June 2011

Lineup & Game Notes (June 25, 2011)

Gates open at 5:00pm tonight. Come on out and enjoy the game!

Saturday’s Lineup:
TJ Mittlestaedt – LF
Nick Shaw – SS
Cody Hawn – 1B
Greg Hopkins – 2B
Mike Walker – 3B
Chris Dennis – DH
Chad Stang – CF
Tony Pechek – C
Franklin Romero, Jr. – RF

Saturday’s Starting Pitcher:
Jimmy Nelson

Saturday’s Game Notes: RattlersGameNotesJune25

(If you clicked the game notes link…This will explain the titles in the left-hand  column)

Postgame thoughts (June 24, 2011)

Imagine the highlights here. They are taking a long time to load on to YouTube tonight for some reason.

Check over here later and click on the 2011 Game Highlights.

UPDATE: Or just click here. I am having a problem embedding this and there is a lot to do today.

Rattlers 4, River Bandits 3
Boxscore | Game Story

  • The second walk-off win of the season is a great way to start the second half
  • Remember earlier in the season when I compared the Rattlers offense to the offense of the Badger Basketball team?
  • It happened again.
  • Nothing from the Stang hit in the third to the double by Tyler Roberts in the eighth.
  • Then, the lid came off
  • Roberts took a little bit of a chance on the grounder to the left side after the double, but he made it.
  • Mittelstaedt stays hot with an RBI single in the eighth.  1-for-2 with a pair of walks.  He’s 12-for-23 since June 14.
  • Once Walker got on in the ninth, you could sense the Rattlers had a great shot to win that game.
  • Romero with a very nice stint as a pinch runner and a nice Dave Roberts impression.
  • He steals second to get into scoring position and Dennis – with his Bill Meuller impression – singled Romero home with the tying run.
  • Let’s go through the last few pitches of the final plate appearance for Roberts:  On the 2-1 pitch, he chased a fastball up in his eyes; on the next pitch, he got just enough of an inside pitch to stay alive in the at bat.  On the next pitch, Roberts lined a pitch to right (opposite field for those of you at home) for the game winning sac fly.
  • Oh, and his double to right in the eighth…also to right.
  • That doesn’t excuse the bad throw that let the River Bandits score their first run in the fifth inning…But, it sure makes up for it.
  • Brooks Hall’s unofficial pitch count (82 pitches, 48 strikes) just looks weird.  I thought that he was in the strike zone more than that, but, I triple checked my math…
  • He got into trouble in the 6th when he walked Cody Stanley on four straight pitches and gave up a two-out, two-run double to Jonathan Rodriguez on a 3-1 pitch.  That put the Rattlers down 3-1.
  • There was a 92 a few times on the pitch speed indicator for Hall.
  • There was a 96 a lot of times for Carlos Martinez, the Quad Cities Starter tonight.
  • Kudos to Brian Garman! Three scoreless no hits, two walks, four strikeouts and the win.
  • Here are a couple of interesting numbers: 2-49 & 2-19.  Also: 13-29 & 15-9.
  • In 2010, Wisconsin was 2-49 when trailing after eight innings. In 2011, Wisconsin is 2-19 when trailing after eight innings.
  • In 2010, Wisconsin was 13-29 in one run games. In 2011, Wisconsin is 15-9 in one run games.
  • To wrap this post up, Where’s Roberts?

The Rattlers celebrate their 9th inning win over the River Bandits on June 24.

  • I just noticed…Greg Hopkins (#5)…Is that a jump for joy?  I think it is.

Lineu, Game Notes, & Transactions(June 24, 2011)

PLAY BALL!  The second half of the season is here.

Lots of changes since the first half ended.

Here is a compendium:
RHP Austin Ross & RHP Tyler Thornburg have been sent to Brevard County (Florida State League)
RHP Tyler Cravy & LHP Thomas Keeling have been sent to Helena (Pioneer League)

RHP Maverick Lasker has joined the Timber Rattlers from Brevard County (FSL)
RHP Dan Britt & RHP Matt Miller have been activated from Wisconsin’s Disabled List
RHP Damon Krestalude has been activated from the disabled list.

The Timber Rattlers roster is now at the 25-man limit.

