas will be instructors at the clinic, started by Cody and Brett last year.

“I used to love hearing my dad tell me about the experiences he learned in pro ball. I want the kids in my community to get the same information I got,” Cody Scarpetta said.

That doesn’t mean Scarpetta is ready to become a coach. He said the Brewers told him he should start the 2011 season in Class AA after a solid year in the Florida State League in high Class A ball.

There is also this:

Scarpetta reports Feb. 13 with pitchers and catchers to the Brewers’ major league camp in Phoenix. The minor league camp is next door. “If you get sent down, you just walk across the street,” Scarpetta said.

He knows he’ll make that walk. But he also thinks this is the year he can establish himself as a true major league prospect.

“It’s going to be a big year for me,” Scarpetta said. “I want to see how far I can get.”

Much of it depends on his control.

“I’m happy with making hitters put the ball in play and going right after them, instead of trying to go around them,” Scarpetta said. “If I’m able to put my fastball wherever I want, and if I can command a secondary pitch whether it’s my change-up, curve or a cutter, I think I’ll be a tough guy.”

Go and read it all.


This is not about that story.  If you know what ‘that story’ is, you’ve already seen it.  If you don’t know, well, head over to the Toronto Star for this writeup…which is picture-free

I’ll just leave you with this quick lesson:

1.) Don’t put EVERYTHING you do on the internet.

The main thing that I wanted to pull out of that article is this:

On Monday, when making the announcement of the Shaun Marcum trade for
Lawrie, GM Alex Anthopoulos waxed enthusiastically about his admiration
for the young B.C. native’s combination of “confidence, swagger and
determination that all the great ones have.” On Tuesday, Anthopoulos
stuck to his guns, making no apologies, not backing off his admiration
for Lawrie.

“Hey, look, with respect to Brett, I know a lot’s been written and a
lot’s been said,” Anthopoulos commented. “We spent a lot of time working
on (the trade) and had a lot of long-time coaches and baseball people
that have been around him say that this guy plays the game hard.

“I had one guy tell me that in 30 years he’s never seen a guy play
harder and you’ll never have an issue with him between the lines. Is he
intense? Is he competitive? Yes. And he’s 20 years old. You’re not going
to get 25 players that are cut from the same cloth. But I know one
thing, his work ethic and the way he plays the game won’t be matched.
Jose Bautista’s got a lot of swagger.”

Here are a few other links from north of the border:

Hometown newspaper in Langley, BC.

While happy to be going to Toronto and the lone Canadian team in the Major Leagues, Lawrie said he would play anywhere which would afford him the chance to play in the big leagues.

“I am happy to go the Toronto Blue Jays,” he said, adding that the fact it is a Canadian team is a nice bonus, but he is just looking for the quickest route to the big leagues. “I just want to have that opportunity to play major league baseball.

“It could be anywhere; wherever I get the opportunity is good for me.”

The Calgary Herald has this plus a quote from Brett:

Lawrie has never lacked for confidence. In fact, rare is the story or
blog that doesn’t mention the words cocky, arrogant or attitude when
referencing the heavily tattooed 20-year-old from Langley, B.C.

it’s no surprise, then, that the newest member of the Toronto Blue
Jays organization, plucked out of the Milwaukee Brewers’ minor-league
system in exchange for right-hander Shaun Marcum, says he’s “done with
minor league baseball” after just two seasons.

“I’m ready (for
the major leagues), there’s no doubt in my mind that I’m ready,” the
powerfully built second baseman said Tuesday from Los Angeles, where
his fiancee is a senior on the UCLA soccer team.

It says that it is from their news services, but I can’t find the original article.  That “done with minor league baseball” quote has got to be out of context…doesn’t it?

Are you ready, Myrtle Beach!!??!?!?!

Brad Holman, Wisconsin’s pitching coach from 2002-2005, is taking his pitching knowledge and his guitar to Myrtle Beach next season.  Holman will be the pitching coach of the Pelicans.

Brad Holman moves up to Myrtle Beach, along with many of the Rangers young hurlers, after the past two seasons in the same role with Low-A Hickory (NC). A draft pick of his hometown Kansas City Royals in 1990, the 6-5 right-hander cracked the big leagues with the Seattle Mariners in 1993. Since 2002, the now 42-year-old alumnus of Auburn University at Montgomery has tutored pitchers at the Single & Double-A levels. His older brother Brian also pitched in the big leagues for the Expos & Mariners.

The folks in Myrtle Beach better be ready for the Holman tradition:

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