November 2012

MLB Memory Lane: September 7, 1980

I went to a lot of baseball games before I started working in baseball.  MLB Memory Lane is a look back at some of those games.

This week, I went to a baseball game and a football game was all we talked about on the way home.

Date: September 7, 1980
Opponent: Texas Rangers
Stadium: Milwaukee County Stadium
Seat Location: First Base Lower Deck
With: Family

This was the highlight of the Brewers game I attended on September 7, 1980.

Before the game, the choice was easy.  Go see the Brewers play an early September game against the Texas Rangers or stay home and watch the Green Bay Packers open the 1980 season against the Chicago Bears.

The Brewers (73-65) well above .500, but they were in fifth place in the American League East.  Heck, everyone in the East – except the Toronto Blue Jays -was  above .500.  But, the New York Yankees 84-51 and the only team close to them were the Baltimore Orioles.

But, it didn’t matter that the Brewers were 12-1/2 games behind the Yankees.  This was the last chance to catch a game in 1980.  It was our last chance to see George Bamberger as the manager of the Brewers.  Bambi had announced his retirement and was managing his last game for Milwaukee on this day.

Besides, what could possibly happen in that Packers-Bears game?  Green Bay finished 5-11 in 1979.  They were playing a Bears team that made the playoffs in 1979.  Plus, the Bears had Walter Payton.  He shredded the Packers every time.

Heading to County Stadium for a game that featured a starting pitching matchup of Bob McClure against Doc Medich was easy.

Also making it easy was the fact that we had tickets through the Brewers/Pepsi Fan Club.  We were going to the Brewers game.

But, I really don’t remember much from the baseball game.

Looking back at the boxscore, I see that Paul Molitor went 4-for-5.

Digging a little farther, I see that Cecil Cooper‘s 2-for-5 bumped his batting average to .361.  During a normal year, that should lead the American League by about 30 to 40 points.  But, George Brett was hitting an insane .396 at the time.

The play-by-play shows that the Brewers took a 1-0 lead in the first inning on an RBI single by Cooper to score Eddie Romero.

But, the Rangers rallied for two runs after there were two outs and none on base in the top of the second.  The two-run single with the bases loaded was by Mike Richardt, who happened to be playing in his eighth major league game.

That a rookie like Richardt would get the key hit in a lineup of that had Mickey Rivers, Al Oliver, Richie Zisk, and Jim Sundberg should have told me what day it was going to be.

The Rangers added on three more runs in the top of the third.  Four of the first five Rangers to bat had base hits.  The last three hits (by Zisk, John Ellis, and Sundberg) drove in runs to knock McClure out of the game.  On came Fred Holdsworth in relief to end the inning.

The Rangers added a run in the fifth off Holdsworth and another in the sixth off John Linn.

The Brewers had 13 hits over 8-2/3 innings against Doc Medich.  But, they would score only two runs.  One in the first inning.  The other when Cecil Cooper tripled to start the sixth inning and Gorman Thomas drove him in to make the score 7-2.  And that was the last run of the game.

I’m not sure when in the game the following event happened.  But, it must have been around this point in the game….Maybe the seventh inning.

The Packers game started at noon.  The Brewers game started at 1:00pm.  So right around 3pm or so, Chester Marcol would have been lining up a kick in overtime to beat the Bears.

Keep in mind, the 1980 season was the first season for this thing:

State of the Art technology for 1980!

I can’t remember if there was an announcement between innings that asked fans to turn their attention to the scoreboard or not.  All I remember is seeing a replay of the winning play in the Packers game.

There was a groan from the fans in attendance as Marcol’s kick was blocked – by Alan Page if I remember right.  Then, there was a slow-rising cheer as the fans watch the ball come right back to Marcol and the Packers kicker take off for the endzone:

This happened. This was a real thing.

The cheer rose to a crescendo as Marcol crossed the goal line just inside the pylon, raised the ball awkwardly over his head with both hands, and tried to keep from running into the wall.

That play, shown on the grainy video board at County Stadium, took the sting out of Romero’s second error of the game and the fact that Robin Yount didn’t play in this game.

We may have gone to a Brewers game, but the talk on the ride home was all about the Polish kicker who scored a touchdown.

Brewers Batting Order for 9/7/80:
Paul Molitor, 2b
Eddie Romero, ss
Cecil Cooper, 1b
Gorman Thomas, cf
Ben Oglivie, lf
Don Money, dh
John Poff, rf
Jim Gantner, 3b
Buck Martinez, c

Paul Molitor was 4-for-5
Robin Yount did not play.

