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Knights Daily Update

Playoff Game 2 tonight; Knights lead 1-0

August 14, 2013

We had a great start to the South Division playoff series last night with an 8-6 victory at Medford. We now lead the best-of-3 series 1-0 and have the next two games at Goss Stadium.

We need just one win to advance to the West Coast League's Championship Series for the sixth time in the past seven seasons.

Last night we were sparked by four RBIs from shortstop Peter Van Gansen, the reigning WCP co-Player of the Week. Peter hit a two-run homer in the third to open our scoring; his two-run double in the ninth provided the eventual winning runs.

Third baseman Cody Lenahan homered; center fielder Blake Drake had two hits and two RBIs and Colin Feldman got the final out with the tying runs on base to preserve the win for starter Jorge Perez.

Jerad Casper and Matt Taylor drove in two runs each for the Rogues, who hit three doubles and scored three times in a ninth-inning comeback that fell just short.

Here's a link to the game story from the hometown Medford Mail-Tribune newspaper.

WCL ERA leader Elliot Surrey (5-1, 1.26) of UC Irvine is the projected starter for Corvallis. He blanked Medford 4-0 on July 26 in his lone game against the Rogues. Medford's probable is lefty Jon Forsythe (4-1, 1.43), the loser in Surrey's shutout.

The winner of the South Division playoff series advances to face either Wenatchee or Walla Walla in the finals. Host Wenatchee won 8-4 on Tuesday night to take a 1-0 lead in their North Division playoff series, which now switches to Walla Walla for Game 2 and Game 3, if necessary.

Here's a link to a story on that game from the Walla Walla Union Bulletin newspaper. A crowd of 1,096 watched that one at Paul Thomas Jr. Field in Wenatchee.

So, now you're all caught up.

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Tickets have been moving steadily for tonight's game but there are plenty left. We'd love a big crowd to cheer us on and to help us get into the finals.

We finished seventh in the WCL in attendance for league games at 31,475, an average of 1,211 for 26 openings. Click here for the complete league stats (WCL games only).

However, three of our four largest crowds were for nonleague games against the Portland Lobos (2,453; 2,278) and the Mid-Valley Rockets (1,830). So our overall regular-season attendance numbers are significantly better: A total of 41,138 and an average of 1,327, both regular-season franchise records.

We can break our all-time record (42,447), set in 2011, with a good crowd tonight, or if we advance to the WCL finals and get at least one more home game.

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Salem-Keizer (A Northwest, Giants) pitcher Chase Johnson (2011) allowed two hits and had seven strikeouts in five shutout innings and got the win in a 3-0 victory over Hillsboro on Tuesday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention went to:

* Indians (R Arizona Rookie League, Indians) third baseman Grant Fink (2011) was 2-for-5 with two runs and an RBI in a 14-3 win over the Padres.

* Great Falls (R Pioneer, White Sox) first baseman Danny Hayes (2010) was 2-for-5 with a run and an RBI in a 10-4 loss to Ogden.

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That's all for today. See you at the stadium tonight!


Off to Medford

August 13, 2013

We'll be short today, because we're leaving for Medford and Game 1 of the WCL playoffs this morning and we don't want to be left behind!

You can listen to the game on KEJO-AM 1240, or follow it on Twitter, and we'll have updates on Facebook as well. I like our chances, with Jorge Perez starting for us.

Don't forget that Game 2 is at Goss Stadium at 6:40 p.m. Wednesday. We've got tons of prizes to give away and hopefully we can also win the playoff series and advance to the WCL Championship for the sixth time in the past seven years.

The Knights downtown offices will be open today and tomorrow to take care of all your ticket needs. They're also available online, and at the stadium on game day starting at 6 p.m.

So, see you at the ballpark!

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Hillsboro (A Northwest, Diamondbacks) closer Jimmie Sherfy 92011) pitched a scoreless ninth and had two strikeouts for his fifth save in a 2-0 win over Tri-City on Monday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Orioles (R Gulf Coast League, Orioles) shortstop Justin Viele (2010) was 2-for-3 with a run in a 6-5 win over the Twins.

