Results tagged ‘ Brandon Maurer ’

Wednesday Notes (5/18)

Despite another ninth-inning comeback attempt and home runs by both Jabari Blash and Mickey Wiswall, the LumberKings could not extend a winning streak to two games last night, falling 8-6 to the Burlington Bees in the opener of this 10-game road trip.  Wiswall belted a two-run shot in the ninth off right-hander Drew Tyson that brought the Kings to within two, but Tyson then retired Stefen Romero leaving the potential tying run — Carlos Ramirez — in the on-deck circle.

Listen to the blasts:  Blash Solo HR (#2) 5.17.11   |   Wiswall 2-R HR (#2) 5.17.11

Clinton is now 3-13 in the month of May, dropping their season record to a MWL-worst 10-29.  Not many ways to sugar-coat it, but chew on this statistic…of the 13 May losses, the Kings have had the tying or winning runs either at the plate or in the on-deck circle in their final at-bat nine times and have scored eight runs total in the ninth inning.  They’ve lost by three runs five times, two runs five times and one run four times in that 13-game span. 

More encouraging factoids just like like that one in tonight’s Game Notes:  5.18.11 kingsnotes

The “no starting lineups” thing didn’t work two games in a row, so here you go…

LumberKings (10-29):  Shaver Hansen/2B, Kevin Rivers/LF, Tim Morris/DH, Stefen Romero/3B, Mickey Wiswall/1B, Jabari Blash/CF, Kalian Sams/RF, Steven Baron/C, Jake Schlander/SS, Edlando Seco/LHP

Burlington Bees (28-9):  Royce Consigli/RF, Nino Leyja/2B, Tony Thompson/3B, Josh Whitaker/DH, Yordy Cabrera/SS, Douglas Landaeta/LF, AJ Kirby-Jones/1B, Tyreace House/CF, John Nester/C, Tyler Vail/RHP

Notice anything different about those lineups?  Kevin Rivers is starting for the first time since April 25 vs. Peoria and lefty Edlando Seco makes his first start since game one of the Northwest League Playoffs when he suited up for Everett against Oakland’s low-A affiliate (and many of the Bees hitters) in Vancouver.  Seco hasn’t allowed a run over his last 8.0 innings as a reliever and steps up to fill the vacated rotation spot left by right-hander Brandon Maurer.

Should be an interesting one tonight.  Listen online at  First pitch is at 6:30 PM.


Tonight’s Interview: Rich Dorman (Vol. 2)

Yes, the LumberKings went 0-3 on the homestand against the West’s first-place team, the Burlington Bees (including a 4-2 loss last night), but there’s no doubt the Clinton pitching staff is coming around.  As you’ll read in tonight’s Game Notes (posted below), the rotation is 3-4 with a 2.67 ERA over the last 11 games and the bullpen is 1-2 with a 1.64 ERA over the last four games. 

Right-hander Forrest Snow fell to 1-4 despite allowing four runs (one earned) over 6.0 innings last night.  Right-hander Brandon Maurer has an ERA of 0.69 over his last two starts.  Left-hander James Paxton made strides in his second start two games ago.  Right-hander Jandy Sena (no runs in two games, 4.0 IP) and left-hander Edlando Seco (no runs in two games, 6.0 IP) are helping the bullpen turn it around.  There’s signs of life amongst the Clinton arms.

Thus, it’s time to talk to pitching coach Rich Dorman again.  In the full-cut interview (a shorter version will air on the broadcast), Dorman talks about Snow, Maurer, George Mieses, Paxton, tonight’s starter Taijuan Walker, Sena, Seco and others.  Definitelya worthy listen as Dorman elaborates with great detail over nearly nine minutes.

Listen Here:  Dorman Interview 5.10.11

Tonight’s Game Notes:  5.10.11 kingsnotes

Starting Lineups:

LumberKings (9-23):  Shaver Hansen/2B, Julio Morban/CF, Stefen Romero/3B, Mickey Wiswall/1B, Matt Browning/DH, Jake Schlander/SS, Jabari Blash/RF, Steven Baron/C, Robbie Anston/LF, Taijuan Walker/RHP

Quad Cities River Bandits (14-17):  Greg Garcia/SS, Starlin Rodriguez/2B, Oscar Taveras/RF, Cody Stanley/C, Jonathan Rodriguez/1B, Packy Elkins/3B, Chris Edmondson/LF, Romulo Ruiz/DH, Frederick Parejo/CF, Seth Blair/RHP

How will Walker and the rest of the staff fare in this three-game road series against 14-17 Quad Cities?  Hopefully it’s the continuation of the trend we’ve seen for the last 11 days.  First pitch is at 7:00 PM, listen online at


Mother’s Day Notes (5/8)

First off, happy Mothers Day to you all!  Looks like we’ll have a fantastic day for baseball here at AEF.

A reminder for all of you dedicated LumberKings fans, Mariners’ prospect followers and supporters of breast cancer awareness (that should be everyone, of course).  The LumberKings will be wearing special pink caps on the field today as they take on the Burlington Bees at 2:00 PM.  Those caps will be autographed and auctioned off both here at the game today and online through the Kings’ ebay site.

Expect hats from guys like Taijuan Walker, Stefen Romero, Forrest Snow, Jabari Blash and others to hit the web within the next few days.  It’s a one-of-a-kind item for a great cause…all proceeds from the cap auction are going to the Susan G. Komen fund.  So get your hands on a cap and help the cause also.

Getting to last night…the LumberKings battled all night with the West Division-leading Bees thanks to the efforts of right-hander Brandon Maurer.  The 23rd round pick in 2008 struck out a career-high 11 batters over 6.0 innings, exiting in a 1-1 game.  Right-hander Jonathan Arias pitched as well as we’ve seen all season with two scoreless innings but yielded the game-winning RBI double to Yordy Cabrera in the top of the ninth as the Kings fell 2-1.  Stefen Romero doubled twice and finished 3-for-4 and Tim Morris went 3-for-4 with an RBI, but it wasn’t enough to keep Clinton from falling to 1-5 against Burlington this season.

Listen to Maurer’s 11th punch-out:  Maurer Career-High 11th Strikeout 5.7.11

Left-hander James Paxton missed his last start after a minor BP injury, but he’s back today for his second career outing.  The Mariners’ 4th-round pick is 0-1 with a 4.50 ERA following his debut outing against Peoria back on April 27.  The Bees answer with left-hander Jacob Brown, Oakland’s 26th round pick in 2010.  Brown is 3-0 with a sparkling 1.48 ERA on the season.

Today’s Game Notes:  5.8.11 kingsnotes

Starting Lineups: 

Burlington Bees (21-7):  Tyreace House/CF, Royce Consigli/RF, Nino Leyja/2B, Jose Rivero/DH, Yordy Cabrera/SS, Josh Whitaker/1B, Douglas Landaeta/LF, Wade Kirkland/3B, Daniel Petitti/C, Jacob Brown/LHP

LumberKings (9-21):  Julio Morban/LF, Shaver Hansen/2B, Stefen Romero/DH, Mickey Wiswall/1B, Matt Cerione/CF, Ramon Morla/3B, Jabari Blash/RF, Marcus Littlewood/SS, Steven Baron/C, James Paxton/LHP.

First pitch is at 2:00 PM, listen online at


Tonight’s Interview: Steven Baron

In a tale of two games yesterday, the LumberKings built a 7-0 lead on offensive days from Steven Baron (3-for-4, two doubles, HR, 3 RBI), Jabari Blash (3-for-5, HR, RBI) and Mickey Wiswall (1-for-5, 2 RBI), all backing seven scoreless, two-hit innings from right-hander Brandon Maurer.

It wouldn’t last.  Beloit scored nine runs on the beleaguered Clinton bullpen in the eighth inning to take a sudden 9-7 lead and would go on to win 10-8.  Rather than wallow in the 17th loss of the season and fourth at the hands of the rival Snappers, I’m emphasising the growth we saw yesterday from this offense, particularly Baron.

Yesterday’s Highlights:

Seattle’s supplemental first-round selection out of high school in 2009, Baron struggled with the LumberKings in the first half.  He’d be sent down at midseason to the short-A Everett AquaSox, where in working with former Kings’ manager Scott Steinmann, Baron would grow into a Northwest League Postseason All-Star.  He’d win a ring with the Sox before returning to Clinton for the Midwest League Championship Series.  This spring, Baron was a mainstay in Major League camp with the Mariners, hitting .500 (7-for-14) with a home run and three RBI.

All of that for a guy who is still learning to be consistent at the plate and still working on the finer points of handling a pitching staff.  The 20-year-old Baron talks about his breakout offensive day yesterday, catching Maurer, what he does as a catcher when a pitcher is struggling (as we saw in the 8th yesterday), his wild 2010 season, his Cactus League experience and more.  Note…the wind plays a bit of a factor in the audio quality at the latter half of the interview, but I didn’t want to cut that part. 

Listen Here:  Baron Interview (Full Edition) 5.2.11

Tonight’s Game Notes:  5.2.11 kingsnotes

Starting Lineups:

Beloit Snappers (13-8):  Jamaal Hawkins/SS, Gunner Glad/2B, Lance Ray/RF, Michael Gonzales/1B, Daniel Ortiz/CF, Josmil Pinto/C, Nate Roberts/LF, Andrew Leer/3B, Derek McCallum/DH, BJ Hermsen/RHP

LumberKings (7-17):  Julio Morban/LF, Shaver Hansen/2B, Tim Morris/DH, Mickey Wiswall/1B, Matt Cerione/CF, Ramon Morla/3B, Jabari Blash/RF, Steven Baron/C, Carlos Ramirez/SS, Stephen Kohlscheen/RHP

First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 PM, listen online at


Tuesday Notes (4/26)

Hidden deep within last night’s 14-3 loss to Peoria were a few bright spots.  Shortstop Marcus Littlewood hit his first professional home run in the second inning, taking Chicago Cubs’ first-round pick Hayden Simpson deep to the Lumber Lounge in right for a solo shot.  Right-hander Willy Kesler lowered his ERA to 1.38 with 4.0 scoreless innings of relief including two strikeouts.  Matt Cerione went 3-for-4 with his first RBI of the season and is now 5-for-8 over his last two games.   Tim Morris recorded his third multi-hit game in the last four games, going 2-for-4 with a run scored.

Listen to the not-so-little blast: Littlewood solo HR (first of career) 4.25.11

Aside from that, last night was tough to watch.  The Chiefs batted around and then some on right-handers George Mieses and Jonathan Arias during an eight-run second inning, the second eight-run frame Clinton pitchers have allowed in the last three games.  The offense went just 1-for-8 with runners in scoring position and have scored Mieses just three runs of support in four starts.

But, there’s more new blood on the roster today with the addition of outfielder Jabari Blash.  He and fellow new arrival Shaver Hansen are both in the lineup tonight for the middle game of this three-game set against Peoria.  Right-hander Brandon Maurer (1-1, 3.00) has lost his “tandem” tag and is now a full-time starter…he lost his last time out against Cedar Rapids on 4/20 despite giving up just three runs over 5.0 innings.  Maurer will be on the hill tonight for start #3.

Read more in tonight’s Game Notes:  4.26.11 kingsnotes

Starting Lineups:

Peoria (9-8):  Matt Szczur/CF, Rubi Silva/RF, Greg Rohan/3B, Richard Jones/1B, Micah Gibbs/C, Elliot Soto/2B, DJ Fitzgerald/LF, Anthony Giansanti/DH, Arismendy Alcantara/SS, Austin Kirk/LHP

LumberKings (5-13):  Matt Cerione/CF, Shaver Hansen/2B, Julio Morban/LF, Mickey Wiswall/DH, Ramon Morla/3B, Tim Morris/1B, Jabari Blash/RF, Marcus Littlewood/SS, Steven Baron/C, Brandon Maurer/RHP

First pitch is once again at 6:30 PM, tune in online at


Tonight’s Interview: Brandon Maurer

We received a bit of the thrilling and a bit more of the disappointing yesterday as the LumberKings rallied from a 3-1 deficit to tie the score 3-3 in the bottom of the ninth, only to lose to Burlington 4-3 on a 10th inning error.  Anthony Phillips provided both the game-tying solo homer in the ninth (LISTEN TO PHILLIPS’ BLAST) and the throwing error that plated Burlington’s go-ahead run.  It just goes to show how quickly things can turn in this game, and it unfortunately happened to Phillips, who celebrates his 21st birthday today.

Not lost in the mix was a solid 4.0-inning start from right-hander Brandon Maurer.  For a guy who would have likely been in the Clinton rotation last year if not for a season-derailing right elbow injury, simply making an April start was a victory in itself.  A four-hit, six-strikeout performance was pure icing for the ’08 23rd round pick.

Today, I caught up with Maurer to talk about yesterday’s outing, the experience in joining Clinton at playoff time last year, his offseason stint with the Adelaide Bite of the Australian Baseball League (where he developed his new slider), pitching in a tandem with right-hander Fray Martinez and more.

Listen Here:  Maurer Interview 4.11.11.mp3

Tonight’s Game Notes:  4.11.11 kingsnotes

It’s an all-international mound matchup tonight as South Korean-born right-hander Seon Gi Kim makes his LumberKings’ debut against Moscow, Russia native and Beloit left-hander Andrei Lobanov.  First pitch is at 6:30 PM, listen online at

Tonight’s Lineups:

LumberKings (1-3):  Matt Cerione/CF, Julio Morban/RF, Ramon Morla/3B, Mickey Wiswall/1B, Stefen Romero/2B, Tim Morris/DH, Steven Baron/C, Marcus Littlewood/SS, Kevin Rivers/LF, Seon Gi Kim/RHP

Beloit (2-2):  Daniel Santana/SS, Gunner Glad/2B, Lance Ray/1B, Oswaldo Arcia/DH, Derek McCallum/LF, Daniel Ortiz/RF, Kyle Knudson/C, Reggie Williams/3B, Wang-Wei Lin/CF, Andrei Lobanov/LHP


Sunday Notes (4/10)

Kevin Rivers belted a thrilling two-out, two-run homer on the first pitch he saw in the seventh inning to put the Kings ahead 4-3, but Burlington rallied for three runs with the help of two errors in the eighth to win, 6-4 last night.  Right-hander Matt Bischoff (L, 0-1) took the loss, allowing three runs — one earned — on six hits over 2.0 innings in relief.  The series concludes today with Clinton looking for the split on a rare 80-degree April Sunday.

Listen to the Rivers bomb:   Rivers 2-R HR (#1) 4.9.11.mp3

Right-hander Brandon Maurer (4-8, 3.23 career) makes his first start of 2011  today against the Bees, first pitch scheduled for 2:00 PM.  Right-hander Blake Hassebrock (0-1, 5.96 career) starts for Burlington.

Today’s Game Notes:   4.10.11 kingsnotes

Today’s Lineups:

Burlington (2-1):  Tyreace House/CF, Nino Leyja/3B, Douglas Landaeta/LF, Tony Thompson/1B, Yordy Cabrera/DH, Wade Kirkland/SS, Royce Consigli/RF, Ryan Pineda/2B, Daniel Petitti/C, Blake Hassebrock/RHP

LumberKings (1-2):  Matt Cerione/CF, Julio Morban/RF, Ramon Morla/3B, Mickey Wiswall/DH, Stefen Romero/2B, Tim Morris/1B, Steven Baron/C, Kevin Rivers/LF, Anthony Phillips/SS, Brandon Maurer/RHP

Listen in for the pregame show beginning at 1:45 PM on!


It didn’t count, but it was still baseball

The LumberKings hit the field for batting practice and a simulated game this evening in front of a crowd of die-hard fans.  Seon Gi Kim and Edlando Seco got some work in against live hitters, two who already visited the Leinenkugel’s Lumber Lounge.  Both Kevin Rivers and Julio Morban hit home runs…home runs that don’t count for much other than pride.

Still, it was a fun first-time experience.  Probably not as fun as High Desert’s exhibition action against Victor Valley College last night.  Nine Mavs pitchers, including former LumberKings Jimmy Gillheeney (’10), Nick Czyz (’10), Jon Hesketh (’09-’10), Ogui Diaz (’09), Jose Jimenez (’09-’10), John Housey (’10) and Chris Kirkland (’09-’10) threw a no-hitter in a 12-0 win over the Rams.

I doubt we’ll see a nine-pitcher no-no tomorrow night in the 2011 Opener against Burlington, but we’ll get a good look at Forrest Snow and some other solid arms as well.  Here’s a look at the opening series rotation:

Thu:  RHP Forrest Snow vs. RHP Seth Frankoff

Fri:  LHP Anthony Fernandez vs. RHP Josh Bowman

Sat:  RHP George Mieses vs. RHP A.J. Griffin

Sun:  RHP Brandon Maurer vs. RHP Blake Hassebrock

Game notes will be up tomorrow along with an interview with likely interim manager Jesus Azuaje.  See you here at Alliant Energy Field tomorrow!


Maurer Down Under

Courtesy of my colleague Chris Mehring of the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers, who stumbled across this article from an Adelaide news site…

Right-hander Brandon Maurer, a member of the LumberKings late in 2010 is pitching with the Adelaide Bite of the Australian Baseball League.  Recently, a reporter stepped in to face his “150km/h missile” and wrote an article on it.  He also posted video of the epic battle.

Check it out here:

Looks like he broke off a few curveballs in addition to his “thunderbolts”.  Nice work, Brandon!


Awards and Moves for 8/30

In case you’re not a regular viewer of, there’s a couple of important stories now on there as of a few minutes ago.

Vinnie Catricala is the Offensive Player of the Week for the Midwest League.  Read more about Vinnie’s monster week here:

Also, left-hander Jose Jimenez and infielder Luis Nunez were both promoted to high-A High Desert as well today.  Right-hander Brandon Maurer and infielder Carlos Ramirez have been added from the AZL.  Read more here:

That’s all for now.  Full game notes and an interview (hopefully) coming up before tonight’s 6:30 PM start in Peoria.