And Wisconsin went wild!

Retrosheet Boxscore and Play-by-play for this game

Baseball WPA Chart for this game

Milwaukee Journal Archive Brewers Article for 9/7/80 Game

Milwaukee Journal Archive Packers Article for 9/7/80 Game

Reporter shut off by Starr: Packers coach Bart Starr announced he would no longer take questions from Milwaukee Journal reporter Dave Begel “at any time, under any circumstances”. He would answer questions from other Milwaukee Journal reporters, just not Begel.

Horton wins Battle: This would be the headline from the results of a wrestling card at the Milwaukee Auditorium on September 6. Horton is a typo/misprint/didn’t care enough to check by the Journal. This is obviously Bob Orton, Jr. who won the $20,000 Battle Royale. Also on the card: Randy Savage pinned King Kong Patterson and Orton and Ronnie Garvin wrestled to a no-contest. Click the link for other results.

Past MLB Memory Lane entries:
Rally against The Eck & Walkoff the A’s (1989)

Dennis Lamp near no-hitter (1981)

Teddy & Team Streak (1987)

Friday odds & ends

Latest renovation photos:

Good progress on both stairwells.

“I’m a man who discovered the wheel and built the Eiffel Tower out of metal and brawn.”

The view from home plate.

The above scenes were captured for Episode Eight of the Renovation Update.  Here is Episode Seven:

Big News. This is Big News in our corner of the sky.

The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers will need to renovate their trophy case inside Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium. Minor League Baseball announced the Midwest League affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers as winners of the National Larry MacPhail Award, which symbolizes the top promotional effort in Minor League Baseball.

“The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers do an exceptional job of not only promoting their club in the community, but also of trying to tie in an element that benefits its residents in their ballpark promotions, as well,” Pat O’Conner, President of Minor League Baseball, said in a release earlier today. “The Timber Rattlers have programs and promotions in place for fans of all ages, including several geared towards improving behavior and lifestyle of area youths.”

“Wisconsin’s use of various social media to promote themselves, especially through their mobile web site that allows fans to interact during games, as well as throughout the off-season, merits their selection as the winner of the 2012 Larry MacPhail Award,” said O’Conner.

The award has been given annually since 1966.

More at the link up top and this link to the story.

Elsewhere on the home page:

Flashback Friday wraps up the Subsidy Saga of 1987.  Like I say at the end of the article…”sometimes it is a miracle that professional baseball survived in the Fox Cities.”

From Wednesday, Rafael Neda stepped into The Interrogation Room.

The Timber Rattlers are holding a Holiday card contest.  Children 14 & under can enter by designing our 2012 card.  Download the sheet right here. Deadline is Monday, November 19th.

Alumni Report for Winter Ball. (Stats Through 11/8 and the slash line is AVG/OBP/SLG for those out of practice)

Arizona Fall League:
Phoenix Desert Dogs:
Khris Davis: 226/348/264; 0HR, 6 RBI
Brock Kjeldgaard: 385/455/846; 4HR, 9RBI
Hunter Morris: 253/302/354; HR, 6RBI
Josh Prince: 403/489/558; HR, 7RBI
Nick Bucci: 5G, 5GS, 2-2, 15.0IP; 15R, 15ER, 5BB, 21K
Kyle Heckathorn: 8G, 0GS, 1-0, 11.1IP, 7R, 5ER, 5BB, 8K
Santo Manzanillo: 3G, 0GS, 0-1, 2.0IP, 7R, 7ER, 4BB, K
Jimmy Nelson: 6G, 5GS, 2-2, 18.0IP, 10R, 8ER, 12BB, 20K

Aguilas del Zulia:
Austin Bibens-Dirkx: 3G, 2GS, 0-0, SAVE, 10.2IP, R, ER, BB, 11K

Bravos De Margarita:
Renee Cortez: 5G, 0GS, 1-1, 7.2IP, 3R, 2ER, 2BB, 4K

Cardenales de Lara:
Edilio Colina: 259/355/259; 0HR, 2RBI
Johan Limonta: 296/321/407; HR, 2RBI
Luis Valbuena: 333/500/462; 0HR, 4RBI
Jose Escalona: 9G, 0S, 0-0, 7.1IP, 3R, 2ER, 5BB, 6K
Ryan Feierabend: 4G, 4GS, 0-0, 23.0IP, 6R, 5ER, 4BB, 14K
Caesar Jimenez: 7G, 0GS, 0-1, 3 SAVES, 6.1IP, 2R, ER, 0BB, 11K

