May 2011

A pregame post for May 26

The Wolf Pack allows two non-Wolf Pack members to hang out in their midst before Wednesday's game.

I don’t have much to add to this post from yesterday.  Since it’s a suspended game, there are no stats to update.  No real notes to add to the front page.

If you want to know how the other teams in the Brewers system did yesterday, you may go HERE, HERE, and HERE.

If you want to see highlights of the Brewers win over the Nationals on Wednesday, go HERE.  Gosh. Do I sound like that?

Tonight’s deal:

The Rattlers trail 5-1 after the top of the 3rd inning.  You can catch up on the boxscore right here! The game will restart at 5pm with Brooks Hall is coming on in relief of Charly Bashara to face Peoria in the bottom of the third.  Wisconsin will face Cam Greathouse when they come to the plate in the top of the fourth.  This game is scheduled for seven innings.

If the suspended game ends before 6:00 (say, 5:50 for example), the second game will start at 6:30.  If the suspended game ends at 6:15, the second game will start approximately 30 minutes after the conclusion of the suspended game.  Game two is scheduled for 7 innings.

The Game Two Starting Pitchers are:
Wisconsin: Jimmy Nelson
Peoria: Hayden Simpson

Pitching matchups for the Series with Kane County:

FRI: RHP Jameson Dunn v. RHP Yordano Ventura
SAT: RHP Austin Ross v. RHP Jason Adam
SUN: RHP Tyler Thornburg v. RHP Sugar Ray Marimon
MON: TBA v. RHP Leondy Perez

Weather permitting

Postsuspension slideshow (May 25, 2011)

I am really sick of rain.  Part of me wanted to stay up in the press box for my Lt. Dan moment.

Here are some pictures:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Lineup & Game Notes (May 25, 2011)

A view of O'Brien Field from between two palm trees

Tonight’s Game One Lineup:
Reggie Keen – CF
Nick Shaw – 2B
Chris Dennis – DH
Mike Walker – 1B
Tyler Roberts – C
Franklin Romero, Jr. – RF
Robbie Garvey – LF
Calos George – SS
Greg Hopkins – 3B

Tonight’s starting pitchers:
Game one: Charly Bashara
Game two: Jimmy Nelson

Tonight’s Game Notes: RattlersGameNotesMay25

Postgame Post (May 24, 2011)

Mike Walker cleared the batting eye in center moments before the tarp had to be placed on the field. Coincidence? I think not.

Rattlers 10, Chiefs 2
Boxscore | Game Story

  • Tyler Thornburg allowed two walks and five hits in three innings.  No runs though. I have him at 10-1/3 straight scoreless innings over three starts.
  • Don’t worry, panicky panickers. He was not going back out on the hill after the Rattlers hit for 25 minutes in the top of the fourth and a 64 minute rain delay.  He will be back and ready to go for his next start.
  • Let’s hear it for Brian Garman!  Five scoreless innings out of the bullpen.  That does two jobs: Saves the bullpen. Gives Garman a much needed positive outing.
  • The Rattlers took the lead in the third inning on three straight two out RBI hits.
  • Six of the seven runs scored in the fourth inning also came on two out RBI hits.
  • I’m sure this is just coincidence, but the last time the Rattlers scored seven runs in an inning was when Matt Erickson was ejected from a game.  Tonight, Dusty Rhodes was ejected and the Rattlers again scored seven runs in an inning.
  • The Rattlers went 9-for-18 with runners in scoring position on Tuesday night.  Let me consult my calculator……Yes. Pretty good.
  • Click on that picture. Look at that batter’s eye in center.  It’s 400′ from home plate.  Look at how high that thing is. Mike Walker cleared it with his home run in the fourth.  I can’t even over-exaggerate how far that home run went.
  • Reggie Keen with another outfield assist! It came in the ninth and it came on a smart play by him.  The Chiefs had runners at first and second with one out.  Single to center and no chance to get the runner at the plate.  The runner from first obviously has not received the memo that you DO NOT RUN on the Rattlers outfield and took off for third.  The poor guy was out by 20 feet and didn’t even know what hit him.  Nine Outfield assists for Keen.  He is the Midwest League leader.
  • By the way, Cody Hawn took over coaching at first base after Dusty was ejected tonight. He was disappointed they did not give him a stopwatch.
  • Today was the third time the Rattlers have started a road trip under the new plan. The plan is to leave a little later from Appleton. Stop to eat when the team arrives in the city they are playing. Head to the ballpark. Play the game. Check into the hotel after the game.
  • The Rattlers have won all three games to start those three road trips.  Wisconsin was 3-6 when they did things the old way “leave early. check into hotel. eat. leave for ballpark.” last year.
  • And to be fair, in the one game that started a road trip on a travel day this year, the Rattlers operated under the old way and won that one, too.
  • Things to watch for tomorrow: Charly Bashara as the starter in game one.  Jimmy Nelson as the starter in game two.  The weather RADAR for Peoria to see in there will be any game.
  • I’m just going to point out that the Rattlers are seven games over .500. They haven’t been there since the end of the 2005 season.
  • The movie on the bus ride down to Peoria today was Rounders.  Is Malkovich’s Teddy KGB blowup at the end ever NOT funny?
  • Speaking of hilarious: Teddy KGB soundboard.
  • I should put a language warning out there for those last two links.

