Results tagged ‘ Prospects ’

Number 88

MLB’s Pipline announced their Top 100 Prospects heading into the 2015 season.

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!

Orlando Arcia as a Timber Rattler in 2013.

Orlando Arcia as a Timber Rattler in 2013.

Alumni Birthdays for February 3:
Luis Figueroa (’98) – 38
Mike Marchiano (’98) – 40
Whitey Gluchoski (Manager, ’46 & ’47) – Would have been 92

First Rattler to start in an All-Star Game.

First Rattler to start in an All-Star Game.

All Time Leader in Walkoff Hits by a Timber Rattler.  All FIVE happened in 1998.

All Time Leader in Walkoff Hits by a Timber Rattler. All FIVE happened in 1998.



Good day at On Deck

The Milwaukee Brewers held their On Deck event on Sunday afternoon.  The Timber Rattlers had some representation:



Michael Sears of The Milwaukee-Journal Sentinel caught this photo of former Rattlers Clint Coulter and David Goforth:


Full size photo at this photo gallery.

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.” 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!!!!

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

Eric Arnett Wisconsin Timber rattlers 2010

Alumni Birthdays for January 26:
Josh Prince (’09) – 27
Ryan Rowland-Smith (’02, ’03) – 32
Mike Pazik (Coach, ’82) – 65

Ryan Rowland-Smith from 2003.

Ryan Rowland-Smith from 2003.

Brewers prospects to watch

This USA Today article is from last Wednesday, but I just found it.  And since three of their four Brewers prospects to watch have been Timber Rattlers within the last two seasons, I thought it was relevant enough to share here.

They name Tyrone Taylor (’13), Orlando Arica (’13), Clint Coulter (’13, ’14), and Taylor Jungmann.

Here is a quick taste of what they say about the three former Rattlers:


[T]he center fielder has shown all the qualities needed to be a leadoff hitter as he’s risen through the minor leagues, despite being among the younger players at each level. Taylor, 21 this month, spent most of last season at High Class-A Brevard County (Fla.), where he hit .278/.331/.396 with 22 stolen bases.


Arcia, 20, is an excellent defender who hit .289 with a .346 on-base percentage and 31 stolen bases last season at High Class-A Brevard County. A natural shortstop, Arcia performed equally well defensively while learning second base last season.

Orlando Arcia as the Timber Rattlers shortstop in 2013.

Orlando Arcia as the Timber Rattlers shortstop in 2013.


He tied for the Midwest League home run title and had a league-best .930 OPS on his way to becoming the organization’s Minor League Player of the Year. He split his time almost evenly between catcher and designated hitter in 2014, but at age 21 he should have ample time to transition to the outfield, where he played exclusively in the Arizona Fall League.

Alumni Birthdays for January 23:
Brandon Moorhead (’03, ’04) – 35
Cornelio Garcia (’86) – 50

Garcia went on to have a great career in the Mexican League and is a member was elected to Mexican Baseball’s Salón de la Fama in 2003, the first year he was eligible for the honor.

Cornelio Garcia's baseball card with the 1986 Appleton Foxes.

Cornelio Garcia’s baseball card with the 1986 Appleton Foxes.

Fall League Wrap – November 18, 2014

Jim Callis of has this complete review of the players who stood out from the crowd in the 2014 Arizona Fall League.

This is what he notes about a pair of Brewers prospects:

Best Performance: Left-handed reliever Michael Strong recorded a 1.98 ERA, two saves and 14 strikeouts in 13 2/3 innings. He isn’t especially physical at 6 feet and 195 pounds, but he can run his fastball up to 94 mph and backs it up with a hard curveball.

Best Prospect: Outfielder Tyrone Taylor posted a .271/.315/.306 slash line and was the AFL’s toughest player to strike out, with one whiff every 13.3 plate appearances. His biggest assets are his speed, center-field defense and line-drive hitting.

In random…and I do mean random…alumni news over the past weekend.  Look at who turned up to talk to the Milwaukee Bucks before their game against the Heat in Miami on Sunday:

And what did they talk about?  Jim Paschke had this tweet:

There was a Jersey Chaser winner yesterday.

Mehring Monday looked at The Traded, the four 2014 Timber Rattlers to be traded by the Brewers this year.

The Mascots recreated a scene from A Christmas Story…really.