Caribes de Anzategui:
Luis Oliveros: 625/625/875; 0HR, 3RBI
Mike Wilson: 063/250/063; 0HR, RBI

Navegantes del Magallanes:
Sean Halton: 160/263/360; 3HR, 6RBI
Carlos Maldonado: 367/451/733; 6HR, 18RBI

Tiburones de La Guaira:
JC Ramirez: 5G, 0GS, 1-0, 3.1IP, 5R, 4ER, 3BB, 4K

Dominican Republic:
Aguilas Cibaenas:
Edward Paredes: 9G, 0GS, 1-0, 6.2IP, R, ER, 4BB, 5K
Juan Sandoval: 6G, 0GS, 0-1, 4.0IP, 9R, 6ER, 3BB, 0K

Estrellas de Oriente:
Juan Diaz: 250/270/361; 0HR, 4RBI

Gigantes del Cibao:
Carlos Peguero: 357/514/714; 3HR, 7RBI

Leones del Escogido:
Taylor Green: 300/333/350; 0HR, 3RBI

Tigres del Licey:
Carlos Triunfel: 222/300/222; 0HR, 3RBI

Sydney Blue Sox:
Craig Anderson: 1G, 1GS, 0-1, 7.0IP, 2R, 2ER, BB, 6K

Puerto Rico*:
Cangrejeros de Santruce:
Jeff Dominguez

Criollos de Caguas:
Efrain Nieves

*- It was Opening Night on Thursday in Puerto Rico. Just ex-Rattlers who played this week. Stats next week.

MLB Memory Lane: April 17, 1987

I went to a lot of baseball games before I started working in baseball.  MLB Memory Lane is a look back at some of those games.

This week, Team Streak and Teddy Higuera!

Date: April 17, 1987
Opponent: Texas Rangers
Stadium: Milwaukee County Stadium
Seat Location: Third Base Upper Deck
With: High School Friends

1987 Teddy Higuera is awesome!

If you were a Brewers fan at the time of this game, you know what the start of this homestand was like.

They were less than 48 hours removed from Juan Nieves tossing the first no-hitter in franchise history.

They were 9-0!

Traffic to get into Milwaukee County Stadium was backed up for miles…on Good Friday!

It seemed everyone wanted to see this team make it to 10-0.  Teddy Higuera would make it so.

Teddy Higuera is one of those triumph and tragedy guys in Milwaukee Brewers history.

He started his career with four straight seasons of 15 or more wins.  He was second in the 1985 Rookie of the Year voting (Behind Ozzie Guillen).  Dude pitched three scoreless innings (4th, 5th, & 6th) in the 1986 All-Star game and struck out both Tony Gwynn AND Ryne Sandberg. He won 20 games and was second in the 1986 AL Cy Young Award voting (behind Roger Clemens).   

Then, around 1990 to 1991 he got hurt.  He missed all of 1992 after rotator cuff surgery.  Damn. It’s not right that he would get hurt.

But, the injuries were off in the distance on an special April evening against the Texas Rangers in 1987 at County Stadium in front of over 41,000.

So Larry Parrish hit a leadoff homer in the second inning and the Brewers fell behind 1-0.  Big deal.  Teddy would hold the Rangers right where they were and the Brewers would come back.

It took until the sixth inning, but Milwaukee broke through against Mike Mason.

Paul Molitor (who else?) started the rally with a walk and a stolen base.  Robin Yount doubled Molitor home and the Brewers were tied.  Later in the inning, Cecil Cooper drove in Yount with a grounder and Dale Sveum sent Rob Deer home with a double for a 3-1 lead.

Don Slaught hit a leadoff homer in the top of the seventh and the lead was 3-2.

Then, Pete O’Brien reached on an error.  He was on second with one out and the dangerous Ruben Sierra at the plate.  O’Brien took off for third on a two-strike count against Sierra.  Higuera got the strikeout and Bill Schroeder threw out O’Brien at third for the double play.

Did I mention that Sierra was a pinch-hitter for Oddibe McDowell?  Did I mention that Bobby Valentine was the manager of the Rangers in this game?

