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Knights Daily Update

The WCL makes The Oregonian, G-T

July 19, 2011

We got smoked 16-1 in Bellingham on Monday, but the sun still came up on Tuesday morning. Or so I'm told, anyway, since we had clouds and more clouds here in C-Vegas during the non-summer of 2011.

Anyhow, we did find a couple things to brighten the day.

* First, there's an excellent story about the West Coast League in The Oregonian this morning by Jamie Goldberg, who visted Corvallis last week and stayed for a game against Kitsap.

* And Knights outfielder/catcher Ryan Gorton was profiled by Corvallis Gazette-Times reporter Kevin Hampton in this story in Tueday's editions of the G-T.

Now, let's hope we can get back in the winning track tonight against the surging Bells. They are 13-3 in their last 16 games and appear ready to challenge perennial power Wenatchee for supremacy in the East Division, which the AppleSox have ruled since the WCL's formation in 2005.

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The Knights had eight players named to the West Division all-star team for the June 26 West Coast League All-Star Game, set for July 26 at Goss Stadium.

They are pitchers Jace Fry, Chase Johnson, Dylan Stuart, Mark Trentacosta and Ben Wetzler; first baseman Sean Myrom, third baseman Jimmy Allen and shortstop Trent Oleszczuk. They were chosen by major-league scouts and the league's managers. Also, one player from each team was selected by fan voting. Myrom earned that honor for the Knights.

Knights' manager Brooke Knight will lead the West Division team.

Here's a complete list of the all-stars in this story from the WCL's website.

The game starts at 7:15 p.m. It will be preceded by a Home Run Derby and followed by a fireworks display. Reserved seats are $10, general admission is $5, and tickets are available at the Knights office, at the stadium on Friday's game against Cowlitz, and at the stadium before the game on July 26.

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A huge electrical storm knocked Teamline, our Internet live-game provider, off the air on Monday night so our game with the Bells wasn't available on webcast.

We've been assured we'll be back on the air tonight, however, if Mother Nature cooperates. Humans and technology almost always finish second in a battle with lightning, though, so keep that in mind.

At least they're getting summer somewhere, right?


Myrom, Knight named to WCL all-star team

July 17, 2011

Nice weather we're having, huh? Last month we celebrated Halloween in June at the ballpark; I guess we celebrated November in July during this weekend's series against Kelowna.

Anyhow, we do have some good news to report to partially lift the gloom.

Knights' first baseman Sean Myrom was named a West Coast League all-star after winning a vote of the fans. He will play for the West Division in the midsummer classic, set for 7:15 p.m. July 26 at Goss Stadium.

A junior-to-be at Concordia University in Portland, Myron received 756,222 votes in online and paper balloting. He is hitting .287 in 33 games, with 10 doubles, one homer and 33 RBIs.

Brooke Knight of the Knights will manage the West Division all-stars, as the Knights led the division on the July 18 cutoff date. Wenatchee's Ed Knaggs will manage the East Division stars.

Every team had one player chosen by fan voting; the remaining all-stars were selected by major-league scouts and the WCL's managers. Each division's complete 21-man roster will be announced on Tuesday.

The all-star game is being revived after a two-year hiatus. Sponsored by PEAK Internet, it will also feature a pre-game Home Run Derby and postgame fireworks display.


Weekend series with Kelowna on tap

July 15, 2011

We've got lots of stuff to report today, starting with our big weekend series with Kelowna, which starts tonight at 6:40 at Goss Stadium.

We also play the Falcons at 6:40 p.m. Saturday when, of course, The Famous Chicken makes his first visit to Goss Stadium for a Knights game.

And on Sunday, it's Fitzpatrick Paint the Park Pink Night, presented by The Corvallis Clinic's Project H.E.R.

So come on out to the ballpark, and watch your first-place Corvallis Knights!

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Former Knights pitcher Matt Andriese threw three scoreless innings for the Eugene Emeralds on Thursday night in a 3-2 loss to the Tri-City Dust Devils, lowering his ERA to 2.10 in six starts.