Alumni Birthdays for November 18:
Michael Reed (’13) – 22
Tony Butler (’07, ’10) – 27
Mike Hrynio (’04) – 32
David Ortiz (’96) – 39
Tom Gordon (’88) – 47
Don Carr (’85) – 52
Diego Melendez (’80) – 56

Tom Gordon at Goodland Field in 1988.

Tom Gordon at Goodland Field in 1988.

David Ortiz in 1996

David Ortiz in 1996

Veterans Day and All-Stars – November 11, 2014

Photo is from the excellent Baseball in Wartime website.

306th Bomb Group

306th Bomb Group in the European Theater of Operations during World War II.

This link is to Those Who Served and were baseball players.  Thank you to all who served. has been announcing their All-Stars for each Major League organization for the last few weeks.  Yesterday, they announced the Brewers organizational All-Stars.

Ten of the twelve positions were filled by players who played with the Timber Rattlers.  Yes. Twelve. The eight defensive positions, a utility position, right-handed starting pitcher, left-handed starting pitcher, and relief pitcher.

Click the link for the whole list and for comments on each player from Reid Nichols, the Director of Player Development for the Brewers.  I’ll excerpt the write-ups on the players who were Timber Rattlers in 2014.

Catcher — Clint Coulter, Wisconsin (126 games): After an injury-plagued 2013, Coulter improved across the board, playing in 56 more games than the year before while boosting his OPS by 216 points. The 2012 first-round pick led the organization with 22 homers and 89 RBIs while batting a solid .287 for the Timber Rattlers.

“He made a big improvement,” said Reid Nichols, the Brewers’ director of player development. “I think he’ll make more next year. He was a little more selective at the plate. He’s learning how to slow it down. He was a little too firm and hard on his stride and he’s learned to soften it up a bit, and it’s really helped him.”

Though there’s a good chance you’ll see the Brewers’ No. 7 prospect on this list next year, it almost certainly won’t be at the same position, Nichols indicated.

“His catching didn’t get a whole lot better and we moved him to right field for now,” he said of Coulter, who has continued his season in the Arizona Fall League. “He’s working in the outfield and he’s made a pretty good adjustment.”

Second baseman — Chris McFarland, Wisconsin (100 games): Repeating at Wisconsin, McFarland increased his batting average by 46 points and saw his OPS rise from .656 to .719. The 21-year-old also increased his stolen base total from seven to 30, tying for 12th in the Midwest League.

“I really think he came in more focused,” Nichols said. “Different approach at the plate, more business-like. I think he started getting a bit more serious about his job.”

Nichols attributed the rise in steals to an organizational emphasis.

“We [used to have] a roving baserunning instructor and we went without one this year, and I think everyone took it to heart that it was their job, too,” he said of the coaches at each level. “Our teaching was to be more aggressive on the basepaths — we didn’t care if you got thrown out, we just wanted to see if you could steal or not. I think it’s paid off. We were happy with the improvement in the basestealing, although that’s not the focus; we just want the guys to be more aggressive.


Chris McFarland running the bases for the Rattlers in 2014.

Outfielder Michael Ratterree, Wisconsin (125 games), Huntsville (seven games): After winning Pioneer League MVP honors in 2013, Ratterree made the jump to full-season play and showed promise, despite a .228 average. The 23-year-old tied for second in the organization with 19 homers and tied for fourth with 76 RBIs. Ratterree helped balance out his low average with patience at the plate, drawing 79 walks, including 75 at Wisconsin to rank second in the Midwest League. He also received some postseason hardware, earning a Minor League Gold Glove.

“Anytime you get a young hitter who can take walks, he’s gonna do something later,” Nichols said. “While he didn’t have a really good batting average, his on-base was good and that will turn into a good batting average later, in my opinion. And he won a Gold Glove for the Minor Leagues, which is kind of cool. Same as all these guys — focus up the middle and be selective at the pitches you swing at early in the count. It’s kind of the formula for hitting in general. He’ll get it.”

Alumni Birthdays for November 11:
Michael Cox (’04) – 34
Jose Herrera (’01) – 35
Jim Horner (’97, Manager: ’06, ’07) – 41
Kyle Towner (’95) – 42
David Lawson (’93, ’94) – 42
Ryan Smith (’94) – 43
Chuck Hernandez (’83) – 54
Kim Girkins (’76) – 60
James White (’63) – Would have been 74




Back on October 20 – October 7, 2014

The Arizona Fall League begins today.  The Milwaukee Brewers Prospects will be playing for the Glendale Desert Dogs.

