Results tagged ‘ Drew Gagnon ’
Despite leaving Appleton on Thursday tied at a game a piece, the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers were able to overcome the hostile environment of playing on the road and took games 3 and 4 in Fort Wayne in order to win their first Midwest League pennant. The win was the cherry on the sunday of what was an amazing season for Milwaukee’s Low-A affiliate. So, without further ado, let’s look at some of the highlights.
8 Timber Rattlers Take Part in the Midwest League All-Star Game
The following players took part in this years All-Star Game held at Kane County:
7 Players Promoted to High-A Brevard County
Rehab Starts A Plenty
The following Brewers each spent some time on the Appleton Roster this year:
For the Record
Brandon Macias set a dubious team record becoming the most hit batsman in team history. Macias was hit 21 times this season, breaking the old record of 18 times held by Luis Tinoco.
Chadwin Stang’s 19 game hitting streak was the 3rd longest in team history behind Luis Tinoco (27 in 1996) and Josh Womack (22 in 2005).
Ben McMahan became only the 2nd player in team history to record double digits in doubles, triples and home runs in a season with 21/11/15. The only other player to complete this accomplishment was Chris Colton in 2004.
The following players had multi-homer games this season:
Greg Hopkins (x2)
Cream City Cables would like to not only congratulate the players, coaches, and staff for all they did to make this championship possible, but also would like to thank the organization for providing us access to the team and players throughout the season. I can’t wait to get the 2013 season started to see what the team does in defense of the title.
“It’s a great day for a ball game; let’s play two!” – Ernie Banks
Tonight, the Timber Rattlers did exactly that as they faced off in the season’s first double-header against the Burlington Bees (Low A Oakland Athletics). The change of schedule was brought about by inclement weather on Monday which caused the scheduled series opener to be cancelled and rescheduled as one of two 7 inning games to be played on Tuesday night.
Game 1 saw the Timber Rattlers send Matt Miller (0-3, 6.75) to the mound to face off against the Bee’s Drew Granier (2-0, 1.69) in what would be a decidedly lopsided battle. Granier would pitch all seven innings of game 1 holding the Rattlers to a single run scored in the bottom of the 5th inning when 1st baseman Greg Hopkins scored on a sacrifice fly from 2nd baseman Carlos George.
However, the damage had already been done as the Bees had stung the Rattlers for 3 runs in the top of the 5th. They would put up two more insurance runs in the top of the 7th for a final score of 5-1.
Game 2 saw the Timber Rattlers send Drew Gagnon (1-0, 1.26) to the mound to face off against the Bee’s Jonathon Joseph (0-1, 5.93). The Rattlers, backed by a solid outing by Gagnon, would put up the only runs of the game in the bottom of the 4th inning when both designated hitter Brandon Macias and second baseman Carlos George would score to give the team a 2-0 lead.
Gagnon would pick up the win pitching 5.1 scoreless innings and striking out 6 batters in the process. Finding himself in trouble with one out in the 6th inning and the bases loaded, Gagnon would be replaced by Seth Harvey who would come on in relief and pick up his second save of the young season. Harvey would retire all five batters he faced in order, striking out four and improving his ERA to 1.50.
The split brings the Timber Rattlers record to 6-6 on the season tied with Beloit, Burlington, Cedar Rapids, and Peoria. The team will play the final game of this home stand Wednesday evening at 6:35pm before heading out on the road for 6 games starting Thursday.
One other note from tonight’s contest: Jason Rogers saw his streak of consecutive games reaching base end at 11 when he failed to get on base in the second game of tonight’s double-header. Rogers, however, continues to lead the team in Batting Average (.317), RBI (8), OBP (.417), and Slugging (.537). Additionally, he is tied with Chadwin Stang for the most homeruns on the team with 2 a piece.
Game(s) at a Glance:
Player(s) of the Game: Nick Rickels and Royce Consigli – Each with 2 runs scored for Burlington
WP: Drew Granier ( 2-0)
LP: Matt Miller (0-3)
Player of the Game: Seth Harvey
WP: Drew Gagnon (1-0)
LP: Jonathan Joseph (0-1)
Save: Seth Harvey (2)
On a day that saw the Brewers get shut out by the Chicago Cubs 8-0, the Timber Rattlers found themselves in the position to seek a little redemption for their parent club as they took on Cubs affiliate, the Peoria Chiefs, in the first game of a 4 game series. Under clear skies and with a game-time temp of 57 degrees, the 740 fans in attendance at Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium were in for a great night of April baseball.
