Results tagged ‘ Jason Bay ’
Texas Rangers’ closer Neftali Feliz becomes fourth former Clinton player to win a R.O.Y. award
Former Clinton LumberKings right-hander and Texas Rangers’ closer Neftali Feliz was voted the 2010 American League Rookie of the Year in an announcement today from the Baseball Writers Association of America. He is the fourth former Clinton player to win the award, joining Steve Sax (1982 N.L. Rookie of the Year), Ron Kittle (1983 A.L. Rookie of the Year) and Jason Bay (2004 N.L. Rookie of the Year).
The 22-year-old Feliz received 20 out of 28 first-place votes thanks to an outstanding 2010 season with the American League Champion Rangers. He set a Major League Baseball record for saves by a rookie, converting 40 of 43 chances while going 4-3 with a 2.73 ERA in 70 appearances with Texas.
Feliz was acquired by the Rangers as part of a seven-player trade with Atlanta on July 31, 2007. He began his first full season in the Texas system as a starting pitcher with the LumberKings in 2008. The Azua, Dominican Republic native went 6-3 with a 2.52 ERA in 17 starts that year, walking just 28 batters while striking out 106 over 82.0 innings. Feliz was named a 2008 Midwest League All-Star and was also the league’s Pitcher of the Week from June 9-16.
Feliz joins Kittle as the only former Clinton players to win the American League award. Kittle, a member of the Clinton Dodgers in 1977, won in 1983 while an outfielder with the Chicago White Sox. Sax (1979 Clinton Dodgers) was the National League’s top rookie in 1982 while with the Los Angeles Dodgers, while Bay (2001 LumberKings) took home the nomination following his 2004 season with the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Folks from miles around flock to Alliant Energy Field once a year for this day. In the past, the likes of Dave Stewart, Mike Scioscia, Orel Hershiser, Jason Bay, Grady Sizemore and Ian Kinsler have been immortalized with their Clinton likeness in bobble form. Danks takes his turn tonight.
Danks pitched with the LumberKings in 2004 a year after being drafted in the first round by the Texas Rangers. That season, he went 3-2 with a 2.17 ERA in 14 games, eight starts.
Since then, he’s passed through the upper levels of the Rangers’ system before being traded to the Chicago White Sox in 2006 in a deal that brought Brandon McCarthy and former LumberKing David Paisano to Texas. Since his 2007 debut with the Sox, Danks is 42-40 with a 3.89 ERA, including 11-7 with a 3.23 mark in 20 starts this season.
The giveaway bobbleheads aren’t expected to last long tonight, but we will have some available to sell through the Souvenir Store. You can obtain one in the near future by calling the Kings at 563-242-0727.
As for tonight’s game, the LumberKings try to break free from a 1-8 skid that has dropped them from third place to seventh place in the West. The playoff hopes are still very much alive with 38 games remaining, but a winning streak needs to start soon.
Tonight’s Game Notes:
Left-hander Nick Czyz (2-2, 4.34) will be on the hill this evening facing the Cedar Rapids Kernels, first pitch scheduled for 7:00 PM. Listen to the game on 1390kcln.com.
On tonight’s pregame interview, I venture into the visiting clubhouse to interview Quad Cities River Bandits’ manager Johnny Rodriguez. Why? Because the rival skipper was on the Clinton staff in 2001, the year that produced stars Jason Bay and Grady Sizemore.
Not enough for you? Rodriguez has his Bandits at 6-1 after last night’s unfortunate 4-2 loss for the LumberKings (more about that in tonight’s notes:
One more reason to listen to the interview.
Rodriguez’s son Sean is a three-year Major League infielder, currently playing with the Tampa Bay Rays.
We’ll talk about all of that on the interview with the former LumberKings coach this evening.
Johnny Rodriguez (QC Manager) Interview 4.15.10.mp3
The LumberKings will attempt to draw even in the series against Rodriguez’s Bandits behind right-hander Tyler Blandford (0-0, 4.15), making his second career start. The broadcast begins at 6:15 PM on 1390kcln.com!
While Jason Bay (’01) is easily the most notable former LumberKing to change teams, he’s not the only former Clinton player who will be settling in to new digs in 2010.
Bay’s four-year, $66 million deal with the New York Mets is certainly the headliner. The ’01 LumberKing hit .267 with a career-high 36 homers and 119 RBI with Boston last year, but Theo Epstein’s four-year offer apparently wasn’t sweet enough to keep Bay on Yawkey Way.
