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Knights Daily Update

Cubs promote Matt Dorey

November 25, 2013

Happy Monday, everyone.

Hope you had a great weekend (or at least a better one than our state's football teams, except for Linfield). But, life goes on, the sun rose in the east as expected this morning, and Thanksgiving should remind everyone that there are a lot more important things in life than college football (Knights' baseball, for instance).

Anyhow, we've got some Knights news to report today, so let's get started.

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You may have seen this already on the news portion of our website, but good news always bears repeating.

Our 2007 head coach, Matt Dorey, has been named the director of amateur scouting for the Chicago Cubs of the National League. He succeeds Jaron Madison, who moves from director of amateur scouting to director of player development.

Here are more details, from our website.

Dorey joined the Cubs from the Boston Red Sox, hired when Theo Epstein left Boston to become GM of the Cubs. Epstein was prohibited from raiding the Red Sox organization as a condition of the deal, and could only take one employee with him. That employee was Dorey, who was an area scout and one of the team's top talent evaluators.

Dorey will oversee the Cubs 2014 draft and the fourth overall pick. He was Boston's area scout for Louisiana and Texas after being its Northwest scout in 2008, after leaving the Knights prior to the season.

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We're drawing ever closer to initial "Clearing the Bases" sale, scheduled for 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 14, in the front lobby of the Madison Plaza in downtown Corvallis. We'll have merchandise, caps, memorabilia, some team artifacts and other items for sale at excellent prices, just in time for the holidays.

We'll also have a very special deal on a very popular Knights' item, so stay tuned to this space for more details as the big day approaches. Save the date (Dec. 14) and come on down to the heart of downtown Corvallis to check it out.

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Some news from elsewhere in the West Coast League:

BELLINGHAM: The Bells have added nonleague games with the Everett Merchants of the Pacific International League on June 24-25. Click here for more details, from the team's website.

KITSAP: The BlueJackets have signed left-handed pitcher Matt Narahara of the University of San Francisco for the upcoming season. He's a 6-foot-1, 207-pound freshman from Castro Valley High School in Castro Valley, Calif.

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That's it for today. See you on Tuesday.


Oregon freshman Stephen Nogosek to return in 2014

November 22, 2013

Happy Friday, everyone.

Another sunny and cold day at the WWHQ in Corvallis, where everyone is pulling out their thermal underwear and turtlenecks in anticipation of a chilly night at Reser Stadium on Saturday when the Beavers host Washington in a pretty important Pac-12 football game.

We'll make sure to bundle up, and we're looking forward to the final home game of the fall.

We've got some Knights news to report today, so let's get started.

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We've signed Oregon freshman right-handed pitcher Stephen Nogosek for the 2014 season. He's a returnee from our 2013 West Coast League championship team, and an important member of a 2013-14 Oregon recruiting class that was ranked No. 7 nationally by Baseball America.

The 6-foot-1, 185-pounder was 1-1, 2.81 in nine games for us in 2013, with 20 strikeouts in 16 innings. He also hit .239 (17-71) in 26 games as an infielder, with no homers and seven RBIs.

He's a graduate of Woodcreek High School in Roseville, Calif., and played on the United States U-16 national team before enrolling at Oregon.

Nogo will be joined by four other returnees from our 2013 championship team: Pitchers Chris Bishop (Pacific Lutheran) and Sean Eberhardt (George Fox), and outfielders Grant Melker (San Diego) and Joe Duffin (Cypress JC). Infielder Marc Gallegos of Corban University, a 2012 all-WCL selection with the Knights who missed last summer with a shoulder injury, will also return.

Welcome back, Nogo!

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The Arizona Fall League is complete and we updated the final stats of our Knights in that circuit last week. But we have three alums in the Australian Baseball League, so here's an update on their seasons:

ERIC MASSINGHAM (2006-07): The pitcher from Cal Poly is 1-0, 6.00 in three appearances with defending champion Canberra, with one strikeout in three innings.

DEAN GREEN (2008): The one-time Oklahoma State/Barry University slugging first baseman is still on the disabled list with the Sydney Blue Sox.