The Rattlers struck first in the bottom of the 1st inning when Jason Rogers (playing in left field) connected on a pitch from Chiefs’ starter PJ Francescon (0-1, 3.48) and took it 377 ft for his second homerun of the week. The blast gave the Timber Rattlers an early 1-0 lead.
Rattlers’ starter Drew Gagnon (0-0, 2.00) would keep the lead alive into the 5th, striking out 6 in 4.2 innings of work, when with two outs in the 5th, Cheifs third baseman, Brad Zapenas, singled, stole his way to second, and eventually scored on left fielder Pin-Chieh Chen’s single to tie the game a 1-1. Gagnon would finish the game with a total of 7 Ks in 5 innings of work.
Not content to be tied for long, the Timber Rattlers opened up the bottom of the 6th inning with a solo homer from Chadwin Stang (also his second of the week) which put the team back out front 2-1. But the Rattlers weren’t done yet. Designated hitter Brandon Macias would follow the Stang homer with a single, advancing to 2nd on a wild pitch, and eventually scoring on a single from first baseman Parker Berberet to bring the score to 3-1.
The Chiefs tried to close the gap in the 8th inning when Zapenas drew a walk off of Rattlers reliever Tommy Toledo (1-0, 3.86), advanced to second on a wild pitch, and eventually scored on a single from catcher Rafael Lopez. The single would mark the end of Toledo’s night as the Rattlers would call on Seth Harvey (0.00) to pick up the save.
The Timber Rattlers would make Harvey’s job easier thanks to Stang drawing a walk to start off the bottom of the 8th. Stang would advance to 2nd on a Macias sacrifice bunt, and eventually score as a wild pitch would move him to third followed by a throwing error from the catcher, Lopez, which would plate him for the second time of the night and bring the score to 4-2.
Now, with a two run advantage, Harvey would work through the top of the 9th only giving up a single to Reggie Golden who collapsed in a heap as he touched 1st base. Zeke DeVoss would be brought in to pinch run, but would never be given an opportunity to advance.
The win brings the Rattlers record to 3-4, tied with Peoria, Kane County, and Beloit.
The Rattlers are back in action at Time Warner Cable Field tonight for game two of this four game series. Start time is 6:35 pm. The Timber Rattlers are scheduled to send Mark Williams (0-1, 4.50) to the mound while the Chiefs will counter with Jose Rosario (0-0, 1.93).
Game at a glance:
Player of the game: Chadwin Stang: 1/1 – 2 runs – 1 hit (HR) – 1 RBI – 1 BB – .304
WP: Tommy Toledo (1-0)
LP: PJ Francescon (0-1)
Save: Seth Harvey (1)
By: Ryan Smith
As I stated in my previous article, I was able to gain access to the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers Media Day on April 3rd. Throughout the early portion of the day, I was able to conduct a few brief interviews with some of the players on the 2012 Opening Day roster. I figured that, as opposed to giving you a basic gist of what the players said during these interviews, I’d provide a transcript of my conversations with each player. I tried to keep the interviews relatively short since the players had six or seven other reporters waiting to talk to them as well. They also had to head back to the clubhouse to get ready for the scrimmage that would take place later in the day.
So without further ado, here’s what transpired from the four interviews I landed on Tuesday:
One of the first players I spoke with was Timber Rattlers catcher Rafael Neda. Neda is one of the ten players who is returning to Appleton this season. Manager Matt Erickson had mentioned earlier that he thought some of this continuity within the roster could be a strength for the team early on in the season. Between his time with the Timber Rattlers and the Brevard County Manatees, Neda put up a 2011 line of .177/.320/.226.
RS: First off, welcome back to Appleton. I know you must be excited about the upcoming season. What have you been doing to prepare for the 2012 season?
Rafael Neda, C, #12 (9th Round, 2010 First-Year Player Draft): It’s been a lot of rehab and just trying to keep my body in shape, my legs especially. Basically, I’ve been doing a lot of everything. A lot of catching drills, hitting off the tee with all of my coaching staff. Overall, I feel pretty good and I’m ready to kick off this next season.
RS: So before we started talking, you said that this is a little cooler than what you’d like. Where have you been doing your training during the offseason?
RN: In Mexico or Arizona. So, it’s been really warm weather down there. This is a little chilly.
RS: I hate to tell you, but this is warm for Wisconsin in April, so the first month might be a little rocky. Back to baseball, what would you say is your best skill or attribute that you bring to the Timber Rattlers organization?
