May 2012

Lineup and Game Notes for May 16, 2012

Back home again.

Tonight’s Lineup:
Brandon Macias – 3B
Carlos Gomez – CF
Jason Rogers – 1B
Nick Ramirez – DH
Greg Hopkins – 2B
Ben McMahan – LF
Chadwin Stang – RF
Rafael Neda – C
Yadiel Rivera – SS

Wisconsin Starting Pitcher:
Andy Moye

Burlington Starting Pitcher:
Brent Powers

Timber Rattlers Game Notes:
RattlersGameNotesMay162012

Follow today’s game…
With the Radio: AM1280, WNAM

With Internet Audio: WNAM internet feed (free)
With Internet Video: MiLB.TV (subscribers only)

Nine after 9 for May 15, 2012

Wisconsin 5
Kane County 11
Boxscore | Game Story

That homer from Nick Ramirez wound up out by that white sign to the right of the hitter’s background in center.

  1. David Goforth had 27 pitches – 19 strikes – in the first two innings.  I had him at 33 pitches – 14 strikes in the third inning.  The three straight walks were tough.  Two of them were four pitch strikes, one came on a 3-1 count and, the last one walked in a run.  He walked four in the inning.
  2. Yet, he almost got out of the inning with the game tied 4-4.  There were two outs and a 1-2 count on Justin Trapp when a pitch got up in the zone and Trapp put it over the wall in left for a grand slam.
  3. I believe that I have mentioned how much I hate that place.  Still stands. I hate that place.
  4. The Cougars outscored the Rattlers 20-7 in the last two games of the series.
  5. This is the third straight loss for the Rattlers.  The only other time they lost three in a row this season was when they were swept in a three game series at South Bend.
  6. Not going to say that Nick Ramirez is locked in, but he is getting there.  His home run in the fifth inning was to a place that most guys don’t reach in that ballpark – wind or no wind.  He put it out on the deck to the right of the hitting background.
  7. I got a response from Matt Erickson as to why the Rattlers played the infield in with a runner at third yesterday when they were down 7-1 in the fourth inning on Sunday.  It went something like this: The way the wind was blowing and as early as it was, we wanted to make it tough for them to score runs and give ourselves a chance to come back.  We’re not going to play back and give up a run for an out just so you can get on the bus back to the hotel faster.  I’m pretty sure he was kidding about that last part.
  8. Yadiel Rivera had the day off Tuesday.  He was hitting .209 in May with 14 strikeouts and nine hits in 13 games.  He should be back in there Wednesday.
  9. Quick preview for the Burlington series: The Bees just got swept in a four game series by the Peoria Chiefs on the road.  The Rattlers dropped two of three in Burlington earlier this season.UPDATED: Probable Pitchers:
    WED: Andy Moye v. Brent Powers (instead of Macias)
    THU: Matt Miller v. Raul Alcantara
    FRI: Drew Gagnon v. Sean MurphySee you there.

Lineup and Game Notes for May 15, 2012

View from behind home plate before Tuesday’s game at Fifth Third Bank Ballpark in Geneva, IL.

Today’s Lineup:
Chadwin Stang – CF
Brandon Macias – SS
Jason Rogers – LF
Nick Ramirez – 1B
Greg Hopkins – 3B
Ben McMahan – DH
Max Walla – RF
Parker Berberet – C
Carlos George – 2B

Timber Rattlers Starting Pitcher:
David Goforth

Cougars Starting Pitcher:
Robinson Yambati

Timber Rattlers Game Notes:
RattlersGameNotesMay152012

Timber Rattlers Roster Moves:
OF John Dishon placed on the DL
C Parker Berberet activated from the DL

Updated Timber Rattlers Roster:
Timber_Rattlers_Roster_051512

Follow today’s game…
With the Radio: AM1280, WNAM
With Internet Audio: WNAM internet feed (free)

Nine after 9 for May 14, 2012

Timber Rattlers 2
Cougars 9
Boxscore | Game Story

Not all sausage race knockoffs are the same.