Matt was in Corvallis earlier this week, visiting his younger brother, Knights' outfielder David Andriese. Here's an update on Matt, who is on a strict pitch count with the Ems after pitching more than 90 innings at UC Riverside this spring.

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We lead second-place Cowlitz and Bend by 1.5 games in the West Division pennant race, with a key part of our schedule on the horizon.

After this weekend's series with the Falcons, we head to Bellingham for three games with the Bells at Joe Martin Field, the former home of Bellingham's now-defunct Northwest League franchise.

After an off-day on July 21, we host Cowlitz on July 22 and then head up to Kelso-Longview for two games with the Black Bears at Dale Story Field at Lower Columbia College. Then we're idle again on July 25 to prepare for the July 26 WCL All-Star Game at Goss Stadium.

We'll have a major announcement after the All-Star Game, so stay tuned!

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Nice story in the Corvallis Gazette-Times today about local runner Scott Lommers and his quest to run in every road race in Corvallis this year, a dream the Heart of the Valley Runners and the Knights helped fulfill on Wednesday.

The Take Me Out to the Ballpark 5K is set for July 27. To register, click here.

That's all for now.


Thursday's off-day update

July 14, 2011

It's a rare off-day at the Corvallis Knights' WWHQ in the heart of downtown Corvallis, so the pace is a little slower than on a game day.

But don't worry boss, we're still here grinding away, getting ready for our upcoming three-game set with the Kelowna Falcons, which starts at 6:40 p.m. Friday at Goss Stadium.

Here's the promotional lineup:

FRIDAY: It's Olufson Design Ladies Night, presented by MOM Magazine. There will be lots of displays and items for sale/free samples in the plaza outside the stadium. The game starts at 6:40 p.m.

One lucky fan will win a Tissot watch from Olufson Designs, and it's also a Bicoastal Media $50,000 Friday. A lucky fan will throw one pitch for big money.

SATURDAY: The world-famous San Diego Chicken, a legendary mascot in sports, makes his first appearance at a Knights game, thanks to Allstate Insurance - the Robblee Agency. He puts on a great show, so come out and see him.

SUNDAY: It's Fitzpatrick Painting Paint the Park, presented by the Corvallis Clinic Project H.E.R. We have $1 ice cream. Come out to the ballpark and help support breast cancer awareness.

Make sure to wear pink! Pink Lemonade will be for sale (a portion of sales will be donated to Project H.E.R.) and don't forget to buy a Hot Pink T-shirt (a portion of sales will be donated to Project H.E.R.).

So we'll see you at the ballpark!

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We drew 1,059 on Wednesday night, a great crowd considering the weather didn't break until midafternoon and it was still unseasonably cold. Hopefully summer really arrives this week.

We did pass the 20K mark last night, and have drawn 20,397 for 16 dates, and have 12 crowds of 1,000 or better. We're hoping for a big weekend to get us near 25K and closer to our record of 31,536, set in 2009.

We've only got one home game next week (Friday vs. Cowlitz), but it's a biggie, as the ZOOperstars! make a return appearance to Goss Stadium. It's also Bicoastal Media $50,000 Friday. A lucky fan will throw one pitch for big money.

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Former Knight Carter Bell (2009) has cleared up his visa issues and the ex-Beavers infielder had an outstanding debut on Wednesday night with the Yakima Bears in the Northwest League. He went 2-for-3, with a triple.

And it's not reflected on the St. Louis MLB website yet but the word on the street is that ex-Beavers pitcher Sam Gaviglio, a teammate of Bell's on the 2009 Knights, has also signed. He'll most likely start his career with Batavia in the New York-Penn League or with Cedar Rapids in the Midwest League.

Here's a complete rundown of our former Knights in the minors:

DREW GARCIA (2007, White Sox): The 2B from UC Riverside is hitting .214 (41-192) in 54 games with triple-A Charlotte of the International League, with four homers and 18 RBIs.

NICK STRUCK (2009, Cubs): The Mt. Hood CC righty has been promoted again, to triple-A Iowa, and is 0-1, 3.38 in his lone start, with four strikeouts in 5.1 innings.