RN: Well, I feel like I’m really consistent behind the plate. One of my goals this year, definitely, is to try and be a better leader, especially with all of the pitchers on the pitching staff.
RS: It’s always nice to have a catcher who can handle his business behind the plate like that. Okay, hypothetical question for you now: if you could choose any pitcher to step into the batter’s box against, who would you like to step in and face? You know, to test your mettle?
RN: Oh, definitely I would like to face (San Francisco Giant Tim) Lincecum. I think he’s really intense on the mound, a really intense guy. SO I would definitely like to step in and face him.
RS: And one final question: what are your goals for 2012, for the season ahead?
RN: One of my goals is to have a good year personally as a team player. I want to help us get to the playoffs and hopefully get that championship.
RS: Sounds like a plan. I know you have to run now. Thanks for taking some time to talk with Cream City Cables. Good luck this year!
*You can follow Rafael on Twitter @RafaelNeda88
I was also able to get a few minutes to speak with shortstop prospect Yadiel Rivera. Rivera also spent some time in Appleton during the 2011 season, though he spent most of the year with the Helena Brewers in the Pioneer League. Over the course of his 2011 campaign, Rivera posted a line of .236/.271/.372. Within the entire Brewers’ organization, Rivera is ranked 15th in Baseball America’s Prospect Handbook.
RS: I’m here with Yadiel Rivera, shortstop for the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers. There are a couple shortstops on the roster for the Rattlers. What do you think is your best quality that you bring to the field every day?
Yadiel Rivera, SS, #13 (9th Round, 2010 First-Year Player Draft): You know, I have fun. If you’re having fun, you’ll have a good game. So I try to have fun and do my job the best that I can.
RS: I’ve read quite a bit that you’re pretty good with your glove and that you have a pretty strong arm over at shortstop. Is that something that just kind of comes naturally to you or is it something you specifically work at each day? If so, what are some of the ways you approach improving that area of your game?
YR: Well, with the glove, it’s kind of natural, but I still work at it all the time to get even better. As for my arm, that’s something that I work on every day at the park. You have to work at something if you want to get better.
RS: What specific area of your game have you been trying to improve from last year to this season?
YR: I’m been focusing on getting better with my hitting, trying to be more consistent at the plate. I don’t want to strike out as much as I did a few years ago. I’m focusing on making more contact, making better swings. Just trying to do well this year (at the plate).
RS: So what are your goals for the 2012 season?
YR: First of all, I want to make the playoffs, help the team make the playoffs. I just want to do my job. Try to go out there, have fun, do my job, and help the Timber Rattlers win a lot of games.
RS: Thanks for your time, Yadiel. Good luck out there.
I spoke with Timber Rattlers right-hander David Goforth. Drafted last summer out of Mississippi, Goforth appeared in 19 games for the Helena Brewers, posting a 0-4 record with a 4.43 ERA while striking out 42 over 40.2 innings pitched. Coming into the 2012 season, Baseball America has Goforth ranked 17th among the prospects in the Brewers’ system.
RS: I’m here with Timber Rattlers pitcher David Goforth. David, you hear a lot about pitchers and their superstitions. Do you have any superstitions or rituals that you go through before a game?
David Goforth, RHP, #17 (7th Round, 2011 First-Year Player Draft): Not really. I don’t really. I wouldn’t say that there’s any superstition I have before games. I don’t do anything that most other players don’t do as well before they have a game.
RS: So, Baseball America has you ranked 17th in the Brewers’ farm system.
DG: Yeah, I’m kind of aware of that. I try not to pay much attention to prospect rankings and stuff like that. I just try to take it day-by-day and game-by-game. Just try to do the best that I can do and let everything else take care of itself. But yeah, I’ve heard from a few different places and my agent and a few other people have told me. A lot of times you don’t even know which rankings to look at. Like I said, I just let that stuff take care of itself. It doesn’t change my approach at all.
RS: I’ve heard you say that you think your fastball is your best pitch right now. Are there any particular secondary pitches that you’ve really been trying to focus on to pair up with that fastball?
DG: Really, my changeup. That’s going to be a big pitch for me here in this league, at this level. Just being able to work off the fastball with the changeup. I’ve spent a lot of time during Spring Training working on that pitch, and I think it’s gotten a lot better than what it was before. We changed the grip that I had been using to throw my changeup, and I think it’s going to be a big pitch for me here.
