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Knights Daily Update

Clinc Saturday; Knights-Sweets II tonight

June 24, 2011

Don't forget our free kids baseball clinic from 12;30-4 p.m. on Saturday at Goss Stadium. Our players and coaches will be there to instruct boys and girls ages 5-18 in the finer points of baseball and on being a good teammate.

Admission is free with an injury waiver form, which is available by clicking here. See you at the ballpark.

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Tonight's 6:40 game against Walla Walla is State Farm Insurance Rally Towel Night. The first 500 fans will receive a Knights/State Farm rally towel, courtesy of your local State Farm Insurance agents.

Saturday is the first $1,000 Kids (10-under) Dash for Cash, presented by All Family Vision Care. And Sunday is Faith Night, presented by Hope 107.9.

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Here are some notes about tonight's 6:40 Game 2 of the series:

* The Knights won Thursday night's series opener 3-1 over the Sweets and now lead the all-time series 6-4. They are 3-1 all-time vs. the Sweets at Goss Stadium, where the Knights are 6-1 this summer, with five wins in a row.

* Right-hander Adam Duke of Oregon State (0-0, 3.00) will make his second start for Corvallis tonight, opposed by righty Kyle Anderson (0-0, 2.70).

* Corvallis third baseman Jimmy Allen (Cal Poly) went 0-for-4 on Thursday night, ending a five-game hitting streak. Left fielder Kramer Scott (Portland) has four hits in his last seven at-bats and has hit safely in five of the last six games he's started.

* Knights' outfielder Nate Blackham (Washington State) suffered a hand injury while diving for a ball in Wenatchee this past Wednesday and is out for an undetermined period. He was hitting .316 (6-19) with no homers, no RBIs and two stolen bases in six games.

* Right-hander Tim Culligan (Nevada) and outfielder Chance Kopacz (Walla Walla CC) are the only Oregonians on the Sweets' roster. Culligan is from Hillsboro (Liberty); Kopacz is from Hermiston (Hermiston).

* Sweets' right-hander Jacob Overbay (Nevada) is the younger brother of Pittsburgh Pirates' first baseman Lyle Overbay. Teammate Sean Santschi is the younger brother of former Oregon State outfielder Scott Santschi, a member of the Beavers' 2006 and 2007 NCAA champions.

* The Knights have drawn 6,493 fans for six dates, an average of 1,082 per game. They are 1,618 fans ahead of last year on a corresponding date.

* The series concludes at 6:40 p.m. Saturday. The projected starters are lefty Jace Fry (0-1, 1.69) of Oregon State for the Knights and lefty Tyler Billen (0-0, 0.00, 1 save) of Harding (Ark.) University for the Sweets.

* The Knights play their annual exhibition against the T. Gerding Construction American Legion team at 5:05 p.m. Sunday to conclude the homestand. They open a three-game WCL series at Kitsap on Monday night.


Gaviglio honored; Knights host Sweets

June 23, 2011

Former Knights' pitcher Sam Gaviglio (2009) was honored again this week.

The Oregon State junior right-hander earned his fourth All-American honor on Thursday when the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) named him to its second team.

Gaviglio has also been named second-team All-America by Baseball America and Louisville Slugger/Collegiate Baseball and third team by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA).

He's the first OSU player to earn four All-American honors in a year since Cole Gillespie did so in 2006.

He was named a first-team Pacific-10 Conference all-star; was a Golden Spikes Spotlight Player of the Week; was a semifinalist for the College Baseball Hall of Fame's National Pitcher of the Year award, and was also one of 30 semifinalists for the Golden Spikes Award, given annually to the nation's top collegiate player.

He was selected in the fifth round of the recent MLB draft by the St.Louis Cardinals.

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Some notes about this week's series between the Walla Walla Sweets (5-7 WCL) and the Knights (8-7 overall, 7-7 WCL):

* The Sweets took 2 of 3 from the Knights in Walla Walla on the first weekend of the season but the teams have gone in different directions since that series.

The Knights swept Bellingham at Goss Stadium last weekend and have won 4 of 6 after losing Wednesday night's series finale at Wenatchee.

Walla Walla, on the other hand, was swept by the AppleSox last weekend and has lost 6 of 9 WCL games since winning the initial series against the Knights. The Sweets swept the Portland Stars of WCL Portland on Monday and Tuesday.

* Corvallis leads the all-time series 5-4 and is 2-1 against the Sweets at Goss Stadium, where the Knights have won four in a row since losing 7-4 to Klamath Falls on June 8.

* Catcher Elliot Stewart (Cal Poly) is hitting .294 to lead the Sweets, with a triple, two homers and four RBIs in 17 at-bats. Outfielder Chance Kopacz (Walla Walla CC), a Hermiston native, is at .283, with eight RBIs.

* Sweets' righty Tim Culligan (Nevada) is 2-1, 3.46; he's a graduate of Liberty High in Hillsboro. Righty Jacob Overbay (Nevada) is the younger brother of Pittsburgh Pirate' first baseman Lyle Overbay.

* The Knights lost infielder Griffin Boyd for the balance of the season with a rib injury earlier this week. They signed Seattle University second baseman Trent Oleszczuk to fill that vacancy.

* The Knights play their annual exhibition against the T. Gerding Construction American Legion team at 5:05 p.m. Sunday to conclude the homestand.


Where the Knights have landed

June 22, 2011

I ain't here on business, I'm only here for fun ...

And part of that fun is discovering where our former players who were selected in the recent 2011 MLB draft will begin their professional careers once they've signed.

Not everyone has signed, of course. According to information available on MLB.com, Tyler Anderson (2009, 1, Colorado); Andrew Susac (2009, 2, San Franciosco); Sam Gaviglio (5, St. Louis); Josh Osich (2008, San Francisco); Jace Fry (2011, 9, Oakland); Scott Lyman (2010, 10, Florida) and Taylor Ard (2009, 25, Boston) have not yet signed.

MLB says James Nygren 2009, 33, Florida) hasn't signed, but we know he has and he's supposed to pitch on Thursday for the Gulf Coast League Marlins against the GCL Mets.

And Carter Bell (20009, 29, Arizona) has signed but is letting his injured right hand recover before playing again this summer.

Anyway, here's where everyone else has landed:

* Dayton Alexander (2011, 6, Oakland) is with the Arizona Rookie League Athletics.

* Dean Green (2008, 10, Tigers) is with the (Norwich) Connecticut Tigers in the short-A New York-Penn League.

* Michael Blake (2010-11, 16, Arizona) is with the Yakima Bears in the short-A Northwest League.

* Nic Cuckovich (2011, 17, Royals) is with the Arizona Rookie League Royals.

* Dustin Emmons (2009-10, 38, Mets) is with Kingsport (W. Va.) in the short-A Appalachian League.

* Cody Bartlett (2007, 41, Toronto) is in beautiful Bluefield, W. Va., in the short-A Appalachian League.

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We close our series at Wenatchee tonight and return to C-Vegas for a Thursday-Saturday series against Walla Walla and our annual exhibition game against the T. Gerding Construction American Legion team on Sunday.

Thursday is Block 15 night/Philomath Chamber of Commerce/$1 hot dog night; Friday is State Farm Insurance Rally Towel Night, and Saturday is our first $1,000 Kids (10-under) Dash for Cash, sponsored by All Family Vision Care.

So there's lots going on at the ballpark besides the baseball. See you there!

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Former Knights pitcher Andrew Checketts (2000) was named the new head coach at UC Santa Barbara today. He's been the pitching coach at Oregon the last three seasons. He starred at OSU from 1996-98 after a prep career at West Linn and one season at Florida.

Here's the link from the UCSB website.

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Speaking of our pro Knights, here's a rundown on the progress of our former players now in the minors:

DREW GARCIA (2007, White Sox): The 2B from UC Riverside is hitting .218 (27-114) in 35 games with triple-A Charlotte of the International League, with four homers and 14 RBIs.

NICK STRUCK (2009, Cubs): The Mt. Hood CC righty has been promoted to double-A Tennessee and is 1-1, 2.01 in four games, with 17 strikeouts in 22.1 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 .286 (71-248) in 71 games, with 17 homers and 53 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 .207 (24-116) in 34 games, with no homers and 10 RBIs.

ROCKY GALE (2007, 2009, Padres): The catcher from the University of Portland was promoted to the PCL's Tucson beavers for a game and went 1-for-4. He's hitting .133 (8-60) in 22 games for Lake Elsinore in the California League in two Class A stops.

NICK AKINS (2007, Dodgers): The former Vanguard College infielder is hitting .217 (28-129) with the Great Lakes Loons in the Class A Midwest League, with six homers and 24 RBIs in 36 games. He's currently on the disabled list.

GREG PEAVEY (2007, Mets): The one-time Oregon State pitcher is 6-2, 3.12 in 14 games at Class A Savannah in the Sally League, with 69 strikeouts in 78 innings.

ALEX BURG (2008, Giants): The MVP of the 2008 WCL champions, a Washington State alum, is hitting .462 (12-26) in eight games with the San Jose Giants of the Class A California League, with two homers and six RBIs.

MATT PARKER (2009, Twins): The former San Diego State catcher hit .176 (3-17) in six games, with no homers and an RBI, for Beloit (Wis.) in the Class A Midwest League. He is no longer on the active roster.

DAVID ANDRIESE (2009, Padres): The former UC Riverside star is 0-1, 6.75 in one game with the Eugene Emeralds, with five strikeouts in four innings.

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That's all for today.


Bre makes the G-T

June 21, 2011

Nice story in the "Behind the Corvallis Knights" feature in this morning's Corvallis Gazette-Times on our own Bre Kerkvliet, our assistant general manager/director of business development.

Here's the link to a good read from G-T sports writer Kevin Hampton.

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We've got a roster update to report, and unfortunately it's not good news.

Infielder Griffin Boyd will be sidelined for the balance of a summer by a rib injury suffered in a collisoon at first base in our opening home series against Klamath Falls.

Griffin was hitting .278, with no homers and five RBIs. In 2010, he hit .277 in 34 games, with no homers and five RBIs.

Best of luck to Griffin, who will be a senior at Western Oregon next season.

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The Blog is kind of an attendance geek and we follow how the Knights are doing at the box office very closely, as it's a good indication of how we're doing in the community.

We're at 5,164 fans through five games, an average of 1,033 per game. We're 1,024 ahead of last year's numbers at a comparable date, and we rank fifth in the WCL in per-game average (WCL games only).

Our goal is 36,000 this year; help us reach it!

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Former Oregon State star pitcher Greg Peavey pitched for us in the second half of the 2007 season, just after his graduation from high school in Vancouver, Wash. He saved the championship game of the West Division playoffs against Kitsap, and helped us reach the WCL finals, where we lost to Moses Lake.

He's now playing for the Class A Savannah Sand Gnats in the New York Mets' system. Here's an update on his progress, from The Columbiannewspaper of Vancouver.

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Two more of the 17 former/current Knights selected in the recent MLB draft signed pro contracts on Monday.

Pitcher Dustin Emmons (2009, 2010) signed with the New York Mets; infielder Cody Bartlett signed with Toronto.

So that's nine from the 2011 draft who've now signed: Emmons and Bartlett; Carter Bell and Michael Blake with Arizona; Matt Andriese with San Diego; Nic Cuckovic with Kansas City; Dayton Alexander with Oakland; Dean Green with Detroit, and James Nygren with Florida.

Certainly there are more to come; some may have already signed but their names have not yet been released by their new clubs.


Roster moves for Wenatchee

June 20, 2011

The season's only a week old and already the injury bug has bitten the Knights.

Infielder Griffin Boyd of Western Oregon and RHP Jimmie Sherfy of Oregon were late scratches from the travel roster for this week's series at red-hot Wenatchee because of injuries.

Boyd (.278, 0-5) is out for an undetermined time with injured ribs, sustained in a collision at first base in our opening series against Klamath Falls. And Sherfy (-0-, 2.70) is out for at least two weeks with a tight right shoulder.

Pitcher/catcher Justin Hepner (0-1, 6.75) of San Diego State and pitcher Matt Pechmann (0-2, 2.25) of Mt. Hood CC took their places for the series, which runs tonight through Wednesday night.

The Knights will have more players at their disposal, however, for what should be a very tough series. The AppleSox have won 14 in a row since an opening-night loss and already lead the East Division by 7.5 games over Kelowna.

Outfielder Nate Blackham has completed a term of summer school at Washington State and rejoins the club today. He hit .444 (4-9) with two steals in the opening series at Walla Walla before returning to Pullman to finish his schoolwork.

And the Knights have signed Seattle University second baseman Trent Oleszczuk ("Oly") to fill the void left by dings to Boyd and Nate Roberts, a Seattle teammate of Oly's who is out for the summer with a hand injury.

The 5-foot-9, 170-pounder hit a team-best .322 (1 HR, 21 RBIs) for the Redhawks, with team-highs of 39 runs and 58 hits, and an outstanding .983 fielding percentage. He's a senior-to-be from Southridge High in Beaverton who was a Metro League all-star before playing two seasons at Chemeketa CC in Salem.

Welcome aboard, Oly.

The Knights are starting (in order) RHP Chris Johnson (1-0, 0.00), RHP Mitch Patito (0-0, 0.00, 1 save) and RHP Chase Johnson (0-0, 0.00). The AppleSox will go with Owen Jones (2-0, 0.98), Jackson Goulder (2-0, 2.19) and Mike Murray (0-0, 1.50).

All three games are on KLOO-AM 1240. The Knights return home after Wednesday's game and will host Walla Walla this Thursday through Saturday.

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Former Knights pitcher Matt Andriese, the 2009 WCL Pitcher of the Year, made his professional debut on Saturday night for the Eugene Emeralds, against the Boise Hawks at PK Park in Eugene.

Andriese pitched four scoreless innings, then gave up three of Boise's eight runs in the fifth and was tagged with the loss. He had five strikeouts.

Andriese's younger brother (and current Knight) David Andriese and former Knights teammate (and current Knight) Eric Young were at the ballpark.

The elder Andriese starred at UC Riverside and was the Padres' third-round draft choice earlier this month. The Emeralds are San Diego's short-season Class A Northwest League franchise.

Here's a link from the Eugene Register-Guard with the game story.


Notes from a weekend sweep

June 18, 2011

Some leftover notes from the Knights' weekend sweep of the Bellingham Bells at Goss Stadium:

* The Knights now lead the all-time series 28-15 overall and 15-3 at Goss Stadium. The sweep also reversed a recent trend; Bellingham had won 6 of 8 entering the series.

* Center fielder Matt Nylen went 3-for-3 on Saturday in his only start and reached base safely all four times. He raised his average 95 points to .269.

* The Knights scored 12 runs in three games and seven different players had RBIs: Sean Myron (2), David Andriese (2), Jimmy Allen (2), Corey Davis (2), Corey Moore, Kramer Scott and Nylen.

* Closer Mitch Patito struck out the side to save Friday's first game. Patito has nine saves and 28 strikeouts in 23 innings in his two-year Knights' career.

* Reliever Mark Trentacosta had three scoreless innings in Game 2 on Friday and has not allowed a run in 6.2 innings in three appearances. He has seven strikeouts.

* Saturday's crowd of 723, on an inclement day, raised the season total to 5,164 in five dates, an average of 1,033 per game. The season high is 1,452 on June 17.

* The Knights go Wenatchee this Monday-Wednesday. Portland sophomore Chris Johnson (1-0, 0.00) is Monday's projected starter; the rest of the rotation isn't finalized yet.

* The Knights host Walla Walla on Thursday-Saturday, and play their annual exhibition against the T. Gerding Construction American Legion team (formerly Richey's Market) on Sunday.

Thursday is Block 15 Thursday/Philomath Chamber of Commerce/$1 hot dog night.

Friday is State Farm Insurance Rally Towel Night. The first 500 fans will receive a free rally towel.

Saturday is our first $1,000 Kids (10-under) Dash for Cash, presented by All Family Vision Care.

Sunday is HOPE Night, presented by 107.9 FM.

* Finally, here's the link to Saturday's game story aftert the 4-2 win over the Bells.


Knights host Bellingham in a doubleheader

June 17, 2011

Some notes about tonight's 6:05 p.m. doubleheader against Bellingham:

* The Knights welcome UC Irvine pitchers Nick Hoover, a three-year Knight, and Sebastian Santos to the team tonight. Their college season did not end until this past Monday, when the Anteaters lost 3-2 to Virginia in the championship game of the NCAA Charlottesville Regional.

* Knights' infielder Nate Roberts of Seattle University will miss the remainder of the season with a lingering hand injury he sustained during the college season. The WCL leader in RBIs in 2010 as a Moses Lake Pirate, Roberts was 0-for-9 with an RBI in three games with the Knights.

* Corvallis leads the all-time series 25-15 and is 12-3 at Goss Stadium. However, the Bells took 2 of 3 last July in their most recent visit to Corvallis and have won 6 of the last 8 games in the series.

* First baseman Sean Myrom hit the Knights first home run of the season against the Portland Bucks on Thursday night. Six of Myrom'S 10 hits have gone for extra bases; he also has a team-best five doubles.

* Tonight's Game 2 starter for Corvallis, lefty Dylan Stuart of UC Riverside, was the Big West Conference Freshman Pitcher of the Year. He was 1-1, 1.72 in 18 games, with 29 strikeouts and six pickoffs in 31.1 innings.

* The Knights drew a season-high 1,265 fans to Thursday's 5-1 win over the Portland Bucks. They've drawn 2,989 fans to their first three games, an average of 996 per date. They are 2,680 fans ahead of last year's total after three games.

* Bellingham coach Gary Hatch is a member of the Washington State Baseball Coaches Hall of Fame and is the coach at Sehome High School in that city. He started there as an assistant in 1973 and became head coach in 1980. He won state titles in 1983, 2007 and 2008.


Boyd named to Team USA

June 16, 2011

Good news for another former Knight, Oregon State pitcher Matt Boyd, a second-team WCL all-star for our 2010 club.

The junior-to-be has been invited to join the 2011 USA Baseball Collegiate National Team tour, which begins on June 21 in conjunction with franchises in the New England Collegiate Baseball League.

Boyd is an alternate for players in Omaha competing for a national championship. USA Baseball will continue to make roster decisions through the end of the College World Series.

Boyd was 0-0, 1.57 with four saves in 30 games this spring. He had 35 strikeouts in 46 innings.

Former Knights Kevin Gunderson and Carter Bell have also played for their respective national college teams.


Ex-Knight Carter Bell signs with D-Backs.

June 15, 2011

First, before we get to the Carter Bell news:

Our West Coast League all-star game ballot is now available online at Corvallisknights.com. We'll also have ballots at the ballpark so don't be afraid to stuff the ballot box!

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We've got another alum in pro baseball.

Former Knights infielder Carter Bell (2009) of Oregon State has signed with the Arizona Diamondbacks. He was their 29th-round selection in the recent MLB draft.

A native of Courtenay, British Columbia, Bell played for the Knights after his freshman year at OSU. He hit .303 (10-33), with three RBIs, in 10 games before missing the rest of the season with a concussion.

Here are the details from the Diamondbacks' wsebsite. The D-Backs also announced the signing of ex-Knight Michael Blake (2010), something we've already announced here.

Arizona's short-season Class A franchise is in nearby Yakima, Wash. So we could see Carter and Michael in action at Eugene and at Salem-Keizer this summer, unless they instead are sent to Missoula in the rookie Pioneer League.

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We're equally happy to report that the cavalry has arrived in the form of most our partner-school players. The newest arrivals should be in uniform for Thursday's 6:40 p.m. game against the Portland Bucks of WCL Portland at Goss Stadium.

Among those dropping by the Knights' downtown WWHQ this morning were Jimmy Allen, Chase Johnson and David Armendariz of Cal Poly; David Andriese, Mitch Patito and Dylan Stuart of UC Riverside, and Corey Davis of Wright State.

And coincidentlaly, Andriese's brother, former Knights (2009)/UC Riverside pitcher Matt Andriese will be in Eugene this summer, playing for the Emeralds. He was San Diego's third-round selection in the recent MLB draft.

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We've got more honors to announce for ex-Knights pitcher Sam Gaviglio of Oregon State, Bell's teammate on the 2009 Knights.

Baseball America named Gaviglio a second-team All-American; the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) named him a third-team All-American.

He was named a second-team All-American by Louisville Slugger last week. Gaviglio was 12-3 this season, and was a fifth-round draft choice by the St. Louis Cardinals in the recent MLB draft.

He was a first-team Pac-10 all-star, is a semifinalist for the College Baseball Hall of Fame’s National Pitcher of the Year award and is one of 30 semifinalists for the Golden Spikes Award, given annually to the nation’s top collegiate player.

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Three more professional Knights

June 14, 2011

We can confirm that three more Corvallis Knights have joined the ranks of professional baseball.

Outfielders Dayton Alexander of Feather River College and Michael Blake of Hawaii, and infielder Nic Cuckovich of Riverside Community College were all selected on the the second day of the Major League baseball draft and have signed professional contracts.

Alexander (round 6) inked a deal with Oakland; Blake (16) signed with with Arizona and Cuckovich (17) signed with Kansas City.

Alexander had started the Knights’ first four games this season and was hitting .267 (4-15). Blake led the Knights in hitting last summer with a .344 average. Cuckovich was our projected starting shortstop.

We'll follow their progress in their new careers in our weekly "Knights in the Minors" feature.

Word on the street is that Oregon State pitcher and former Knight James Nygren (2009), a Florida draftee, has signed and will be heading to camp later this week. Nothing official on the Marlins' website yet, however.

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Knights' lefty Jace Fry will start for the North team at 6 p.m. Saturday in the first game of the Reser's Oregon All-Star Series at Goss Stadium.

Fry is 0-1, 1.69 in two appearances with the Knights. He was 10-0 at Southridge High and was the Metro League Pitcher of the Year.

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More of our full-time players will be arriving this week so we've made a few roster adjustments.

Pitchers Taylor Hill of Hawaii Pacific and Brian Ranta of George Fox, and first baseman Grant Fink of Mt. Hood CC, all 10-day signees, have been released.

Hill was 0-0, 0.00 in three innings over two appearances. Our opening-night starter at Walla Walla, Ranta was 0-1, 2.25 in four innings over two games, with four strikeouts.

Fink made some great plays on defense but was hitting just .148 (4-27) with one RBI in eight games.

Fink has already landed with the Portland Bucks of WCL Portland, our affiliate league that plays at the University of Portland and Mt. Hood. He'll play in Corvallis on Thursday night.

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Don't forget, we're idle until 6:40 p.m. Thursday, when we play the Portland Bucks of WCL Portland in a nonleague game.

It's our first Block 15 Thursday, presented by KLOO-FM, so head out to the ballpark for a select Block 15 brew, priced right for sampling, or quench your thirst with a cold Summer Knights Ale, the specially-crafted microbrew Nick and the gang at Block 15 created specifically for us.

It's also a Bi-Mart 2-for-1 Night and $1 Hot Dog Night. And the rumor is, ELVIS will be in the house. Don’t miss a special pre-game performance by the King of Rock.

Friday's 6:05 p.m. doubleheader against Bellingham is Big League Chew/Trading Card/Little League night, and Saturday's 12:35 single game is a (early) Dad's Day special, as all dads get in for $2 when accompanied by a family member.