The former Rattlers on the Desert Dogs roster include:

Brooks Hall
Mike Strong
Tyler Wagner
Wei-Chung Wang

Tyler Wagner in 2013

Tyler Wagner in 2013

Catcher: Shawn Zarraga

Infielder: Nick Ramirez

Outfielder: Tyrone Taylor

Tyrone Taylor in 2013

Tyrone Taylor in 2013

Pitching Coach: Chris Hook

Glendale hosts the Mesa Solar Sox today at 2:35pm CDT.  According to this boxscore, Taylor will leadoff and play center and  Nick Ramirez will bat seventh and play first base for Glendale.

The Arizona Fall League will be used as a laboratory for the new Pace of Game Initiative.  Click that link to read the full story.  A few of the rules:

A hitter must keep one foot inside the batter’s box throughout his plate appearance. Exceptions include a foul ball or a foul tip, a pitch forcing the batter out of the batter’s box, a request for time out being granted, a wild pitch or a passed ball and several others.

Intentional walks will no longer include the pitcher lobbing four balls outside the strike zone. Instead, the manager will signal to the home-plate umpire and the batter will take first base.

Each team will be permitted three “timeout” conferences covering any meeting involving pitchers and catchers, managers, coaches and batters. Timeouts during pitching changes and those that result from an injury or other emergency will not be counted toward the limit.

More at the link.

As someone who had some experience with a pitch clock – many years ago in the Northern League -this is all well and good…But, it all comes down to enforcement.  And as someone who has experienced the “Keep One Foot In” rule….oh, brother…From Top Five Tuesday: Weird Endings…

1.) April 30, 2007 – Backstory: Before the 2007 began, Minor League Baseball tried to initiate some policies that would speed the game. Umpires, players, and coaches were informed before the start of the season that if a batter needed a little time between pitches, they could only move one foot out of the batter’s box. If a batter walked completely outside the box with both feet, a strike would be called. Now, let’s fast forward to the bottom of the ninth inning at Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium in late April of 2007.   Leury Bonilla, who had homered in the bottom of the seventh inning off Dragons reliever Pedro Viola, stepped to the plate with Wisconsin trailing 3-1. Bonilla was the tying run in the bottom of the ninth due to Ogui Diaz reaching first on a two-out error on Dayton third baseman Juan Francisco. Bonilla was down in the count 0-1 to start. Plate umpire Alex Ortiz called the next pitch from Viola a strike to run the count to 0-2. Bonilla thought it the pitch should have been called a ball. He decided to collect himself instead of saying anything to Ortiz. Unfortunately, Bonilla took a couple of steps out of the right-handed batter’s box as he walked up the third base line. Ortiz immediately called a strike on Bonilla. That strike just happened to be strike three. The final out of the game came on a called third strike that was never even thrown to the plate.

Yeah. Let’s NOT have that happen again.

I am going to be taking some time off from work.  I will be gone the rest of this week and all of next week.  The next post on the blog will be on Monday, October 20.  Some of the features on the website will be returning that week, too.

The Timber Rattlers alumni in the NL Central (Not including Brewers):
Luis Valbuena (’06): 149 games, .249/.341/.435, 16 HR, 51 RBI

Manny Parra (’11): 53 games, 0-3, 1 Save, 4.66ERA, 36.2IP, 18BB, 34K

Alumni Birthdays:
Henry Pawlowicz (’65) – 68
Danny Rourke (’69-’71)- 67
Dan Head (’01, ’02) – 36
Hunter Morris (’10) – 26

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

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

Possible Future Rattlers – October 3, 2014

The Baseball America chats about their Top 20 lists for the Pioneer League and Arizona League happened earlier.  The Q & A of the Brewers farmhands:

Bill Mitchell on the Arizona League Chat:

Jacob Gatewood (Nearby): It’s my 19th birthday today. A spot on your top 20 list would have made for a nice present. Just sayin’. Anyway, do you see me being able to improve my plate discipline next year as Joey Gallo did this year?

Bill Mitchell: Jacob Gatewood, the Brewers compensation round pick, shows plus raw power at the plate and the potential to stay at shortstop. He’s got some swing mechanics to work on and needs to make better contact in order to get to his power potential. Definitely a work in progress. But I wouldn’t want to compare Gatewood to Joey Gallo at this point.

