Three former Snappers among ex-MWLers traded last week

Three former Beloit Snappers players were traded in three different transactions last week.

Two of the trades happened on Monday, Nov. 20. The New York Yankees traded RHP Ronald Herrera to the Texas Rangers for LHP Reiver Sanmartin, and the Oakland Athletics traded RHP Brandon Bailey to the Houston Astros for outfielder Ramon Laureano.

Herrera split the 2014 season between the Snappers and the TinCaps. He went 3-4 with a 3.38 ERA, 35 strikeouts and 10 walks in 50.2 innings (nine starts) for Beloit before the A’s traded him to the San Diego Padres in late May. He finished the season with Fort Wayne, going 3-5 with a 4.28 ERA, 47 strikeouts and 15 walks in 82 innings (17 games/16 starts). He made his MLB debut for the Yankees this year, but made only two relief appearances in the big leagues.

Bailey pitched for the Snappers this year, going 1-1 with a 2.68 ERA, 73 strikeouts and 21 walks in 57 innings (15 games/11 starts). Laureano played for the 2015 Quad Cities River Bandits, batting .265 with 4 HR, 34 RBI and 18 SB in 76 games.

The third trade took place on Wednesday, Nov. 22, as the Baltimore Orioles acquired outfielder Jaycob Brugman from the A’s for a player to be named later or cash. Brugman batted .278 with 8 HR and 37 RBI in 70 games with the 2014 Snappers. He made his MLB debut for the A’s this year. He batted .266 with 3 HR and 12 RBI in 48 games at the major-league level.

In another Nov. 22 trade that didn’t involve a former Snappers player, the Atlanta Braves acquired RHP Josh Ravin from the Los Angeles Dodgers for cash considerations. As a Cincinnati Reds farmhand, he made 41 starts for the Dayton Dragons over three seasons (2008-10), cumulatively going 7-22 with a 5.02 ERA, 156 strikeouts and 118 walks in 193.2 innings. He primarily pitched at the Triple-A and major-league levels for the Dodgers this year.

Posted in Beloit Snappers, Dayton Dragons, Fort Wayne TinCaps, Midwest League, Quad Cities River Bandits | Leave a comment

Cougars to be featured on Travel Channel’s ‘Food Paradise’

The El Jefe burger was a new addition to the menu at Northwestern Medicine Field this year. (Photo courtesy of the Kane County Cougars)

The Kane County Cougars are one of several Minor League Baseball teams that will be featured on an episode of Travel Channel’s “Food Paradise” set to debut Sunday night.

The teams were chosen from video applications sent to the Travel Channel last spring. Footage for the show was shot at the ballparks during the past season. (The Cougars segment was filmed over two days in August.)

The episode will first air at 8 p.m. CT on Sunday, Nov. 26. It currently is scheduled to be rebroadcast three times, at 11 p.m. CT on Monday, Nov. 27; 4 p.m. CT on Saturday, Dec. 2; and 2 p.m. CT on Sunday, Dec. 17.

The episode will showcase unique foods from the selected MiLB teams. Signature food items offered at Northwestern Medicine Field this year included the El Jefe burger, which is a jalapeño and Monterey Jack cheese-infused burger patty topped with Ghost Pepper Jack cheese, pork belly, chipotle mac and cheese, pork carnitas, jalapeño straws, honey mustard sauce, and, of course, a bun. Kane County’s ballpark also offers many classic food items, including barbecue pork chop sandwiches and giant Polish and Italian sausages.

If you watch the show, leave a comment telling us what you thought of the episode!

Posted in Kane County Cougars, Midwest League | Leave a comment

New video scoreboard installed at Dow Diamond

A new video scoreboard has been installed at Dow Diamond. (Photo courtesy of the Great Lakes Loons)

Installation of a new video scoreboard in the Dow Diamond outfield area has been completed by the Thanksgiving deadline set by the Great Lakes Loons.

The next phase of the project is completing the team’s new production studio on the third level of the stadium in order to support the upgraded technology of a new high-definition system. It is expected to be operational and ready for testing early next year.