Lineup & Game Notes & Pitching Matchups (May 24, 2011)

Happy Birthday, Mom.  I wouldn’t be able to do this without you.  I am not sure what this is, but I sure do enjoy doing it for a living.  Thanks for everything.

O'Brien Field is the home of the Peoria Chiefs, the Midwest League affiliate of the Chicago Cubs.

Probable Pitching Matchups for the Peoria Series:

TUE: Thornburg v. Jung
WED: Nelson v. Hicks (GM 1)
WED: Bashara v. Greathouse (GM 2)
THU: Hall v. Simpson

Brace yourself, but the weather forecast in Peoria is calling for a 90% chance of rain, thunderstorms, and various other, um, crap for tomorrow.  Those pitching matchups above are weather permitting.

Tuesday’s Lineup:
Reggie Keen – CF
Nick Shaw – 2B
TJ Mittelstaedt – DH
Chris Dennis – 1B
Mike Walker – 3B
Franklin Romero – RF
Robbie Garvey – LF
Tyler Roberts – C
Yadiel Rivera – SS

Tuesday’s Starter:
Tyler Thornburg

Tuesday’s Game Notes: RattlersGameNotesMay24

Postgame Post (May 23, 2011)

Video Highlights:

Timber Rattlers 4, Bees 3
Boxscore | Game Story

  • Tonight on It’s the Mind we examine the phenomenon of deja vu, that strange feeling you sometimes get
  • Seriously though, if 4-3 works…4-3 works.
  • What happened to Zach Braddock? Take it away, Tom Haudricourt: Zach Bradock had his third rehab outing with Class A Wisconsin canceled when he cracked a fingernail warming up in the bullpen and couldn’t properly grip the ball.
  • That’s what happened to Zach Braddock.
  • Austin Ross was pressed into service early and gave up some weird runs.  But, only three runs in 5-2/3 innings.
  • He did give up nine hits. That was a lot.
  • Weird weather day.  Bright blue to battleship gray to pouring rain and back again.  It was like a goofy screen saver or time lapse video.
  • Ross threw a lot of pitches in the first inning and I’m not sure if it was because he had to come in before he was supposed to or if he was trying to figure out the strike zone or what exactly it was, but he got through 5-2/3.
  • Eric Marzec took a wicked line drive off his right hip to start the seventh inning.  He gathered himself to track down the ball and get the first out of the inning.  He stayed in game and added another 1-1/3 innings to his scoreless month of May.
  • Greg Holle with a drama-free, two-inning save.  He is now 11-for-11 in saves.
  • I had stepped out of the booth as Holle started jogging into game.  I heard the rain start, but did not see how heavy it had become until I returned to the booth.  I think it was raining harder at that time than at any time during the rain delay on Saturday.
  • But, 20 minutes later, game on.  Two innings later game over.
  • Mike Walker hit that home run to left-center on an 0-2 pitch.  I still can’t believe he got a pitch that good on an 0-2 pitch.  Walker’s last three games against the Bees…Home Run…HBP…Home Run.  To be continued…on July 30?  Well, maybe not.
  • Robbie Garvey with a three hit day today!
  • What? The Rattlers and Bees don’t play again until July 30?  Sheesh.
  • Wisconsin took 4 of 5 from the division leading Bees. The Rattlers are five back of the Bees and there are 26 games left on the schedule.
  • This homestand was a huge accomplishment for this Rattlers team.  Think back before the start of the 10-games in seven days.  If I had told you that  Miller would leave after two batters, there would be three games that could be considered Johnny All-Staff (bullpen pitchers) games, three different pitchers would be called on to close out games, AND the offense would average 3.3 runs per game in those ten games, what would you have said to a 7-3 record? AND that six of the wins would have been by one run?
  • Stats are weird.  The Rattlers were actually outscored 37-33 on the homestand.
  • Again. Outstanding accomplishment for the Rattlers!
  • Not that they will get a chance to enjoy it.  14-games in 13-days on the road to Peoria, Kane County, Bowling Green, and Dayton.
  • For now. Enjoy it.  Talk to you tomorrow from Peoria!