  1. Brandon Macias – and his glove – made a couple of really outstanding defensive plays at third base today.  In the bottom of the first, Justin Trapp hit a hot shot down the third base line.  Macias dove to a backhand stab and the ball knocked the glove off his hand.  However, the ball stayed in the glove.  Macias reached in to grab the ball and threw to first for an unusual out.  In the third, Macias denied Jin-Ho Shin with a similar stop and throw.  This time, the glove stayed on his hand.  Brian Buchanan, the Cougars manager, was coaching at third base.  He and Macias looked like they were both grinning at each other after both plays.
  2. Chad Thompson had a rough day, but was one out from working scoreless innings in both the second and the third. The home run by Watts came with two outs in the second.  In the third, there was a runner at third with two outs and Thompson walked the next two batters on a 3-2 pitch to load up the pitches.  Then, he fell behind Antonio 3-0…and after a strike made it 3-1…he left the next pitch up and the ball carried out of the park for a grand slam.  One more walk ended Thompson’s day.  I did see 90 a couple of times from him, but he had trouble throwing strikes when he needed it.
  3. Back to the start of the third inning rally.  John Dishon tried to make a diving catch of a sinking line drive off the bat of Trapp with one out.  The gamble didn’t pay off and the ball skipped to the wall for a triple. Does the inning play out differently with a runner on first and one out versus a runner on third and one out?  Not to go all Peter King here but, maybe.
  4. In the 4th with the score already 7-1, the Cougars had runners on second and third with one out.  The infield played halfway, not all the way in, but halfway.  Then, Jorge Bonifacio lined a single about to where Yadiel Rivera would have been playing a normal position.  I didn’t get a chance to ask why that particular defense was called for in that particular spot.  There is a theory about making a team earn every run,  I will ask tomorrow and report the answer
  5. Speaking of Yadiel Rivera, he launched his third home run of the season in the sixth inning.  It looked like a low pitch that was a little off the outside corner.  He went down and got it.  Nice at bat.  Needs to have more like that.
  6. Nick Ramirez is starting to heat up at the plate.  Two hits today.  He has at least one hit if each of his last four games.
  7. Tough call on the player of the game today.  Ramirez had two hits and scored a run.  Rivera had a homer.  Mark Williams pitched four scoreless innings five strikeouts.  I almost went with Williams.
  8. Williams battled the strike zone in his first inning with a couple of walks.  But, he fought through it and found his way.  He retired 10 of the last eleven batters he faced and struck out four in a row at one point.  Williams looked good again today.
  9. Carlos Gomez worked out with the team for a bit this morning.  He will work out with the team again on Tuesday.  Then, he will play Wednesday with the Timber Rattlers at home.  Looking forward to it.

Lineup and Game Notes for May 14, 2012

From the upper deck

Today’s Lineup:
John Dishon – CF
Brandon Macias – 3B
Jason Rogers – DH
Nick Ramirez – 1B
Greg Hopkins – 2B
Ben McMahan – LF
Max Walla – RF
Tyler Roberts – C
Yadiel Rivera – SS

Timber Rattlers Starting Pitcher:
Chad Thompson

Cougars Starting Pitcher:
Kellen Moen

Timber Rattlers Game Notes:
RattlersGameNotesMay142012

Follow today’s game…
With the Radio: AM1280, WNAM
With Internet Audio: WNAM internet feed (free)

Nine after 9 for May 13, 2012

Rattlers 4
Cougars 5
Boxscore | Game Story

So close.

