Results tagged ‘ Steven Baron ’

Baron Promoted to High Desert

Catcher Steven Baron is latest Clinton call-up to join Mavericks

Clinton, IA – The Clinton LumberKings, in conjunction with the Seattle Mariners have announced the promotion of catcher Steven Baron to high-A High Desert.  No counter move has been made, leaving the Clinton active roster with 24 players.

Baron, 20, hit .197 with a team-high 13 doubles, four home runs and 20 RBI in 57 games with the LumberKings this season.  Seattle’s supplemental first-round pick in 2009 out of John A. Ferguson High School in Miami, FL also spent the first half of 2010 with Clinton, hitting .182 with three doubles, a home run and 14 RBI in 45 games.  He finished last season with short-A Everett, hitting .253 with 12 doubles, three homers and 22 RBI as the Northwest League’s Post-Season All-Star at catcher.

With Baron’s promotion, the LumberKings are left with one active catcher, Carlton Tanabe.  Infielder Jetsy Extrano will be used as the emergency catcher until the roster spot is permanently filled.

 -DL

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

Tonight’s Interview: Eddie Menchaca (Vol. 5)

After a four-day hiatus for the Midwest League All-Star Break, your LumberKings are back at it tonight as they open the second half at home against the Burlington Bees.  With the second half beginning, it’s back to a 0-0 record and an eight-way tie for first in the West Division, although the Kings no longer have to worry about both Burlington and Wild Card winner Quad Cities as far as the standings are concerned.

Eddie Menchaca’s LumberKings might get treated like the underdogs as the second half begins, but a 9-8 record so far in the month of June indicates a club ready to turn things around with the fresh start.  My first interview of the second half is with the Clinton skipper, and we’ll talk about the team’s refocused attitude, the strong starting rotation including tonight’s starter Jandy Sena and Futures Game representative James Paxton, an offense now featuring a healthy Julio Morban and a new second-baseman in Jetsy Extrano, setting the tone against the first-half champion Bees and more.

Listen Here:  Menchaca Interview 6.24.11

Tonight’s Game Notes:  6.24.11 kingsnotes

Roster Moves:  Yesterday, the LumberKings swapped second-basemen as Shaver Hansen was promoted to high-A High Desert and Jetsy Extrano was received from short-A Everett.  Today, catcher Billy Marcoe was sent to the AZL to make room for Steven Baron, who has been reinstated from the disabled list.  Extrano and Baron are both in tonight’s lineup.

Starting Lineups:

Burlington Bees (0-0, 45-25):  Royce Consigli/RF, Nino Leyja/2B, Tony Thompson/3B, A.J. Kirby-Jones/1B, Josh Whitaker/DH, Douglas Landaeta/LF, Yordy Cabrera/SS, John Nester/C, Tyreace House/CF, Sean Murphy/RHP

LumberKings (0-0, 24-46):  Stefen Romero/DH, Julio Morban/CF, Matt Browning/3B, Mickey Wiswall/LF, Tim Morris/1B, Steven Baron/C, Kalian Sams/RF, Jetsy Extrano/2B, Anthony Phillips/SS, Jandy Sena/RHP

The quest for the 10th playoff spot in the last 14 seasons starts tonight at 7:00 PM.  Listen to the broadcast on 1390kcln.com.

-DL

Tonight’s Interview: Carlton Tanabe

The LumberKings fell 9-5 last night as Quad Cities scored five times in the ninth to break a 5-5 tie.  The winning run scored as Michael Swinson came home on a two-out bases-loaded wild pitch by Jonathan Arias.  Cody Stanley followed with a three-run double to put the game out of reach.

Clinton had overcome a 5-2 deficit with a three-run fourth inning after a 38-minute rain delay.  Carlton Tanabe started the two-out rally with an RBI double to left-center off Rock Falls, IL native Seth Blair.  He’d later score on a single by Julio Morban, who would in turn score on a single to center by Mickey Wiswall (listen: Wiswall RBI single 6.15.11).  The Kings scored five total runs against Blair, including two on a first-inning homer by Stefen Romero (listen: Romero 2-R HR (#4) 6.15.11), his first since April 30.