* West Michigan (A Midwest, Tigers) first baseman Dean Green (2008) was 2-for-4 with an RBI and two runs in a 10-4 win over South Bend.

* Great Falls (R Pioneer, White Sox) first baseman Danny Hayes (2010) was 1-for-4 with a triple, a run and two RBIs in a 5-1 win over Missoula.

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That's all for today. We're off to Medford!


On to Medford!

August 12, 2013

The regular season is finally over, we're the South Division champions again, and we're off to Medford on Tuesday to start the South Division playoff series.

We'll bus down to Medford on Tuesday, and return right after the game. Righty Jorge Perez (1-1, 1.30) of Grand Canyon University is our scheduled starter.

Here's the schedule:

* GAME 1: Tuesday, 6:35 p.m., at Harry & David Field in Medford.

* GAME 2: Wednesday, 6:40 p.m., at Goss Stadium in Corvallis.

* GAME 3: Thursday, 6:40 p.m., at Goss Stadium in Corvallis (if necessary).

Wenatchee and Walla Walla will play the North Division playoff series at the same time, starting on Tuesday in Wenatchee. The winners of each best-of-3 series will advance to the WCL Championship Series.

That best-of-3 showdown starts Saturday, Aug, 17, at Walla Walla Walla or Wenatchee. Aug. 18 is a travel day; Game 2 and Game 3 (if necessary) will be at Medford or Corvallis on Aug. 19-20.

Tickets for our Wednesday night home game are now on sale. Punch cards are good for the playoffs. See you at the ballpark!

Now, on to the news.

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Knights shortstop Peter Van Gansen was named West Coast League co-Player of Week on Monday for games played on August 5-11. Click here for full details.

Van Gansen hit .500 (9-18) with a six RBIs, seven runs and two steals, with a .571 on-base percentage. He also had a club-record seven hits in a row in games against the Bend Elks.

A rising sophomore at Cal Poly, Van Gansen hit .310 in (44-142) in 40 games, with no homers, 24 RBIs and 11 stolen bases.

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Click here for a wrapup story on the 2013 regular season, from our website.

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Here's a story on former Knights' star David Armendariz (2011) from The Tribune newspaper of San Luis Obispo. Nice to see that David's having a strong summer in the Cape Cod League.

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Indians (R Arizona Rookie League, Indians) third baseman Grant Fink (2011) was 3-for-4 with a double, triple, two RBIs and two runs on Sunday in a 10-3 win over the Reds to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Springfield (AA Texas, Cardinals) outfielder Adam Melker (2008-09) was 3-for-5 with two runs in an 11-5 loss to Midland.

* Salem (A Carolina, Red Sox) pitcher Kyle Kraus (2009-10) threw two scoreless innings and had two strikeouts in a 6-1 win over Wilmington.

* San Jose (A California, Giants) shortstop Matt Duffy (2010) homered, singled, scored twice and drove in a run in a 3-2 win over Bakersfield.

* South Bend (A Midwest, Diamondbacks) third baseman Carter Bell (2009) was 2-for-2 with two runs and two doubles in a 12-1 win over West Michigan.

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That's all for today. See you sometime on Tuesday.


Great night at the ballpark

August 9, 2013

The Knights concluded our regular-season home schedule on Thursday with another great night at Goss Stadium.

First, we defeated the Portland Lobos U-19 select team 7-4 to finish our seven-game homestand with a perfect record. We improved to 28-4 overall at home; we're also 26-5 overall since July 1.

And the crowd of 2,453 pushed our season attendance to 41,138, a record for the regular season. We had 31 home dates, so that's an average of 1,327 per opening.

With at least one home playoff game set for Wednesday, we've got a great shot to break our all-time record of 42,447, established in 2011, and to hit our preseason goal of 45,000 fans.