The game didn’t stay close for long.  The Brewers scored seven runs in the bottom of the seventh inning off three Rangers pitchers (Mitch Williams, Dale Mohorcic, Scott Anderson).  Just look at it:

BREWERS 7TH: BROWER CHANGED POSITIONS (PLAYING CF); SIERRA STAYED IN GAME (PLAYING RF); Schroeder singled to left; On a bunt Gantner forced Schroeder (pitcher to shortstop) [Gantner to first]; MOHORCIC REPLACED WILLIAMS (PITCHING); Molitor doubled to left [Gantner scored]; Yount singled to center [Molitor scored]; Yount stole second [Yount to third (error by Slaught)]; Braggs walked; ANDERSON REPLACED MOHORCIC (PITCHING); Deer singled to left [Yount scored, Braggs to third]; Cooper doubled to right [Braggs scored, Deer to third]; Sveum was walked intentionally; Brock was hit by a pitch [Deer scored, Cooper to third, Sveum to second]; Schroeder struck out; Gantner singled to center [Cooper scored, Sveum scored, Brock to third]; CASTILLO BATTED FOR MOLITOR; Castillo was called out on strikes; 7 R, 6 H, 1 E, 2 LOB. Rangers 2, Brewers 10.

The Castillo pinch hitting for Molitor would be Juan Castillo.  I wonder how many times someone pinch hit for Paul Molitor.

From there it was smooth sailing to 10-0.

Higuera struck out O’Brien looking – the 12th K of the game for Higuera – for the final out and the crowd went crazy.  They continued to cheer after the team left the field and kept cheering  until Higuera came out for a post-game curtain call.

He did and it was awesome.

Brewer of the Game:
Teddy Higuera!  Complete Game five-hitter with two walks and 12 strikeouts.  It was so much fun to watch him pitch… Especially against a team that struck out as much as the 1987 Texas Rangers.

The Brewers Batting Order for that game:
Paul Molitor, 3b
Robin Yount, cf
Glen Braggs, rf
Rob Deer, lf
Cecil Cooper, dh
Dale Sveum, ss
Greg Brock, 1b
Bill Schroeder, c
Jim Gantner, 2b

Molitor was 1-for-3 with a double, two runs and an RBI
Yount was 2-for-5, with a double, two runs, and two RBI

Retrosheet Boxscore & Play-by-play

Baseball Reference WPA Graph

Teddy Higuera Baseball Reference

Teddy Higuera Baseball Reference Bullpen

Past MLB Memory Lane entries:
Rally against The Eck & Walkoff the A’s (1989)

Dennis Lamp near no-hitter (1981)

Walkoff Wednesday (2002 season)

It’s Walkoff Wednesday on Rattler Radio.

Let’s head back to the 2002 season.  The Rattlers had future major leaguers like Shin-soo Choo and Greg Dobbs, but it missed the playoffs for the first time since the 1995 season.

This edition of the Timber Rattlers finished with a 53-86 record, including a 23-47 record in the second half.

NOTE: I was busy with the Green Bay Gamblers hockey team (end of regular season and playoff run) for the first month of the season, so I missed some games. However, Mike Antonellis, the Kane County Cougars announcer in 2002, has filled in the blank on the game at Kane County on April 13.  If you want to thank Mike – the radio announcer for the Portland Sea Dogs – for his contribution to this project, please visit his blog Inside the Clubhouse with Mike Antonellis.

Timber Rattlers Walkoffs (3):

Sean Peless hit the only walkoff home run for the Rattlers in 2002.

DATE: April 16
OPPONENT: Quad City River Bandits
BATTER: Sean Peless
PITCHER: Matt Vorwald
SCORE BEFORE WALKOFF: Tied 3-3 in the bottom of the ninth.
GAME WINNING PLAY: Sean Peless hits a two-run home run with no outs in the bottom of the ninth!
FINAL SCORE: Timber Rattlers 5, Quad City 3
NOTES: The home run was the second of the game for Peless.  This was the 13th game of the season and it was his fourth homer of the season.

DATE: July 19
OPPONENT: Beloit Snappers
BATTER: Eddie Menchaca
PITCHER: Carl Michaels
SCORE BEFORE WALKOFF: Tied 4-4 in bottom of the 12th inning
GAME WINNING PLAY: Eddie Menchaca two-out RBI single scores Luis Cordova.
FINAL SCORE:  Timber Rattlers 5, Beloit 4
NOTES: This win moved the Rattlers second half record to 6-20.  Menchaca has been the manager of the Clinton LumberKings for the last two seasons.