  1. Drew Gagnon was up in the strike zone a couple of times today and it hurt him.  Dean Espy’s RBI double in the second and the two run homer by Lane Adams in the fifth in particular were pitches up in the zone that got him into trouble.
  2. His most impressive job today was after the trouble started in the third inning.  First the trouble: The Cougars had runners at first and third with no outs and Gagnon got a hot one hopper back to him off the bat of Jorge Bonifacio.  Gagnon turned and threw wildly to second.  (Aside: The ball glanced off Yadiel Rivera‘s glove but the error should have gone to Gagnon.  I had it as an E-1 in my book and it may be changed after the game)  That led to the tying run scoring and runners still being on first and third with no outs.
  3. Now, the escape: Shallow fly to center, Bonifacio takes off on a pitch in the dirt and was out at second (this was called a caught stealing in the boxscore), and a pitch that froze Michael Antonio on a 3-2 pitch for strike three.
  4. On the offensive side, the only inning in which the Rattlers went down in order was in the first inning.  The offense had a lot of chances today, but… 2-for-13 with RISP.
  5. John Dishon with three hits, including two doubles, today in the #9 spot in the order.
  6. Chadwin Stang in the leadoff spot had three hits, a run, a stolen base, and two RBI.  But, there was one miscue on the bases.  In the seventh, with the Rattlers down 5-2, Dishon was on third and Stang blooped a hit to shallow right.  Dishon scored to make it 5-3.  Stang motored for second and the throw got by the shortstop and into left field – just beyond the infield dirt behind third. Stang got up and took off for third.  However, Kane County third baseman Danny Mateo played the angle and backed up the throw to second.  The ball rolled right to him.  All he had to do was run a little bit to get in front of the bag.  He intercepted Stang about 15 feet from third for a big second out of the inning.
  7. Nick Ramirez should have had three hits on Sunday.  But, left fielder Tim Ferguson had other ideas.  Ferguson came in on a sinking line drive in the second inning for the first web gem.  In the third, with one on and two outs and the Rattlers up 2-1, Ferguson came out of nowhere to make a diving catch on a pop fly to medium left-center that looked like it would drop for sure.  Ramirez with a twitter, tip o’ the cap to Ferguson.
  8. A Nine after 9 tip o’ the cap to Michael Strong.  In his second outing since joining the Rattlers, he worked three more scoreless innings, walked one, and allowed a hit.  In two games with Wisconsin, the lefty has pitched six scoreless innings, allowed two hits, and walked four.
  9. How close were the Rattlers to tying the game in the ninth? That picture up top is of the one of three foul balls by Jason Rogers on a two strike count against Kane County closer Nick Graffeo.  This one was either just before or just after Rogers lined a low changeup to left field.  Rogers did a good job holding back to get good wood on the ball on the ball, but the ball just hooked foul.  Almost.  Almost. Get ‘em tomorrow.

Lineup and Game Notes for May 13, 2012

The Sun is out, the sky is blue, it’s Mother’s Day, & the Timber Rattlers are in first place. All is right in our little corner of the world.

Today’s Lineup:
Chadwin Stang – CF
Brandon Macias – 3B
Jason Rogers – 1B
Nick Ramirez – DH
Greg Hopkins – 2B
Ben McMahan – LF
Yadiel Rivera – SS
Rafael Neda – C
John Dishon – RF

Timber Rattlers Starting Pitcher:
Drew Gagnon

Cougars Starting Pitcher:
Edwin Carl

Timber Rattlers Game Notes:
RattlersGameNotesMay132012

Follow today’s game…
With the Radio: AM1280, WNAM
With Internet Audio: WNAM internet feed
(free)

Nine after 9 for May 12, 2012

Rattlers 2
Cougars 1
FINAL – 11 Innings
Boxscore | Game Story

That’s Greg Hopkins charging in from first base on the bunt attempt in the 11th.