Ben (Leland Grove): Medeiros and Touki had their struggles in the AZL, from what I’ve read. Who would have ranked higher for you, and who will climb through the minors faster?

Bill Mitchell: Both first-round picks (Arizona’s Touki Toussaint and Milwaukee’s Kodi Medeiros) struggled at times in their pro debuts, mostly with commanding their pitches and trying to do too much out of the gate. I probably would have ranked Touki the highest of the two. While Medeiros will be given every chance to start, there are still a significant number of scouts that believe his future will be in the back end of the bullpen.

Dave (Appleton, Wi): How close were the Brewers other top picks Medeiros and Gatewood from making the list?

Bill Mitchell: I’ve already addressed Medeiros and Gatewood in previous questions. To clarify, Medeiros came up just a fraction of an inning short of having enough playing time to qualify for the list but likely would have ranked in the 11-20 range. Gatewood was on my 21-30 group of prospects this year.

Steve (Madtown): I’d love to hear your thoughts on the Brewers that you got a good look at not on the list. Medeiros, Gatewood, Denson (if you saw him on rehab), Lara? Thanks

Bill Mitchell: I’ll briefly divert from AZL discussion to address one name you mention— Gilbert Lara — primarily because I think he could be a player that we’ll be talking about on next year’s chat. Lara is a 16-year-old shortstop who signed with the Brewers for just over $3 million in July. He’s playing with the Brewers instructional league team right now and has been the talk of Arizona so far. Still very raw approach at the plate and the swing needs lots of work, but this kid has some serious pop.

Bill Mitchell also had the Pioneer League Chat:

Warren (New London): I liked Brandon Diaz last year in the Arizona League. He got off to an excellent start here and then tailed off quite a bit, and I’m wondering what Pioneer League observers think of him.

Bill Mitchell: Brandon Diaz just missed the list. The 2013 8th round pick is a nice centerfielder with twitchy athleticism who barrels up the ball. He has above-average speed with good instincts on the basepaths. Diaz projects as a fourth or fifth outfielder, and I like his chances to getting there.

Dave (Appleton): What were the differences for Devin Williams this year as opposed to last year?

Bill Mitchell: Williams, the Brewers 2nd round pick in 2013, improved his slider this year, but the biggest change came with maturity and understanding the professional game. It was a real up and down season for the right-hander, but results improved significantly in the second half of the Pioneer League season. He still has a lot of work to do, especially in improving the fastball command, but his performance in August is a positive sign.

Dave (Appleton): Better pitching prospect for the Brewers, Devin Williams or Kodi Medeiros?
Bill Mitchell: Definitely Medeiros. His stuff is better, although like many young pitchers he’s got to get better command. I said in my recent AZL chat that many scouts still believe he will wind up in the back end of the bullpen, but he’s a starter for now.

Dave (Appleton, WI): What happened to Tucker Neuhaus this year? From just looking at his stats this year, it looks like he really struggled.

Bill Mitchell: I didn’t get favorable comments from scouts on Neuhaus’ performance at the plate and his name didn’t come up in prospect discussions with the managers. He’s gotten too big to handle shortstop, so there will be much more pressure on his bat to develop as a third baseman.

In the AL Division Series games, last night, the Orioles won big and the Royals won in extra innings.

How about these catches by former Rattler Lorenzo Cain?

Former Rattler Chris Tillman (’07) was the winning pitcher for the Orioles and talks with the media after the game.

Here’s Tillman striking out the side first inning:

Looking at today’s playoff pitching matchups. There are a few of today’s starters who pitched against the Rattlers.

Yordano Ventura, who gets the start for the Royals tonight, pitched for Kane County in 2011. In two starts against the Rattlers, he did not allow a run on four hits and two walks over nine innings with 15 strikeouts. He did not have a decision in either game.

Clayton Kershaw starts for the Dodgers tonight. He was a member of the Great Lakes Loons in 2007 and made one start against the Rattlers on May 8 at Great Lakes. Kershaw got the win as he allowed two runs on five hits with two walks and eight strikeouts over 5-2/3 innings. The Rattlers scored two runs off Kershaw in the second inning, but the Loons scored five – two earned – in the fourth off Steve Richard.

