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Knights Daily Update

Short and sweet today

July 10, 2013

We'll be brief, as it's already been a busy morning and we've still got a game tonight.

Great win last night over Wenatchee to clinch the home series, and to guarantee nothing worse that a season split with the AppleSox, the defending WCL champions. We're now 4-1 in our last five WCL games, have won two series in a row, and are 6-1 overall in our last seven games.

Tonight's series finale starts at 6:40 p.m. and matches lefty Devon Barker (2-1, 3.41) for the Knights and righty Jake Bruml (2-1, 3.22) for Wenatchee. The fifth annual Heart of the Valley Runners Take Me Out to the Ballgame 5K Run and Walk precedes the game, starting and finishing at Goss Stadium.

So, see you there. We've had great weather throughout our ongoing 11-game homestand and it looks super for the rest of the week, so we'll see you at Goss!

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Last night's crowd of 1,136 raised our season total to 21,293 in 17 dates, an average of 1,253 per opening. We're 610 fans ahead of last year's pace through a corresponding number of home games.

That's great but we'll need your help to crack our all-time record of 42,447, set in 2011, and to reach our target goal of 45,000. So come on out to Goss Stadium through the rest of the week. We host Walla Walla this Thursday through Saturday.

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Remember, first baseman Jim Murphy of the Reading (Pa.) Fightin' Phils, our 2007 MVP, plays in the Eastern League All-Star Game tonight in New Britain, Conn. Catcher Andrew Susac (2009) of Richmond was also selected but he can't play because of an injury.

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Vermont (A New York-Penn, Athletics) catcher Ryan Gorton (2011) homered, singled and had a sacrifice bunt that led to the winning run in a 2-1, 10-inning win over Hudson Valley on Tuesday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention went to:

Greensboro (A South Atlantic, Marlins) pitcher Scott Lyman allowed three hits and two runs over eight innings and got the win in a 7-2 victory over Lexington. He had seven strikeouts.

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


Boyd signs with Jays; Heck to Mississippi State

July 9, 2013

Good morning everyone.

It's always a wonderful morning after a nice win against a quality opponent in a series opener. So our 8-5 victory over the Wenatchee AppleSox at Goss Stadium last night put a little spring in our step as we headed off to the WWHQ this morning.

We held on to second place in the South Division with the victory, our third in our last four West Coast League games and our fifth in our last six games overall. We lead Cowlitz by 1/2 game in the race for second, and are just three games behind first-place Bend in the South Division pennant race.

Game 2 is at 6:40 tonight and it matches lefty Trevor Lubking of the AppleSox and Pacific Lutheran, and Elliot Surrey of the Knights and UC Irvine. Should be a good one.

Remember, it's a Bi-Mart $2 Tuesday; GA tickets are available for $2 by showing your Bi-Mart card. Coors Light will also be available for $2. So head on out to the ballpark and help us reach of quest of 45,000 in attendance this summer.

Now, on to the news.

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Alum Matt Boyd (2010), a left-handed pitcher from Oregon State, announced he has signed with the Toronto Blue Jays. They selected him in the sixth round of the recent MLB draft.

He hasn't been assigned to a minor-league affiliate yet. His possible destinations are Vancouver in the Class A short-season Northwest League; Bluefield (WVa) in the rookie Appalachian league, or the Gulf Coast League (Fla.) Blue Jays, another rookie league. We should know soon.

We'll be following him wherever he ends up.

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Knights' infielder Seth Heck of Tacoma Community College will play at Mississippi State next season. The Bulldogs recently finished second behind UCLA at the College World Series.

Seth hit .330 (62-188) in 51 games at TCC in 2013, with a homer and 32 RBIs. He was named a NWAACC West Division all-star, a second-team NWAACC all-star, and the Gold Glover winner for shortstops.

In 2012, Seth hit .355 (59-166) in 44 games, with 22 RBIs. He was a NWAACC West Division all-star, a second-team NWAACC all-star, and the Gold Glover winner for shortstops.

He's a graduate of Kamiak High School in Edmonds, Wash., who originally joined us as a 10-day signee. He's hitting .289 overall this summer, with a homer and 12 RBIs in 26 games.

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Pitcher Devon Barker of Central Washington has 62,201 votes (as of 11:30 a.m. Tuesday) and leads the voting to represent the Knights at the West Coast League All-Star Game, set for July 23 in Victoria, B.C. You can vote by clicking here. Voting concludes this Saturday.

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First baseman Jim Murphy of the Reading Fightin' Phils, our 2007 MVP, will play for the Eastern Division in the Eastern League All-Star Game on Wednesday night in New Britain, Conn.

A Washington State alum, Murphy is hitting .289 in 87 games, with 15 homers and 54 RBIs. Reading is the double-A affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies.

Former Oregon State catcher Andrew Susac (2009) was selected but cannot play because of a finger injury. He is hitting .265 in 70 games, with 11 homers and 38 RBIs, for the Richmond Flying Squirrels, San Francisco's affiliate.

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Interesting story on the Northwoods League and its owner, Dick Radatz Jr., from The Boston Globe via Ballpark Biz. Click here for a good read.

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Walla Walla right-hander Cody Poteet of UCLA and Medford lefty Justin Jacome of UC Santa Barbara delivered masterful pitching performances in combined shutouts on July 5 to earn co-WCL Player of the Week honors. Click here for full details.

