June 2010

In Game Interview: Thomas Han

Two nights ago, I was joined in the booth by former Clinton LumberKings Director of Operations, Thomas Han.  He was briefly back in town and checking out the Kings-Kane County game while also showing off his new ring.

His Super Bowl Championship Ring.  Han moved on from Clinton to join the ticket sales staff of the World Champion New Orleans Saints.  We talked about his time here at Alliant Energy Field, the excitement of being at the Super Bowl in Miami, all things Saints related and more.  Oh yeah, and the LumberKings scored a couple runs during the frame.

Listen Here: 
Thomas Han In-Game Interview 6.28.10.mp3


Braley, Democrats Defeat Republicans in Annual Congressional Baseball Game

Picture_002.jpgWashington, DC – Congressman Bruce Braley (D-Iowa) helped lead the Democrats to their second consecutive win over the Republicans in the annual Congressional Baseball Game at Nationals Park Tuesday evening. Braley, who was a designated hitter for the Democrats, wore a Clinton LumberKings jersey and sparked a nine-run 7th inning to put the Democrats over the top. The Democrats won by a score of 13-5. Braley finished the game going 2-4 with one RBI.

B-Roll of Braley at the Congressional Baseball game is available here.

 “Last night was a great example of bipartisanship in Congress,” Braley said. “While the Democrats are proud to hold the trophy and extend our win streak to TWO games, both parties can be proud of the fact that we raised more than $150,000 for two outstanding charities here in Washington. It felt great to represent the great state of Iowa and the Clinton LumberKings on a Major League field with all my friends and colleagues playing for the same causes.”

The annual event benefitted the Washington Literacy Group and the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Washington. Last night’s game marked the 94th time the two teams have played.

Each year, Braley takes the field representing a baseball team from Iowa’s First District. Braley wore a jersey given to him by the Anamosa Blue Raiders last year, when the Democrats defeated the Republicans 15-10. He’s also represented the University of Northern Iowa Panthers and the Quad Cities River Bandits.


Thanks again to Caitlin Legacki for the press releases, photos and the video.


6/29 Notes

I’m keeping it short and sweet today.

Tonight’s Game Notes: 
6.29.10 kingsnotes.pdf

Right-hander Taylor Stanton (6-4, 3.77) faces the Kane County Cougars tonight, first pitch at 7:00 PM.  Listen on 1390kcln.com.

Shortest.  LumberBlog.  Ever?


Braley to Play in 49th Annual Congressional Baseball Game

Will sport a Clinton LumberKings jersey in tonight’s game


Washington, DC – Congressman Bruce Braley (D-Iowa) will participate in the 49th Annual Congressional baseball game tonight to raise funds for the Washington Literacy Group and the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Washington. Braley will be in the starting lineup as designated hitter, wearing a Clinton LumberKings jersey as he helps the Democrats take on the Republicans at Nationals Park this evening.

 “On every other day of the year, partisan game-playing does a tremendous disservice to the American people…but tonight is different,” Braley said. “Though the teams are still Democrats vs. Republicans, this game is a great opportunity to put politics aside and support two great causes here in the Washington area while also honoring our national pastime. We’ve been practicing hard for more than two months and hope to extend our winning streak to two games. As a representative of Dyersville and the Field of Dreams, it’s a special chance to showcase Iowa’s proud baseball heritage on a Major League field with my friends and colleagues. I want to thank the Clinton LumberKings for allowing me to represent them tonight and I promise not to let them down.”

Each year, Braley takes the field representing a baseball team from the First District of Iowa. Last year, Braley wore an Anamosa Blue Raiders jersey when the Democrats defeated the Republicans 15-10. He’s also represented the University of Northern Iowa Panthers and the Quad Cities River Bandits.

The first pitch will be thrown tonight, Tuesday evening at 7:00pm EST.

Thanks to Caitlin Legacki for passing this our way.


Hesketh Heads West, Gallagher Joins Kings

Left-hander Jon Hesketh earns promotion to High Desert, is replaced by right-hander Nolan Gallagher


Clinton, IA – The Clinton LumberKings, in conjunction with the Seattle Mariners, have announced four player transactions affecting the Clinton 25-man roster today.  Left-hander Jon Hesketh has been promoted to high-A High Desert, effective today.  He is replaced on the roster by Seattle’s 2007 fourth-round pick, right-hander Nolan Gallagher.  Also, right-hander Ryan Moorer has been placed on the seven-day disabled list.  Right-hander Jorden Merry has been recalled from short-A Everett.


Hesketh, 24, went 3-5 with a 4.43 ERA over 14 starts with the LumberKings this season.  The Langley, British Columbia, Canada native struck out a team-high 82 batters over 67 innings for an 11.01 strikeouts-per-nine-innings ratio, second-best amongst all Midwest League starters.  He was in his second stint with Clinton after being drafted in the 20th round out of the University of New Mexico in 2009.


Gallagher, 24, comes to Clinton after a rehab stint in the Arizona League.  He went 1-1 with a 5.40 ERA over two starts, yielding six earned runs over 10.0 innings.  Seattle’s fourth-round pick in 2007 out of Stanford, Gallagher missed all of 2009 after undergoing Tommy John surgery on his right elbow on June 24.  He’s a career 3-5 with a 3.10 ERA over four professional seasons.


Moorer, 24, went 0-0 with a 3.00 ERA over two relief outings with the LumberKings, including a run over 2.0 innings in last night’s game against Kane County.  He exited in the midst of the sixth inning with an undisclosed injury.


Merry, 23, returns for his third stint with Clinton this year.  He’s 0-0 with a 6.75 ERA over four relief appearances and has one save in one opportunity.  Merry was 0-0 with a 5.40 ERA over two relief outings with the AquaSox.