My interview tonight is with Tanabe, fresh off his 2-for-4 game.  The 24th round pick out of Pearl City, Hawaii has been Steven Baron’s back-up this season but is now getting a chance to play with Baron on the DL.  We talk about last night’s double, staying productive despite playing sparingly, getting an opportunity to start, his experience with former Mariners’ catcher Dan Wilson earlier this year, being the other half of the Hawaiian battery with Keli’i Zablan and more.

Listen Here:  Tanabe Interview 6.16.11

Tonight’s Game Notes:  6.16.11 kingsnotes

Starting Lineups:

Quad Cities River Bandits (37-28):  Michael Swinson/LF, Ronny Gil/SS, Oscar Taveras/RF, Starlin Rodriguez/2B, Cody Stanley/C, Nick Longmire/CF, Victor Sanchez/DH, Jonathan Rodriguez/3B, Geoff Klein/1B, Trevor Rosenthal/RHP

LumberKings (21-45):  Julio Morban/CF, Mickey Wiswall/DH, Tim Morris/1B, Matt Browning/3B, Kevin Rivers/RF, Jorge Agudelo/2B, Carlos Ramirez/SS, Robbie Anston/LF, Carlton Tanabe/C, James Paxton/LHP

Lefty James Paxton makes his final start before the 2011 Midwest League All-Star Game tonight and is looking to snap Clinton’s five-game losing streak.  Paxton gave up a career-high five earned runs over 5.1 innings in his last start against Bowling Green, but is still 2-2 with a 2.63 ERA and 54 strikeouts over his last seven starts.

The broadcast begins at 6:45 PM, listen online at 1390kcln.com.

-DL

Sunday Notes (6/12)

The second leg of this nine-game, three-opponent homestand comes to a close this afternoon as the LumberKings take on Bowling Green for game three of the three-game set.  The Hot Rods, needing another win last night to stay at least a half-game behind first-place Lansing in the East, got what they needed as Phil Wunderlich clubbed a two-run homer off right-hander Jandy Sena in the eighth to give thema 4-2 lead and ultimately the win by that count.

Steven Baron shined in the loss, doubling home Stefen Romero in the second inning off left-hander C.J. Riefenhauser and singling in Romero again in the fourth to tie the game at 2-2 (listen: Baron RBI single 6.11.11)  The Romero-Jabari Blash-Baron trio went a combined 6-for-11 with a double, two runs scored and two RBI while the rest of the lineup went 2-for-20.  Still, the Kings had a shot in the bottom of the ninth with Carlos Ramirez on and just one out against Hot Rods closer Chris Rearick, but pinch-hitter Matt Browning grounded into a game-ending double play as shortstop Derek Dietrich dove to make the stop and flipped to Hector Guevara from the ground for the 6-4-3 twin killing.

Clinton’s streak of three-straight series wins has stopped, but they’re still 7-4 against the East and will attempt to keep the Hot Rods from sweeping today.  18-year-old right-hander Taijuan Walker pitched just 3.0 innings with some minor back soreness his last time out against Dayton on 6/7 but is still riding a rotation-best 14.2-inning scoreless streak over his past three starts.  Walker puts his 2-2 record, 2.81 ERA on the line today as he faces Bowling Green for the first time.

More about Baron, Walker and others in today’s Game Notes:  6.12.11 kingsnotes

Starting Lineups:

Bowling Green Hot Rods (35-28):  Cody Rogers/LF, Hector Guevara/DH, Phil Wunderlich/1B, Derek Dietrich/SS, Steve Tinoco/RF, Robby Price/3B, Kevin Kiermaier/CF, Luke Bailey/C, Robi Estrada/2B, Enny Romero/LHP

LumberKings (21-42):   Carlos Ramirez/2B, Mickey Wiswall/LF, Tim Morris/DH, Stefen Romero/3B, Kevin Rivers/RF, Steven Baron/C, Jabari Blash/CF, Matt Browning/1B, Anthony Phillips/SS, Taijuan Walker/RHP

First pitch is at 2:00 PM, join me for the broadcast on 1390kcln.com.

