The Caribbean Series is taking place in Puerto Rico right now. Taking a look at the rosters finds plenty of former Timber Rattlers playing…especially for the host team:
Yadiel Rivera, who shows off his uniform in this tweet from earlier in the week.
Serie del Caribe 2015 pic.twitter.com/4jrIodSRC6
— Yadiel Rivera (@YADIELRIVERA13) February 2, 2015
Through the first three days, Puerto Rico is 0-3. Venezuela is 3-0.
Alumni Birthdays for February 6:
Terry Serrano (’08) – 28
Carlos George (’10, ’11, ’12) – 26
Chad Thompson (’12, ’14) – 24
JB Brown (’80) – 58
Jackie Smith (’77, ’78) – 60
Leslie Hayes (1913) – Would have been 123
This article by Jake Seiner was published on MiLB.com on Monday. It looks at Prospect Projections within the NL Central.
There are a few issues with the Brewers entry…mainly that Shawn Zarraga is no longer in the organization. BUT, overall, worthwhile to take “a look at rookie-eligible players who could make an impact in the Majors.”
The projections are:
analysis regarding who could make an impact, as well as Steamer projections (taken with gratitude from Fangraphs) for those players. For those who don’t know, Steamer is a projection system that uses statistics, age, level and other factors to predict player performance. The system makes for a fun point of reference in trying to gauge which prospects could play the biggest short-term roles.
Each team is broken down into hitters and pitchers. So, a look at the writeup on hitters in Milwaukee’s organization doesn’t have anything on former Rattlers. But, here are how they project a few ex-Rattlers to perform in the Majors based on that formula:
And now a look at the MLB projections of former Timber Rattlers pitchers:
Take those projections for what they are…projections.
Alumni Birthdays for February 5:
Eric O’Flaherty (’04, ’05) – 30
Jason Heath (’95) – 44
And now a word from out Sponsor:
The Fang & Whiffer Valentine’s Deliveries for February 13 are sold out.
Don’t bother the snake….Leave the snake alone:
Alumni Birthdays for February 4:
Brett Iddon (’96) – 39
Rick Thoren (’76, ’77) – 60
Larry Smith (’63) – 74
Rex Carrow (’47, ’48) – Would have been 88
Rex also played baseball and basketball at Michigan State, played on the European Baseball Championship winning team while in the military beating the Mediterranean Champions in Leg Horn, Italy, and went on to play professionally as a third baseman for the Philadelphia Phillies and Cleveland Indians for a total of seven seasons. He was a non-rostered player on the 1948 Cleveland Indians World Series team. Rex served in the U.S. Army during WWII in the 1st Infantry Division (Big Red One) and as an MP, personally guarding infamous Nazi war criminals, Hermann Goering (Commander of the German Air Force) and Ernst Kaltenbruner (Commander of the German Gestapo) during the historic Nuremburg Trials in 1945-46.
Former Timber Rattlers shortstop Orlando Arcia checks in at #88:
Arcia’s advanced defensive skills are ready for higher levels now. He has outstanding range and soft hands to go along with a very strong arm. There is no question he will stay at the premium position long-term. Arcia continues to improve at the plate to the point where he’s no longer a glove-only type of middle infielder. He makes consistent contact, to all fields, rarely striking out. He even has a little extra-base pop coming from his very quick swing, which was on display particularly during his winter ball stint. He uses his speed to be a basestealing threat as well.
Good to see!
Alumni Birthdays for February 3:
Luis Figueroa (’98) – 38
Mike Marchiano (’98) – 40
Whitey Gluchoski (Manager, ’46 & ’47) – Would have been 92
Six more weeks of winter? Yes. That’s what Grover Groundhog taught me.
Alumni Birthdays for January 31:
Taylor Brennan (’14) – 23
Caleb Thielbar (’10) – 28
Fred McNair (’94) – 45
Lowell Schellhase (’41) – Would have been 95
Alumni Birthdays for February 1:
Bill Kostich (’93) – 44
Vernon Slater (’91) – 45
Earl Goodwin (’48) – Would have been 87
Alumni Birthdays for February 2:
Donny Langdon (’05) – 33
Steve Kokor (’66, ’67) – 68
Speaking of Grover Groundhog….
This week’s Flashback Friday is an article by Gordon McIntyre that appeared in the 1948 Appleton Papermakers program.
Bill Miller, who has dropped off some other cool things from Appleton Pro baseball’s history, brought a few more things this week. I’ll be going through those and sharing them from time to time.
Marquess Pfaff of WSCO had Matt Erickson on his show yesterday. Click this link to hear the interview.
