May 2011

Lineup & Game Notes (May 15, 2011)

The tarp is coming off the field at Alliant Energy Field before Sunday's game between the Rattlers and the Clinton LumberKings


The grounds crew is working to get everything ready for today’s game and I think that we are on schedule for a 2:00pm start time in Clinton.

And by grounds crew, I am going to include Rich Dorman, the pitching coach for the Clinton LumberKings.  He was getting the mound ready in the Clinton bullpen while the regular grounds crew was taking the tarp off the field.

I say again…PLAY BALL!

Sunday’s Lineup:
Nick Shaw – 2B
Greg Hopkins – 3B
Cody Hawn –  DH
Mike Walker – 1B
Reggie Keen – CF
TJ Mittelstaedt – LF
Tyler Roberts – C
Robbie Garvey – RF
Yadiel Rivera – SS

Sunday’s Starting pitcher:
Charly Bashara

Sunday’s Game Notes: RattlersGameNotesMay15

Today in Timber Rattlers History (May 15, 1998)

Brought to you by Rasmussen College

The Timber Rattlers won at 9-3 over the Fort Wayne Wizards on May 15, 1998 at Fox Cities Stadium.

This game is notable for one thing:  Back-to-back-to-back home runs in the bottom of the sixth inning by Luis Figueroa, Harvey Hargrove,and Mike Marchiano.

Plus, Joel Pineiro struck out nine over six innings to run his record to 5-1.

It is also noted in the story that the Rattlers wore jerseys that were throwbacks to the Appleton Papermakers teams in the 1950s.  Those were sweet.

The Post-Crescent Notes on the game (Click to enlarge):

Game Notes on the May 15, 1998 Rattlers game that featured three consecutive homers by Luis Figueroa, Harvey Hargrove, & Mike Marchiano.

The May 15, 1998 boxscore:

Boxscore of May 15, 1998 Timber Rattlers game.

All the young arms

Tom Haudricourt has this blog post up about the young arms (h/t to the artist formerly known as @battlekow) in the Milwaukee Brewers system.  Particular attention is being paid to the Timber Rattlers.

[O]ff to the best start is right-hander Austin Ross, an eighth-rounder out of LSU. Ross, 22, was the Brewers’ minor-league pitcher of the month for April and has continued to excel in May.

Through seven games (six starts), Ross is 4-1 with a 1.85 earned run average. In 43 2/3 innings, he has allowed only 28 hits and 12 walks while logging 45 strikeouts.

Brewers minor-league pitching coordinator Lee Tunnell has been impressed with Ross, on and off the field.

“From the first time you meet him, he’s very professional,” said Tunnell. “He presents himself well, takes his job seriously and has a vision to be a major-league pitcher. He’s intelligent and focused.

“So, if you ask if we are surprised by his success, no we are not surprised at all.”

Right-hander Jimmy Nelson, a second-rounder out of Alabama, and righty Matt Miller, a fifth-rounder out of Michigan, also are pitching in the Timber Rattlers’ rotation. But perhaps the most interesting pitcher there is right-hander Tyler Thornburg, taken in the third round out of Charleston Southern.

Because he is smallish – 5-foot-10, 185 pounds – and has an unusual delivery, Thornburg drew comparisons to Tim Lincecum before the draft. And he does have a live arm, throwing his fastball in the mid-90s with regularity.

Click through for the whole thing.

Rattlers MLB Alumni (Games of May 14, 2011)

Rene Rivera (’03) is back in the Big Leagues!  Has been since early May. I just caught it.

Toronto 9 @Minnesota 3 (11)

Rene Rivera: 1-for-3

Baltimore 6 @Tampa Bay 0

Adam Jones (’04): 2-for-4, RUN, RBI

Boston 6 @New York 3

David Ortiz (’96): 0-for-4

Alex Rodriguez (Foxes, ’94): 0-for-3

Arizona 1 @Los Angeles 0

JJ Putz (’00): IP, H, 0R, BB, K, SV #8

Florida 1 @Washington 0

Greg Dobs (’02): 2-for-4

@Atlanta 5, Philadelphia 3

Raul Ibanez (Foxes, ’94): 0-for-2, RUN

@Cincinnati 7, St. Louis 3

Ryan Franklin (Foxes, ’94): 1.1IP, 3H, 2R, BB

San Diego 9 @Colorado 7

Rob Johnson (’05): defensive replacement

Postgame thoughts (May 14, 2011)

Tom Keeling flips the ball to Cody Hawn for the final out of Saturday's game, a 7-5 Rattlers win over Clinton on a rainy night at Alliant Energy Field.