  1. Matt Miller tonight: 6IP, 4H, R, 0ER, 0BB, K.  Matt Miller, Last four starts: 25IP, 16H, 7R, 6ER, 5BB, 16 K.  The movement on the fastball was there tonight but the offspeed stuff is really coming around for him.
  2. He is in control, too.  In one full season and six weeks, Miller has made 29 appearances – 28 starts – for the Rattlers.  Here is a list of the times he has walked no batters in an appearance: 6/27/11 over 1.2IP at Peoria, 8/30/11 over 6.0IP v. Cedar Rapids, and Saturday night in Kane County.
  3. Chadwin Stang made an amazing catch in the first inning Jorge Bonifacio.  It was a full out dive to rob Bonifacio of an RBI and at least a double.  Pitchers need plays like that.
  4. Tyler Roberts with a nice at bat to get Ben McMahan home from second in the fifth inning for a 1-0 lead.  The Kane County defense was shaded a bit like the Cubs were on Friday night when Corey Hart his the game winning single in the bottom of the thirteenth.  Not as severely – the second baseman wasn’t on the left side of second base – but there was still a hole and Roberts found it and the Rattlers had their first run.
  5. If he had it to do over again, I think that Greg Hopkins would have run the ball in to the mound or thrown to the plate instead of throwing behind the runner to third base in the bottom of the fifth.  The situation would have been first and third with two outs instead of a run in on the wild throw by Macias.
  6. Welcome back, Tommy Toledo.  He had not pitched since May 2, but he was there on Saturday when the Rattlers needed him.  He tossed four innings, walked two, struck out one…and that’s all.
  7. A couple of notes on Macias.  He absolutely crushed a ball in the top of the eighth and the ball did not carry.  It just stopped.  It was a cooler night down here…probably 58…, but I thought he hit it.  Then, he made a great pick on a hard grounder in the bottom of the ninth in a tough spot.  First and second with one out and Orlando Calixte at the plate.  Here are a few notes on the  back story of that play: Data point A.) Calixte had a walkoff hit for the Cougars on Friday night in their comeback win over Clinton. Data point B.) Macias had missed a similar grounder in the bottom of the ninth inning in a game at South Bend back on April 22. Data point C.) The Rattlers have lost a lot – I mean A LOT – of really, really, really tough games on walkoffs  here in Kane County in the past.  But, Toledo executed the pitch he wanted and Macias started a text book 5-4-3 double play to send the game to extra innings.  Let’s go to the Win Probability Inquirer to show how big that play was.  By turning that double play, Macias turned a 69.87% chance of the Cougars winning the game into a 50-50 proposition.  That’s a pretty big play.
  8. The Rattlers rally in the top of the 11th was all about getting a bat on the ball and being patient.  Jason Rogers smacked a single through the middle on an 0-1 pitch.  Nick Ramirez drew a four pitch walk. Greg Hopkins with the butcher boy/slash bunt play to find a hole in the defense to load the bases with no outs. Then, it was up to Ben McMahan to get the run in from third.  You can’t do that by striking out…At least, I’m pretty sure…Where was I? Oh, right putting the ball in play.  When the team got back to the hotel I found myself waiting for the elevator in the lobby with manager Matt Erickson.  He noted that the Cougars have the worst defense in the league…It’s true…It’s darn true…Their fielding percentage after the game is at .953 and the bobble by Mateo that let Rogers score the go ahead run was the 64th of the season by the Cougars.  Make them make a play.
  9. Seth Harvey must need a couple of base runners on to focus.  Tonight was his thirteenth appearance of the season.  He has retired the first batter he has faced seven times.  He has allowed at least one base runner in 12 of his 13 games.  The only game that he retired all the hitters he faced was on May 9.  That was the game the Rattlers led Quad Cities 8-5 in the top of the ninth inning and there were already two runners on with one out.  Harvey struck out both batters in that game.  On Saturday against the Cougars it was walk, stolen base, single.  Then, K, K, 3U to close it out.  Not that I’m complaining.  I don’t get as much exercise as I should.  Need to get my heart rate up there somehow.  Final thought on Harvey: Strikeout to walk ratio: 22:3.  He’s been getting into trouble, but he has shown that he has the stuff to get himself out of trouble.

Lineup and Game Notes for May 12, 2012

O’er the hills and o’er the main, Through Flanders Portugal and Spain
King George commands and we obey – Over the hills and far away.