Lineup & Game Notes (May 23, 2011)

Very Late. Sorry.

Monday’s lineup:
Reggie Keen – CF
Nick Shaw – 2B
TJ Mittelstaedt – LF
Chris Dennis – DH
Mike Walker – 1B
Tony Pechek – C
Robbie Garvey – RF
Yadiel Rivera – SS
Greg Hopkins – 3B

Monday’s Game Notes: RattlersGameNotesMay23

Postgame Thoughts (May 22, 2011)

Timber Rattlers 4, Bees 3
Boxscore | Game Story

Video Highlights:

  • 4-3 win? Where have I seen that score for the Rattlers?
  • New Olympic Competition: 4-Man 27-out sprint.  You get four relievers.  You need to win the game.  GO!
  • I almost came up with something like: Outlined against a blue Wisconsin sky the Four Horsemen rode again. In dramatic lore they are known as famine, pestilence, destruction and death. These are only aliases. Their real names are: Dunn, Britt, Cravy and STOSH!
  • But, that would be plagiarism.
  • Great job today by all of the relievers.  Dun got through three.  Britt, who tossed seven innings on Wednesday against Beloit, comes back on three days rest for a couple of innings.  Cravy did the job, until he made the hot tag to STOSH!
  • Wawrzasek came out for the ninth inning and closed it out for the save.  That savesHolle for tomorrow if the Rattlers need him.  that’s big in a lot of ways.
  • Offensively, Shaw with two solid hits.  Mittelstaedt continues to heat up.  Dennis picks up an RBI through a drawn-in infield in the bottom of the first inning.
  • Yadiel Rivera got a gift of a 2-0 pitch to hit his first pro homer.  Look at where that thing was.  BOOM goes the dynamite!
  • Shaw with a couple of more webgems.
  • Today the weather decided to do something different.  It was AWESOME!  THEN, it rained.  A lot.  Then, it hailed!  Then, we were under a tornado warning.  Then, it stopped.  NOW, it’s starting again.  SHEESH!
  • That said, 5,580 was the attendance today.  Big things ahead…I think.
  • One of my favorite episodes of Without a Trace is Win Today.  Jack Malone proves he can take a punch…and much, much worse. Plus, there is this exchange between Jack and his surprise interrogator.
    Cynthia Neuwirth: You know what Joe Torre says.
    Jack Malone: Oh, I don’t know, what? Go Yankees?
    Cynthia Neuwirth: Win today. And all he’s got is George Steinbrenner to worry about.
  • My favorite episode of Without a Trace is Candy.  I will not provide links to that.
  • Zach Braddock and Austin Ross tomorrow.  Then, the Rattlers hit the road…for a long time…
  • Sorry for the quality of the post tonight. I’m running on empty and have a lot of stuff to do. Watch the highlights again and

Lineup & Game Notes (May 22, 2011)

This is the best day – as far as weather goes – for baseball in Appleton in a long time.

Get out here!