Time to take a look at Rattler Alumni in the AL East:

Adam Jones (’04): 159 games, .281/.311/.469, 29HR, 96RBI

Blue Jays:
Brett Lawrie (’09): 70 games, .247/.301/.421, 12HR, 38RBI

Red Sox:
David Ortiz (’96): 142 games, .263/.355/.517, 35HR, 104RBI

Blue Jays:
Jeremy Jeffress (’10): 3 games, 0-0, 10.80ERA, 3.1IP, 3BB, 4K

Shawn Kelley (’07, ’08): 59 games, 3-6, 4 saves, 4.53ERA, 51.2IP, 20BB, 67K

Jake Odorizzi (’10): 31 games, 31 starts, 11-13, 4.13ERA, 168.0IP, 59BB, 174K

Oh, an Odorizzi pitching highlight?

Michael Pineda (’08): 13 games, 13 starts, 5-5, 1.89ERA, 76.1IP, 7BB, 59K

Matt Thornton (’99, ’00): 46 games, 0-3, 2.55ERA, 24.2IP, 6BB, 20K

Chris Tillman (’07): 34 games, 34 starts, 13-6, 3.34ERA, 207.1IP, 66BB, 150K

Gotta share these other Shawn Kelley videos:

Alumni Birthdays for October 3:
Peanut Williams (’98, ’99) – 37
Brent Matheny (’03, ’04) – 35

Alumni Birthdays for October 4:
Bill O’Donnell (’58) – 80
Delwyn Young, Sr (Hitting Coach, ’93) – 51
Francisco Laureano (’67) – 47
Emmerson Bello (’98) – 37
Brock Griffin (’03) – 35
Jose Sanchez (’10) – 26

Alumni Birthdays for October 5:
Frank Henderson (’88, ’89) – 46
Chad Weisner (’95) – 43
Russ Koehler (’97, ’98) – 40

Top 20 in the MWL – October 1, 2014

Keep your eyes on this link to Baseball America.  They should be announcing the Top 20 Prospects in the Midwest League soon.  Since the team has a subscription to the print magazine, I can see the list before it’s on the web…which is so….odd.

Only one Timber Rattler made the list:

Clint Coulter #7 on BA list. Photo Credit: Ann Mollica

Clint Coulter #7 on BA list. Photo Credit: Ann Mollica

#7 Clint Coulter.  The partial scouting report from the magazine.

While Coulter does have a great batting-eye, his swing isn’t picture-perfect, as it involves a large load and a powerful cut that makes it hard to always control the barrel.  That leads to swings and misses on pitches in the zone, but when he does connect, Coulter drives the ball.

Peoria pitcher Alex Reyes was #1 in the MWL.  The full list and capsules on each of the players on the list should be at the link later.

I would have thought that Taylor Williams might have made the list, but it’s tough in a 16-team league.

In last night’s AL Wild Card game, the Kansas City Royals defeated the Oakland Athletics 9-8 in 12 innings.  Former Timber Rattler Lorenzo Cain drove in a pair of runs last night, including the first run of Kansas City’s comeback in the eighth inning:

Today is the first day of the season review of Timber Rattlers in MLB during the 2014 season. Here’s a quick look at the former Rattlers….and one former Fox who spent time in the AL West this year:

Raul Ibanez (’94): 57 games, .157/.258/.265, 3HR, 21RBI

That was hit number 2,000 for Ibanez in his MLB career.

Michael Saunders (’06): 78 games, .273/.341/.450, 8HR, 34RBI

Shin-Soo Choo (’01, ’02):
123 games, .242/.340/.374, 13HR, 40RBI
One of his hits this season was #1,000 in his career:

Nate Adcock (’07, ’08):
7 games, 0-0, 4.50ERA, 10.0IP, 5BB, 9K

Ryan Feierabend (’02):
6 games, 0-0, 6.14ERA, 7.1IP, 2BB, 4K

Eric O’Flaherty (’04, ’05): 21 games, 1-0, 1 save, 2.25ERA, 20IP, 4BB, 15K
The save was the first of his MLB career.

Felix Hernandez (’03): 34 games, 34 starts, 15-6, 2.14ERA, 236IP, 46BB, 248K.

Take a bow, King Felix!

Alumni Birthdays:
Erik Komatsu (’09) – 27
Tom Johnson (’87) – 49


Erik Komatsu as a Timber Rattler in 2009. Photo Credit: Wm. Glasheen

Friday Prospect Information

For the past few Fridays, I have had some photos of the field to give you a view of how the melt is going.