With the moves, the active Clinton roster stands at 25 players with three on the disabled list.  Both Gallagher and Merry are expected to be in uniform for tonight’s game against Kane County.





6/26 Game Notes

Well, the first game of the second half didn’t exactly go as hoped for your LumberKings as they were stifled by right-hander Brad Stillings of the Beloit Snappers in a 6-1 loss.  Stillings scattered three hits over 7.0 innings.  Clinton finally scored in the ninth inning on a bases-loaded walk to Matt Cerione to end the shutout.

Read more in tonight’s Game Notes: 
6.26.10 kingsnotes.pdf

Tonight, it’s left-hander Nick Czyz (0-0, 0.00) making his first start, fourth appearance for the LumberKings.  It’s also his first outing in the Midwest League since returning from High Desert over the All-Star Break.  Listen to all the action beginning at 6:00 PM on 1390kcln.com.


Odds and Ends from the All-Star Game

parkview entrance.jpgThe 2010 Midwest League All-Star Game took place at Parkview Field in Fort Wayne, Indiana last night, and in case you missed it, the East continued its run of dominance with a 6-2 win over the West.  Great Lakes’ Jerry Sands — the league home run leader — belted a first-inning opposite-field shot that proved to be the difference, helping him earn the “Star of Stars” award.  You can read plenty more about the game and also check out the final box score here:  Sands Powers East to All-Star Win

I spent part of the game shooting video from Press Row in the luxury suites, part of it on the radio with Mike Maahs of the Fort Wayne TinCaps (I might have audio of my sixth inning play-by-play, including Nick Franklin’s infield single to post in the near future) and part of it down in the seats behind home plate.  I must say, the TinCaps put on an excellent show and impressed a lot of folks.

I captured some video on your Kings in action, but it’s going to take some time to edit before it’s ready.  In the meantime, enjoy some photos and a pre-All-Star interview with the derby rep himself, Nick Franklin.

Listen Here: 
Franklin ASG Interview 6.22.10.mp3

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Vinnie Catricala takes some cuts during the optional West Division batting practice.

franklin asg 1.jpg

Franklin gets in some BP as well.

Erasmo Ramirez, Brian Moran, Catricala and Franklin

asg anthem.jpg

More video (hopefully) to follow in the next few days.  Oh yeah, and the LumberKings start the second half on Friday.  No rest for the weary.


2010 Midwest League Home Run Derby

I had the fortune (and media credential) of enjoying last night’s Midwest League Home Run Derby from the West Division dugout at Parkview Field, and what a show it was.  Clinton’s own Nick Franklin hit a combined six home runs while lasting into the second round, but ultimately it was the smooth right-handed strokes of Wisconsin’s Khris Davis and Fort Wayne’s own Nate Freiman that produced the most clouts last night.

Davis ended up winning in a pretty impressive final round over Freiman.  Both launched several to deep left field that seemed to get completely over the back wall of the stadium.  I have video to prove it, which you will see within the next few days (or later today if I get the time to edit).

For now, here’s some pictures from last night:

ParkviewField ASG 1.jpg

Parkview Field, home of the Fort Wayne TinCaps.

autograph line.jpg

Brian Moran (seated on the very end) of your LumberKings takes part in the pregame autograph session.

in the dugout.jpg

Inside the West Division dugout during the Skills Contest.

franklin derby 1.jpgNick Franklin prepares for the Home Run Derby.

ramirez catricala moran.jpg

Erasmo Ramirez, Vinnie Catricala and Brian Moran of your LumberKings.

franklin derby 2.jpgMike Trout
, Franklin, Davis and Matt Adams represent the West.

Thumbnail image for franklin derby 3.jpgFranklin swings in the first round.  He had four blasts and moved on to the second round.

franklin derby 4.jpgFranklin watches the flight of one of his two second-round homers.

freiman derby.jpgNate Freiman
of the East puts on a display for his home fans.  While he didn’t win, his home runs easily traveled the furthest to left.

davis derby.jpg

Wisconsin’s Khris Davis talks to reporters following his derby victory.


 More to come after tonight!


2010 First-Half Finale

Happy Father’s Day from the LumberBlog!

Believe it or not, the first half comes to an end today for your Clinton LumberKings.  There’s no playoff spot on the line, only a shot at sole posession of third place and some momentum going into the second half.  If the Kings beat Beloit and Peoria loses to Quad Cities, Clinton’s 38-31 record would put them alone in third.  That’s what we play for this afternoon.

A tradition continues today as we reflect on the year so far with the 2010 First-Half Highlight Reel.  From Kalian Sams’ dramatic home runs to Nick Franklin’s amazing first full season to unbelievable plays in right field by James Jones to the strikeout artistry of Jon Hesketh and more, hear it all (and then some).

Listen Here: 
2010 First Half Highlight Reel.mp3

Today’s Game Notes: 
6.20.10 kingsnotes.pdf

The half ends with right-hander Taylor Stanton (6-3, 3.51) on the mound for his 11th start.  First pitch is scheduled for 2:00 PM, listen to the game online at 1390kcln.com.

After today, check back the next two days for coverage of the 2010 Midwest League All-Star Game in Fort Wayne, Indiana.  I’ll be there alongside Franklin, Vinnie Catricala, Brian Moran and Erasmo Ramirez.  It should be a great time.


6/19 Notes

There’s no rain whatsoever expected for tonight, so twinbill baseball is a go for 5:00 PM.  Left-hander Jon Hesketh (3-4, 4.55) is expected to throw game one, with right-hander John Housey (4-2, 2.88) getting the game two start.

Check out the Game Notes here: 
6.19.10 kingsnotes.pdf

Listen to both games online on 1390kcln.com starting at 4:45 PM.