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Brevard County (A Florida State, Brewers) outfielder Mitch Haniger (2010) was 2-for-5 with two doubles, a run and an RBI on Monday in a 4-3, 10-inning win over Tampa to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Reading (AA Eastern, Phillies) first baseman Jim Murphy (2007) was 1-for-1 with a run, two RBIs and two walks in a 10-6 loss to Trenton.

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


Sherfy signs with Arizona

July 8, 2013

We're back in the office this morning after a successful weekend that featured easy wins over the WCL Portland Toros and Lobos in a couple of nonleague games at Goss Stadium.

The work load gets much tougher this week, though, as Wenatchee (tonight-Wednesday) and Walla Walla (Thursday-Saturday) come to town for a couple of West Coast League series. The AppleSox and Sweets are 1-2 in the North Division.

We are now in second place in the South Division at 14-13, one-half game ahead of Cowlitz. The top two teams in each division advance to the playoffs, which start on Aug. 13, and we plan to be there for the seventh year in a row. We took 2 of 3 against Bellingham in our most recent WCL series and if we keep playing .667 ball we'll make it just fine.

Now, on to today's Knights news.

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Oregon closer Jimmie Sherfy, a key member of the bullpen on our 2011 WCL champions, has signed with the Arizona Diamondbacks. He's been assigned to the Hillsboro Hops, their short-season Class A Northwest League affiliate. Here's more on the story from The Oregonian.

Jimmie was selected in the 10th round of the recent MLB draft. Best of luck to him in pro baseball and we'll be following his career closely.

The other three four Knights alums who still haven't signed - Oregon State pitchers Matt Boyd, Ben Wetzler and Scott Schultz, and Cal Poly infielder Jimmy Allen - have until Friday to sign. Boyd (Toronto) has no eligibilty remaining, so he will sign (he may have already but MLB.com lists him as unsigned), but Wetzler (Philadelphia), Schultz (Miami) and Allen (Boston) still have a tough decision to make as they still have one more year of eligibility.

We don't know anything on Wetzler and Schultz, but the cal Poly grapevine tells us Allen isn't signing and will return to San Luis Obispo for his senior year.

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Alum Jim Murphy (2007) of the Reading Fightin' Phils made the East team for the Eastern league All-Star Game, to be played Wednesday at New Britain, Conn. Here's more from MILB.com. Congrats to Jim, our 2007 MVP.

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The AppleSox went 9-1 in their last 10 games to move into first place in the North Division. They swept the Kitsap BlueJackets in Silverdale this past weekend to pass Walla Walla in the North Division pennant race.

Wenatchee infielder Connor Spencer of UC Irvine is sixth in the WCL with a .343 average; he has no homers and 16 RBIs in 19 games. Outfielder Brett Stephens, a UCLA signee from Moraga, Calif., is 10th at .333, with two homers and 12 RBIs in 23 games.

Wenatchee and Corvallis have combined to win the past five WCL championships. Corvallis prevailed in 2008 and 2011, Wenatchee in 2009, 2010 and 2012. Corvallis defeated Wenatchee for the 2008 crown; Wenatchee topped Corvallis for the 2009 and 2012 titles.

The AppleSox took 2 of 3 from the Knights in Wenatchee this past June 5-7, and they lead the all-time regular-season series 26-22. Wenatchee also leads the all-time playoff series 4-3.

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Our attendance continues to trend upward. We've drawn 19,154 fans through 15 games, an average of 1,276 per opening. We're 991 fans ahead of last year's pace through a corresponding number of dates.

We've got some good promotions this week (Baseball giveaway, Block 15, Bi-Mart $2 Tuesday, etc.) also and that should help us headed in the right direction. Click here for complete promotional information.

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Great Falls (A Pioneer, White Sox) first baseman Danny Hayes (2010) was 1-for-4 with a double, a run and two RBIs on Sunday in a 9-6 loss to Helena to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

No honorable mentions today.

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That's it for today. See you at the ballpark this week!


The homestand continues

July 5, 2013

Tough loss to Bellingham last night in Game 3 of our 11-game homestand. But we won the series 2-1 and if that trend continues and we keep playing .667 baseball we'll be safely into the plahoffs for the seventh year in a row.

We resume action tonight with a 6:40 p.m. nonleague game against the Toros of WCL Portland. It's Les & Bob's Cardinal Out Night and Papa's Pizza Singles Night; the first 150 fans will receive a free cardinal Knights tee shirt and the first 250 fans will receive a free slice of Papa's Pizza.

And everyone is encouraged to wear cardinal, our team color. Let's turn Goss Stadium into a sea of cardinal!

Saturday is Rocky Night. It's Sylvester Stallone's birthday so we'll celebrate all things Sly.

We've had a few days off, because of the busy Fireworks Night and the July 4 holiday. But the blog is back in business, so let's get started on today's Knights news.

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Our attendance, aided by this spectacular early July weather, continues to trend upward. We've drawn 17,156 fans for 13 home dates, an average of 1,320 per night. We're 2,806 fans ahead of last year's pace through a corresponding number of home dates.

That number will take a hit today, as the corresponding 2012 date to tonight is Fireworks Night. But we'll still be ahead, and on track in our quest to set an all-time record and to even hit 45,000 for the season.