The new video board is 31 feet tall and 80 feet wide, and features 13HD technology. The 2,500-square-foot display is equivalent to 235 60-inch televisions, with more than two million light-emitting diodes (LEDs) capable of generating up to 281 trillion colors. Variable content zoning capabilities allow the Loons to show either one large image, or provide a seamless display with any combination of video, statistics, line score, sponsor advertisements and other animations.

The Loons are also adding 3.5-foot-by-120-foot ribbon display boards on each base-side for player statistics and other video elements. Those boards will be attached to the front façade of the suite level.

Removal of the original scoreboard began in early September. It had been in place since Dow Diamond opened in 2007.

Posted in Great Lakes Loons, Midwest League | Leave a comment

Mariners trade away three former LumberKings pitchers

J.P. Sears is one of three former Clinton LumberKings pitchers who were traded by the Seattle Mariners this past week. (Photo courtesy of the Clinton LumberKings)

The Seattle Mariners traded away three former Clinton LumberKings pitchers in the past week, in three different transactions.

On Wednesday, they traded RHP Emilio Pagan and minor-league shortstop Alexander Campos to the Oakland Athletics for designated hitter/corner infielder Ryon Healy. Pagan pitched for the LumberKings in 2014, going 2-3 with a 2.89 ERA, 16 saves, 62 strikeouts and 14 walks in 56 innings (42 relief appearances). He made his major-league debut for the Mariners this year.

On Thursday, the Mariners traded RHP Thyago Vieira to the Chicago White Sox for $500,000 in international signing bonus allotment money. The Brazilian fastballer pitched for the LumberKings in 2014 and 2015, cumulatively going 2-5 with a 6.31 ERA, 45 strikeouts and 34 walks in 51.1 innings (35 relief appearances). He has since improved his control, and made his MLB debut for the Mariners in August of this year.

On Saturday, the Mariners traded minor-league LHP John Patrick “J.P.” Sears and minor-league RHP Juan Then to the New York Yankees for RHP Nick Rumbelow. Sears pitched in 10 games for the LumberKings this year, giving up only two unearned runs while striking out 29 and walking nine in 17 innings. He finished five games, collecting three saves in the process.

Posted in Clinton LumberKings, Midwest League | Leave a comment

Clinton’s ballpark to undergo renovations this offseason

An exterior view of Clinton’s Ashford University Field. Some notable improvements will be made inside the ballpark during the offseason. (Photo by Craig Wieczorkiewicz/The Midwest League Traveler)

A busy offseason is planned for Ashford University Field, with numerous renovations on tap for the home of the Clinton LumberKings.

The 80-year-old ballpark’s face lift will include a new ribbon video-board, several high-definition monitors, a freshly-painted façade, a resurfaced main concourse, and additions to the picnic area on the left-field side of the stadium. The team said all changes will be in line with the park’s existing aesthetic while enhancing the game-day experience for fans.

It is the facility’s first major renovation project since 2006, when improvements included construction of a new home clubhouse and the left-field picnic garden, as well as expansion of the right-field Lumber Lounge. The ballpark, originally known as Riverview Stadium, was built in 1937 as a Works Progress Administration project during the Great Depression.

The ballpark’s first ribbon video-board will be placed along the façade of the Leinenkugel’s Lumber Lounge. It will be six feet tall and 65 feet wide, and be used to show fans a variety of video content including player statistics, in-game entertainment, and advertisements.

Three 75-inch, high-definition monitors will replace old-school dry-erase boards along the outer walls of the front office, displaying the game’s lineups, league standings, and league leaders. Those outer walls are located along the to-be-repaved concourse just inside the main gates.

The Dr Pepper Picnic Garden will get new picnic benches that are supposed to dry quicker after being rained on. Starting in 2018, that area of the park also will have a Mexican food stand housed beneath a palapa hut (similar to a tiki hut, but with open sides instead of walls) and palm leaves to help give it a tropical feel.

All the improvements are expected to be finished by Clinton’s 2018 home opener on Saturday, April 7.

The Dr Pepper Picnic Garden was added to Ashford University Field in 2006. Some changes will be made to it this offseason. (Photo by Craig Wieczorkiewicz/The Midwest League Traveler)

Posted in Clinton LumberKings, Midwest League | Leave a comment