Never fear for the Red Sox, not only did they get John Lackey, Adrian Beltre and Mike Cameron, but they also replaced Bay with another former LumberKing. On November 25, the Sox swung a deal that sent cash to the Kansas City Royals in exchange for infielder Tug Hulett (’05).
Boston becomes the fourth organization already for the young Hulett, who hit .265 with 70 runs scored and 20 steals for the ’05 LumberKings. He debuted two seasons ago with Seattle and was traded to the Royals last winter. Hulett has combined to hit .194 with a home run and three RBI over 45 big-league games.
The Royals subtracted Hulett on the same day that they added another former LumberKing. Josh Rupe (’03), who went 3-1 with Texas in 2008 but pitched in only four games in 2009, signed a minor league deal after being granted free agency by the Rangers on November 9. Rupe went 4-1 with a 3.90 ERA over six games with the Kings in 2003.
While technically old news from the end of the 2009 season, reliever Roy Corcoran (’02) is now in the Houston system after signing a minor league deal last August. Corcoran was notable as the only former LumberKing on the 25-man roster with Seattle when Clinton signed on as a Mariners’ affiliate last winter. In 82 Major League outings, Corcoran is 8-3 with a 4.17 ERA and three saves. He was 3-4 with 11 saves in 2002.
Rounding things out, former Clinton Giant Matt Williams (’86) was named the first base coach for the Arizona Diamondbacks, while Clinton Dodger Mitch Webster (’78) is now the Midwest Regional Scouting Supervisor for the Royals. As reported in an earlier post, former manager Andy Fox (’06) is now in the Mariners’ system as the hitting coach for double-A West Tennessee.
If you have news to share about a former Clinton player or ARE a former Clinton player and want to update the fans on what you’re doing, send me an email at email@example.com. I’d be happy to post it here on the LumberBlog.
In a press release sent out yesterday by the Texas Rangers, former LumberKings Mitch Moreland (’08) and Craig Gentry (’07) were named winners of 2009 Minor League awards.
Moreland (left) took home the Tom Grieve Minor League Player of the Year honors, hitting .331 with 16 home runs and 85 RBI in 116 games between Baksersfield and Frisco. He then went on to hit .300 with three blasts and 12 RBI in 18 games in the Arizona Fall League. Of course, many of you will remember Moreland’s monster 2008 in black-and-green when he hit .324 with 18 homers and 99 RBI. He also struck out three batters over 2.0 innings as a left-handed reliever.
The speedy Gentry was named the Minor League Defender of the Year thanks to stellar defense primarily with Frisco. He was third in the Texas League in putouts (296) and tied for eighth in outfield assists (8). Gentry was called up to Texas in September and became the first 2007 LumberKing to reach the Majors.
Coming up in the near future on the LumberBlog, we’ll take a look at former LumberKings that are switching uniforms in 2010 (yes, others not named Jason Bay) and throw out some possible names for next year’s roster. That’s right, content coming up!
An update on former LumberKings in the MLB Playoffs:
Jason Bay (’01) was a disappointing 1-for-8 with three walks and three strikeouts for the Red Sox as they were swept by Mike Scioscia’s (’77) Angels. Gary Matthews (’95) went 0-for-1 in the series.
If the Phillies get by Jim Tracy’s Colorado Rockies and on to an NLCS matchup with the Dodgers, it still looks like it will be without John Mayberry, Jr. (’06). Matt Stairs and Ben Francisco probably have the reserve outfield spots on lockdown barring injury despite going a combined 0-for-2.
That’s it and that’s all for now.
When the 2009 MLB Playoffs officially kick off this evening, the Midwest League will be well-represented. Rather than dig up every Postseason participant that ever spent a day in the league, I’ll focus on former LumberKings (or Clinton players in general) that will vie for the World Series trophy this year:
Red Sox: Jason Bay (’01)
Angels: Manager Mike Scioscia (Clinton catcher in ’77), Gary Matthews, Jr. (’95)
That appears to be it. I won’t do a full playoff prediction for the big leagues like I did the Midwest League, but my support will be behind the Colorado Rockies. Manager Jim Tracy never played for a Clinton squad, but his son Chad Tracy was a LumberKing in ’07.