JIM MURPHY (2007, Phillies): Our 2007 MVP as a first baseman from Washington State is at Lakewood in the Florida State League and is hitting .282 (88-312) in 86 games, with 19 homers and 61 RBIs.

ADAM MELKER (2008, 2009, Cardinals): The ex-Cal Poly outfielder is with the Palm Beach Cardinals in the Florida State League and is hitting .220 (41-186) in 55 games, with no homers and 17 RBIs.

ROCKY GALE (2007, 2009, Padres): The catcher from the University of Portland continues his summer touring the Padres' various affiliates. He's now on the roster of the AA San Antonio Missions, but has not yet played for them.

Earlier this summer he was promoted to the PCL's Tucson Beavers for four games and hit .250 (3-12), with no homers and two RBIs. He also has played at Lake Elsinore in the California League and with Foret Wayne in the Midwest League this season.

NICK AKINS (2007, Dodgers): The former Vanguard College infielder completed a rehab assignment with the Arizona Rookie League Dodgers and hit .360 (9-25) in six games, with two homers and six RBIs. He's back with the Great Lakes Loons in the Class A Midwest League, where he's hitting .206 (28-136) in 38 games, with six homers and 24 RBIs.

GREG PEAVEY (2007, Mets): The one-time Oregon State pitcher is with the St. Lucie Mets in the Florida State League and is 2-1, 4.15 in four games, with 11 strikeouts in 21.2 innings.

ALEX BURG (2008, Giants): The MVP of the 2008 WCL champions, a Washington State alum, is hitting .353 (36-102) in 28 games with the San Jose Giants of the Class A California League, with six homers and 17 RBIs.

DAVID ANDRIESE (2009, Padres): The former UC Riverside star is 2-1, 2.38 in five games with the Eugene Emeralds, with 21 strikeouts in 22.2 innings.

JAMES NYGREN (2009, Marlins): The former OSU righty is 2-1, 1.26 with two saves in six games with the Gulf Coast League Marlins. He has 19 strikeouts in 14.1 innings.

DAYTON ALEXANDER (2011, Athletics): The former Feather River outfielder is hitting .132 (5-38) with no homers and one RBI in 12 games with the Arizona Rookie League Athletics.

DEAN GREEN (2008, Tigers): The former Oklahoma State/Barry U. standout is hitting .318 (21-66) with a homer and nine RBIs with the (Norwich) Connecticut Tigers in the short-A New York-Penn League.

MICHAEL BLAKE (2010, Diamondbacks): The former Mt. Hood CC/Hawaii star is 2-3, 5.23 in nine games with the Yakima Bears in the short-A Northwest League, with 16 strikeouts in 10.1 innings.

NIC CUCKOVICH (2011, Royals): The onetime Riverside (Calif.) CC standout is hitting .358 (19-53)) in 13 games with no homers and seven RBIs with the Arizona Rookie League Royals.

DUSTIN EMMONS (2009-10, Mets): The former UC Riverside star is 1-0, 3.45 in seven games with Kingsport (W. Va.) in the short-A Appalachian League, with six strikeouts in 15.2 innings.

CODY BARTLETT (2007, Blue Jays): The ex-Washington State middle infielder is hitting .209 (9-43) with Bluefield, W. Va., in the short-A Appalachian League, with no homers and nine RBIs in nine games.

JOHN ESHLEMAN (2008, Giants): The former Mt. San Jacinto (Calif.) JC player is hitting .238 in 16 games with Salem-Keizer in the Northwest League, with no homers and six RBIs.

SCOTT LYMAN (2010, Marlins): The former UC Davis pitcher has been assigned to the Jamestown Jammers in the short-A New York-Penn League but has not pitched yet.

CARTER BELL (2009, Diamondbacks): As mentioned, the former Oregon State infielder is hitting .667 (2-3) with Yakima in the Northwest League, with no homers and no RBIs.


Jimmie's back in town, Jimmie's back in town

July 13, 2011

We've got some good news on the injury front, for a change.

Knights' right-handed pitcher Jimmie Sherfy has recovered from shoulder issues and a pulled abdominal muscle and is back on the active roster. His return gives us another live arm as our quest for a fifth consecutive West Divisoon title begins the stretch run.