Rattlers 7, LumberKings 5
Boxscore | Game Story

  • That picture doesn’t give the true feeling of the rain, cold, and wind tonight.  You can see the puddles and mud forming on the warning track in the lower right hand corner of the picture.  You notice that Terry Pollreisz is wearing a jacket as he coaches first base.  Terry NEVER wears a jacket when he’s on the field.
  • This weather was more akin to the final 18 holes of a British Open on the Old Course at St. Andrew’s.
  • But, nice job by the Clinton grounds crew to get it in.  There were times it got really bad, but play on they did.
  • Plus, no one wanted a doubleheader tomorrow
  • The Rattlers had the fastest on-field post-victory handshake line I’ve seen.  They were done and off the field before I could send it to a commercial break.
  • In last night’s post, I mentioned that Tyler Thornburg was under 50% in first pitch strikes.  Tonight, Matt Miller had to be between 65% and 75% first strikes.  There were a couple of times he was 0-2 on hitters.  But, he wound up going deep into those counts.  Nice win for Miller and the defense helped him out a bit.
  • HOWEVER, after the error on Shaw in the sixth, Morris grooved one to Tim Morris and Morris cranked it for a homer to cut the lead to 4-3.  That was the first homer allowed by Miller this season.  It was also his last pitch of the game.
  • Do not eject Mike Walker.  It only makes him mad.  He lined a two-out, two-run double in the top of the first and the Rattlers were up 2-0.
  • Tony Pechek limped back to the dugout after a grounder to first in the second. He tripled and scored on a wild pitch in the fifth inning.  Go figure.
  • Eric Marzec with two scoreless innings.  He still hasn’t allowed a run in eight innings since coming off the DL.  He’s only allowed two hits in those eight innings.
  • Brian Garman should have worked a perfect eighth, but a dropped third strike and a hit batsman extended the inning.  He didn’t let it bug him.
  • STOSH! should have worked a scoreless ninth. I’m not going to fault him for the two runs scored.  The weather conditions had a lot to do with Wisconsin being unable to turn the third double play of the night on Clinton’s Steven Baron.
  • You read that right, Baron grounded into two double plays and it could have been three.
  • Keeling gets the out.
  • Yes. I am overcompensating for not mentioning the work done by Tyler Cravy last night.  Sue me. It’s my blog.
  • I feel bad for Eddie Menchaca, Rich Dorman, and Poles, three guys on the L-Kings coaching staff who were part of the Rattlers at one point or another in their career.  I wouldn’t wish 9-28 on my worst enemy.
  • There was some horrific defense by the LumberKings let the Rattlers put the game away in the seventh inning.  I mean the throw to first on Hawn’s grounder…I can’t do it justice…Eddie probably wanted to grab a glove and go out there.
  • If you read the story, you already know a couple of things.  The Rattlers have not won seven in a row since 2003.  They are three games over .500 for the first time since they were 3-0 to start the 2009 season.
  • Here are the games from that winning streak back in 2003:
    5/29  @FW        Win   9-4
    5/30  v. WMI   Win  12-2
    6/1      v. WMI   Win   4-1  Game one of DH
    6/1      v. WMI   Win   4-1  Game two of DH
    6/2     v. WMI   Win   8-4
    6/3     v. FW     Win   7-4
    6/4     v. FW    Win   2-1  14 Innings
    6/5     v. FW    Win  13-3
    6/6     v. FW    Tie     1-1    6 innings
    6/7     @SB      Win  12-4
  • Yes, I tie.  I’l explain later when I have more time.
  • Do I really want to go back and see the last time the Rattlers were four games over .500?  No. But, I will.
  • Something to think about for tomorrow.  The rain was really coming down hard late in the game.  The infield took a lot of rain during the game.  The grounds crew got the tarp on the field, but you can’t unring a bell.  That water on the infield isn’t going to dry overnight.  The rain is supposed to stick around and the weather forecast doesn’t look any better for tomorrow.  Sunday is the last meeting of the half between the Rattlers and the LumberKings. A rain out would actually help the Rattlers prepare for the week of doubleheaders they have in front of them. But, Clinton will do everything in their power to get the game in for the gate and for the integrity of the schedule.   I’ll want to call the game, but it does add an interesting dynamic to Sunday.
  • That’s all for tonight.  I don’t think McDonald’s will let me stay here any longer.  (The wireless over here is so much better than the hotel right now).
  • Well, this will be all.  I don’t remember seven having a School House Rock song, but I guess it did:

Lineup & Game Notes (May 14, 2011)

A look at the grandstand of Alliant Energy Field in Clinton, Iowa.

As of 3:40pm the tarp is on the field in Clinton. Here is a look at the RADAR for the Clinton, Iowa area!

Two things.

  1. The Rattlers do not want another doubleheader.  There are enough of those  ahead (May 18, May 19, May 21, and May 25).
  2. Clinton is celebrating its 75th Anniversary of Professional Baseball in the city tonight.  They have some decent ticket sales and do not want to have a postponement

I have sat through a couple of five hour delays for day games here in the past.  There was also a game here (I think it was 2003) where the game did not start until after 9pm.  So, tonight’s tip is: Be prepared for a long delay tonight.

Saturday’s Lineup:
Nick Shaw – 2B
Greg Hopkins – 3B
Cody Hawn – 1B
Chris Dennis – LF
Mike Walker -DH
Reggie Keen – CF
TJ Mittelstaedt – RF
Tony Pechek – C
Yadiel Rivera – SS

Saturday’s starting pitcher:
Matt Miller

A note before the game notes: Charly Bashara will make the start for the Timber Rattlers on Sunday at Clinton.  Del Howell is a scratch from his turn in the rotation.

Saturday’s Game Notes: RattlersGameNotesMay14

Today in Timber Rattlers history (May 14, 2000)

Brought to you by Rasmussen College

May 14, 2000

The Timber Rattlers beat the Peoria Chiefs 6-0 at Pete Vonachen Stadium.  Cha Seung Baek was the winning pitcher.  Sean Parnell hit a pinch-hit three-run double in the eighth inning.

Take a look at the boxscore and see who went 0-for-4 on the Chiefs side…

Boxscore for May 14, 2000 game between the Rattlers and the Peoria Chiefs. Click to enlarge.

Rattlers MLB Alumni (Games of May 13, 2011)

@Cleveland 4, Seattle 3

Asdrubal Cabrera (’05): 1-for-4, RUN, RBI
Shin-Soo Choo (’05): 1-for-4, RUN, RBI, HR #4

Carlos Peguero (’07): 1-for-3, RUN, RBI, HR (Video: First MLB Home Run!)
Michael Saunders (’06): 0-for-4

Boston 5 @New York 4

David Ortiz (’96): 1-for-3

Alex Rodriguez (Foxes, ’94): 1-for-3
Rafael Soriano (’00): IP, 0H, 0R, 2BB, K

@Tampa Bay 3, Baltimore 0

Adam Jones (’04): 0-for-3

Chicago 4 @Oakland 3

Matt Thornton (’00): .2IP, 0H, 0R, BB

@Colorado 12, San Diego 7

Rob Johnson (’05): 0-for-3, RBI

Philadelphia 5 @Atlanta 4

Raul Ibanez (Foxes, ’94): 2-for-4, RBI

Eric O’Flaherty (’05): 1.1IP, 3H, R, 2K, BS, Loss

Florida 6 @Washington 5 (11)

Greg Dobbs (’02): 1-for-1, RBI

Postgame Thoughts (May 13, 2011)

3 balls, 2 strikes, 2 outs, Bottom 9th, bases loaded, Rattlers up by one...Holle's pitch...