RS: Okay. Just to wrap things up, what’s one of your main goals for this season?
DG: Honestly, just to throw as well as I can and help the team in any way I can. I just want to help us win. Throw the ball well, command the strike zone, and do whatever I can do to help the team win.
RS: All right. Thank you and good luck this year!
*You can follow David on Twitter @Brew_Crew72
Finally, I took a few minutes to speak with right-hander Drew Gagnon (pronounced “Gah-nyo”). Gagnon, drafted last June out of Cal State Long Beach, appeared in eight games for Helena in 2011. Gagnon compiled a 0-3 record while recording one save. He had an 8.05 ERA while striking out 27 in just 19.0 innings pitched. Coming into the 2012 season, Gagnon was ranked 23rd among the prospects in the Brewers’ organization, according to Baseball America.
RS: I’m here with Drew Gagnon of the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers. Thanks for taking a moment to speak with me, Drew.
Drew Gagnon, RHP, #24 (3rd Round, 2011 First-Year Player Draft): Not a problem at all.
RS: You’re actually one of the higher-rated players in the Brewers’ organization as far as prospects are concerned. Upon hearing that, how do you react to that type of information? Do you feed off of that or do you just try to block it out?
DG: Obviously, it’s a good feeling to know that you’re liked in the system. It gives you a feeling that you have a chance to go through the system pretty well. But at the end of the day, it’s not about your status, it’s not about how much money you’ve made. It’s about what you do on the field and how you get the job done. You can be that guy. You can be a first-rounder, but if you don’t find the strike zone or get the ball over the plate, you’re not going to go anywhere. So while it’s nice to hear about those rankings, in the end, it’s all about what you do on the field. That’s all that matters.
RS: What would you say is your “go-to” pitch? Especially if you get in a jam. You know, a couple of runners are on and you need a big out. What pitch do you turn to first?
DG: I like my changeup. I like my changeup a lot. I still need to work on it a little bit, find the strike zone with more consistency. But right now, actually, I’m starting to like my curveball a lot more. I’m getting a better feel for it with the delivery. It’s coming along nicely. But, right now, I think my “go-to” pitch would still have to be my changeup.
RS: What have you been doing this offseason to get yourself ready for 2012, for your first full season of pro ball?
DG: Well, since this was my first offseason, I haven’t really had that much time without baseball. I’ve just been trying to relax, taking care of my arm. Once baseball started back up, I just started throwing again. I was following the program, doing the lifting, doing all the running. Basically just trying to get ready for the season any way I can.
RS: If you could pick one player to face, where you had to pitch against him, who would you like to pitch against?
DG: Well, am I trying to get the win or just trying to push myself?
RS: You’re trying to challenge yourself.
DG: Justin Verlander would be nice. See what I could do going up against a guy of his caliber. That would be a good challenge for anyone.
RS: What about a hitter? What hitter would you like to pitch to?
DG: Oh man, I really don’t know. I’ve never really thought about that one. That’s a dangerous question.
RS: Well, if it were Prince, you could feel free to pitch high-and-inside. As a Brewer fan, I would be okay with that. Finally, what are your goals for 2012?
DG: My goals are to come prepared every day, just being able to reach my ability each day. I want to get better every day and help this team win. I want to help us get to the playoffs and win a championship.
RS: Sounds like a good plan. Thanks for your time. I’ll let you head to the clubhouse and get ready for the scrimmage. Good luck this year!
* You can follow Drew on Twitter @DGags24
I’d like to thank Rafael, Yadiel, David, and Drew for taking the time to speak with me. I’d also like to thank Chris Mehring once again for providing me with access to Media Day. Be sure to check back with Cream City Cables for all of your Timber Rattlers coverage, as well as information about the other teams in the Brewers’ farm system. I speak for everyone here at Cream City Cables when I say good luck to the 2012 Wisconsin Timber Rattlers!
On Friday evening, fans in attendance at Time Warner Cable Field were treated to something special: the first Timber Rattler homerun of the season, and the team wasted very little time getting it done.
With the first two batters retired in the bottom of the 1st inning, first baseman Jason Rogers hit a bomb to left field off of Kernels starting pitcher Mike Clevinger that left the park with room to spare. The shot gave the Timber Rattlers their first lead of the season as they pulled ahead of the Kernels 1-0 in the early going.