-DL

Special Guest: Dan Wilson

Tonight’s pregame interview features 12-year Seattle Mariners’ catcher Dan Wilson, who is currently in Clinton working with catchers Steven Baron and Carlton Tanabe and also aiding manager Eddie Menchaca and his staff.  Wilson, the 1996 A.L. All-Star, regular backstop for the likes of Randy Johnson and Jamie Moyer and permanent Mariners’ fan-favorite joins me to talk about his post-retirement role with the Mariners, the Clinton catching corps, his insights on catching and handling a pitching staff, the current-day Mariners, memories of the ’95 season and more on this nearly eight-minute conversation.

Listen Here:  Dan Wilson Interview 5.14.11

Tonight’s Game Notes:  5.14.11 kingsnotes

Starting Lineups:

Wisconsin Timber Rattlers (17-15):  Nick Shaw/2B, Greg Hopkins/3B, Cody Hawn/1B, Chris Dennis/LF, Mike Walker/DH, Reggie Keen/CF, TJ Mittlestaedt/RF, Tony Pechek/C, Yadiel Rivera/SS, Matt Miller/RHP

LumberKings (9-27):  Shaver Hansen/2B, Carlos Ramirez/SS, Tim Morris/1B, Mickey Wiswall/LF, Stefen Romero/3B, Matt Browning/DH, Kalian Sams/RF, Jabari Blash/CF, Steven Baron/C, Forrest Snow/RHP

First pitch for “75th Anniversary Night” featuring the LumberKings in old Clinton Pilots uniforms is scheduled for 6:00 PM.  Listen to the game on 1390kcln.com.

-DL

Tonight’s Interview: Chris Mehring

Another game, another close loss last night as the LumberKings fell 4-1 in the Quad Cities.  For the third-straight night, the Kings had a chance in the ninth with the tying run at the plate.  Mickey Wiswall homered for the first time this season with two outs in the inning and singles by Matt Browning and Kalian Sams set the stage for Steven Baron.  Baron worked the count and was able to check up on a two-strike slider in the dirt once, but the next time he attempted to check on Boone Whiting’s slider, he was rung up for strike three by home plate umpire Mike Dorantes.

Highlights from last night:

The LumberKings open a three-game home series tonight against the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers.  Back on April 29 and 30, the Kings took two-straight games over the Rattlers and won their first (and only) road series of the season, two games to one.  Since then, Clinton is 2-10 while Wisconsin is 9-3.

Matt Erickson’s Rattlers have won five-straight games.  In the first two games of this series, Wisconsin will start right-hander Tyler Thornburg (2-0, 1.80), one of the Midwest League’s best in the early going of 2011 and Milwaukee Brewers’ left-hander Zach Braddock who is completing a rehab stint.  Given all of the positives for the Rattlers, I decided to interview their longtime radio voice, Chris Mehring.  We cover their recent winning trend, the fantastic starts of Thornburg and Austin Ross, Braddock’s start tomorrow, Erickson’s first year at the helm and more.

Listen Here:  Chris Mehring Interview 5.13.11

Tonight’s Game Notes:  5.13.11 kingsnotes

Starting Lineups:

Wisconsin Timber Rattlers (16-15):  Nick Shaw/2B, Greg Hopkins/3B, Cody Hawn/1B, Mike Walker/DH, Franklin Romero/RF, Robbie Garvey/LF, Reggie Keen/CF, Tyler Roberts/C, Yadiel Rivera/SS, Tyler Thornburg/RHP

LumberKings (9-26):  Robbie Anston/CF, Carlos Ramirez/2B, Tim Morris/DH, Stefen Romero/3B, Mickey Wiswall/1B, Kalian Sams/LF, Jabari Blash/RF, Steven Baron/C, Jake Schlander/SS, James Paxton/LHP

First pitch for Clinton Community College Night is scheduled for 6:30 PM, listen online at 1390kcln.com.