DATE: July 27
OPPONENT: Kane County Cougars
BATTER: Luis Cordova
PITCHER: Lincoln Holdzkom
SCORE BEFORE WALKOFF: Tied 2-2 in the bottom of the ninth
GAME WINNING PLAY: Kane County first baseman Jason Stokes dropped a throw to first to allow pinchrunner Miguel Villilo to score from second base.
FINAL SCORE: Timber Rattlers 3, Cougars 2
NOTES: The game was tied 1-1 in the top of the ninth.  The Cougars took the lead on an RBI grounder off pitcher Jeff Perez that let a run home from third.  The Rattlers tied the game in the ninth on a two-out RBI double by Chris Collins.  Stokes, who crushed the Rattlers during the season, dropped the throw to first and the Rattlers won the game.

Opponent Walkoffs (4):

DATE: April 13
OPPONENT: Kane County
STADIUM: Phil Elfstrom Stadium
BATTER: Hunter Wyant
PITCHER: Lanny Patten
SCORE BEFORE WALKOFF: Timber Rattlers 5, Kane County 4 in the bottom of the ninth
GAME WINNING PLAY: Hunter Wyant hit a two-run home run with no outs
FINAL SCORE: Kane County 6, Timber Rattlers 5
NOTES: The Rattlers took a 5-4 lead with four runs in the top of the eighth inning.  This was after Dontrelle Willis held the Rattlers to an unearned run on three hits over seven innings.  BUT, Kane County scored twice in the bottom of the ninth off Lanny Patten for the win.  Scott Hicks doubled to start the inning and went to third on an error.  Then, Wyant hit his homer.

DATE: April 30 (Game One of doubleheader)
OPPONENT: Quad City River Bandits
STADIUM: John O’Donnell Stadium
BATTER: Michael Sandoval
PITCHER: Michael Kesten
SCORE BEFORE WALKOFF: Tied 2-2 in the bottom of the 12th.
GAME WINNING PLAY: Sandoval’s RBI double with one out scores Digno Torres
FINAL SCORE: River Bandits 3, Timber Rattlers 2
NOTES: This was game one of a doubleheader.  The Rattlers tied the game 2-2 on consecutive two-out RBI singles by Miguel Villilo and Shin-Soo Choo.  Kesten pitched five scoreless innings of relief and went back out for a sixth.  He got the first out.  Then, back-to-back doubles by Torres and Sandoval ended this one.

DATE: June 5
OPPONENT: Fort Wayne Wizards
STADIUM: Memorial Stadium
BATTER: Keto Anderson
PITCHER: Lanny Patten
SCORE BEFORE WALKOFF: Tied 6-6 in the bottom of the 12th
FINAL SCORE: Fort Wayne 7, Timber Rattlers 6
NOTES: The Wizards had runners at first and third with one out.  Anderson hit a grounder to second.  The Rattlers got the force at second, but could not turn the double play on Anderson to end the inning and force the 13th inning.  That allowed Nick Trzeniak to score the winning run.

DATE: August 26
OPPONENT: Cedar Rapids Kernels
STADIUM: Veterans Memorial Stadium
BATTER: Nick Gourneault
PITCHER: Mike Kesten
SCORE BEFORE WALKOFF: Tied 1-1 in the bottom of the eleventh.
GAME WINNING PLAY: Gourneault hit a two-out, RBI double to drive in Mike Napoli from first base with the winning run.
FINAL SCORE: Cedar Rapids 2, Timber Rattlers 1
NOTES: Kesten got the first two outs of the eleventh, but walked Napoli on a 3-2 pitch.  Then, Gourneault laced a double and the Rattlers lost for the 81st time of the 2002 season.  They fell to 21-42 in the second half.

Past Walkoff Entries:

Walkoff Wednesday (2001 Season)

Walkoff Wednesday (2000 Season)

Walkoffs 2005-2012

Tough day in AZ and other news

John Steinmiller has an injury reports on former Timber Rattlers who are participating in the Arizona Fall League:

First, BROCK! Kjeldgaard

OF Brock Kjeldgaard broke his left foot on Oct. 27 after he fouled a ball of his foot. He has returned to Milwaukee where he will have surgery this week by Dr. Richard Marx. He expects to be ready in time for Spring Training and finished his stint in the Fall League hitting .385 with four home runs and nine RBI in just seven games.