Updated Roster: Timber_Rattler_Roster_062411

Friday’s Lineup:
TJ Mittelstaedt – RF
Nick Shaw – 2B
Cody Hawn – 1B
Greg Hopkins – 3B
Mike Walker – DH
Chris Dennis – LF
Mike Brownstein – SS
Tyler Roberts – C
Chad Stang – CF

Friday’s Starting Pitcher:
Brooks Hall

Friday’s Game Notes: RattlersGameNotesJune24

Thornburg & Ross promoted

This is the least surprising news since it was announced that the Sun would rise in the east this morning.

Tyler Thornburg & Austin Ross are heading to Brevard County, Milwaukee’s affiliate in the Florida State League.

See this video at The Fan 2 Facebook page of an interview of the newest members of the Manatees.

Maverick Lasker is rejoining the Timber Rattlers from Brevard.

Wisconsin is one short on the roster.  That should change soon, but I am heading out for the day in about 10 minutes.  I will update this post later if there is, you know, an update.

Meanwhile, just check out this release from the Timber Rattlers website for the Homestand Highlights.

Second half starts Friday night.  Lost of good stuff.

All-Star Slide Show

A few pictures from the night in Quad Cities:  Most of these were posted on the Live blog, but just in case….

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Second half starts on Friday!

MWL All-Star Game LiveBlog (2011)

Same story as last night.

Click Here when the festivities begin at 7pm.  I may update this post a little closer to game time.


A few pictures:

A billboard in light from last night

The plan on the scorecard says that the Rattlers are scheduled to play in the following order for the Western Division:

Chris Dennis: Starting in left and batting 4th
Tyler Thornburg: Pitching the top of the 4th
Mike Walker: Entering the game in the 6th, batting 6th, playing first base
Austin Ross: Entering the game in the top 8th, pitching 2/3

Speaking of the Rattlers All-Stars:

Serious Mike Walker and the All-Stars

And another:

Smiling Mike Walker and the All-Stars

MWL All-Star Monday Live Blog

The festivities kick off at 7:00pm. Look for the live blog to start right around that time.

Apparently, WordPress doesn’t support the coveritlive code. So, just click on the link below and you will be taken right to the live blog.

Mike Walker is in the “Home Run Derby” and we’ll cover that, keep an eye on opening night for Helena in the Pioneer League, and maybe discuss poker strategies for cash games…but probably not that last one.

Click Here

UPDATE: Here are some pictures of the field for tonight’s…deal:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

And the Point System:
Over Black Berm Fence: 15
Foul Pole: 13
Off Batters Eye: 11
Home Run or Obstacle: 10
Warning Track, Wall, or Ribbon Board: 8
Level 3: 5
Level 2: 3
Level 1: 1
Foul: -2
Swinging Strike: -5


Each player gets ten outs (or non-home runs).

Postgame Thoughts (June 19, 2011)

High Fives!

Timber Rattlers 4, Kernels 1
Boxscore | Game Story

  • Twitter updates from earlier today to explain why a three inning outing by Austin Ross was not a big deal
    Trainer Jeff Paxson would not be watching the game from the dugout if something was wrong with Ross.
    Plus, [Del] Howell hasn’t been in a game since 6/10.
    …And Keep in mind that the All-Star Game is Tuesday.
  • I think the first one is the main clue.
  • If today’s game was a win and their in situation, Ross probably would have been in there and to HECK with appearing in the All-Star Game.
  • But, it wasn’t.
  • For once, I don’t think that I messed up the lede for the game story:
    TJ Mittelstaedt may not want four days off for the Midwest League All-Star break. The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers outfielder had a triple, a home run, and two RBI in a 4-1 victory over the Cedar Rapids Kernels on Sunday afternoon in the final game of the first half. Mittelstaedt went 11-for-21 with a pair of home runs during the just concluded 7-game road trip for the Rattlers.
  • Your leaders at the break:
    AVG: Walker – .282
    HR: Walker – 11
    RBI: Walker – 49
    SB: Keen – 28
    WINS: Thornburg – 7
    ERA: Thornburg 1.57
    SO: Thornburg – 76
    SAVES: Holle 15
  • A couple of reminders:
    The Rattlers will be off until Friday night.  They return to Midwest League action against the River Bandits on 6/24
    I will have a liveblog of…whatever they are calling the Home Run Derby on Monday night and the game on Tuesday.
    You will be able to watch the game on Sports32 if you are a Time Warner Cable Subscriber in Wisconsin
  • Speaking of Sports32, they have allowed the Timber Rattlers to put a segment of the latest edition of Field Pass on YouTube:
  • Enjoy the next few days, Timber Rattlers fans.  Have some fun. The real work starts on Friday.