Timber Rattlers starter Drew Gagnon then went on to protect his teams lead by striking out each of the next 6 batters he faced. While this should have gotten him out of the 2nd and 3rd innings, the 3rd strike that he threw to Kernels’ first baseman Kevin Mosequit got past Timber Rattlers catcher Parker Berberet allowing Mosequit to reach base and the 3rd inning to continue.
The error would prove to be costly as left fielder Ryan Jones would be walked in the next at bat, and third baseman Kaleb Cowart would follow that up with a single which allowed Mosequit to score and tie the game at 1 run a piece.
The Kernels added to their lead in the 6th after right fielder Gary Mitchell hit a ground rule double to left to start the inning. Mitchell advanced to third on a grounder by center fielder Chevy Clarke, and eventually scored on an RBI grounder by Kernels catcher Abel Baker.
The Timber Rattlers answered back in the bottom of the 7th when Brandon Macias drew a walk to start the frame. He would steal 2nd during shortstop Adrian Williams at-bat, and would eventually score on a Williams double bring the score to a 2-2 tie.
Unfortunately for the Timber Rattlers, the Kernels where not done yet. Baker drew a walk from Timber Rattlers reliever Mark Williams to start off the 9th. He would be replaced on the base paths by pinch runner Andy Workman who eventually scored on a sacrifice fly from Mosequit to put the team back in the drivers seat, with a score of 3-2.
The Timber Rattlers were unable to get any offense going in the bottom of the 9th, and all 3 batters were retired in order.
The season opening series against the Cedar Rapids Kernels wraps up this afternoon at Time Warner Cable Field with a 1:05 pm start. The Timber Rattlers will send righty Brandon Williamson to the mound to face Cedar Rapids’ lefty Ryan Crowley.
Game at a Glance:
WP: Ty Kelly (Cedar Rapids, 1-0)
LP: Mark Williams (Wisconsin, 0-1)
BS: Jacob Negrete (Cedar Rapids, 1)
Player of the game: Kaleb Cowart (Cedar Rapids) – 2/4 (.667) – 1 single, 1 double, 1 RBI
by Kevin Kimmes
The Timber Rattlers season officially kicked off last night as 4,576 fans packed in to Time Warner Cable Field for some early April baseball. Despite temperatures that quickly dipped as the sun went down, the crowd was in high spirits for the first game of the new season.
The Timber Rattlers’ starting pitcher, Matt Miller (L, 0-1), found himself in trouble right out of the gate as he walked the Kernels’ second baseman, Kevin Mosequit, on 4 straight pitches to start the game. Despite the struggles, he was able to put together 2 innings of scoreless ball.
In the 3rd inning, the Kernels’ put on a hitting clinic resulting in 4 runs scored including doubles from third baseman Kaleb Cowart, first baseman Frazier Hall, and catcher Abel Baker. The Timber Rattlers would fight back in the bottom of the 3rd, scoring their first run of the season when 1st baseman Jason Rodgers singled off Kernels starting pitcher Austin Wood, allowing shortstop Yadiel Rivera to score from third. Rivera had reached base earlier when he was hit in the helmet by a wild pitch to start off the bottom half of the inning.
The Kernels would tack on two more runs in the 7th inning as left fielder Ryan Jones scored from first on a Cowart triple. Later, Cowart would touch home after a wild pitch from Timber Rattlers reliever Kevin Shackelford got by catcher Rafael Neda allowing him to score from 3rd.
Not content with a five run lead, the Kernels would score one more run off of Timber Rattlers’ reliever Tommy Toledo in the top of the 9th inning off of yet another double by Hall.
Despite being down by six runs heading into the final half inning of play, the Timber Rattlers decided not to go quietly. Left fielder Ben McMahan lead off the bottom of the 9th with a double to center. Then after two quick outs by 3rd baseman Greg Hopkins and catcher Rafael Neda, designated hitter Brandon Macias would match McMahan’s double with one of his own bringing the score to 6-2. Unfortunately, this would be all the offense the squad could muster as Rivera would record the final out of the game in the next at bat.
The Timber Rattlers will play game two of this three game series tonight at Time Warner Cable Field with a 6:35 pm start time. The Timber Rattlers will bring Drew Gagnon to the mound to face Cedar Rapids’ Mike Clevinger in what should be an exciting contest.
Game at a Glance:
WP: Austin Wood (1-0)
LP: Matt Miller (0-1)
Star of the Game: Kaleb Cowart (Cedar Rapids) – 4/5 (.800) – 2 singles, 1 double, 1 triple, 2 runs scored, 2 RBI,