Tonight’s Interview: Nate Reed

For the first time this season, your LumberKings have a share of first place.  Yes, they’re still 25-46 overall, but with a second-half-opening 5-4 win over the Burlington Bees last night, the Kings are in a four-way tie for first in the West Division.

It didn’t come easy, and it didn’t come without a few breaks going Clinton’s way.  Trailing 3-1 heading into the bottom of the eighth and looking farely overmatched against hard-throwing Bees’ right-hander Pedro Vidal, the Kings looked headed to another close loss at the hands of Burlington.  Stefen Romero ended Vidal’s string of seven-straight batters retired with a flare single to right-center, and Matt Browning reached on a dropped pop-up by recent Midwest League “Star of Stars” winner, Bees’ second-baseman Nino Leyja.  The window of opportunity opened as Mickey Wiswall cut the deficit to 3-2 with a Texas League RBI single to right, and things just got downright odd as Wiswall was caught in an apparent inning-ending rundown between first and second, only to be given second base upon Eddie Menchaca’s appeal to the umpires that Tim Morris had actually been hit by the low-and-in pitch.

That sudden reversal of fortunes put the Bees’ defense back on the diamond (they had gone into the dugout and stayed there in the midst of manager Aaron Niekula’s rebuttal) and brought up Steven Baron, who drilled Vidal’s 1-0 pitch down the third-base line to score Browning and Wiswall (listen: Baron Go-Ahead 2-Run Double 6.24.11).  Kalian Sams then grounded towards All-Star shortstop Yordy Cabrera, but Cabrera booted it, sending Morris home for a 5-3 Clinton advantage.

Left-hander Nate Reed (pictured) would have been a bright spot no matter what the final outcome, given his season-high seven strikeouts (including three-straight against Burlington’s 4-5-6 spots in the eighth) over 2.1 innings last night.  Despite giving up Royce Consigli’s third RBI double of the night in the ninth, Reed closed down the game for his first win with the LumberKings.

And so, he’s my interview guest tonight.  We talk about last night’s outing, his setup role in the bullpen, his long path to the pros (including three seasons at the University of Pittsburgh, a 20th round selection by the Chicago White Sox and one season at Kutztown University) and more.

Listen Here:  Reed Interview 6.25.11

Tonight’s Game Notes:  6.25.11 kingsnotes

Roster Move:  With right-hander George Mieses coming off the disabled list tonight to make the start, someone had to go.  That turned out to be right-hander Stephen Kohlscheen, who was shipped to short-A Everett.

Starting Lineups:

Burlington Bees (0-1, 45-26):  Royce Consigli/LF, Jose Crisotomo/CF, Tony Thompson/3B, A.J. Kirby-Jones/1B, Josh Whitaker/DH, Douglas Landaeta/RF, Yordy Cabrera/SS, Nino Leyja/2B, John Nester/C, Nate Long/RHP

LumberKings (1-0, 25-46):  Stefen Romero/DH, Julio Morban/CF, Matt Browning/3B, Mickey Wiswall/1B, Kevin Rivers/LF, Steven Baron/C, Kalian Sams/RF, Jetsy Extrano/2B, Anthony Phillips/SS, George Mieses/RHP

First pitch is at 6:00 PM on this “Stay Late Saturday”, listen to the broadcast on 1390kcln.com.

-DL

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