This Friday, that is impossible.  I am in Arizona…where the only snow is in the mountains…probably…

I will be reporting from Minor League Camp on past and future Timber Rattlers.  I will also reporting from four Timber Rattlers Spring Training Games.  There should be reports on the Timber Rattlers website, here on the blog, and @CMehring throughout the weekend and into Tuesday morning when the eventual tweet: “Missed my plane…damn.” will be seen.

By the way, yesterday’s post on the 2014 Specialty Jerseys got a lot of traffic – more traffic than the traditional Walkup Music post, but not as much traffic as a Snow in April post.  Since WTMJ’s WI-Sports & Uni Watch have both posted links…traffic is heading that way again today.  Thank you for the clicks!

The Timber Rattlers front office was busy with field stuff while I was on the plane out of the Fox Cities yesterday. Just call them “Two Tarps”:

Making progress with 13 days to go.

There were a few Brewers Prospect stories that were published this week and – in case you missed them – I thought this would be a good place to share:

MLBPipeline rates their top 20 Brewers Prospects

Plenty of former Timber Rattlers on this list.  Jimmy Nelson and Tyrone Taylor are 1-2.  Click that link for the full list AND scouting reports on all 20.

Bernie Pleskoff asks How do Brewers’ prospects fit Milwaukee’s needs?

Jim Callis notes Brewers banking on wealth of prospects at lower levels.  In which he has three questions with Victor Roache, notes that his camp standout this season is Mitch Haniger, and his breakout candidate is Orlando Arcia.

Jim also has more Brewers coverage on his blog with notes on possible future Rattlers Tucker Neuhaus and David Denson.

The Brewers also announced releases yesterday and – unfortunately – there were a lot of former Rattlers on this list.

Friday News & Notes

Baseball America released their list of the Top 20 Prospects in the Midwest League earlier this week.  That list contained no Timber Rattlers.

There are 16 teams in the MWL and there is no guarantee that every team is going to have at least one player in that Top 20 list…Especially in a year where some teams are loaded – from a prospect standpoint.  For example:  Cedar Rapids (4), Quad Cities (3), and Kane County (3) took up half of the 20 spots on the 2013 MWL list.

JJ Cooper handled the “Why no Rattlers?” question in his chat (No link. Subscribers only) content:

Mike (Milwaukee, WI): I’m a bit surprised not to see a single TimberRattler make your list, specifically Tyrone Taylor, Orlando Arcia or Victor Roache. Was it simply a matter of not having room for them, or are their ceilings just not as high as those who did make it?

J.J. Cooper: Promised on Twitter that I would answer this one. All three were among prospects considered for the list. Taylor came the closest to making it. I’d say he was in the 21-30 range. Pretty universally scouts liked Taylor more than Roache because of a better hitting approach, better defense, plays a premium position and is more athletic. In Taylor you have a solid center fielder while Roache was considered adequate in LF. Taylor was probably the third best CF prospect in the league behind Toles but ahead of Mallex Smith. Arcia often looked overmatched this year at the plate, but scouts think he’ll improve as he matures. He has a solid swing but he’s just not strong enough to do anything with that swing yet.

Photo Credit: Ann Mollica

Tyrone Taylor just missed Baseball America’s Top 20 list.

The Toles that Cooper mentions is Bowling Green’s Andrew Toles, who won the MWL batting title at .326.  Toles was placed at #19 on BA’s list.

Also from earlier this week, Adam McCalvy had this surprise in his twitter timeline:

  The surprise part is that last note about 2013 Timber Rattlers All-Star Pitcher Austin Blaski retiring.

2013 Timber Rattlers All-Star Austin Blaski has retired.

2013 Timber Rattlers All-Star Austin Blaski has retired.

Blaski’s last game with the Timber Rattlers was on June 13 in the second game of a doubleheader against the Beloit Snappers at Pohlman Field. Blaski allowed one run on four hits with four walks and four strikeouts to pick up the win in a 2-1 defeat of the Snappers. He was a late addition to the 2013 MWL All-Star squad and was scheduled to pitch in the game at Dayton. But, he was scratched from making an appearance. That game was on June 18. Blaski had surgery one month later – July 18.

Now, he’s retired.

Good luck, Austin.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 57 other followers

%d bloggers like this: