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GAME NOTES 7/13

07/13/2012 4:57 PM -

Fun…Well Done

 

Tonight:

- Celebrate X-Mas in July! Wear your favorite holiday attire and receive buy-one-get-one-free GA/Berm tickets.

- Appearance by the Falcon Skydiving Team.

 

Saturday:

10 Year Anniversary Salute: Meet former T-Bones manager “Dirty” Al Gallagher and 2006 Pitcher of the Year Jonathan Krysa.

MAPS t-shirt giveaway for first 1,000 fans.

3rd annual Camp for Kids, including overnight sleepover.

Post-game Fireworks by Verizon.

 

Kenny’s Korner

 

On Thursday night’s 12-inning win:

“That was huge for us. Mainly, it relaxes us since it stopped our losing streak. Really, we’ve played well the last two nights, but we just didn’t come away with a win on Wednesday. Last night’s win is good, also, because it can give us a boost in future tight games. Any time you win a close game like that, especially in extra innings, it adds confidence to the bullpen and the whole team in general.”

 

On Brian Grening’s pitching performance:

“One of our team strengths is guys going at least seven innings, and helping lead that is Grening. The thing about him is that he doesn’t have big-league type stuff, except his changeup, but he’s such a competitor, and his preparation is incredible. He is constantly doing something to improve, whether it’s working on his grip or his motion, or talking to coaches and his teammates about what the other team is trying to do. He’s a true student of the game. Some pitchers have that feel. He’s a perfect example of a guy who’s a pitcher and not just a thrower.”

 

On Brandon Jones, who went four for five with a walk, an RBI double and a run scored:

“Gradually, I’ve seen him look better throughout the week (after last week’s wrist injury), so it was only a matter of time before he had a big game. A hand or wrist injury, even something small, affects hitters, and I think Jones’ injury affected him. Last night, though, we saw what we’ve grown accustomed to with him, which is simply one of the best hitters in the league. I have enormous respect for him as a hitter. It’s a huge asset to me and to the guys in the lineup to have such a big-time hitter.”

 

On tonight’s starter Shaun Garceau:

“This is a big start for him. Wichita has not seen him yet, so it’ll be nice to see how he does against them. Plus, it’s nice for him to be able to start at home. He didn’t go to Wichita this week, so he should be rested and ready to go. He knows what’s at stake in this series, so I’m confident he’ll be well prepared and give us a good outing.”

 

Roster moves between home stands

The Kansas City T-Bones announced the signings of Lee Cruz, a 6-foot-2, 190-pound first baseman/outfielder from Dade City, Fla., and pitcher Dustin Loggins, a 6-foot-5, 210-pound right hander from Waynesville, Mo.

 

Cruz started this season with the T-Bones before signing with Yucatan of the Mexican League. In six games with Kansas City, Cruz had seven hits in 25 at bats, and one home run, good for a .280 batting average. Then, in 26 games with Yucatan, Cruz batted .330 with 31 hits, including eight doubles and eight home runs, a .670 slugging percentage, 26 RBIs and 20 runs scored. In 2011 Cruz was selected as the American Association’s MVP.

   

Loggins, who played collegiately at College of the Ozarks, an NAIA school, pitched in eight games this season for the Ozark Generals of the MINK League. He was 1-2 with a 2.89 ERA. In 37 1/3 innings pitched, Loggins struck out 43 batters, while walking only nine.

 

Cruz, who will wear number 6, and Loggins, who will wear number 17, are scheduled to be in uniform tonight for the T-Bones.

 

Yesterday the T-Bones announced the signing of former D-II All-American Pat Trettel, a 6-foot-1, 225-pound catcher from Wexford, Pa. After going undrafted out of Seton Hill University, Trettel spent parts of 2010 and ’11 with Lincoln of the American Association. This season, Trettel played 44 games with the Normal (Ill.) CornBelters of the Frontier League, where he was selected for the league’s all-star game. In his one at-bat during that game, Trettel got an RBI single for the West Division club.

 

In 140 professional games, Trettel has a .248 batting average with 127 hits, 23 home runs and 77 RBIs.   

 

As a senior in 2010 at Seton Hill, an NCAA Division II school, Trettel batted .420 with 16 home runs, 81 RBIs and 54 runs scored. He was selected as a Division II All-American, the first male All-American in Seton Hill’s history.

