Tonight’s Interview: Nick Franklin (Vol. 4)

franklin3.JPGThe LumberKings won for the 14th time in the last 20 games last night, hanging on for a 6-4 victory over the Quad Cities River Bandits last night.  Clinton amassed an early 5-0 lead and did just enough to protect it against the hard-charging Bandits, winning for the fifth time in their last six games at Modern Woodmen Park.  Right-hander Taylor Stanton improved to 10-6 with the win, becoming just the fifth MWL pitcher to reach a double-digit win total.

The Kings were able to grab that early lead off right-hander Eric Fornataro thanks to a breakout performance from shortstop Nick Franklin.  In what was amazingly just his second four-hit game this season, Franklin recorded three singles and his 19th double, finishing 4-for-5 with two runs scored in the #2 spot in the order.

Franklin had an eye-opening first half, hitting .299 with 14 home runs and 37 RBI to earn a midseason All-Star selection.  Since then, the 19-year-old first-round pick has come down to earth a bit, hitting .244 with five home runs and 17 RBI.  Pitchers have started to change their approach to Franklin in using more offspeed pitches, but he as well has started to adjust as a hitter.

Those adjustments have come in a multitude of ways, which Nick talks about on the pregame interview tonight.  From extra cage sessions with hitting coach Terry Pollreisz to “fight the virus” to using an old high school drill (hitting lima beans with a broomstick) to increase his visual acuity to pumping himself up with — get this — Phil Collins’ “In the Air Tonight” (which I incorrectly identify as a Genesis song).  Those topics and more are discussed tonight.

Listen Here: 
Franklin Interview 8.20.10.mp3

Tonight’s Game Notes: 
8.20.10 kingsnotes.pdf

Right-hander Erasmo Ramirez (10-4, 2.60) will have a difficult time reprising his 12-strikeout performance from his last start in the Quad Cities, but the LumberKings would certainly be happy with six good innings and a series win in his 20th start tonight.  The game begins at 7:00 PM, listen online at 1390kcln.com.

-DL

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