A rising sophomore at Oregon, Sherfy was 0-0, 2.70 in 3.1 innings over two appearances when he went on the DL. He hasn't pitched since June 17, but he's ready to go and could see some action in tonight's series finale against Kitsap if need be.

Outfielder Nate Blackham, a sophomore-to-be at Washington State, has rejoined the team to rehab but has not been activated. He injured a thumb while diving to make a catch at Wenatchee on June 22 and hasn't played since.

Blackham was hitting .316 in six games, with two steals and would have been a great No. 2 hitter had he remained healthy. It's not known if he'll return this year, but you can bet he'll be high on the Knights' wish list for the 2012 season.

However, we have lost infielder J.K.Dykes, a rising Washington State sophomore. He was hitting .045 (1-22) in nine games and just could not seem to relocate the form that made him a .300 hitter for the Knights in 2010.

So, our infield looks set with Jimmy Allen at third, Trent Oleszczuk at short and Corey Moore at second, as middle infielder Alex Foulon remains out with a shoulder injury that's sidelined him since July 1.

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More good news: Your Corvallis Knights have cracked the Top 25 and are now No. 21 in this week's Perfect Game summer baseball rankings.

They're not up online yet, but here's a link to the Perfect Game website.

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The weather was actually beautiful (if a little chilly) by the time we played on Tuesday night, but the day-long showers and inclement (that's a polite way to say #@&#@! nasty) weather reduced the crowd to a season-low 695.

It also snapped our streak of consecutive crowds of 1,000 or more at nine games in a row.

Still, that pushed our attendance over the 19,000 mark to 19,338 for 15 openings. We're still 5,549 ahead of last year's pace and on course to set a franchise record, as long as you Knights' fans out there keep doing your part.

It looks dry for tonight, however, and nice for the weekend series against Kelowna. Tonight is Mike Parker Night, presented by Papa's Pizza. The award-winning Knights/OSU broadcaster will throw out the first pitch and be recognized before the game and the first 250 fans will receive a free slice of pizza.

Senior tickets for tonight's game are only $2. And don't forget the San Diego Chicken is in town on Saturday.

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Former Knights' star Matt Andriese, the 2009 WCL Pitcher of the Year, was at the ballpark last night to watch his younger brother, Knights' outfielder David Andriese.

Matt's pitching for the Eugene Emeralds this summer after being drafted in the third round by the San Diego Padres last month. We caught up with him briefly and should have an update on the Knights' webpage sometime on Thursday.

Matt and David's parents, Greg and Lynn Andriese of Redlands, Calif., are in town this week visiting their sons. Greg made a nice play to snare a foul ball in Monday's game against Kitsap, so we can see where the boys got some of their athletic ability!

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Reporter Jamie Goldberg of The Oregonian will be in town today doing interviews for an upcoming story on the Knights and the West Coast League.

And it sounds as if the crack broadcast team of Dan Segel and Brooks Hatch will be reunited for the July 23-24 games at Cowlitz. Consider yourselves forewarned!

That's all for today. We've got game notes to compile.


Knights vs. Kitsap, Round II

July 12, 2011

Welcome to November in July. Seriously, 60 degrees and misting on July 12? It's time for some of that global warming to strike the Pacific Northwest because we've already suffered through enough unseasonably cold weather in 2011.

OK, enough ranting. Your red-hot and rolling Knights host Kitsap at 6:40 tonight in Round II of the three-game series. Round I went to the Knights, 3-0, on Monday night as Jace Fry, Chris Mendoza and Nick Hoover combined on the shutout.

We now lead the WCL's West Division by a full game over Bend. Knights' starter Max Beatty will attempt to maintain that edge tonight as he goes for his second victory of the summer over the BlueJackets; he pitched seven scoreless innings in a 1-0 win at Silverdale on June 27.

It's another special event at Goss Stadium - Holiday Inn Express Baseball Giveaway/Bi-Mart 2-for-1 Night. So ignore the clouds and get out to the ballpark; the weather's supposed to improve by gametime anyways.

The Knights play Kitsap again on Wednesday night; it's Mike Parker Night, hosted by Papa's Pizza. The award-winning Knights/Oregon State broadcaster will throw out the first pitch, and the first 250 fans will receive a free slice of Papa's Pizza.

We host Kelowna on Friday through Sunday. Friday is Olufson's Design Ladies Night, presented by MOM Magazine. The world-famous San Diego Chicken is in town on Saturday, and Sunday is Fitzpatrick Paint the Park Pink Night presented by the Corvallis Clinic's Project H.E.R.

So we expect to see you at the ballpark.

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Speaking of large crowds, our Monday night gathering of 1,153 was our 11th crowd of 1,000 or better in 14 openings, and it raised our season attendance to 18,643, or 5,631 more than at a corresponding date in 2010. And we still haven't had great baseball weather yet.

Readers of the Blog know we're a big attendance geek and it's one of the first things I check in any MLB, minor-league or WCL box score. As the famous Yogi Berra supposedly said, "If the fans don't come out to the ball park, you can't stop them," but if they are, it shows people care and you're doing things right.

A few other attendance facts:

* We've already surpassed our entire season total from 2007 (12,729, 29 dates) and from 2008 (17,929, 28 dates).

* We've had 11 crowds of 1,000 or more, and nine in a row heading into tonight. Last season we had 12 crtowds of 1,000 or more in 31 openings.

* We're well on our way to breaking our all-time total attendance number (31,009, 2009) and our all-time average (1,000 per game, 2010).

* And we still rank in the West Coast League in attendance, according to the latest stats.

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Nice story on PA announcer Brian Brooks, the other voice of the Knights, in today's Corvallis Gazette-Times. It's certainly worth a read.

That's all for today; see everyone tonight!


Thank heaven for 7/11

July 11, 2011

Happy 7/11, everyone.

We're back home for a six-game homestand against Kitsap and Kelowna, so of course the weather turns south after a brilliant week of sunshine and 80-degree temperatures while we're on the road. That's baseball, I guess.

But we're positive a few clouds and some chillier-than-normal weather won't deter Knights fans from coming to Goss Stadium and keeping us on a record pace for attendance.

We've drawn 17,490 fans for 13 home dates, an average of 1,345 per night. We're also 4,955 fans ahead of last year at a corresponding date and we want to keep that momentum going.

Right now we rank third in the WCL behind Bend and Wenatchee (league games only).

And we've got some good promotions this week, starting with tonight's Emmons Meat Market Miser Monday. Tuesday is Holiday Inn Express Baseball Giveaway Night, and Wednesday is Mike Parker Night, presented by Papa's Pizza, and the first 250 fans will receive a free slice o' pizza pie.

Friday is Olufson's Design Ladies Night, presented by MOM Magazine. The world-famous San Diego Chicken is in town on Saturday and Sunday is Fitzpatrick Paint the Park Pink Night presented by the Corvallis Clinic's Project H.E.R.

See you at the ballpark!

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Somehow we overlooked this last week but here's a story on Knights' reliever Scott Schultz from his hometown newspaper, The Peninsula Gateway of Gig Harbor, Wash. They caught up to Scott on our recent trip to Kitsap.

And Sunday's Corvallis Gazette-Times had a big story on the four Oregon Staters pitching for the Knights.

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The pitching rotation for the Kitsap series is set. Tonight, Jace Fry (0-1, 2.25) startts for the Knights. opposed by Brandon Rohde (0-1, 0.96)in a battle of lefties.

On Tuesday, Max Beatty (3-1, 3.03) goes for the Knights, opposed by Cole Thompson (1-1, 2.57), and on Wednesday Chase Johnson (1-1, 3.86) starts for the Knights, opposed by Blake Golding (2-2, 2.33).

Outfielder David Andriese, who missed the Kelowna series with shingles, is back, as is outfielder Matt Nylen, who missed the Kelowna series with passport issues.


Knights start six-game homestand Monday.

July 10, 2011

Veteran pitcher Nick Hoover said the Corvallis Knights could use a weekend series at Kelowna to right a ship listing from four consecutive losses.

The Knights did just that by sweeping the Falcons to retake first place in the West Division of the West Coast League. Now, they intend to keep sailing in the proper direction during a six-game homestand against Kitsap and those same Falcons.

Corvallis (19-12, 17-12 WCL) begins the six-pack against Kitsap at 6:40 p.m. Monday at Goss Stadium. Lefty Jace Fry (0-1, 2.25) is its projected starter, opposed by Bluejackets' lefty Brandon Rohde (0-1, 0.96).

"We had great starting pitching, outstanding relief pitching, and we finally got some timely hitting" in sweeping the Falcons, Knights' coach Brooke Knight said Sunday, noting the Knights outscored Kelowna 8-1 in the final four innings in the series.

"We still have some things to clean up," as they made two errors in each game. "But now we get some of our players back and hopefully we can build on a great weekend."

Starters Chase Johnson, Chris Johnson and Kyle Hart all went at least six innings and relievers Ben Wetzler, Scott Schultz and Mark Trentacosta allowed just one unearned run in nine combined innings. Trentacosta had two saves, Wetzler had two holds, and Schultz earned a victory.

Outfielder David Andriese (.158, 1-12) returns after missing the series with shingles. Outfielder Matt Nylen (.213, 0-7), originally a 10-day signee who wasn't expected to be with the club for the Kelowna trip, is back after missing the series because he didn't have a passport.

The Knights and BlueJackets continue the series at 6:40 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday. Thursday is an off day and Kelowna comes to town for a Friday-Sunday rematch highlighted by the first Corvallis appearance of the San Diego Chicken on Saturday night.


Knights in Kelowna tonight

July 7, 2011

The Knights arrived safely in Kelowna after a long bus ride and they'll play the Falcons at 6:35 p.m. tonight, Friday and Saturday. Catch all the games on KEJO 1240; we're picking up a feed from Kelowna broadcaster Ryan Watters, who does a great job.

The team is confident it can snap out of its recent funk, as pitcher Nick Hoover and first baseman David Armendariz explained in this preview story in today's Corvallis Gazette-Times.

We're confident, too, that we'll be writing about a win when we compose tonight's game story for the website.

And remember, we're home all next week, against Kitsap on Monday-Wednesday and against Kelowna on Friday-Sunday. Saturday is the first Corvallis appearance of the legendary San Diego Chicken, the most famous mascot in sports. Don't miss it!

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Time to update our Knights in the minors.

DREW GARCIA (2007, White Sox): The 2B from UC Riverside is hitting .222 (40-180) in 50 games with triple-A Charlotte of the International League, with four homers and 18 RBIs.

NICK STRUCK (2009, Cubs): The Mt. Hood CC righty has been promoted again, to triple-A Iowa, and is 0-1, 3.38 in his lone start, with four strikeouts in 5.1 innings.

JIM MURPHY (2007, Phillies): Our 2007 MVP as a first baseman from Washington State is at Lakewood in the Florida State League and is hitting .289 (85-294) in 80 games, with 17 homers and 56 RBIs.

ADAM MELKER (2008, 2009, Cardinals): The ex-Cal Poly outfielder is with the Palm Beach Cardinals in the Florida State League and is hitting .226 (37-164)) in 48 games, with no homers and 17 RBIs.

ROCKY GALE (2007, 2009, Padres): The catcher from the University of Portland was promoted to the PCL's Tucson Beavers for three games and hit .273 (3-11), with no homers and two RBIs. He's back at Lake Elsinore in the California League and is hitting .141 (10-71) in 27 games, with no homers and 10 RBIs.

NICK AKINS (2007, Dodgers): The former Vanguard College infielder is on a rehab assignment with the Arizona Rookie League Dodgers and is hitting .400 (6-15) in four games, with a homer and two RBIs. He was hitting .217 (28-129) with the Great Lakes Loons in the Class A Midwest League, with six homers and 24 RBIs in 36 games, before being injured.

GREG PEAVEY (2007, Mets): The one-time Oregon State pitcher is with the St. Lucie Mets in the Florida State League and is 2-0, 1.59 in three games, with seven strikeouts in 17 innings.