   

In other moves, the club activated pitchers Drew Bailey and Matt Foust from the disabled list.

 

 

Pitching matchup features two five-win righties

Tonight’s game features Kansas City’s Shaun Garceau and Wichita’s Derek Blacksher.

 

Garceau is 5-1 on the season with a 1.98 ERA. He was undefeated going into this last road trip, when he took a loss after pitching a complete game during the T-Bones’ 3-1 loss to Fargo-Moorhead on Sunday, allowing three runs on eight hits during eight innings.

 

Blacksher got a win in his last start, as the Wingnuts won 6-3 on July 7 while he allowed just two earned runs on seven hits over 7 1/3 innings.

 

T-Bones play three extra-innings games during six-game road trip

Kansas City went 1-5 in its most recent stint away from CommunityAmerica Ballpark, but several of its losses came by the smallest of margins.

 

In the first stop of the road trip, Fargo-Moorhead swept the four-game series against the T-Bones, but it took the RedHawks 10 innings to put away Kansas City in both the third and four games of the series. The T-Bones lost 10-9 on Monday and 6-5 on Tuesday.

 

The third extra-innings game in six days had a happier ending for Kansas City, thanks to a win in 12 innings at Wichita, where the T-Bones earned a split in the first segment of the home-and-home series.

 

Helms hits homers in back-to-back games

Rookie Spiker Helms got home runs in both Tuesday and Wednesday’s games against Fargo-Moorhead. The blast on July 8 was Helms’ first of the season as a T-Bone. His homer on July 9 contributed to his total of five RBIs in the game, tying a team high this season.

 

Sadler gets 200th professional home run

On Wednesday Ray Sadler smacked a two-run home run to left, his 10th of the season and 200th of his 13-year professional career, but his offense alone was not enough to overcome an early disadvantage and fell in the opener to the Wingnuts, 4-2, at Lawrence-Dumont Stadium.

 

Sadler’s 10 homers for Kansas City this season are the most on the team.

 

While They Were Away

During their six-game road trip that included four games at Fargo-Moorhead and two games at Wichita, the T-Bones lost five straight before finally getting a win in 12 innings in their last game of the trip.

 

Saturday, July 7

Fargo native Jake Laber pitched 6 2/3 innings of shutout baseball as the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks moved into a virtual deadlock with Kansas City for the wild card lead with a 6-2 victory on in front of a sellout crowd of 4,893 at Newman Outdoor Field.

 

Sunday, July 8

After scoring a combined 21 runs on Thursday and Friday, the T-Bones mustered only one run and couldn’t take advantage of Shaun Garceau’s pitching performance in a 3-1 loss to Fargo-Moorhead at Newman Outdoor Field.

 

Monday, July 9

Kansas City gave up four runs in the bottom of the ninth inning, and then lost 10-9 on a walk-off single by Fargo-Moorhead rookie Buddy Sosnoskie in the bottom of the 10th in a heartbreaker at Newman Outdoor Field.

 

Tuesday, July 10

Fargo-Moorhead erased a 5-0 deficit heading into the bottom of the eighth inning and completed the four-game sweep of Kansas City with a 10-inning victory, 6-5, at Newman Outdoor Field.

 

Wednesday, July 11

Ray Sadler launched a two-run home run to left in the fourth inning, but the T-Bones were unable to overcome an early deficit and dropped the opener to the Wingnuts, 4-2, at Lawrence-Dumont Stadium.

 

Thursday, July 12

After dropping their first five games of the six-game road trip, Kansas City’s Enrique Cruz hit a two-run single in the top of the 12th inning, scoring Devin Goodwin and Brandon Jones, as the T-Bones went on to beat Wichita, 6-3, at Lawrence-Dumont Stadium in Wichita, Kan.

 

Up Next for Kansas City

After finishing a four-game home-and-home series against Wichita, the T-Bones will get one day off before taking on the Sioux City Explorers in a three-game homestand. The Explorers’ record is 24-29, and after losing their most recent game they are currently third in the Central Division standings, right behind the T-Bones.

 

This week will mark the first time the two teams meet up this season, although they will play each other again in September in Sioux City in the T-Bones’ last games of the 2012 season.

 

What’s Up with Wichita

Wichita comes to CommunityAmerica Ballpark holding a six-game lead over Kansas City in the Central Division standings.

