MWL Championship Series Preview

The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers and the Fort Wayne Wizards TinCaps meet in Game One of the 2012 Midwest League Championship Series on Wednesday, September 12.  The series is a best-of-five

The schedule:
Wednesday, September 12 @ Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium at 6:35pm CDT
Thursday, September 13 @ Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium at 12:05pm CDT
Friday, September, 14 – TRAVEL DAY
Saturday, September 15 @ Parkview Field at 6:05pm CDT
Sunday, September 16 @ Parkview Field at 4:05pm CDT
Monday, September 17 @ Parkview Field at 6:05pm CDT

ROAD TO THE FINALS:
Fort Wayne – Qualified as the Second Half Eastern Division Wild Card
First Round:
September 5: @Fort Wayne 5, Lansing 2
September 6: Fort Wayne 9, @Lansing 6

Eastern Finals:
September 8: @Fort Wayne 4, Lake County 3
September 9: @Lake County 7, Fort Wayne 4
September 10: Fort Wayne 13 @Lake County 6

Wisconsin – Qualified as First Half Western Division Champion
First Round:
September 5: @Burlington 4, Wisconsin 0
September 6: @Wisconsin 4, Burlington 0
September 7: @Wisconsin 3, Burlington 0

Western Finals:
September 8: Wisconsin 9 @Clinton 1
September 9: @Wisconsin 4, Clinton 2

The teams met just three times during the regular season.  So, instead of the head-to-head numbers, this post will give the overall season numbers for each team.  There will also be a link to the three games played at Fort Wayne in July, a few other notes about the teams, and the probable pitchers.

And that seems like a good place to start.
Game One: RHP Jacob Barnes v. RHP Joe Ross
Game Two: RHP Chad Pierce v.RHP Colin Rea
Game Three: RHP David Goforth v. LHP Frank Garces
Game Four: RHP Chad Thompson v. RHP James Needy
Game Five: RHP Mark Williams v. RHP Matt Wisler

All stats below are Regular Season and current players only unless otherwise noted:
Overall Record:
Fort Wayne:  69-71
Wisconsin: 78-61

First Half Record:
Fort Wayne: 31-39
Wisconsin: 44-25

Second Half Record:
Fort Wayne: 38-32
Wisconsin: 34-36

Home Record:
Fort Wayne: 37-33
Wisconsin: 42-28

Road Record:
Fort Wayne: 32-38
Wisconsin: 36-33

Longest Winning Streak:
Fort Wayne: Six
Wisconsin: Eight

Longest Losing Streak:
Fort Wayne: Five (Twice)
Wisconsin: Six

OFFENSE:
AVG:
Fort Wayne: .252
Wisconsin: .257

OBP:
Fort Wayne: .325
Wisconsin: .323

SLG:
Fort Wayne: .368
Wisconsin: .395

HOME RUNS:
Fort Wayne: 64
Wisconsin: 107

STRIKEOUTS:
Fort Wayne: 1031
Wisconsin: 1187

WALKS:
Fort Wayne: 461
Wisconsin: 415

SB/SBA:
Fort Wayne: 206/286
Wisconsin: 118/194

RUNS/GAME:
Fort Wayne: 4.33
Wisconsin:  4.63

SAC:
Fort Wayne: 46
Wisconsin: 49

PITCHING:
STRIKEOUTS:
Fort Wayne: 1101
Wisconsin: 1019

WALKS:
Fort Wayne: 499
Wisconsin: 487

ERA:
Fort Wayne: 3.59
Wisconsin: 3.83

RUNS ALLOWED/GAME:
Fort Wayne:  4.23
Wisconsin: 4.30

SAVES/SAVE OPPORTUNITIES:
Fort Wayne: 28/49
Wisconsin: 47/67

WHIP:
Fort Wayne: 1.31
Wisconsin: 1.32

DEFENSE:
ERRORS:
Fort Wayne: 173
Wisconsin: 125

FIELDING PERCENTAGE:
Fort Wayne: .966
Wisconsin: .976

INDIVIDUAL LEADERS:
OFFENSE:
AVG:
Fort Wayne: Yeison Asencio – .323
Wisconsin: Brandon Macias – .288