-DL

Tonight’s Interview: Shaver Hansen

It was a character-building win for the LumberKings yesterday in Peoria as they overcame 3-1 and 4-3 deficits over the eighth and ninth innings to beat the Chiefs, 5-4 in 14 innings.  Shaver Hansen (pictured left) went a career-best 4-for-6 with a two-run homer that tied the game in the eighth, and Ramon Morla doubled to score Mickey Wiswall to tie the game again in the ninth.

Finally in the top of the 14th, two walks and Wiswall’s infield single loaded the bases against Chiefs’ right-hander Bryce Shafer.  With two outs, Steven Baron worked the count to 3-2 and took a pitch high from Shafer for a go-ahead bases-loaded walk.  The relief work of right-handers Jandy Sena (3.0 scoreless innings for the win) and Willy Kesler (scoreless bottom of the 14th for the save) helped make Baron’s team-leading 12th RBI stand up.

Yesterday’s Highlights:

Tonight, I catch up with Hansen, Seattle’s sixth-round pick out of Baylor University in 2009 and a third-year member of the LumberKings.  We talk about yesterday’s monster effort, his thoughts on stint #3 in the black and green, shaking off an 0-for-14 start at the plate, his growth as a player in the last three seasons and more.

Listen Here:  Hansen Interview 5.7.11

Tonight’s Game Notes:  5.7.11 kingsnotes

Starting Lineups:

Burlington Bees (20-7):  Tyreace House/CF, Royce Consigli/RF, Nino Leyja/2B, Jose River/DH, Yordy Cabrera/SS, Josh Whitaker/1B, Douglas Landaeta/LF, Ryan Pineda/3B, John Nester/C, Tyler Vail/RHP

LumberKings (9-20):  Julio Morban/CF, Shaver Hansen/2B, Tim Morris/1B, Stefen Romero/LF, Mickey Wiswall/DH, Ramon Morla/3B, Jabari Blash/RF, Steven Baron/C, Carlos Ramirez/SS, Brandon Maurer/RHP

First pitch is scheduled for 6:00 PM, listen online at 1390kcln.com.

-DL

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 1390kcln.com.

-DL

Tonight’s Interview: Ted Tornow

Rain wouldn’t allow us to complete last night’s season opener against Burlington, so we’re finishing it tonight.  The LumberKings and Bees stand tied, 4-4 heading into the fourth thanks to an early comeback effort against right-hander Seth Frankoff.  Kings’ Opening Night starter Forrest Snow was touched up for four runs — three earned — over three innings, but was starting to settle in when the tarp went on.  An RBI triple by Julio Morban, RBI single by Marcus Littlewood (pictured right), RBI sac fly by Stefen Romero and RBI single by Steven Baron brought Clinton back from 3-0 and 4-2 deficits.  Littlewood singled again to left with two outs in the bottom of the third, but Tim Morris was thrown out trying to score by Bees’ left-fielder Douglas Landaeta to keep the game tied.

A lot of game left to go tonight, and it’s only the opening act.  We’ll also have a seven-inning game afterwards, in which 2010 Everett Pitcher of the Year and Northwest League All-Star left-hander Anthony Fernandez will make his first start in black and green.  It sounds like we’ll see right-hander Stephen Kohlscheen, the 45th round pick out of Aubur in 2010, in the resumption of the first game.  Those two will alternate starts anyways to begin the year, so the twinbill setup works perfect for them.

Read more about the action in tonight’s Game Notes:  4.8.11 kingsnotes

As for the interview, I caught LumberKings’ General Manager Ted Tornow tonight.  We talked about the beginning of the 75th anniversary of the franchise and what that means to everyone involved, improvements to Alliant Energy Field that fans will see this season, building stability with the Seattle Mariners and more.

Listen Here:  Tornow Interview 4.8.11.mp3

First pitch of inning #4 will be at 6:00 PM.  Listen online at 1390kcln.com.

-DL

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