So buy your playoff tickets now. They are going fast.

Now, on with the news.

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Last night was infielder Seth Heck's final game with us this summer. He's leaving today for Mississippi State, his new college. Seth joined us as a 10-day signee from Tacoma Community College, earned a full-time gig, and became one of our more versatile and valuable players.

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Klamath Falls outfielder Cameron Newell of UC Santa Barbara and Medford reliever Brandon Williams of Mt. Hood Community College earned WCL co-Player of the Week honors. You can click right here for more details.

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Interesting story right here from The Daily News of Kelso-Longview outlining one coach's thoughts on how to "improve" the West Coast League. Not sure any of those ideas would work, but I guess it's a talking point.

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A couple promotions to announce:

* The Minnesota Twins have promoted catcher Bo Altobelli (2010) to single-A Cedar Rapids of the Midwest League from Elizabethton of the Rookie Appalachian League.

* The Miami Marlins have promoted outfielder Alex Burg, our 2008 MVP, to triple-A New Orleans of the Pacific Coast League. He had been playing with Jupiter in the high-A Florida State League. It's also his 26th birthday today.

* San Diego has promoted catcher Rocky Gale (2007, 2009) to triple-A Tucson of the Pacific Coast League. He had been playing at San Antonio in the double-A Texas League.

* Colorado has returned pitcher Tyler Anderson (2009) to Modesto of the high-A California League after a rehab assignment with Tri-City in the short-A Northwest League.

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West Michigan (A Midwest, Tigers) first baseman Dean Green (2008) homered twice and had three RBIs on Thursday in a 5-4 win over Lansing to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Hillsboro (A Northwest, Diamondbacks) closer Jimmie Sherfy (2011) pitched a scoreless ninth for his third save in a 3-2 victory over Tri-City. He had one strikeout.

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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 .255 (27-106) with two homers and six RBIs in 40 games with Beloit, Oakland's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

BO ALTOBELLI (2010): Bo is hitting .182 (2-11) with no homers or RBIs in three games with Cedar Rapids, Minnesota's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

TAYLOR ARD (2009): Taylor is hitting .237 (81-342) with six homers and 42 RBIs in 98 games with Clinton (Iowa), Seattle's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

CARTER BELL (2009): Carter is hitting .225 (46-204) with three homers and 17 RBIs in 59 games with South Bend, Arizona's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

ALEX BURG (2008): Alex is hitting .200 (1-5) with a homer and an RBI in three games with New Orleans, Miami's affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League.

MATT DUFFY (2010): Matt is hitting .333 (22-66) with three homers and six RBIs in 16 games for San Jose, San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A California League.

GRANT FINK (2011): Grant is hitting .222 (24-108) with one homer and 13 RBIs in 31 games for the Indians, Cleveland's affiliate in the Arizona Rookie League.

ROCKY GALE (2007, 2009): Rocky is hitting .200 (4-20) with two RBIs for Tucson, San Diego's affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League.

DREW GARCIA (2007): Drew is hitting .267 (20-75) with one homer and five RBIs in 27 games with Colorado Springs, Colorado's affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League.

RYAN GORTON (2011): Ryan is hitting .205 (16-78) with one homer and three RBIs in 27 games for Vermont, Oakland's affiliate in the Class A New York-Penn League.

DEAN GREEN (2008): Dean is hitting .268 (15-56) with four homers and 11 RBIs in 14 games for West Michigan, Detroit's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League while on rehab assignment from Lakeland, its affiliate in the Class A Florida State League.

MITCH HANIGER (2010): Mitch is hitting .245 (61-249) with six homers and 28 RBIs in 66 games for Brevard County, Milwaukee's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League.

DANNY HAYES (2010): Danny is hitting .213 (26-122) with two homers and 23 RBIs in 32 games for Great Falls, the White Sox affiliate in the Class A Pioneer League.