For those of you who cannot:

Sunday’s Lineup:
Robbie Garvey – RF
Nick Shaw – 2B
TJ Mittelstaedt – LF
Chris Dennis – DH
Mike Walker – 1B
Tyler Roberts – C
Franklin Romero – RF
Greg Hopkins – 3B
Yadiel Rivera – SS

Sunday’s Starting Pitcher:
Jameson Dunn

Sunday’s Game Notes: RattlersGameNotesMay22

Postdoubleheader post (May 21, 2011)

Game one Highlights:

Game two Highlights:

Game one:

Rattlers 4, Bees 3
Game Story | Boxscore

Game two:
Bees 10, Rattlers 4
Game Story | Boxscore

  • Game one
  • Brooks Hall looked good tonight.  A high school draft pick from 2009 comes in and goes five innings, allowed three runs on six hits, and struck out three.
  • All three runs and five of the six hits came in the third inning.  I wouldn’t consider any of the hits “screaming mimis” nor would I consider any of them “seeing-eye singles”.
  • Hall was sitting at 88-89 and his change-up was particularly effective tonight.  He threw 76 pitches and 50 of them were strikes.  He was behind in the count maybe five times in the game.  I thought it was a nice debut outing.
  • Especially the way he got out of a self-made jam in the fifth inning.  He got the first two outs rather quickly, but a walk and a hit batsman (on an 0-2 pitch no less) brought Yordy Cabrera to the plate.  The Brewers Prospect got over on the A’s prospect by spotting a 1-2 fastball perfectly on the inside corner for a called third strike.
  • Eric Marzec is now at 12 scoreless innings over seven outings in April.
  • Chris Dennis with his third triple of the season.  He also knocked in TJ Mittelstaedt with a single to put the Rattlers up 4-3.
  • Game two
  • Oh, what could have been.  Bases loaded one out, two runs in up 3-1, with the Bees defense reeling due to three, count them THREE errors in the frame.  But, a popout and a strikeout end the inning.
  • Then, the fourth inning happened….
  • I watched the Bees in the first two and a half games of this series and wondered how they had won 29 games.  I watched them in the top of the fourth and wondered how they had lost 12.
  • Now…they did get help – and a lot of it – from the Rattlers in that inning.  But, they saw the opening, pushed through, and made it bigger.
  • Damon Krestalude was the special guest starting pitcher for the Timber Rattlers today.  His last outing prior to game two was May 9.  It lasted 2/3 of an inning.  He made it to the fourth, but gave up a single and a double to the first two batters.  He left after that.  He had tossed 67 pitches (36 strikes) in those 3+ innings.
  • Tom Keeling has been pretty solid out of the bullpen for the last few appearances.  But, there was something a little off today.  He walked the first batter he faced on four pitches.  A sacrifice fly was followed by a two-run triple, a hit batsman, another four pitch walk, an RBI single, a K, and a walk to force in a run.
  • Then, Brian Garman came in to walk in another run on four pitched.
  • WALKER, TIMBER RATTLER! He crushed a pitch for a home run to the beach in right-center in the fifth. HR #7
  • A meteor striking the earth didn’t kill the dinosaurs. It was a Mike Walker Home Run that traveled back in time and caused the Chicxulub impact crater.
  • TJ Mittelstaedt. Knuckleball. Awesome.
  • A bullpen so depleted that they have to turn to a knuckleballing infielder/outfielder…Not awesome.
  • Miscellaneous:
  • Saturday, May 21. A Day In The Life of the Tarp at Time Warner Cable Field.
    On the field from 12pm until 4:30pm
    Off the field from 4:30pm until 12am
    On the field right now
  • It’s not the tarp’s fault. It’s nobody’s fault.  But, saints preserve us, this is getting old.
  • I think that I may actually sound like a human being on the broadcast tomorrow instead of Tommy Tighe impersonating Paul Harvey trying to do a David Lee impression of young George Bailey saying, “Please don’t hit my sore ear again, Mr. Gower.”
  • For the second game in a row, I have no idea who is to be the starting pitcher for the Rattlers.  Add in the fact that I don’t know who will be starting for the Bees later today.  In the words of Count Mondego in the film ‘The County of Monte Cristo” after the Countess Mondego let’s him know that she is onto his unfaithfulness…”It’s actually quite… liberating. Wouldn’t you say?”
  • When I roused myself from my medicine induced haze this morning, I caught the end of an Australian Rules Football game on ESPN 2.  I feel like that football must fell – if it could feel – after a full game.
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