We can't do it without you, so come on out to Goss tonight and this weekend, and next week, when we host Wenatchee on Monday-Wednesday and Walla Walla on Thursday-Saturday.

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Good news to report on the alumni front.

* The San Francisco Giants have promoted left-handed pitcher Josh Osich (2008) to double-AA Richmond in the Eastern League. Josh was 3-1 with a .2.45 ERA and 12 saves in 34 games at advanced-A San Jose, with 48 strikeouts and only 10 walks in 40.1 innings. He was also a California League All-Star.

He pitched a scoreless inning at Richmond in his AA debut. He joins another Knights/Oregon State alum, catcher Andrew Susac (2009) on the Flying Squirrels.

So congrats to Josh. As a former Richmonder during my days at the University of Richmond, I hope he likes it, but that he keeps moving up in the organization and doesn't have to spend a lot of time there. Richmond's heat and humidity can be a bear in the summer.

* The Padres have promoted pitcher Matt Andriese (2009) to triple-A Tucson, where he is 1-0, 1.50 in 12 innings in two starts. He was at San Antonio, where he was a Texas League all-star. Congrats to Matt! Maybe a September callup to the Padres is in his future too.

* Pitcher Kyle Kraus (2009-10) is back with Salem in the A-advanced Carolina League after the Red Sox promoted him from Greenville of the low-A South Atlantic League for the second time this season. Way to go Kyle!

* The Padres also prompted pitcher Max Beatty (2010-12) to the Eugene Emeralds in the Class A Northwest League from the Arizona Rookie League Padres.

* The Giants have assigned pitcher Chase Johnson (2011) to the Arizona Rookie League.

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Speaking of alums, former intern Mickey Godfrey (2009-10) stopped by the press box during yesterday's game to catch up. He graduated from Oregon in 2012 and is now working for the Hood to Coast Relay, and is living in Porttland. Congrats to Mickey, a former player at Corvallis High and video screen operator deluxe!

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Beloit (A Midwest, Athletics) outfielder Dayton Alexander (2011) was 3-for-4 with a run on Thursday in a 3-2 win over Peoria to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Salem-Keizer (A Giants, Northwest) pitcher Chris Johnson (2011) allowed four runs and had seven strikeouts in five innings in an 8-5 win over Everett, but got a no-decision.

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It's time to update the stats from your Corvallis Knights alums in affiliated minor-league baseball:

DAYTON ALEXANDER (2011): Dayton is hitting .256 (15-56) with three RBIs in 24 games with Beloit, Oakland's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

BO ALTOBELLI (2010): Bo is hitting .444 (4-9) with no homers or RBIs for Elizabethton, Minnesota's affiliate in the Class A Appalachian League.

TAYLOR ARD (2009): Taylor is hitting .256 (62-242) with five homers and 34 RBIs in 71 games with Clinton (Iowa), Seattle's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

CARTER BELL (2009): Carter is hitting .206 (28-136) with two homers and 11 RBIs in 40 games with South Bend, Arizona's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

ALEX BURG (2008): Alex is hitting .316 (42-133) with three homers and 26 RBIs in 38 games with Jupiter, Miami's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League.

MATT DUFFY (2010): Matt is hitting .312 (74-237) with four homers and 40 RBIs in 64 games with Augusta (Ga.), San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A South Atlantic League.

GRANT FINK (2011): Grant is hitting .182 (6-33) in 10 games for the Indians, Cleveland's affiliate in the Arizona Rookie League.

ROCKY GALE (2007, 2009): Rocky is hitting .239 (22-92) with eight RBIs in 28 games for San Antonio, San Diego's affiliate in the double-A Texas League.

DREW GARCIA (2007): Drew is hitting .291 (16-55) with one homer and four RBIs in 18 games with Colorado Springs, Colorado's affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League.

RYAN GORTON (2011): Ryan is hitting .074 (2-27) with one RBI in 10 games for Vermont, Oakland's affiliate in the Class A New York-Penn League.

DEAN GREEN (2008): Dean is hitting .333 (25-75) with a homer and six RBIs in 18 games with Lakeland, Detroit's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League. He's currently on the DL.

MITCH HANIGER (2010): Mitch is hitting .264 (34-129) with three homers and 15 RBIs in 35 games for Brevard County, Milwaukee's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League.

DANNY HAYES (2010): Danny is hitting .429 (3-7) with no homers or RBIs in two games for Great Falls, the White Sox affiliate in the Class A Pioneer League.

ADAM MELKER (2008, 2009): Adam is hitting .220 (42-191) with seven homers and 17 RBIs in 63 games for Springfield (Mo.), St. Louis's affiliate in the double-A Texas League.

BRENT MOREL (2006, 2007): Brent is hitting .283 (71-251) with five homers and 40 RBIs in 68 games for Charlotte, the Chicago White Sox's affiliate in the triple-A International League.

JIM MURPHY (2007): Jim is hitting .287 (87-303) with 15 homers and 51 RBIs in 83 games for Reading (Pa.), Philadelphia's affiliate in the double-A Eastern League.

JAKE RODRIGUEZ (2010): Jake is hitting .222 (2-9) with two RBIs in four games for Tri-City, Houston's affiliate in the Class A New York-Penn League.

ANDREW SUSAC (2009): Andrew is hitting .265 (58-219) with 11 homers and 38 RBIs in 70 games for Richmond (Va.), San Francisco's affiliate in the double-A Eastern League.

JUSTIN VIELE (2010): Justin is hitting .306 (11-36) with no homers and two RBIs in 11 games with the Orioles of the Arizona Rookie League.

TYLER ANDERSON (2009): Tyler is 0-1, 3.80 in eight games with Modesto, Colorado's affiliate in the single-A California League. He has 39 strikeouts in 42.2 innings, but is presently on the DL.

MATT ANDRIESE (2009): Matt is 1-0, 1.50 in two games for Tucson, San Diego's affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League. He has 10 strikeouts in 12 innings.

MAX BEATTY (2010-12): Max is 0-0, 8.10 in three games with Eugene, San Diego's affiliate in the Class A Northwest League. He has four strikeouts in 3.1 innings.

A.J. BURKE (2012): A.J. is 0-2, 10.13 in four games with the Athletics, Oakland's affiliate in the Arizona Rookie League. He has five strikeouts in 5.1 innings.

TREVOR FRANK (2012): Trevor is 0-1, 1.35 in four games for Mahoning Valley, Cleveland's affiliate in the Class A New York-Penn League. He has seven strikeouts in 6.2 innings.

SAM GAVIGLIO (2009): Sam is 3-1, 3.67 in five games with Palm Beach, St. Louis's affiliate in the single-A Florida State League. He has 21 strikeouts in 27 innings. He is presently on the DL.

CHASE JOHNSON (2011): Chase is 0-0, 3.00 in two games with the Giants, San Francisco's affiliate in the Arizona Rookie League. He has one strikeout in three innings.

CHRIS JOHNSON (2011): Chris is 2-1, 2.17 in five games with Salem-Keizer, San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A Northwest League, with 25 strikeouts in 29 innings.

KYLE KRAUS (2009, 2010): Kyle is 1-1, 3.00 in four games for Salem, Boston's affiliate in the single-A Carolina League. He has 12 strikeouts in 18 innings.

SCOTT LYMAN (2010): Scott is 2-6, 4.62 in 16 games for Greensboro (N.C.), Miami's affiliate in the Class A South Atlantic League, with 81 strikeouts in 78 innings.

EDDIE OROZCO (2008, 2009): Eddie is 3-3, 4.87 with two saves in 17 appearances with Kane County (Ill.), the Chicago Cubs' affiliate in the Class A Midwest League, with 17 strikeouts in 20.1 innings.

GREG PEAVEY (2007): Greg is 4-2, 6.29 in 33 appearances with Las Vegas, the New York Mets' affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League. He has 35 strikeouts in 48.2 innings.

JOSH OSICH (2008): Josh is 0-0, 0.00 in one appearance with Richmond, San Francisco's affiliate in the AA Eastern league. He has no strikeouts.

JAMES NYGREN (2009): James is 4-2, 3.00 in 22 appearances with Jupiter, Miami's affiliate in the single-A Florida State League. He has 15 strikeouts in 36 innings.

NICK STRUCK (2009): Nick is 5-5, 5.94 in 16 games with Iowa, the Chicago Cubs' affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League. He has 44 strikeouts in 86.1 innings.

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That's it for today, See you on Monday, and see you at the ballpark this weekend!


All-Star voting now underway

July 2, 2013

Happy Tuesday, everyone.

The WWHQ has been jumping today as fans are snapping up the remaining tickets for Wednesday's Fireworks Night game against Bellingham. We still have some left, but they're going fast and we will sell out. So, act now so you don't get left behind.

Tonight's game starts our 11-game homestand. We have nine league games in that span so it's important we get off to a fast start and make some hay at Goss Stadium and climb back into the WCL's South Division race. We're presently tied with Cowlitz for third place at 12-12, three games behind Bend.

Bellingham lost a doubleheader at Kitsap on Monday and is in third place in the North Division. The Bells advanced to the playoffs last year and lost a tough 2-1 playoff series to Wenatchee, which then edged us 2-1 to win the WCL championship.

So, we expect a tough series and the Bells have won three in a row, and four of the last five games, against us. We lead the all-time series 33-21 and are 17-4 at Goss Stadium.

Now, on with the news.

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Fan voting for the West Coast League All-Star game starts today. In Corvallis, it's sponsored by the Willamette Valley Bottling Co.

Fans from each WCL team select a player to compete in the 2013 WCL All-Star Game, scheduled for Tuesday, July 23, at Royal Athletic Park in Victoria, British Columbia. So vote early, vote often for who you feel is the most deserving Knight by clicking here or by voting at Goss Stadium or at Willamette Valley Bottling Co.

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We enter this homestand on a downturn after going 2-4 on a road trip to Bend and Kitsap last week.

Catcher/outfielder Dane Lund is our hottest hitter. The three-year veteran went 4-for-8 (.500) in the Kitsap series and is batting .538 (7-13) in his last five games, with four runs and an RBI, to raise his average to a team-high .338. Outfielder Grant Melker is hitting .545 (6-11) in his last five games, with a double and an RBI, to raise his average to .302.