Next, Santo Manzanillo

 RHP Santo Manzanillo has returned to the Brewers facility in the Dominican Republic where his is rehabbing from a sore right shoulder. He pitched in only three games, tallying 2.0 innings of relief. 

Get well soon, guys.

By the way, the Phoenix Desert Dogs play at the Peoria Javelinas this afternoon.  Nick Bucci (’10) is the starting pitcher for Phoenix.  Josh Prince (’09) and Hunter Morris (’10) are also playing for the Desert Dogs.  Follow along on Gameday.

The other news would be that Australian Baseball League has started and former Rattler pitcher Craig Anderson (’00) is the only alumni playing in that league this season.   Anderson is with the Sydney Blue Sox and lost his first start, a road game at Canberra on November 3, despite allowing two runs on three hits with one walk and six strikeouts over seven innings.

The winter league in Puerto Rico begins on Thursday.  I’ll have a post on that later this week.

1994 Foxes Home Games (#2 – April 15 v. Fort Wayne)

A folder was found during the renovations of Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium.  Inside this folder, an era of Appleton Professional Baseball was rediscovered.  The original scoresheets and boxscores from home games of the first half of the 1994 Foxes season.  This was the time of Alex Rodriguez, Raul Ibanez, and many other future major league ball players.

Rattler Radio will look back at each of those games between now and Opening Day, 2013.  Enjoy.

DATE: April 15
OPPONENT: Fort Wayne Wizards (Twins affiliate)
FOXES STARTER: Brett Hinchliffe
NO, SERIOUSLY: The spot for Weather in the boxscore of the second home game of the 1994 Appleton Foxes season is filled out by official scorer David Ahrens in this manner:  44° gale force winds – overcast.
TRIVIA: This game was played on April 15.  It would be completed on April 16.

Marcus Sturdivant – LF
Michael Barger – CF
Alex Rodriguez – SS
Raul Ibanez – C
Jason Cook – DH
David Lawson – RF
Brian Wallace – 3B
Giomar Guevara – 2B
Jim Clifford – 1B

Armann Brown – LF
James Motte – SS
Ryan Radmanovich – 3B
Tim Costic – DH
Grier Jones – C
Chad Rupp – 1B
Tom Knauss – RF
Ben Jones – CF
Aaron Santini – 2B

I wonder if the wind had anything to do with the two-run home run that was hit by Ryan Radmanovich in the top of the first inning.

The Foxes got to within a run in the bottom of the first inning.  If I reconstruct the inning correctly,the foxes loaded the bases with no outs on a single by Sturdivant, an error on a grounder off the bat of Barger, a passed ball, and a walk to Alex Rodriguez.  Raul Ibanez lined into a double play.  Rodriguez stole second and the throw sailed for an error to let Sturdivant score.

The teams traded runs in the third inning.  An RBI grounder by Tim Costic in the top of the third made it 3-1.  Sturdivant scored from third on a wild pitch in the bottom of the third.

The wild pitch that scored Sturdivant was thrown by reliever Javier DeJesus, who took over for Dan Perkins to start the third.

The game was halted at 8:01pm after the bottom of the fourth inning with the score still 3-2 in favor of Fort Wayne.  The game was picked up the next day.

The Wizards must have enjoyed their night in Appleton because they knocked Robin Cope for three runs when the game restarted the next day.  The first run scored on an error against Ibanez.  The next two came in on a single by Costic.

BUT! The Foxes scored four times in the bottom of the sixth against Fort Wayne reliever Brian O’Brien to tie the game 6-6.

Brian Wallace had a two-run single.  Jim Clifford hit a two-run home run with two outs to even the score.

The tie did not last.  The Wizards loaded the bases against Cope and Chad Rupp made it 7-6 with a sacrifice fly.

Fort Wayne poured it on in the top of the ninth inning.  James Motte reached on an error and that was the night for Cope.  Marty Winchester came in an gave up another home run to Radmanovich and it was 9-6.

Winchester got a strikeout, but gave up a walk and was replaced by Greg Theron.  Theron would promptly give up a two-run home run to Rupp, who had a pinch-hit, two-run, home run in the ninth inning back on the 14th.

The Foxes did not score in the bottom of the ninth and lost 11-6 for a home record of 1-1.

