May 2010

Happy Memorial Day!

100_1791.JPGIt’s not the most picturesque day here in Geneva, IL after a pretty strong (yet brief) storm came through, but it looks like we’ll have baseball here on this Memorial Day.

It’s another “show-and-go” for your LumberKings, meaning an 11:00 AM bus and no batting practice.  That also means that the pregame interview is on one-day hiatus.

Still, enjoy the highlights from last night’s 6-1 win over the Kane County Cougars, Clinton’s 14th in their last 16 games.  Today’s red, white and blue Game Notes are also below.

Memorial Day baseball begins at 1:00 PM, it’s lefty Jimmy Gillheeney (3-3, 2.22) on the mound in search of the four-game sweep in his 11th start of the year.  Listen online at starting at 12:45 PM.


Morris Joins Clinton as Raben Advances

Dennis Raben gets the call to High Desert, Tim Morris replaces him on 25-man roster


Clinton, IA – The Clinton LumberKings, in conjunction with the Seattle Mariners have
announced three player moves affecting the 25-man roster.  First-baseman Dennis Raben has been called up to high-A High Desert.  Replacing him is first-baseman Tim Morris, joining the club from extended Spring Training.


Also announced today, right-hander Tyler Blandford has been reinstated from the disabled list in order to start game two of today’s doubleheader.  Right-hander Jorden Merry has been moved to the Pulaski roster to make room for Blandford.


Raben, 22, hit .221 with eight doubles, eight home runs and 23 RBI over 42 games with Clinton, his first professional action since 2008.  Seattle’s 2008 second-round pick out of the University of Miami had missed all of 2009 following knee surgery.


Morris, 22, was the 11th round selection by the Mariners last year out of St. John’s University.  In his first pro campaign at Pulaski, he hit .214 with four doubles, four home runs and 24 RBI in 50 games.


Blandford has been out of action since May 7.  He’s 1-2 with a 3.96 ERA over six starts so far this season, his first as a pro after being drafted in the fifth round out of Oklahoma State last year.


Merry pitched in one game for Clinton, yielding three runs over 1.0 inning and striking out one.


With the additions of Morris (no number yet chosen) and Blandford, the active Clinton roster stands at 25 players with none on the disabled list.


The LumberKings (24-20) take on the Burlington Bees (15-28) for doubleheader action at Alliant Energy Field tonight, first pitch of game one scheduled for 6:30 PM.  Listen to both games live on AM 1390 KCLN in Clinton or online at


There’s no new interview this evening.  Yesterday’s unaired Daniel Carroll interview will be played for tonigh’ts pregame show.


Still, enjoy the Game Notes: 
5.26.10 kingsnotes.pdf



Pink Jersey Auction Now Online

Game-used, signed Mediacom Cancer Awareness Jerseys now on eBay


martinez pink jersey.JPGClinton
, IA – Twelve game-used, autographed jerseys worn by the Clinton LumberKings during their 4-1 victory over Kane County on Mediacom Cancer Awareness Night are now available through online auction at eBay.  The proceeds from all jerseys purchased will go to the American Cancer Society.


The jerseys being auctioned off include shortstop Nick Franklin, catcher Steven Baron, the game’s starting pitcher Jon Hesketh, right-ielder James Jones, third-baseman Mario Martinez, first-baseman Vinnie Catricala, designated-hitter Dennis Raben, catcher Henry Contreras, left-hander Jimmy Gillheeney and right-handers Tyler Blandford and Erasmo Ramirez.


All jerseys can be found at this link:


The online auction follows a successful silent auction held at Alliant Energy Field.  The total money raised will be announced following the completion of the auction on Monday, May 31.


For more information on the Clinton LumberKings, including tickets and merchandise, call 563-242-0727 or visit



Kings Don Pink for Cancer Awareness Tonight

Special pink jerseys will be auctioned off following Mediacom Cancer Awareness Night


Clinton, IA – The Clinton LumberKings will keep a three-year tradition alive with the third-annual Cancer Awareness Night, sponsored by Mediacom.  After wearing pink hats in 2008 and light blue jerseys in 2009, the LumberKings will don special pink jerseys for tonight’s 6:30 PM game against the Kane County Cougars.


Select jerseys will be on the silent auction block during the game.  Fans can head to the concourse and put down their bids.  The winners will be announced before the conclusion of the game.  The remaining jerseys will be available for online auction later next week.


All proceeds raised from the auction will go to the American Cancer Society.


The LumberKings (21-20) take on Kane County (20-22) tonight at 6:30 PM.  Left-hander Jon Hesketh (2-3, 6.82) makes his eighth start of the season.  Following the game, stick around for Post-Game Fireworks presented by Jewel-Osco and WQAD-TV.  Listen to the game on AM 1390 KCLN in Clinton or live on the web at



Behind the Scenes: Tools of the Trade

As it pours here in Burlington, Iowa, I thought tonight might be a good time to do a LumberBlog feature on my broadcast setup here in the booth.  It’s a question I’ve been asked a few times, mostly by up-and-coming broadcasters that want to know what equipment to go after. 

Believe it or not, not every broadcaster uses the same equipment or setup.  Our setup at KCLN is not quite as advanced as some of the Tieline and Comrex systems that have gained prevalence in this league, but it’s very reliable and almost impossible to screw up.

I use a JK Audio RemoteMix Sport as both an audio mixer and a telephone hybrid, connecting straight into a dedicated or digital phone line to trasmit the broadcast.  The RemoteMix Sport (pictured below) has three separate channels of which to mix audio.  I usually use Mic 1 for my headset, Mic 2 for my crowd mic (or sometimes in-game interview mic) and Mic 3 for my computer patch (for pre-recorded interviews and highlights).

audio board.jpg

The keys on top might remind you of a phone keypad, because that’s exactly what it is.  It’s very simple to dial the number back to the station and get right through.  It’s not visible in the picture, but this board also has a Line Out on the back that exports the full mix of the three channels.  I have this patched into my digital recorder to pick up the highlights you hear on the LumberKings Post Game Show and on this blog.

Speaking of my digital recorder, it’s a TASCAM DR-07 that I purchased from Guitar Center.  Yes, that sounds off the beaten path for sports broadcasters, but the mini recorders that you buy at office supply stores just don’t have the audio clarity that my TASCAM does.  Its original intent is to record music either live or straight off a mixer, so it’s perfect for sports.  It cost me about $200, but it’s the single-most-important part of my gear.


This recorder captures MP3-quality audio (or WAV) and does so with a pair of stereo mics (hidden under the wind screen).  I use this for all of my pregame interviews as a hand-held device and then patch it into my board to record the games.  It records to a mini-SD card and holds about two games-worth of audio before I transfer it over to my computer.

Which brings me to the next-most-vital piece of equipment, my mobile office.  AKA my HP Pavilion.  Yes, I’m not a Mac guy, but I’ve gotten two-plus seasons of service out of my HP.


Aside from the obvious uses (game notes, rosters, email/internet access, blog updates) this HP serves as my mobile sound editor.  That’s because I have Adobe Audition software on my computer (seen on-screen).  I learned to use Adobe Audition while enrolled in an Advanced Radio class at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh.  This program allows me to edit all of my highlights and interviews, multi-track them with music and effects if I want to, and export to a final product.  I can also fix clicks, pops and wind, speed clips up, slow them down, take out unneccessary pauses, etc.  It’s quite a powerful program, and it’s not cheap.  So start saving now!

Between innings, I’ll usually move my highlights from the TASCAM over to the computer so I can edit the clips to the right length and have them ready to play on the post-game show.  I also will patch this computer through to my mixer.

Finally, the piece of equipment that makes me sound so good (I think)…my BeyerDynamic DT290 headset.  My totally awesome parents purchased this for me last Christmas and I’ve already used it for the Fulton High School Basketball season  and the first 40 games this year.  Headphone selection is all about personal preference, and I happen to love this one.


There’s not too much to say about my headset, except that it’s comfortable and it sounds great.  It’s also pretty rugged as far as headsets go.


Here’s a look at the whole setup working in conjunction.  Assuming I have the space, this same layout is what I use at every ballpark in the Midwest League, including Alliant Energy Field.  The binder is where I keep all of my stats and information that I flip through during the game.  Behind is the tarped field here at Community Field in Burlington.

Hopefully this has been interesting to some of you.  There’s more advanced setups in professional baseball, but this is how I bring my broadcasts to you.  If you’re interested in purchasing any equipment of your own, I recommend the following sites:

Any questions on anything?  Contact me at


Holding Steady at #46

The “Latest Leaders” list for April is out at the MLBlogosphere, and behold, the LumberBlog is ranked #46 out of 50 for the “ProBlogs” section.  This marks the second-straight month that this very blog has held the 46th spot.

Check out the full list here:


Hansen Heads West, Gebbers Comes to Clinton

Hawkins Gebbers joins club from extended Spring Training, Shaver Hansen promoted to High Desert


Clinton, IA – The Clinton LumberKings, in conjunction with the Seattle Mariners have announced the promotion of infielder Shaver Hansen to high-A High Desert and the addition of infielder Hawkins Gebbers from extended Spring Training.


Hansen, 22, hit .167 with three doubles and four RBI over 16 games with the LumberKings this season.  Seattle’s sixth-round pick out of Baylor University last year, Hansen spent all of his 2009 action with Clinton, hitting .205 with seven doubles and seven RBI in 36 games.


Gebbers, 23, hit .301 with 13 doubles, two home runs and 21 RBI for short-A Everett last year.  He was Seattle’s 33rd round selection last June out of Biola University.


The moves give the LumberKings a total of 25 players with one listed on the disabled list.  No number is known for Gebbers, who joins the club today and will be in uniform tomorrow night in Burlington.


The LumberKings (19-19) open up a three-game road series at Burlington (13-24) tomorrow night at Community Field.  First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 PM.  Listen to the game on AM 1390 KCLN in Clinton or live on the web at



Have Yourself a Day, Nick Franklin


qWOOJTUE.jpegTwo home runs, a walk-off double and three RBI in a 4-3 win.  That’s Nick Franklin’s stat-line today against the Cedar Rapids Kernels.  Enough said.

Enjoy the highlights:

It feels so good to be back to .500.


AEF Gets Reviewed by Ballpark Digest

Kevin Reichard of stopped by Alliant Energy Field recently and reviewed the home of the LumberKings for the famed ballpark website.  That review is now available online here:

Reichard calls the field formerly known as Riverview Stadium “one of the top five experiences in Minor League baseball”.  That’s right fans of Clinton, you’ve got a certified baseball wonderland sitting in your backyard.

So…see you Thursday when the LumberKings host the Cedar Rapids Kernels?  Good.


A Doubleheader to Remember

In case you missed it today, the LumberKings took both ends of a doubleheader against the Peoria Chiefs at O’Brien Field.  The twinbill sweep is the first for Clinton since they did it on April 12, 2008 against West Michigan.  That itself is great news, but here’s the better news…they did it with six home runs and outscored Peoria 24-5 in the two games.

Mario Martinez went 3-for-3 with a three-run homer and six RBI in the 13-3 victory in game one, becoming the first LumberKing to drive in a half-dozen since Ian Gac did it on May 4, 2008 at Kane County.  Henry Contreras, making his first start of the year (1-for-3 as a pinch hitter/reserve) went 3-for-3 with three runs scored, a solo home run and two RBI as well.  And that was only the beginning.

Rather than hold back all the highlights until tomorrow, here’s the audio from today’s games.

As you can see, it was a fun day of baseball.  Hopefully it continues tomorrow as we close out the series in Peoria.