Righty Chris Bishop (0-2, 2.45) starts tonight's game and righty Casey Bloomquist (2-0, 3.75) starts Wednesday's game. Thursday's starter, Andrew Naderer, has allowed just one earned run and six hits in 14 innings. The lefty from Grand Canyon University has been on a pitch count because of a heavy workload this spring, when the Antelopes advanced to the Division II College World Series.

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Here's an update on rising OSU junior Jace Fry, a member of our 2011 WCL championship team, and his recovery from elbow surgery.

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Brevard County (A Florida State, Brewers) outfielder Mitch Haniger (2010) was 2-for-3 with a homer, two runs and three RBIs in an 8-0 win over Lakeland on Monday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Charlotte (AAA International, White Sox) third baseman Brent Morel (2006-07) was 2-for-4 with a double and a run in a 3-0 win over Buffalo.

* Clinton (A Midwest, Mariners) first baseman Taylor Ard (2009) was 2-for-2 with two runs, two RBIs and a double in a 9-8 loss to Quad Cities.

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


Home at last, and for a while

July 1, 2013

I guess the best thing you can say about our weekend in Kitsap is, it's over, and we don't have to go back to Silverdale until next summer.

We lost all three games to the BlueJackets, who swept a series from us for the first time in the nine-year history of the West Coast League. We could have won all three games, but we didn't, so it's time to flush it and move on.

We're in fourth place in the South Division but there is a lot of baseball left. If (or should I say when) we get things turned around on this 11-game homestand - nine of which are league games - we'll be right back in the hunt for a playoff berth.

So, the turnaround can start on Tuesday, when we open up a three-game series with the Bellingham Bells, the first of 11 games over the next 12 days at Goss Stadium. Wednesday is Fireworks Night, with a special 7:15 p.m. start, and the series concludes at 6:05 p.m. Thursday, early enough so everyone can make city City of Corvallis's fireworks display.

Our pitching rotation for the series is RHP Chris Bishop (0-2, 2.41) on Tuesday; RHP Casey Bloomquist (2-0, 3,75) on Wednesday and LHP Andrew Naderer (2-0, 0.64) on Thursday. Sounds like three wins.

We then host the WCL Portland Toros on Friday and the WCL Portland Lobos on Saturday, and then we're home with the Wenatchee AppleSox on July 8-10 and the Walla Walla Sweets on July 11-13.

There are Fireworks Night tickets still remaining, but they are going fast. So, advance sales are the smart way to go, and far more convenient. The stadium ticket office and the stadium gates will open at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday.

The weather forecast is spectacular and we've got some great promotions planned, so be sure to get out to the ballpark. Our attendance through 10 home dates (11,923) is trending higher than last year through a comparable number of dates (+ 629). We'd love to hit 45,000 total for the summer and shatter the old mark of 42,447, set in our 2011 championship season.

Now, on to the news.

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The Chicago White Sox have returned third baseman Brent Morel (2006-07) back to triple-A Charlotte after a brief stay with the big club while another player was on paternity leave. BeMo went 2-for-9 in three games.

Look for him to return to Chicago, for sure in September if not before.

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Alum Jake Rodriguez (2010), a catcher from Oregon State, has signed with the Houston Astros and is playing for Tri-City (Albany, N.Y.) Valley Cats in the New York-Penn League. One of 13 alums selected in the 2013 draft, he was a 19th-round pick.

Eight of the 13 draftees have signed, according to MLB.com. Unsigned are Matt Boyd (2010), Toronto; Jimmie Sherfy (2011), Arizona; Ben Wetzler (2011), Philadelphia; Scott Schultz (2011), Miami, and Jimmy Allen (2011), Boston.

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Nice story on Knights' pitcher Colin Feldtman in today's Corvallis Gazette-Times and Albany Democrat-Herald by reporter Brad Fuqua. He'll also have a story later this week on new WCL President Dennis Koho, which we will also link.

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Reading (AA Eastern, Phillies) first baseman Jim Murphy (2007) was 2-for-2 with a run, a double and three RBIs in an 8-2 win over New Britain on Sunday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention went to:

* Richmond (AA Eastern, Giants) catcher Andrew Susac (2009) hit a solo homer in a 2-0 win over Erie.

* Springfield (AA Texas, Cardinals) outfielder Grant Melker (2008-09) was 1-for-1 with an RBI as a pinch-hitter in a 3-2 loss to San Antonio.

* San Jose (A California, Giants) reliever Josh Osich (2008) got his 13th save with a shutout ninth inning in a 5-3 win over Stockton.

* Tri-City (A New York-Penn, Astros) catcher Jake Rodriguez (2010) was 2-for-2 with two RBIs and two walks in a 6-2 win over Connecticut.

* Augusta (A South Atlantic, Giants) shortstop Matt Duffy (2010) was 3-for-5 with a solo homer in a 9-7 win over Asheville.

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That's it for today. See you at the ballpark this week!


Brent Morel's back in the bigs!

June 27, 2013

Happy Thursday, everyone! The sun is out, it's warming up and everyone's mood is better. Summer is finally here!

Lots of good news (in addition to the weather) to report today, so let's get right to it.

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First, congrats to Brent Morel (2006-07), the first Corvallis Knights alum to play in the major leagues (many more are in the pipeline, rest assured of that). The White Sox recalled BeMo from triple-A Charlotte on Wednesday and he went 1-for-3 against the Mets in his first game back.