Alumni Birthdays for January 29:
The contest to design the Timber Rattlers batting practice jersey is over and Alex Laedtke’s design is the winner.
“The design was inspired by the team’s nickname, which is seen in the snakeskin patterned side panels and a custom number font with fang-like styling to complement the Timber Rattlers wordmark logo,” said Laedtke. “I think this jersey gives the players a fresh, team-specific look that pushes beyond a standard batting practice uniform.”
Take a look!
Alumni Birthday for January 28:
Don Ruzek (’83) – 57
MLB Network is running their Face of MLB contest. There was a matchup of former Timber Rattlers on round one:
— MLB Network (@MLBNetwork) January 27, 2015
Ouch. The voting is already done and Adam Jones is into the second round:
— MLB Network (@MLBNetwork) January 27, 2015
There is another vote involving a former Rattler right now!
— MLB Network (@MLBNetwork) January 27, 2015
We won’t be staying out of this one….Go, King Felix!!!
There is one more Rattler alumni in the contest. Jonathan Lucroy has moved on to the second round with a first round win over Matt Kemp of the Padres. Lucroy’s second round opponent is Buster Posey of the Giants, who received a first round bye.
Alumni Birthdays for January 27:
Steve Preston (’89) – 48
Gil Villanueva (’86) – 51
Doug Adams (’66) – 72
Bill Pardon (’42) – Would have been 91
The Milwaukee Brewers held their On Deck event on Sunday afternoon. The Timber Rattlers had some representation:
There was alumni news from the event.
The Journal-Sentinel caught up with Jimmy Nelson (’11), who is ready to succeed in the Milwaukee rotation:
When the Milwaukee Brewers traded established starter Yovani Gallardo to Texas and committed to unproven Jimmy Nelson in their starting rotation for 2015, it was an admitted gamble.
Nelson’s goal is to prove it was smart money.
“I’m excited about it. I feel like I’m ready,” the 25-year-old right-hander said during a break Sunday at Brewers On Deck, the team’s annual fan festival in downtown Milwaukee.
What raised concerns among many fans about that move was the way Nelson struggled during his 2014 debut season. He went 2-9 with a 4.93 earned run average in 14 games (12 starts), eventually pitching his way out of the rotation as the Brewers faltered down the stretch.
It was a far cry from how Nelson performed at Class AAA Nashville before being summoned. In 17 outings there, he went 10-2 with a 1.46 ERA, striking out 114 hitters in 111 innings. Nelson was so impressive over that period he was named Pacific Coast League pitcher of the year despite missing most of the second half.
For Nelson, it was a matter of a lesson learned.
“The problem was when I got to the big leagues I got away from my game plan,” said Nelson. “The things I was doing to be successful, I got away from that when I got up here.
“I’ve got to learn from that and stick to what was working. I know why it happens. There’s no specific reason you can put a finger on. I just got away from the way I pitched in Triple-A.”
Brewers.com has news that Jim Henderson (’09) and Tyler Thornburg( ’11) are aiming for Opening Day to return from injury:
Thornburg, who has avoided Tommy John surgery for a compromised ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow, is already throwing bullpen sessions. Henderson, who underwent surgery to “clean up” bone spurs and tissue damage in his right shoulder, is scheduled to throw his first proper bullpen session on Tuesday. If that goes well, he will repeat the exercise on Friday.
“I can probably give you a better answer in maybe two to three weeks, but the rehab’s gone well,” said Henderson, who was penciled in as Brewers closer before experiencing shoulder weakness last spring. “I feel strong. I’ve had no problems, no setbacks. I pushed it as far as I could go last year, trying to come back and rehab, so that I could be ready this year.”
Asked whether his Opening Day goal was realistic, Henderson said, “Yep, 100 percent. We’re going to get 10 bullpens in here before Spring Training, and then you’ve got all of Spring Training as well. …
Personally, I am excited for the new Barrel Man mascot and T-Shirt!!!!
— Milwaukee Brewers (@Brewers) January 25, 2015
Alumni Birthdays for January 24:
Tyler Wagner (’13) – 24
Joseph DeLuise (’64) – 69
Sandy Valdespino (’58) – 76
Ed Lewee (Manager, 1910) – Would be 142
Alumni Birthdays for January 25:
Eric Arnett (’10, ’11) – 27
Jimmy Maness (’66) – 70
Alumni Birthdays for January 26:
Josh Prince (’09) – 27
Ryan Rowland-Smith (’02, ’03) – 32
Mike Pazik (Coach, ’82) – 65