Rattlers 3, LumberKings 2
Boxscore | Game Story

  • A 1-2-3 bottom of the 9th for a save is boring.
  • I wish I would have taken that picture about two seconds later.  Holle with the mother of all fist pumps.
  • Tyler Thornburg walked a tightrope all night. The leadoff man was aboard in each of the first four innings. I didn’t keep track, but of the 22 batters he faced it seemed like he was below 50% on first pitch strikes.
  • That said, when he finally fell off by giving up those two runs in the fourth inning, he went back out and retired the side in order in the 5th.
  • It wasn’t pretty (87 pitches/43 strikes never is)…But, Thornburg battled and didn’t give in.  I like that.
  • The Rattlers offense wasn’t pretty either, but they battled and scraped and clawed and oh, boy…
  • 10 Strikeouts for LumberKings starter James Paxton.  Yeah. I can see why he was a supplemental first round pick in ’09
  • Mike Walker looked like he avoided the tag and scored the run to tie it. But he was called out.  It was the Mirror Image of this play in the Marlins-Nationals game tonight…featuring ex Rattler Greg Dobbs.  Mirror Image because Walker slid to the infield side of the plate…and he was called out.
  • Walker was ejected.  He slammed a mighty helmet slam. But, there was something after that and I missed it because the base umpire gave Walker the thumb.  The plate umpire was otherwise involved with Matt Erickson and Dusty Rhodes.
  • Reggie Keen (@ReGGieReg21) let him know!  3-for-4, stolen base, scored the tying run, another outfield assist. Outstanding!
  • Yadiel Rivera need to develop offensively…BUT…My gosh.  He crushed the first pitch he saw in the ninth inning with Keen at second and sent it to the base of the centerfield wall for a 395′ triple.
  • Nick Shaw falls behind 0-2. Fouls off some pitches, works the count to 3-2, draws the walk. It’s what he does.
  • When Stefen Romero bobbled that grounder off the bat of Greg Hopkins – the play that scored the go ahead run, a scene from The Natural was going through my mind.  Not the Roy Hobbs homer off the light tower.
  • Right before Hobbs hits the homer, a Knight – I think it’s Blevins – is up with two outs.  Blevins hits a grounder to third that is bobbled.  Cut to Pops Fisher on the bench and he yells out “RUN YOU…” well you get the idea.
  • Remember this game from last year?  August 23 at Cedar Rapids. The Rattlers were trailing after eight innings and rallied for a win in the top of the ninth inning.
  • I am so glad the Rattlers didn’t have to wait another..four years to win a game when trailing after eight…Yes.  Remember this from the old blog?
    THIS CAN’T BE RIGHT: A quick look back at the record books shows that the last time the Timber Rattlers won a road game when trailing after eight innings was on August 18, 2006. The Rattlers trailed the Dayton Dragons 4-3 heading to the top of the ninth inning at Fifth Third Field. Wisconsin tied the game with a run in the ninth and eventually won the game 7-5 in 14 innings.
  • Six game winning streak.  That matches the longest winning streak for the Rattlers as an affiliate of the Brewers.  The last 6-game winning streak for the Rattlers was May 16-20, 2009.
  • In case you haven’t heard, Zach Braddock will not start for the Rattlers on Saturday.  Matt Miller steps into his normal spot in the rotation.
  • Franklin Romero was the guest on Friday’s pregame show.  His 13 game hitting streak came to an end.  There is no connection.
  • It’s been a long day. Time to get some work done for tomorrow and see if the Rattlers can roll a seven.

Lineup & Game Notes (May 13, 2011)

Alliant Energy Field in Clinton, Iowa. The Timber Rattlers will be here the next three games.

In case you missed it:

Fang T. Rattler posted a video of the hail hitting Time Warner Cable Field last night at his facebook page.

The Post-Crescent Story on the Zach Braddock start with a great photo gallery.

No. I mean it check out that photo gallery.

Friday’s Lineup:
Nick Shaw – 2B
Greg Hopkins – 3B
Cody Hawn – 1B
Mike Walker – DH
Franklin Romero – RF
Robbie Garvey – LF
Reggie Keen – CF
Tyler Roberts – C
Yadiel Rivera – SS

Friday’s Starting Pitcher:
Tyler Thornburg

Friday’s Game Notes: RattlersGameNotesMay13

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