Game Notes for 5/16; Again with the Strikeouts, A Winning Streak, Liberato’s Mad Dash
Today’s Preview: The Clinton LumberKings (A, Mariners) meet the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers (A, Brewers) for the second time this season. The LumberKings trail the all-time series 297–357, dating back to 1963, against Wisconsin and, 60–65, since the LumberKings became a Seattle Mariners affiliate in 2009. The LumberKings took two of three games in a three -game series at Ashford University Field April 17–19. The series was the last LumberKings series win until Clinton took two of three from the Great Lakes Loons in their last series,
LumberKings Starter: Nick Wells, 21, makes his seventh start of the season for Clinton. Wells came to the Mariners in a traded with the Toronto Blue Jays in 2015 for RHP Mark Lowe. He took the loss his last time out, working five innings, allowing nine seven runs, six earned, on nine hits while walking two and striking out two. After running out of gas two outings ago in West Michigan Wells threw a season-high 82 pitches against the Lansing. In 2016, the lefty faced the Timber Rattlers just once taking the loss in an abbreviated 2 and 1/3 innings. The start was his second shortest of the season and he gave up nine runs, eight earned, on just seven hits, while walking two, and striking out none. The start happened in Clinton, and is the most runs Wells has allowed in an outing in professional career.
Timber Rattlers Starter: Zack Brown, 22, makes his third appearance and third start of the season for the Timber Rattlers. Brown was the opening day starter for the Timber Rattlers but was sent down to Class Rookie Ball Helena Brewers following a loss in the season opener. The righty allowed three runs, in his four innings, on four hits, walking two, and striking out eight. Brown was recalled to Wisconsin on May 11 and has made one other start since returning to the Timber Rattlers a no decision on the road against Lake County. He threw just two innings, not allowing any runs, on two hits, while walking none and striking out none. This will be his 2017 home debut. A University of Kentucky product where he had his best start of his collegiate career against number 5 ranked University of Florida. The start earned him SEC Pitcher of the Week honors.
Last Time Out: Tim Viehoff struck out the first seven Wisconsin Timber Rattlers he faced and was backed by a LumberKings offense that cruised to a 10–3 win on Monday night at Neuroscience Group Field. Anthony Jimenez and Gareth Morgan each had three hits to lead the LumberKings (14–20) offense.
The games started with LumberKings starter Tim Viehoff in total control. The lefty earned his first win with Clinton striking out the first seven batters he faced, a new season-high for consecutive strikeouts by LumberKings pitching. Viehoff (1–4) did not allow a Timber Rattler (17–17) to reach until the fourth inning. The LumberKings were the first to score, scoring twice in the top of the fourth inning. Nick Zammarelli drove home both runs in the inning. With the bases loaded, Zammarelli lifted a ball to left centerfield that one hoped the wall to bring home the first two runs of the game. The lead did not last long as Wisconsin finally strung hits together off Viehoff in the bottom of the fourth inning. Demi Orimolye singled to leadoff the inning, the first hit for the Timber Rattlers in the game, and he was followed by three more Wisconsin batters to reach base safely. Viehoff gave up his only runs in the fourth, a three spot that gave the Timber Rattlers their only lead of the night.
Three Straight: The LumberKings took their third straight with a 10–3 win on Monday night. The win is just the third time in seven road series that the LumberKings have taken the first game of a road series. Clinton will now try to do something they have not done all season today and that’s win a series on the road.
A Little League inside-the park homer: Luis Liberato tripled in the eighth inning of Monday night’s win. The triple was his third of the year, the most for a LumberKing, and the it did not end at third. Liberato actually scored on the play when shortstop gilbert Lara was charged with a throwing error to complete the Little League inside-the-park home run.
More and more strikeouts: Tim Viehoff had the best start to an outing by a LumberKing starter this season. The lefty struck out the first seven batters of the game and was followed with more strikeouts from Jack Anderson, four, and Jeffeson Medina, one, for a 12 strikeout performance by Clinton pitching. The LumberKings, as a team, have now struck out 37 batters over their last three games.
Quevedo Streaking: Catcher Yojhan Quevedo has had to battle through injuries this season and is now seeing playing time split with another catcher Nick Thurman. Still Quevedo has been steady offensively, hitting safely in his last seven games (9-for-33) to tie the longest hitting streak on the team this season. During the streak Quevedo also hit his first home run in over two years.
This date in baseball history: On this date in 1965, future Hall of Famer Jim Palmer, pitching 3.2 innings in relief, wins his first major league game when the Orioles defeat the Yankees at Memorial Stadium, 7–5. The 19 year-old Orioles’ rookie right-hander makes the day more memorable when he hits a two-run homer off Jim Bouton in the fourth inning.
Broadcast Information: All games will be broadcast live on 100.3 FM WCCI and online at LumberKings.com via the TuneIn Radio App with the Erik Oas, in his first season as the “Voice of the LumberKings.”