Lineup & Game Notes (June 19, 2011)

Happy Father's Day!

Sunday’s Lineup:
TJ Mittelstaedt – LF
Mike Brownstein – SS
Cody Hawn – 1B
Greg Hopkins – 2B
Mike Walker – 3B
Chris Dennis – DH
Chad Stang – CF
Tyler Roberts – C
Franklin Romer0 – RF

Sunday’s Starting Pitcher:
Austin Ross

Sunday’s Game Notes: RattlersGameNotesJune19

Father’s Day thought: I love baseball so much because of my dad.

He let me use his Lew Burdette glove to play in games when I was much, much younger.

He took me to Hank Aaron Appreciation Night at Milwaukee County Stadium.  I got to see the former Milwaukee Braves my dad talked about when he would bring up being able to go into County Stadium with “Carry-ins” or when he would mention the Yankees staying at Browns Lake during the World Series in 1957 and 1958.

One time, we sat in the old deluxe mezzanine seats at County Stadium to watch the Brewers play the Tigers.  Detroit had these new middle infielders by the name of Whitaker and Trammel.  But, the Brewers had Robin and Gorman and Sixto and the Ignitor and Benji and all of those names from Bambi’s Bombers.

My brother and I joined the Pepsi Fan Club and Dad took us in to the games.  Even though he worked in Milwaukee and had to drive back to Racine County to get us and head back into Milwaukee to get there in time for me to get the lineup for my scorecard.  Because it would by a TRAGEDY if my scorecard wasn’t filled out before the game started.  We stuck around until the end, because it would be a TRAGEDY if I didn’t see every pitch of the game. Then, we would head home and he would have to get up and head into work the next day while I slept in during summer vacation.

Geez, I was a rotten kid.

Dad and mom took off from work to come watch me play – badly, I mean horribly – in the State High School Baseball Tournament in Wausau in 1987.  They both still come out to games and listen to me on the internet.

Thanks, Dad.

Postgame thoughts (June 18, 2011)

Nick Shaw's bat patiently waits for him to recover from fouling a ball off his foot in Saturday's game at Cedar Rapids.

Kernels 6, Rattlers 5
Boxscore | Game Story

  • Well, that was anti-climactic.
  • Cody Hawn had three hits and two RBI tonight.  The way that he has been hitting the ball lately, it looks like Hawn will have a big second half.  He is 14-for-36 (.389) with seven RBI in his last nine games.  A lot of those balls that weren’t falling earlier in the season are starting to find holes.
  • For example, his RBI double in the third.  It was a line drive to left-center.  Kernels left fielder Justin Bass made a full out, parallel-to-the-ground dive for the ball.  The ball went in and out of Bass’s glove and Hawn got a double.
  • That’s two ejections for Dusty Rhodes this season.  You can read about the call that set him off in the game story.  All I will say is that I wouldn’t mind seeing the replay of that play and maybe send it in with response to the incident report.
  • HEY! for Franklin Romero! scoring all the way from first on an errant pickoff throw to third.  Frankie got a head start and the Kernels were in that “No Doubles Defense”, but he was flying around the bases.
  • Judging by the way the team hung out in the dugout for a minute or two after the game ended, they did not know that Quad Cities won tonight to knock them out of the playoffs. A lot of guys just hung out on the rail and watched the Kernels celebrate the win.
  • Every one on this team talked about making the playoffs as a goal.  Making it in the first half would have been a bonus and a big one.  To see this group of guys fall short, is tough to see.
  • The great thing about the Midwest League schedule is that there are another 70 games to try to make that goal of the playoffs.
  • It’s not going to be easy, and I have a feeling that there are going to be a few roster moves before the start of the second half on June 24, but the goal remains the same for this Timber Rattlers team in the second half
  • Make the playoffs!
  • Hopefully as the second half champion for a shot at Quad Cities in the first round.  That would be fun.
  • First, end the half strong on Sunday afternoon with Austin Ross on the hill.
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