Jim Clifford: 2-for-4, HR, 2 RBI

Alex Rodriguez: 0-for-3, 2 walks, stolen base
Raul Ibanez: 0-for-3, 2 walks, run scored

Jim Clifford would return and play for the Timber Rattlers in 1995.   As far as I know, Clifford is still the Strength & Conditioning Coach for the entire Seattle Mariners minor league system.
The teams combined for three hit batters, four wild pitches, and six errors in this game.
Both Fort Wayne batters who were hit by pitches left the game. Arman Brown was replaced by Jason Baker in the fifth.  Grier Jones was hit in the seventh and replaced by Scott Stricklin later in the game.

Shane Bowers pitched the final three innings, allowed one hit, and struck out three to get the save for the Wizards.

Click for the PDFs:



See the tag for other posts in this series

Rattlers at Rising Stars, 2012

The 2012 Arizona Fall League Rising Stars Game is scheduled to be played on Saturday night.  This is the All-Star Game for the AFL.  It starts at 7pm CDT and you can watch it on MLB Network or on

There will be one former Timber Rattler on the roster.  Hunter Morris, the reigning Southern League MVP and Milwaukee Brewers minor league player of the year, will play for the West in this prospect-laden game.

Hunter Morris rounds the bases after one of his nine home runs with the Timber Rattlers in 2010. (Credit: PSB Photo)

Through Thursday, Morris is hitting .269 (18-for-67) with no homers and five RBI in 16 games for the Phoenix Desert Dogs in AFL play this season.

BUT, he is not the only person with ties to the Timber Rattlers who will be part of this game.

Morris will play for Dusty Wathan, the manager of the West Division.  Wathan played five games for the Rattlers in 1995.  Wathan was the manager of the Reading Phillies in 2011.

Lance Painter, the Rattlers pitching coach in 2006 and 2007, is Wathan’s pitching coach in this game.  Painter has been a pitching coach in the Mariners system since 2006.  He was the pitching coach for the Jackson Generals, the Southern League affiliate of the Mariners, last year.

Lance Painter as the Rattlers pitching coach in 2007.

Brent Johnson, a member of the 2005 Rattlers team, is listed as the BP Pitcher/assistant coach for the West.  He hit .310 with a homer and 44RBI in 109 games during the regular season.  Johnson spent 2012 as an assistant for the Arizona League affiliate of the Mariners.

Brent Johnson as a Timber Rattler in 2005.

Keep your eyes open for these ex-Rattlers during the game.


Odds and Ends for November 1

Lots of stuff to catch up on today.

Congratulations to former Timber Rattlers shortstop Adam Jones.   The Orioles centerfielder won an American League Gold Glove.

Jones, 27, who was voted Most Valuable Oriole for the second straight year, capped his best major league season with his second Gold Glove. He was the only AL center fielder to play in all 162 games and led them in putouts (439), marking the second time in three years he was the league leader in putouts at his position. He also ranked second in range factor per game (2.75) and third in assists (seven) among AL center fielders.

Jones also inspired – by way of jersey selection – Maryland’s own Greg Merson to win the Main Event of the World Series of Poker!

This is from Tuesday night. He wore the orange Adam Jones jersey on Monday. You could see the number 10 on the front of the orange jersey, but this picture is much cooler. Trust me. He’s wearing #10.

A 24-year-old Maryland poker professional won the World Series of Poker main event Wednesday, outlasting his final opponents in a marathon card session of nearly 12 hours for the $8.53 million title.

Greg Merson emerged with the title before dawn in Las Vegas after a session that proved to be a showcase for his skills amid the unpredictability of tournament no-limit Texas Hold ’em. On the last hand, Merson put Las Vegas card pro Jesse Sylvia all-in with a king high. Sylvia thought hard, then called with a suited queen-jack.

You can see the “Jones”  and #10 on the back of the jersey at about 7:58 of this video clip from the broadcast.

Speaking of videos:

Here are a few pictures from next week’s episode:

One elevator shaft/Stairwell

Bathrooms are being renovated, too.

Work has begun on the home team clubhouse, too.

Have you seen the video of Jim Irwin conducting an interview at Goodland Field from the year 1968? You should.

The Timber Rattlers have opened a merchandise kiosk at Fox River Mall.  It is located on the main corridor just past Northwoods Cafe food court.

PSSSSST!!!! It's by the Sunglass Hut!

New Fox River Mall Kiosk.

The Food Court is close. Very close.

A view from the other side.

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