ALEX BURG (2008, Giants): The MVP of the 2008 WCL champions, a Washington State alum, is hitting .382 (29-76) in 22 games with the San Jose Giants of the Class A California League, with five homers and 16 RBIs.

DAVID ANDRIESE (2009, Padres): The former UC Riverside star is 2-1, 2.75 in four games with the Eugene Emeralds, with 18 strikeouts in 19.1 innings.

JAMES NYGREN (2009, Marlins): The former OSU righty is 1-1, 0.95 with a save in four games with the Gulf Coast League Marlins. He has 11 strikeouts in 9.1 innings.

DAYTON ALEXANDER (2011, Athletics): The former Feather River outfielder is hitting .156 (5-32) with no homers and and one RBI in 10 games with the Arizona Rookie League Athletics.

DEAN GREEN (2008, Tigers): The former Oklahoma State/Barry U. standout is hitting .289 (13-45) with a homer and eight RBIs with the (Norwich) Connecticut Tigers in the short-A New York-Penn League.

MICHAEL BLAKE (2010, Diamondbacks): The former Mt. Hood CC/Hawaii star is 1-3, 6.43 in seven games with the Yakima Bears in the short-A Northwest League, with 11 strikeouts in seven innings.

NIC CUCKOVICH (2011, Royals): The onetime Riverside (Calif.) CC standout is hitting .370 (17-46) in 11 games with no homers and seven RBIs with the Arizona Rookie League Royals.

DUSTIN EMMONS (2009-10, Mets): The former UC Riverside star is 1-0, 0.90 in five games with Kingsport (W. Va.) in the short-A Appalachian League, with four strikeouts in 10 innings.

CODY BARTLETT (2007, Blue Jays): The ex-Washington State middle infielder is hitting .194 (6-31) with Bluefield, W. Va., in the short-A Appalachian League, with no homers and seven RBIs in nine games.

JOHN ESHLEMAN (2008, Giants): The former Mt. San Jacinto (Calif.) JC player is hitting .239 in 12 games with Salem-Keizer in the Northwest League, with no homers and four RBIs.

SCOTT LYMAN (2010, Marlins): The former UC Davis pitcher has been assigned to the Jamestown Jammers in the short-A New York-Penn League but has not pitched yet.

CARTER BELL (2009, Diamondbacks): The former Oregon State infielder is with Yakima in the Northwest League but has not played yet.


Off to Kelowna

July 6, 2011

The Knights returned from Bend on Tuesday and left for Kelowna, British Columbia, at noon on Wednesday.

They're not thrilled at being swept by Bend and of a tailspin that's seen them lose 5 of 6 and fall out of first place in the West Division. (Hey, not even "Mr. Winning" himself, Charlie Sheen, wins every day, right?)

But they're confident things will get turned around, starting with a Thursday-Saturday series against the Falcons at Elks Stadium (6:35 p.m., KEJO AM 1240). Check out our preview story on the homepage of this website for more details.

Outfielder David Andriese won't make the trip; he's got shingles. Here's to a speedy recovery.

Our rotation for the series is Thursday, RHP Chase Johnson (0-1, 6.10); Friday, RHP Chris Johnson (2-0, 2.60), and Saturday, RHP Kyle Hart (2-0, 1.93), who makes his first start after a string of strong relief outings.

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Here's a link to a story in today's Oregonian on our pitchers from Oregon State, Ben Wetzler, Scott Schultz, Jace Fry and Adam Duke. Please check it out.

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The Knights rank third in the West Coast League in attendance at 1,374 fans per game (WCL games only). Bend (1,758) and Walla Walla (1,591) are 1-2.

Other teams are Wenatchee (1,240); Cowlitz (1,033); Klamath Falls (968); Kelowna (554); Bellingham (409) and Kitsap (276).

The Knights have drawn 17,490 for all home dates, an average of 1,345. We're almost 5K ahead of last year at a comparable date.

The WCL has drawn 117,765 for 115 openings, an average of 1,024. That doesn't include nonleague games.