 

Offensively, the Wingnuts are led by John Rodriguez, who is tops on the team in batting average, home runs and RBIs with .340, 10 and 48, respectively. Rodriguez’s 48 RBIs are good for third in the American Association. David Peralta has also been a solid contributor for the Wingnuts. Peralta’s 43 RBIs rank second on the team, and his three home runs and .313 batting average are good for third on the team.

 

The Wingnuts recently underwent roster changes, in which C.J. Ziegler, Jake Kahaulelio and James Hoyt all joined the Mexican League’s Tabasco Olmecs. Since their loss on June 29, the Wingnuts have gone 3-10.

 

Wichita is paced by starter Josh Lowey, who is second in the league in wins with eight. Former major leaguer Nate Robertson joined the Wichita’s roster on June 18. In his three appearances, Robertson has pitched eight innings while allowing only three hits.

 

The Wingnuts comes to Kansas City after splitting two games with the T-Bones in Wichita on Wednesday and Thursday, as Wichita won the first game 4-2 and Kansas City won the second 6-3.

 

 

T-Bones Eye Wild Card

With the season reaching its halfway point, the Kansas City T-Bones are in the chase for a potential Wild Card berth.

 

The T-Bones are six games behind Wichita (who they host for the next two games) in the Central Division. The two-game series at CommunityAmerica Ballpark marks the final two games that the T-Bones and Wingnuts will play this season.

 

In the Wild Card race, Kansas City trails the first-place Fargo-Moorhead by 3.5 games and the second place Amarillo Sox by just a half-game. Here are the Wild Card standings as of 7/13:

 

Kansas City Playoff History

 

2004

Kansas City finished the regular season with a 48-48 record. Schaumburg eliminated the T-Bones in the first round, taking the best-of-five series 3-2. Eddie Pearson paced the T-Bones on the season, capturing the league’s MVP award.

 

2008

The T-Bones celebrated a Northern League championship after defeating Gary SouthShore three games to one in the championship series. Kansas City (46-50) pulled the upset of playoffs in the semifinals, when it swept one-seed Fargo-Moorhead after sneaking in the playoffs with a 46-50 record and being the last team to make the playoffs.

 

2009

Gary SouthShore bounced the defending league champ Kansas City in the first round. The T-Bones qualified as the four seed, posting an identical regular season record as the previous year, 46-50.

 

2010

Despite leading the Northern League throughout the 2010 season, a late-season fade found the T-Bones as the second seed in the playoffs. After Kansas City dispatched the Joliet Jackhammers in the semifinals, Fargo-Moorhead swept the T-Bones in the championship series.

 

One Year Ago Today …

Kris Johnson took a no-hitter through seven and one-thirds innings for the Kansas City T-Bones  and teamed up with reliever Drew Graham for a combined one-hit shutout of the Lincoln Saltdogs in a 7-0 victory at Haymarket Park on Wednesday night.

 

Johnson walked the first batter he faced in the contest before retiring the next three hitters. The left-hander then faced the minimum over the five subsequent innings thanks to a caught stealing in the second and a double play in the fifth. Lincoln did not push a runner to second base until the seventh inning when Phil Hawke walked with one out and advanced to second on defensive indifference.

 

Drew Graham took over for Johnson to begin the ninth and retired all three batters he faced to secure a one-hit combined shutout for the T-Bones. Johnson, a product of Blue Springs (MO) High School and Wichita State, threw 103 pitches, 58 strikes, while walking five and striking out six in the victory.

 

Kansas City’s offense struck early against James Garcia, taking a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Keanon Simon doubled, stole third, then scored on a sacrifice fly by Rico Washington. The score would remain until the sixth when the T-Bones plated six runs on five hits and one Lincoln error to cap the score at 7-0. Aharon Eggleston opened the inning with a solo home run and the second run scored on Washington’s second sacrifice fly of the game. Jim Fasano added a three-run double and later came home for the final run on an RBI single by Eggleston, his second hit of the inning.

Garcia was charged with six runs, two earned, on nine hits over five and two-thirds innings in the loss.

 

Eggleston finished three-for-three with two RBI and Ray Sadler collected four hits in five at bats to highlight the offensive attack. Kansas City snapped an eight-series winless streak with the victory in Wednesday’s rubber match. They dropped four and split four in that span.