LIAM BARON ((2008-09): The lefty from Linn-Benton/Gonzaga has appeared in one game for the Perth Heat and did not allow an earned run, but he does not have an ERA yet because he hasn't recorded an out.

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Remember (how could you forget?), we'll have lots of team gear, some equipment, and other knick-knacks available at our initial "Clearing the Bases" sale, scheduled for 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 14, in the front lobby of the Madison Plaza in downtown Corvallis. Merchandise, caps, memorabilia, some team artifacts and other items for sale at excellent prices, just in time for the holidays.

We'll also have a very special deal on a very popular Knights' item, so stay tuned to this space for more details as the big day approaches. Save the date (Dec. 14) and come on down to the heart of downtown Corvallis to check it out.

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The WCL general managers are holding their annual fall meeting today in Salem, so maybe we'll have some league news to report after we hear back from Knights' GM Bre Kerkvliet. Until then, however, it's all quiet on the league front so have a great weekend and we'll see you again on Monday.


Susac praised for progress in AFL

November 21, 2013

Happy Thursday, everyone.

Lots of news about the Corvallis Knights, and some items from around the West Coast League, to pass along today. So let's get going.

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Alum Andrew Susac (2009), a prospect in the San Francisco organization, just missed making Baseball America's list of the Top 20 prospects in the Arizona Fall League. However, he was one of two players to earn honorable mention; here's reporter Jim Mitchell's evaluation of Susac, who was Baseball America's No. 1 West Coast League pro prospect after the 2009 summer season.

"Susac, 23, took what was probably the biggest step forward of AFL player with his performance in the league. Scouts now see the Oregon State product, a second-round pick in 2011, as a future big league regular.

"He hit consistently well all year, batting .360/.507/.480 and leading the league in on-base average, in part because of his 16 walks, while also showing impressive power to all fields and driving balls into the gaps.

"Susac has a slightly above-average arm, throwing out 25 percent of the runners attempting to steal against him, and needs to continue to improve his defense behind the plate."

That's some good stuff. Susac played for the Scottsdale Scorpions and hit .360 (18-50) in 17 games, with two homers and seven RBIs. He also made the Fall Stars Game, the AFL's all-star game.

Susac played at Richmond in the double-A Eastern League in 2013 and hit .256 (67-262) in 87 games, with 12 homers and 46 RBIs. He also played in the EL's All-Star Game, despite missing part of the season with injuries. Susac should advance to Fresno in the triple-A Pacific Coast League in 2014.

He's one of 11 members of our 2009 squad still active in professional baseball. Pitchers Sam Gaviglio, James Nygren, Kyle Kraus, Eddie Orosco and Nick Struck and position players Adam Melker, Taylor Ard, Carter Bell and Rocky Gale all played affiliated ball in 2013. Pitcher Liam Baron played in the Australian Baseball League.

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There's also an article on alum/Milwaukee farmhand Mitch Haniger (2010) in Baseball America by reporter Tom Haudricourt, but it's available via subscription-only so we can't link it.

We can summarize, however. Haudricourt speculates that the former Cal Poly star's athleticism, instincts and the progress he showed at advanced-A Brevard County in 2013 make him a very good bet to advance to Huntsville (Ala.) in the double-A Texas League in 2014.

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We reported on Wednesday that the Victoria HarbourCats have hired Jim Swanson as their new general manager. He succeeds former general manager Holly Jones, the assistant to Knights' president Dan Segel in 2006 and 2007 during her undergraduate days at the University of Oregon.

Here's more on the hiring, from the HarbourCats Baseball Blog. Here's more from the Victoria Times Colonist newspaper, and here's more yet from Island Sports News.

Again, welcome to the WCL, Jim.

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Alum Eric Massingham (2006, 2007) of the Canberra Cavalry pitched three scoreless innings on Wednesday and the defending Australian Baseball League champions rallied to defeat the Uni-President Lions (Taiwanese champions) 14-4 to win the Asia Series championship at Taichung, Taiwan. He allowed three hits and had two strikeouts.

Congrats to Eric, who played at Cal Poly and who earned WCL postseason honors for us in Gresham and in Corvallis. He played in the Philadelphia organization for several years and has starred for Evansville in the Frontier League since being released from affiliated baseball.

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We'll have lots of team gear, some equipment, and other knick-knacks available at our initial "Clearing the Bases" sale, scheduled for 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 14, in the front lobby of the Madison Plaza in downtown Corvallis. Merchandise, caps, memorabilia, some team artifacts and other items for sale at excellent prices, just in time for the holidays.

We'll also have a very special deal on a very popular Knights' item, so stay tuned to this space for more details as the big day approaches. Save the date (Dec. 14) and come on down to the heart of downtown Corvallis to check it out.

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Some news from elsewhere in the West Coast League:

KELOWNA: Due to their rather remote location, the Falcons will travel more than any other WCL club this summer, according to this story in the Kelowna Capitol News newspaper. We don't visit Kelowna this year, due to the unbalanced schedule.

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That's it for today. See you on Friday.


Gaviglio praised for strong AFL season

November 20, 2013

Happy Wednesday, everyone.

Some Knights' news, and some items from around the West Coast League, to announce today. So let's get going.

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Alum Sam Gaviglio (2009), a prospect in the St. Louis Cardinals organization from Oregon State, earned major praise for his performance for the Arizona Fall League's Salt River Rafters.

Here's the report on Gaviglio from MLB.com correspondent Jenifer Langosch, after an interview with Gary LaRocque, the Cardinals' senior advisor for player development:

The right-hander went to Arizona to recoup some of the innings he lost while sidelined by a forearm strain during the regular season. Gaviglio went 3-0 in six starts, allowing 11 earned runs on 25 hits and eight walks. He struck out 21.

"He showed he can pitch at that level, no question about it," said LaRocque.

Sam spent most of last season at Palm Beach in the Class A (advanced) Florida State League and went 4-1, 2.72 in seven games, with 30 strikeouts in 39.2 innings. Look for him at double-A Springfield in the Texas League next summer.

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The Victoria HarbourCats have hired a successor to former general manager Holly Jones, who was the assistant to Knights' president Dan Segel in 2006 and 2007 during her undergraduate days at the University of Oregon.

Victoria has named Jim Swanson as its new GM. Here are more details, from the Victoria website. Welcome to the WCL, Jim.

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Game 2 of the three-game Ants vs. 'Eaters series that concludes UC Irvine's fall practice and the 'Eaters prevailed 7-5 in eight innings to take a 2-0 advantage heading into Wednesday's Game 3(the schedule changed from Monday's report on the UCI website).

Knights' veteran Chris Rabago was 2-for-2 with a double and two runs for the Ants and scored the tying run in the last of the seventh to send the game into extra innings. Rabago won our Joe Segel Hustle Award the past two seasons. Alum Evan Brock (2010) is a tri-captain of the Ants.

Alum Elliot Surrey (2013 has not pitched yet, but may today. Surrey led the WCL in ERA, was all-WCL and was our Pitcher of the Year this past summer.

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We'll have lots of Knights gear, some equipment, and other knick-knacks available at our initial "Clearing the Bases" sale, scheduled for 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 14, in the front lobby of the Madison Plaza in downtown Corvallis. We'll have merchandise, caps, memorabilia, some team artifacts and other items for sale at excellent prices, just in time for the holidays.

We'll also have a very special deal on a very popular Knights' item, so stay tuned to this space for more details as the big day approaches. Save the date (Dec. 14) and come on down to the heart of downtown Corvallis to check it out.

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Some news from elsewhere in the West Coast League:

KITSAP: Infielder Vince Sablan, a sophomore at Olympic Community College, will return to Kitsap in 2014. He hit .206 (21-102) in 35 games last summer, with no homers and eight RBIs. He'll be joined by his twin brother, catcher AlexSablan, also of Olympic CC. Alex missed the entire 2013 season while recovering from a knee injury. They played at South Kitsap High school.

KLAMATH FALLS: The Gems have announced their 2014 schedule, which includes the 2014 WCL All-Star Game at Kiger Stadium. Here's more from Our Sports Central, and here's more yet from the Klamath Falls Herald and News.

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That's it for today. See you on Thursday.


Brock loses UC Irvine intrasquad opener

November 19, 2013

Happy Tuesday, everyone. We've got some Knights' news to announce today, so let's get going.

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Alum Evan Brock (2010), a tri-captain of the Ants, was the losing pitcher on Monday as the 'Eaters edged the Ants 9-8 in Game 1 of UC Irvine's annual three-game intrasquad series at Anteater Ballpark. Game 2 is Wednesday; Game 3 is Thursday.

Alums Chris Rabago (2012-13) and Elliot Surrey (2013) are also playing in the series. Rabago won our Joe Segel Hustle Award the past two seasons; Surrey led the WCL in ERA, was all-WCL and was our Pitcher of the Year this past summer.

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Alum Brent Morel (2006, 2007) of the Chicago White Sox, the first former Corvallis Knight to play in the major leagues, is arbitration-eligible this year. He divided time between triple-A Charlotte and the big club this past season, and he remains on the ChiSox's 40-man major-league roster.

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Alum Chris Stewart (2001) of the New York Yankees, the guest of honor at our 2013 Hot Stove Night function, could be non-tendered (not offered a contract) for the coming season, according to the Pinstripe Alley website. Click here to read author Michael Brown's rather unflattering evaluation of the former Riverside City College standout, our 2001 MVP.

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Plenty of Knights' gear, some equipment, and other knick-knacks will be available at our initial "Clearing the Bases" sale, scheduled for 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 14, in the front lobby of the Madison Plaza in downtown Corvallis. We'll have merchandise, caps, memorabilia, some team artifacts and other items for sale at excellent prices, just in time for the holidays.

We'll also have a very special deal on a very popular Knights' item, so stay tuned to this space for more details as the big day approaches. Save the date (Dec. 14) and come on down to the heart of downtown Corvallis to check it out.

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Some news from elsewhere in the West Coast League:

KITSAP: The BlueJackets have signed have signed left-handed pitcher Peter Nyznyk of Butler University. A graduate of De La Salle High School in Concord, Calif., he's a junior transfer from Los Medanos (Calif.) CC who was 6-4, 3.48 in 18 games at LMCC in 2013, with 72 strikeouts in 103.1 innings.

I guess that means the "Can I buy a vowel?" audio snippet we play over the PA system is good for another summer!

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That's it for today. See you on Wednesday.


Haniger wins AFL championship

November 18, 2013

Happy Monday, everyone. Hope everyone had a great weekend.

Some Knights' news to announce today. So let's get going.

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Former Knights' outfielder Mitch Haniger (2010) and the Surprise Saguaros defeated the Mesa Solar Sox 2-0 on Saturday to capture the Arizona Fall League championship for the first time since 1995. Haniger, rated by Baseball America as the No. 3 prospect in the Milwaukee organization, was 0-for-3 in the finale.

Congrats to Mitch. He had a great fall, led the league in RBIs (24), and certainly enhanced his standing in the organization. He played at Class A Wisconsin (Midwest League) and Brevard County (Florida State League) in 2013.

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Alum Evan Brock (2010) is a tri-captain of the Ants, who will battle the 'Eaters this week in UC Irvine's annual three-game intrasquad series at Anteater Ballpark. Games are set for today, Wednesday and Thursday.

Alums Chris Rabago (2012-13) and Elliot Surrey (2013) will also play. Rabago won our Joe Segel Hustle Award the past two seasons; Surrey led the WCL in ERA, was all-WCL and was our Pitcher of the Year this past summer.

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Several weeks ago we mentioned the new Kalamazoo (Mich.) franchise in the Northwoods League was holding a contest to pick its nickname. The winner was "Growlers," thanks to the city's history in the craft brewing industry.

The losers were Clutch, Cabbies, Kangaroos and Kraken, which apparently is some sort of fictional Great Lakes monster. Here's more on the story from the Ballpark Business website.

Still no word on the nickname of the West Coast League's expansion Yakima franchise. We'll let you know when that decision is made.

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We've got a lot of stuff ready for your inspection at our first "Clearing the Bases" sale, scheduled for 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 14, in the front lobby of the Madison Plaza in downtown Corvallis. We'll have merchandise, caps, memorabilia, some team artifacts and other items for sale at excellent prices, just in time for the holidays.

We'll also have a very special deal on a very popular Knights' item, so stay tuned to this space for more details as the big day approaches. Save the date (Dec. 14) and come on down to the heart of downtown Corvallis to check it out.

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Some news from elsewhere in the WCL:

BELLINGHAM: The Bells have released their 2014 schedule. Here's more from the team's website.

BEND: The Elks have released their 2014 schedule. Here's more from the Bend website.

COWLITZ: The Black Bears have released their 2014 schedule. Click here for full details.

KELOWNA: The Falcons have released their 2014 schedule, their first under new coach Billy Clontz, a former Knights player (2006, 2008-09) and coach (2010-11, 2013). Here's more from Our Sports Central.

MEDFORD: The Rogues have released their 2014 schedule. Here are details from Our Sports Central.

VICTORIA: The HarbourCats have released their 2014 schedule. Here are details from the HarbourCats Baseball Blog.

WALLA WALLA: The Sweet have released their 2014 schedule. Here are more details from Our Sports Central.

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That's it for today. See you on Tuesday.


Adelaide hires Brooke Knight as new coach

November 15, 2013

Happy Friday, everyone.

We've got big news to announce today, so we'll get right after it.

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Knights' skipper Brooke Knight has been named the new head coach of the Adelaide Bite of the Australian Baseball League. He's the winningest manager in ABL history (58-27) after winning two championships with the Perth Heat in 2011 and 2012.

He'll join the club early next week. Click here for more details. Congrats to Brooke.

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Former Knights' outfielder Mitch Haniger (2010), who this spring enters his third year in the Milwaukee organization, was ranked as the Brewers' No. 3 minor-league prospect by Baseball America magazine. He was also rated as having the best outfield arm among players 25 or younger in their organization.

For more on Haniger and the Brewers, please click here. Mitch played at low-A Wisconsin (Midwest League) and at high-A Brevard County (Florida State League) in 2013 and should reach double-A in 2014.

Another alum, former Oregon State pitcher Sam Gaviglio (2009), has allowed just one run in 15 innings over his last three Arizona Fall League starts. Here's more on Sammy G from the MILB.com. He played with the Palm Beach Cardinals (FSL) in high-A this past season.

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It was another productive day on Wednesday for Knights' alums in the Arizona Fall League.

* Scottsdale (Giants) catcher Andrew Susac (2009) was 2-for-3 with a walk in a 3-2 loss to Salt River. Susac played at Oregon State for two years following his summer with the Knights, when he was voted the league's top pro prospect by Baseball America and Perfect Game.

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It's a Friday, and time to update the stats of our alums in the Arizona Fall League and in the Australian Baseball League.

First, our AFL alums:

MITCH HANIGER (2010): The outfielder from Cal Poly is hitting .280 (28-100) in 25 games for the Surprise Saguaros (Brewers), with four homers and an AFL-best 24 RBIs.

ANDREW SUSAC (2009): The catcher/first baseman from Oregon State is hitting .360 (18-50) in 17 games with the Scottsdale Scorpions (Giants), with two homers and seven RBIs.

SAM GAVIGLIO (2009): The right-handed pitcher from Oregon State is 3-0, 3.58 in six games with the Salt River Rafters (Cardinals), with 21 strikeouts in 27.2 innings. He's allowed one run in his last 15 innings.

Now, our ABL alums:

ERIC MASSINGHAM (2006-07): The right-handed pitcher for the Canberra Cavalry is 1-0, 6.00 in three games, with one strikeout in three innings. He played at Cal Poly.

LIAM BARON (2008-09): The left-handed pitcher for the Perth Heat is 0-1 in one appearance. He has no strikeouts and does not yet have an ERA because he has not recorded an out. Liam played at Linn-Benton and at Gonzaga.

DEAN GREEN (2008): The first baseman for the Sydney Blue Sox is on the 7-day disabled list and hasn't played yet. He played at Oklahoma State and at Barry University.

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We've assembled much of the stuff for our first "Clearing the Bases" sale, scheduled for 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 14, in the front lobby of the Madison Plaza in downtown Corvallis. We'll have merchandise, caps, memorabilia, some team artifacts and other items for sale at excellent prices, just in time for the holidays.

We'll also have a very special deal on a very popular Knights' item, so stay tuned to this space for more details about that as the big day approaches. We'll also have a very special guest on hand for part of the time.

So save the date (Dec. 14) and come on down to the heart of downtown Corvallis to check it out.

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That's it for today. Have a great weekend.


We have a schedule!

November 14, 2013

Happy Thursday, everyone.

Our 2014 schedule is finalized, except for the identity of our non-conference opponents.

* We start at 10:30 a.m. on June 4 with our third annual Science, Engineering and Art Day at Goss Stadium. It's a non-league game so the opponent is to be determined.

* Our West Coast League opener is June 6 against Bend at Vince Genna Stadium.

* Our WCL home opener is June 11 against the new Yakima franchise.

You can click right here for complete details.

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Former Knights' pitchers Jorge Perez (2012-13) and Andrew Naderer (2013) stood out for Grand Canyon University as the Antelopes lost a three-game fall scrimmage series at Cal Poly.

"I thought that Jorge [and] Andrew pitched very well and I was really pleased with their outings," GCU coach Andy Stankewitz said. "They looked strong and had control of their pitches."

Naderer and Perez were the winning pitchers in our 2-0 sweep of Wenatchee in the WCL Championship Series last August. Both earned all-WCL honorable mention.

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It was another productive day on Wednesday for Knights' alums in the Arizona Fall League.

* Scottsdale (Giants) catcher Andrew Susac (2009) was 2-for-4 with a run in an 8-5 loss to Salt River. Susac played at Oregon State for two years following his summer with the Knights, when he was voted the WCL's top pro prospect by Baseball America and Perfect Game.

We'll have updated stats on all our ABL and Australian Baseball League alums in Friday's blog.

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Team president Dan Segel is at the WWHQ today assembling items for our first "Clearing the Bases" sale, scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 14, in the front lobby of the Madison Plaza in downtown Corvallis. We'll have merchandise, caps, memorabilia, some team artifacts and other items for sale at excellent prices, just in time for the holidays.

We'll also have a very special deal on a very popular Knights' item, so stay tuned to this space for more details as the big day approaches. Save the date (Dec. 14) and come on down to the heart of downtown Corvallis to check it out.

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Some news from elsewhere in the West Coast League:

KITSAP: The BlueJackets have signed former Chimacum (Wash.) High School star Landon Cray, a 5-9, 160-pound sophomore outfielder at Seattle University, for the upcoming season.

Cray hit .313 in 48 games for SU in 2013, with three homers and 24 RBIs. He was a four-year league MVP and a four-time all-state player at Chimacum, and was the state Player of the Year in 2011. He is a nephew of Paul Sorrento, a former MLB first baseman with Seattle, Minnesota and Cleveland.

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That's it for today. See you on Thursday.


Former intern Megan Murphy now at ASU

November 13, 2013

Happy Wednesday, everyone.

Unlike yesterday, we don't have any big news to announce today. We can report we should have an official 2014 schedule by the end of the week, so stay tuned.

However, we do have a few news items to report, so let's get on with it.

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Former Knights' superstar intern Megan Murphy, (2008, 2011) a Corvallis native and a graduate of Corvallis High School and the University of Oregon, has landed a new job after working the past two years with the Bakersfield Blaze of the Class A California League.

She's now a Group Events Consultant for the Arizona State University athletic department. Here's more on that story, from our website.

Congrats and best of luck to Megan. Her parents, Mike and Mary Murphy, are longtime Knights' season-ticket holders and Mike was instrumental in IBEW 1280 getting involved with the team. IBEW (the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) sponsored the ZOOperstars! last year.

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It was another productive day on Tuesday for Knights' alums in the Arizona Fall League.

* Surprise (Brewers) outfielder Mitch Haniger (2010) was 2-for-4 with two runs and an RBI in a 9-7 victory over Scottsdale. Scottsdale (Giants) catcher Andrew Susac (2009) didn't play. Haniger played at Cal Poly, Susac at Oregon State.

We'll have updated stats on all our AFL and Australian Baseball League alums in Friday's blog.

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Yes, yet another reminder about our first "Clearing the Bases" sale, scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 14, in the front lobby of the Madison Plaza in downtown Corvallis. We'll have merchandise, caps, memorabilia, some team artifacts and other items for sale at excellent prices, just in time for the holidays.

We'll also have a very special deal on a very popular Knights' item, so stay tuned to this space for more details as the big day approaches. Save the date (Dec. 14) and come on down to the heart of downtown Corvallis to check it out.

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Some news from elsewhere in the West Coast League:

KITSAP: The BlueJackets have signed left-handed pitcher Brock Burke, a 6-4, 180-pounder from Evergreen, Colo. He's a senior at Evergreen High and will be a freshman at UO in 2014-15.

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That's it for today. See you on Thursday.


Bells hire Jeff James as their new head coach

November 12, 2013

Happy Tuesday, everyone.

Big news in the West Coast League today. Bellingham has hired former University of Washington player Jeff James as its new head coach for the 2014 season. He succeeds Gary Hatch, who stepped down in September after three years at the helm.

A Seattle native who starred at Newport High School in Bellevue, James then played at California Baptist University, Bellevue Community College, and Washington. He is currently a volunteer assistant coach at Seattle University, and has also been director of baseball operations for Seattle U, and an assistant at Everett Community College, Washington and with the Kelowna Falcons in 2009 and 2010.

Here's more on James from the Seattle University website. More details on James' hiring are available here, from the Bellingham Herald newspaper, and here, from the team's website.

Hatch's assistants, Dane Siegfried and Jim Clem, the pitching coach and recruiting coordinator, will return.

Welcome to the WCL, Jeff. He will be the fourth new manager in the WCL in 2014, joining Knights' playing (2006, 2008-09) and coaching (2010-11, 2013) alum Billy Clontz at Kelowna; Marty Hunter at Bend, and whomever is hired by the expansion Yakima franchise.

We also have a few other news items to report, so let's get on with it.

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Productive day on Monday for Knights' alums in the Arizona Fall League.

* Surprise (Brewers) outfielder Mitch Haniger (2010) hit a grand slam, his fourth homer of the fall, in an 8-2 victory over Scottsdale. Scottsdale (Giants) catcher Andrew Susac (2009) was 1-for-3 with a walk. Haniger played at Cal Poly, Susac at Oregon State.

* Salt River (Cardinals) pitcher Sam Gaviglio (2009) allowed five hits and one run in five innings and got the win in an 8-1 victory over Glendale. Gaviglio struck out four and had one walk; he's now 3-0 and has allowed one run in 15 innings in his last three starts. He also played at OSU.

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Summer college wood bat baseball continues to be a growth industry, especially in regions without a substantial minor-league baseball presence, using cities that once had minor-league franchises (Wenatchee, Bend, Medford, Bellingham, Yakima, Victoria, Klamath Falls and Walla Walla are examples of this in the WCL).

The latest league to be formed is the Great Plains League, in Kansas. It will have two teams in Topeka, a city of 125,000 that no longer has affiliated or independent baseball, and two more (for now) elsewhere. Click here for more details, from the Ballpark Digest website.

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Remember, our first "Clearing the Bases" sale is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 14, in the front lobby of the Madison Plaza in downtown Corvallis. We'll have merchandise, caps, memorabilia, some team artifacts and other items for sale at excellent prices, just in time for the holidays.

We'll also have a very special deal on a very popular Knights' item, so stay tuned to this space for more details as the big day approaches. Save the date (Dec. 14) and come on down to the heart of downtown Corvallis to check it out.

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That's it for today. See you on Wednesday.