OBP:
Fort Wayne: Jace Peterseon – .378
Wisconsin: Brandon Macias – .388

SLG:
Fort Wayne: Yeison Asencio – .474
Wisconsin: Ben McMahan – .500

HOME RUNS:
Fort Wayne: Lee Orr – 11
Wisconsin: Nick Ramirez – 16

DOUBLES:
Fort Wayne: Kyle Gaedele & Austin Hedges – 28
Wisconsin: Brandon Macias – 35

TRIPLES:
Fort Wayne: Jace Peterson – 9
Wisconsin: Ben McMahan – 11

RBI:
Fort Wayne: Yeison Asencio – 61
Wisconsin: Nick Ramirez – 70

WALKS:
Fort Wayne: Jace Peterson – 62
Wisconsin: Brandon Macias – 58

STOLEN BASES:
Fort Wayne: Jace Peterson – 51
Wisconsin: Chadwin Stang – 26

RUNS:
Fort Wayne: Jace Peterson – 78
Wisconsin: Chadwin Stang – 85

PITCHING:
STRIKEOUTS:
Fort Wayne: Matt Wisler – 113
Wisconsin: Chad Pierce – 115

WINS:
Fort Wayne: Frank Garces – 9
Wisconsin: David Goforth – 10

INNINGS PITCHED:
Fort Wayne: Frank Garces – 121.2
Wisconsin: David Goforth – 150.2

ERA:
Fort Wayne: Matt Wisler – 2.53
Wisconsin: Chad Pierce – 3.47

SAVES:
Fort Wayne: Matt Stites – 13
Wisconsin:  Kevin Shackelford – 5

WHIP:
Fort Wayne: Matt Wisler – 1.08
Wisconsin: Chad Pierce – 1.23

The meetings in 2012 – all three games at Parkview Field:
July 14: @Fort Wayne 4, Wisconsin 3 WP: Cropper LP: Shackelford

Quick Recap: Chad Pierce allowed two runs on five hits in eighth innings and the Rattlers led 3-2 heading to the bottom of the ninth inning.  But, Fort Wayne scored two runs in the bottom of the ninth off Kevin Shackelford.  Click here for the full game story.

July 15: Wisconsin 8 @Fort Wayne 2 WP: Goforth LP: Hebner

Quick Recap: Mike Garza drove in four runs, Ben McMahan drove in two, and Nick Ramirez homered to provide all the offense David Goforth would need.  Goforth allowed two runs and allowed eight hits over eight innings for the win.  Click here for the full  game story.

July 16: @Fort Wayne 7, Wisconsin 4 WP: Garces LP: M. Williams SV: Stites

Quick Recap: Tyler Stubblefield and Felix Cabrera both homered as part of a three run third inning off Mark Williams.  Frank Garces allowed two runs on four hits in five innings.  Fort Wayne was up 7-2 into the top of the ninth inning, the Rattlers scored twice in the ninth, but Matt Stites came on to get the final two outs for the save.  Click here for the full game story.

CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES HISTORY:
Fort Wayne has made one appearance in the Midwest League Championship Series prior to 2012. 
2009: Defeated the Burlington Bees in three games.

Wisconsin has made three appearances in the Midwest League Championship Series prior to 2012.
1996: Lost to the West Michigan Whitecaps in four games
1999: Lost to the Burlington Bees in five games
2005: Lost to the South Bend Silver Hawks in five games.

The TinCaps were known as the Fort Wayne Wizards through the 2008 season.  From 1995 through the 2012 regular season.  Wisconsin and Fort Wayne have played 99 game in the overall series.  The series is even at 64-64-1.

The teams played to a 1-1 tie on June 6, 2003 in a game shortened to six innings by rain at Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium.

Wisconsin is 29-31-1 against the TinCaps at home.  They are 35-33 at Fort Wayne, including a 3-6 record at Parkview Field since 2009.

This is the first time these teams will meet in the postseason.

Enough numbers. First pitch of the series is 6:35pm on Wednesday.  Let’s have some fun!

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