Here's more on the story from the Chicago Sun-Times newspaper; here's more yet from MLB.com.

We don't know how long he'll stay up, but he's made a case for playing time by having a great year in Charlotte. He was hitting .280, with five homers and 40 RBIs, when he was recalled.

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Speaking of the White Sox, they have signed Knights alum (2010)/Oregon State senior first baseman Danny Hayes, their 13th-round selection in the recent MLB draft. He tweeted yesterday that he'll begin his pro career with the Great Falls (Mont.) Voyagers in the rookie Pioneer League.

That where another 2010 Knight, infielder Thomas McCarthy, played last year in his first season as a pro. McCarthy had a great season in Great Falls but elected to retire in the offseason.

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Alum pitcher Aaron Corwin (2010, 2012) of Colorado Mesa University has signed with the Taos Blizzard in the independent Pecos League. Here's more from KJCT=TV in Grand Junction, Colo.; and here's a link to the Pecos League website.

Congrats to Aaron, who earlier this month made it to the finals of a tryout for a spot in the Colorado Rockies organization. It's another card on our Hall of Fame at the WWHQ in downtown Corvallis!

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Clinton (A Midwest, Mariners) first baseman Taylor Ard (2009) homered, singled, scored and had three RBIs in a 6-3 win over Wisconsin on Wednesday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League PLayer of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Greenville (A South Atlantic, Red Sox) pitcher Kyle Kraus (2009-10) pitched a scoreless inning and got his second save in a 7-5 win over Charleston.

* Jupiter (A Florida State, Marlins) outfielder Alex Burg (2008) doubled, scored and drove in two runs in a 5-3 win over Fort Meyers.

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Lots of news from around the West Coast League to report. Here's a roundup, from WCL media correspondent Sarah Isreal. Enjoy.

And Bellingham pitcher Mike Connolly has signed with the San Francisco Giants and will be leaving the club.

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That's all for today. Remember, we finish our series at Bend at 6:35 p.m. today and then head to Kitsap for games Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Next home game is 6:40 p.m. Tuesday against Bellingham.


Last day of Juneuary?

June 26, 2013

Finally, the last day of Juneuary. Or so we're being told, I'll believe it when I see it. But I won't be complaining if it's really 92 on Friday, as advertised, and at least we're out of town so this crappy weather isn't affecting us.

We lost 4-2 at Bend last night. We had our chances but couldn't get a big hit. So we will try again tonight and Thursday at 6:35 p.m.

Now, on with the news.

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Two of our 2011 alums, infielder Jimmy Allen of Cal Poly (Boston) and pitcher Jimmie Sherfy of Oregon (Arizona) remained unsigned, several weeks after the MLB draft. They have until mid-July to sign, otherwise they'll return to college for their senior years.

Our four Oregon State alums (Danny Hayes, Ben Wetzler, Matt Boyd, Jake Rodriguez) have not signed yet, but their negotions were on hold while the Beavers were at the College World Series. Boyd (Toronto) and Hayes (Chicago WS), who played for us in 2010 are seniors, so we know they will sign; Wetz (2011), JRod (2010) and Schultz (2011) are juniors, so they have some options.

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Alum Matt Andriese (2009), a pitcher for the San Antonio Missions (AA Texas, Padres), did not play for the South Division on Tuesday at the Texas League All-Star Game because he'd just pitched this past Sunday.

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Jupiter (A Florida State, Marlins) outfielder Alex Burg (2008) was 4-for-5 with two runs, four RBIs, a homer and a double in an 11-5 win over Charlotte on Tuesday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention went to:

* Pitcher Max Beatty (2010-12) of the Arizona Rookie League Padres threw 1.2 scoreless innings and had a strikeout in a 5-4 loss to the ARL Royals. He was not involved in the decision.

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It's time to update the stats from your Corvallis Knights alums in affiliated minor-league baseball:

DAYTON ALEXANDER (2011): Dayton is hitting .220 (9-41) with two RBIs in 18 games with Beloit, Oakland's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

TAYLOR ARD (2009): Taylor is hitting .226 (48-212) with four homers and 25 RBIs in 62 games with Clinton (Iowa), Seattle's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

CARTER BELL (2009): Carter is hitting .210 (25-119) with two homers and 11 RBIs in 35 games with South Bend, Arizona's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

ALEX BURG (2008): Alex is hitting .339 (37-109) with two homers and 19 RBIs in 31 games with Jupiter, Miami's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League.

MATT DUFFY (2010): Matt is hitting .305 (61-200) with three homers and 33 RBIs in 55 games with Augusta (Ga.), San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A South Atlantic League.

GRANT FINK (2011): Grant is hitting .222 (2-9) in two games for the Indians, Cleveland's affiliate in the Arizona Rookie League.

ROCKY GALE (2007, 2009): Rocky is hitting .247 (20-81) with seven RBIs in 24 games for San Antonio, San Diego's affiliate in the double-A Texas League.

DREW GARCIA (2007): Drew is hitting .257 (10-39) with one homer and three RBIs in 11 games with Colorado Springs, Colorado's affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League.

RYAN GORTON (2011): Ryan is hitting .143 (2-14) with one RBI in five games for Vermont, Oakland's affiliate in the Class A New York-Penn League.

DEAN GREEN (2008): Dean is hitting .333 (25-75) with a homer and six RBIs in 18 games with Lakeland, Detroit's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League. He's currently on the DL.