Tonight’s Lineup:
Chadwin Stang – CF
Brandon Macias – 3B
Jason Rogers – DH
Nick Ramirez – 1B
Greg Hopkins – 2B
Ben McMahan – LF
Max Walla – RF
Tyler Roberts – C
Yadiel Rivera – SS

Timber Rattlers Starting Pitcher:
Matt Miller

Cougars Starting Pitcher:
Scott Alexander

Timber Rattlers Game Notes:
RattlersGameNotesMay122012

UPDATE: Timber Rattlers Roster:
Timber_Rattlers_Roster_051212

The moves:
RHP Jacob Barnes has been placed on the DL
RHP Tyler Cravy has been transferred from the Helena roster to Wisconsin

Cravy active for tonight’s game.

Cougars Roster:
Kane County 5.10.12 Roster

Follow tonight’s game…
With the Radio: AM1280, WNAM
With Internet Audio: WNAM internet feed (free)

Nine after 9 for May 11, 2012

River Bandits 4
Timber Rattlers 5
Boxscore | Game Story

Two homer High Five!

  1. As the great Mel Allen used to say, “How about that?”
  2. Let’s start with Andy Moye. He pitched as a starter on Monday in game one of the doubleheader against the Cedar Rapids Kernels.  He went five shutout innings, allowed three hits, walked none, and struck out three on Monday.  He came back on three days rest as a reliever on Friday and the results: no runs on one hit with seven strikeouts over five innings.  Moye was the winning pitcher in both games.  Should I start working on the Pitcher of the Week press release now?
  3. The reason he was able to go five innings on Friday after working five innings on Monday was the low pitch count.  On Monday: 54 pitches/36 strikes.  On Friday: 55 pitches/42 strikes. What’s the phrase? Pounding the strike zone?
  4. Last note: In the highlights watch the final two strikeouts. The first strike three was 91 up and a away.  The second strike three a breaking ball that caught the outside corner at the knees.  That is how Moye has pitched all season.
  5. Jacob Barnes did what he needed to do in his first professional start.  He worked four innings and battled a bit.  Best part. after the second pitch he threw in the game was hit to the QC bullpen. He didn’t let it phase him.  Right back in there and going after guys.  Barnes had walked 10 and struck out five in his first 15-2/3 innings this season.  Tonight, he walked one and struck out five in four innings.  Keep that ratio up and good things will happen for Barnes and the Rattlers.
  6. That look Dick Enberg has on his face in the clip that is linked in #1 is probably the look on the face of the people on the boardwalk behind the batter’s eye and bullpen in the bottom of the second inning.  Yadiel Rivera and Tyler Roberts took target practice on the boardwalk on consecutive pitches.  Watch the highlights below and see where those things land…or in the case of Roberts…look at where that thing hits off the hitting background.  Wind blowing out or not that is still impressive.
  7. Impressive or not, the Rattlers still trailed 4-3 heading to the bottom of the sixth inning after a Quad Cities rally.  Chadwin Stang and Max Walla were patient on 3-1 pitches during consecutive plate appearances and drew walks to set up RBI leader Jason Rogers.  Rogers delivered a line drive that ate up Garcia and got the run home.  That’s 25 RBI for Rogers.
  8. Roberts got another chance in the bottom of the seventh and the 1-1 pitch low and Country sent a high towering shot to left that cleared the wall.  Roberts has struggled a lot at the plate – and behind the plate – this season.  But, tonight he did a really nice job.  He blocked balls in the dirt. Called a good game and hit a couple of homers.  This was one of his best all around games and let’s see if that jump starts him.
  9. It was in the game notes today, but I’ll update Rattlers records after 35 games since 2009 – 14-21; 2010 – 11-24; 2011 – 18-17; 2011 – 22-13. Keep going, Rattlers.  Keep going.      
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 50 other followers

%d bloggers like this: