Tonight’s Interview: Rick Waits
After allowing a career-high five earned runs in his previous start, it’s clear that left-hander James Paxton had a rebound outing last night against Quad Cities. He set a new career high with 13 strikeouts and yielded just one run on four hits over 6.1 innings as the LumberKings beat the River Bandits, 5-1 at Alliant Energy Field. Paxton struck out six-straight batters at one point in the game (listen: Paxton 11th Strikeout 6.16.11), but left in the seventh with the bases loaded and one out. Right-hander Tyler Burgoon came on and left them loaded as he induced a highlight-reel double play started by second-baseman Jorge Agudelo (listen: Agudelo Flip to Ramirez for DP 6.16.11). Burgoon did not allow a run over 2.2 innings to secure his seventh save, making Paxton a winner for the third time. Mickey Wiswall had the clutch hit of the night, singling home two runs to open up a 4-1 lead in the fourth (listen: Wiswall 2-R single 6.16.11).
The efforts for K-Pax and Burgoon were well-timed as they took place in front of Mariners’ Minor League Pitching Coordinator Rick Waits. After coaching for 15 seasons with the New York Mets (including 2003 as their Major League Bullpen Coach), Waits has inherited a minor league system chock full of potential impact arms. Waits is my pregame guest tonight, and he shares plenty of his own insight into Paxton, tonight’s starter Taijuan Walker, Burgoon and the Clinton bullpen, former LumberKing and current Tacoma Rainier right-hander Blake Beavan and how close he is to a Seattle call-up, the outstanding arms in double-A Jackson including Andrew Carraway, Erasmo Ramirez, Anthony Vasquez, Kenn Kasparek and Tom Wilhelmsen and more. It’s definitely a worthy listen.
Tonight’s Game Notes: 6.17.11 kingsnotes
Today’s Roster Move: Despite the potential game-saving play last night, Agudelo has been sent to short-A Everett to clear space for infielder Shaver Hansen, who has been reinstated from the DL and will play tonight in Kane County.
LumberKings (22-45): Julio Morban/CF, Mickey Wiswall/1B, Tim Morris/D, Matt Browning/3B, Kalian Sams/RF, Shaver Hansen/2B, Robbie Anston/LF, Billy Marcoe/C, Anthony Phillips/SS, Taijuan Walker/RHP
Kane County Cougars (27-39): Angel Franco/2B, Ryan Stovall/3B, Brett Eibner/CF, Brian Fletcher/LF, Jake Kuebler/1B, Geulin Beltre/DH, Orlando Calixte/SS, Travis Jones/C, Julio Aparicio/RF, Leonel Santiago/RHP
First pitch is at 7:00 PM here at Elfstrom Stadium, listen to the broadcast on 1390kcln.com.