MITCH HANIGER (2010): Mitch is hitting .265 (27-102) with two homers and 11 RBIs in 28 games for Brevard County, Milwaukee's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League.

ADAM MELKER (2008, 2009): Adam is hitting .220 (40-182) with seven homers and 16 RBIs in 57 games for Springfield (Mo.), St. Louis's affiliate in the double-A Texas League.

BRENT MOREL (2006, 2007): Brent is hitting .280 (68-243) with five homers and 40 RBIs in 66 games for Charlotte, the Chicago White Sox's affiliate in the triple-A International League.

JIM MURPHY (2007): Jim is hitting .296 (80-270) with 15 homers and 47 RBIs in 73 games for Reading (Pa.), Philadelphia's affiliate in the double-A Eastern League.

ANDREW SUSAC (2009): Andrew is hitting .268 (56-209) with nine homers and 36 RBIs in 67 games for Richmond (Va.), San Francisco's affiliate in the double-A Eastern League.

JUSTIN VIELE (2010): Justin is hitting .267 (4-15) with no homers or RBIs in four games with the Orioles of the Arizona Rookie League.

TYLER ANDERSON (2009): Tyler is 0-1, 3.80 in eight games with Modesto, Colorado's affiliate in the single-A California League. He has 39 strikeouts in 42.2 innings, but is presently on the DL.

MATT ANDRIESE (2009): Matt is 8-2, 2.37 in 15 appearances for San Antonio, San Diego's affiliate in the double-A Texas League. He has 63 strikeouts in 76 innings.

MAX BEATTY (2010-12): Max is 0-0, 2.45 in two games with the Padres in the Arizona Rookie League. He has seven strikeouts in 3.2 innings.

A.J. BURKE (2012): A.J. is 0-0, 0.00 in two games with the Athletics, Oakland's affiliate in the Arizona Rookie League. He has five strikeouts in three innings.

TREVOR FRANK (2012): Trevor is 0-0, 0.00 in two games for Mahoning Valley, Cleveland's affiliate in the Class A New York-Penn League. He has three strikeouts in three innings.

SAM GAVIGLIO (2009): Sam is 3-1, 3.67 in five games with Palm Beach, St. Louis's affiliate in the single-A Florida State League. He has 21 strikeouts in 27 innings. He is presently on the DL.

CHRIS JOHNSON (2011): Chris is 1-1, 1.50 in three games with Salem-Keizer, San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A Northwest League, with 11 strikeouts in 18 innings.

KYLE KRAUS (2009, 2010): Kyle is 2-0, 1.69 in 14 games for Greenville, Boston's affiliate in the single-A South Atlantic League. He has eight strikeouts in 13 innings.

SCOTT LYMAN (2010): Scott is 2-4, 4.52 in 14 games for Greensboro (N.C.), Miami's affiliate in the Class A South Atlantic League, with 70 strikeouts in 67.2 innings.

EDDIE OROZCO (2008, 2009): Eddie is 3-3, 5.03 with two saves in 16 appearances with Kane County (Ill.), the Chicago Cubs' affiliate in the Class A Midwest League, with 17 strikeouts in 19.2 innings.

GREG PEAVEY (2007): Greg is 4-2, 6.65 in 30 appearances with Las Vegas, the New York Mets' affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League. He has 29 strikeouts in 44.2 innings.

JOSH OSICH (2008): Josh is 2-1, 2.58 with 11 saves in 32 games with San Jose, San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A California League. He has 47 strikeouts in 38.1 innings.

JAMES NYGREN (2009): James is 4-2, 3.27 in 20 appearances with Jupiter, Miami's affiliate in the single-A Florida State League. He has 13 strikeouts in 33 innings.

NICK STRUCK (2009): Nick is 4-5, 6.05 in 14 games with Iowa, the Chicago Cubs' affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League. He has 42 strikeouts in 74.1 innings.

We'll add our other alums who recently signed to the list as they are assigned to their respective teams.

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


Enough already with Juneuary!

June 25, 2013

Another rainy, dreary day down at the WWHQ. Didn't summer start last Friday? Still waiting for it to arrive!

Luckily the Knights are out of town, over in Bend for Game 1 of a three-game series against the Elks that begins a 6-game road trip. It appears they should be able to play in Bend tonight as any showers there are supposed to end by 4 p.m.

From Bend, we head to Kitsap for games on Friday-Sunday. So our next game is July 2 against Bellingham; that opens up an 11-game homestand, our longest of the season, with lots of promotions.

The biggest one, of course, is the July 3 Fireworks Night against Bellingham. Tickets are still available but they are going fast. The game will sell out, so get your seats now at the office or online. Don't wait until that night, because you might be out of luck!

Now, on to today's news.

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Some bad news to report, unfortunately.

Oregon State rising sophomore pitchers Andrew Moore and Max Engelbrekt will not pitch for us this summer as expected.

Moore threw 131 innings this spring and is being shut down this summer to rest from that heavy workload. He was 14-2 with a 1.79 ERA, was the Pacific-12 Conference Freshman of the Year, an all-league selection, and made several All-American teams.

Engelbrekt, who was 5-1 with a 1.30 ERA and five saves, sustained a back injury in the NCAA Super Regional against Kansas State and did not pitch again. His injury requires 6-to-8 weeks of rest to heal and that precludes him from playing summer baseball.

We sure wanted them, and we'll certainly miss them. But their health and their college/future professional futures are the most important things. So, get healthy guys.

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Victoria is rated No. 11 and Bend is rated No. 23 on this week's summer baseball Top 30, compiled by Perfect Game. We're not ranked yet, or even receiving votes, but we sure hope to be before too much longer. And here's a story detailing UCLA's connection with the WCL, from the league website. Lots of Bruins in the WCL!

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Salem-Keizer (A Northwest, Giants) pitcher Chris Johnson (2011) allowed three hits and had six strikeouts in six scoreless innings in a 1-0, 10-inning win over Vancouver on Monday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors. He got a no-decision.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Brevard County (A Florida State. Brewers) outfielder Mitch Haniger (2010) was 1-for-4 with a triple, a run and an RBI in a 4-3 win over Dunedin.

* Augusta (A South Atlantic, Giants) shortstop Matt Duffy (2010) was 2-for-4 with two RBIs in a 3-2 win over Savannah.

* Elizabethton (Rookie Appalachian, Twins) catcher Bo Altobelli (2010) was 2-for-4 with a run in a 7-2 win over Greeneville.

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That's all for today. See you on Wednesday. Jake Rodriguez


Back to work after a successful weekend

June 24, 2013

Juneuary continues in CorVegas with another cool, cloudy day. But fortunately for us it's an off day and then we're out of town at Bend and Kitsap while the dreary weather continues.

We're not home again until July 2, and by then the weather is supposed to have finally turned into summer, if the forecasters are to be believed. I hope so, because we have 11 home games in 12 days starting on July 2, including our July 3 Fireworks Night game against the Bellingham Bells.

Lots of good news to report today, so let's get started.

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First, some on-the-field news. We took 2 of 3 from Klamath Falls over the weekend to remain hot. We're 8-3 after a 2-5 start, have four straight series wins, and have drawn to within one-half game of the Gems in the race for second place in the West Coast League's Southern Division.

We can draw closer to the first-place Bend Elks this week too, as we're over in Central Oregon this Tuesday-Thursday at Vince Genna Stadium.

Dylan Hecht of UC Santa Barbara, Casey Bloomquist of Cal Poly and Andrew Naderer of Grand Canyon are our scheduled starting pitcher.

We might be without closer Jorge Perez for the series, as he sprained an ankle during warmups last Friday night. Jorge has four saves in as many attempts this season and has been lights-out as our closer. Hopefully he'll be ready to go by the time we hit Kitsap; if not, then Brandon Choate, who saved Sunday's 9-8 win over the Gems, will continue in that role.

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We also made a few roster moves. Pitchers Eric Huson (0-0, 1,80) of Mt. Hood CC, Tom Zarosinski (1-1, 4.32) of George Fox and Kyle Treadway (0-0, 4.00) of Pacifuc U. have been released. Zarosinski and Treadway were 10-day signees.

Zarosinski has already signed with the Okotoks Dawgs, a highly-successful team from Calgary, Alberta, that plays in the Western Major Baseball League. Huson may catch on with a WCL Portland team.

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Speaking of Knights pitchers,future Knight Andrew Moore (2013) of Oregon State was named a first-team All-American by the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) on Monday. Congrats to Andrew!

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Our attendance took a nice jump this weekend, despite the pregame rainstorm on Sunday that definitely impacted Sunday's walkup gate. Saturday's ZOOperstars! crowd of 2,042 was tremendous and there also was a ton of energy on Friday's Cowbell Night.

We've drawn 11,923 fans for 10 home dates, a 1,193 average. That's an increase of 629 over a corresponding number of dates in 2012, when we drew 41,834, the second-highest total in franchise history.

We expect big things out of our July 2-13 homestand. By that time the weather finally should have turned, and we've got a Fireworks Night and other great promotions. Help us set a franchise attendance record, and hit our target goal of 45,000!

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Several more Knights alums selected in the 2013 MLB draft have been assigned to their first minor-league club.

* Shortstop Justin Viele (2010) of Santa Clara is playing for the Orioles in the Arizona Rookie League.

* Pitcher Max Beatty of Pacific Lutheran is playing for the Padres in the Arizona Rookie League.

They join pitcher AJ Burke (2012) of the A's and third baseman Grant Fink (2011) of the Indians in the ARL.

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Charlotte (AAA International, White Sox) third baseman Brent Morel (2006-07) was 3-for-4 with a triple, a run and three RBIs in a 6-2 victory over Indianapolis on Sunday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention went to:

* Reading (AA Eastern, Phillies) first baseman Jim Murphy was 1-for-2 with a two-run homer in a 14-6 win over Richmond. There's more news on Murphy in the next segment of the blog.

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Former Washington State standout Big Jim Murphy, our 2007 MVP, was named the Eastern League Player of the Week for June 17-23. He hit .371, with four homers and 10 RBIs; here's more from the Eastern League website.

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A teammate of Murphy's on that 2007 club, pitcher Mike Koons, has signed with the St. Paul Saints of the independent American Association. He signed with Houston at midseason in 2007 and spent several years ion the Astros organization before being released.

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That's plenty, and that's it for today! See you on Tuesday.