ADAM MELKER (2008, 2009): Adam is hitting .257 (68-265) with eight homers and 27 RBIs in 90 games for Springfield (Mo.), St. Louis's affiliate in the double-A Texas League.

BRENT MOREL (2007): Brent is hitting .269 (83-309) with five homers and 46 RBIs in 83 games with Charlotte, the Chicago White Sox's affiliate in the triple-A International league.

JIM MURPHY (2007): Jim is hitting .275 (112-407) with 19 homers and 66 RBIs in 113 games for Reading (Pa.), Philadelphia's affiliate in the double-A Eastern League.

JAKE RODRIGUEZ (2010): Jake is hitting .232 (13-56) with a homer and eight RBIs in 18 games for Tri-City, Houston's affiliate in the Class A New York-Penn League.

ANDREW SUSAC (2009): Andrew is hitting .252 (66-262) with 12 homers and 46 RBIs in 83 games for Richmond (Va.), San Francisco's affiliate in the double-A Eastern League.

JUSTIN VIELE (2010): Justin is hitting .254 (26-95) with one homer and 10 RBIs in 34 games with the Orioles of the Arizona Rookie League.

TYLER ANDERSON (2009): Tyler is 0-2, 4.07 in nine games with Modesto, Colorado's affiliate in the single-A California League. He has 43 strikeouts in 48.2 innings.

MATT ANDRIESE (2009): Matt is 1-5, 4.14 in eight games for Tucson, San Diego's affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League. He has 30 strikeouts in 45.2 innings.

MAX BEATTY (2010-12): Max is 1-1, 2.40 in 10 games with the Arizona Rookie League Padres, with 16 strikeouts in 15 innings.

MATT BOYD (2010): Matt is 0-1, 1.00 in four games for Lansing, Toronto's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League, with eight strikeouts in nine innings.

A.J. BURKE (2012): A.J. is 0-3, 9.82 in nine games with the Arizona Rookie League Athletics, with 12 strikeouts in 11 innings.

TREVOR FRANK (2012): Trevor is 1-3, 3.20 in 13 games for Mahoning Valley, Cleveland's affiliate in the Class A New York-Penn League. He has one save and 27 strikeouts in 25.1 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 2-1, 1.71 in six games with Salem-Keizer, San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A Northwest League, with 21 strikeouts in 26.1 innings.

CHRIS JOHNSON (2011): Chris is 4-3, 2.31 in 10 games with Salem-Keizer, San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A Northwest League, with 58 strikeouts in 58.1 innings.

KYLE KRAUS (2009, 2010): Kyle is 3-2, 4.12 in 10 games with Salem, Boston's affiliate in the single-A Carolina League. He has 21 strikeouts in 39.1 innings.

SCOTT LYMAN (2010): Scott is 1-1,7.88 in two games with Jupiter, Miami's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League, with three strikeouts in eight innings.

JAMES NYGREN (2009): James is 6-3, 3.26 in 30 appearances with Jupiter, Miami's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League. He has 24 strikeouts in 49.2 innings.

EDDIE OROZCO (2008, 2009): Eddie is 0-1, 8.59 in six games with Boise, the Chicago Cubs' affiliate in the Class A Northwest League, with nine strikeouts in 7.1 innings.

JOSH OSICH (2008): Josh is 0-2, 7.07 in 12 appearances with Richmond, San Francisco's affiliate in the double-A Eastern League. He has two saves and 17 strikeouts in 14 innings.

GREG PEAVEY (2007): Greg is 1-0, 0.90 in two games with Binghamton, the New York Mets' affiliate in the double-A Eastern League. He has 10 strikeouts in 10 innings.

JIMMIE SHERFY (2011): Jimmie is 0-0, 0.00 in seven appearances with Hillsboro, Arizona's affiliate in the Class A Northwest League. He has three saves and 12 strikeouts in seven innings.

NICK STRUCK (2009): Nick is 6-8, 6.17 in 22 games with Iowa, the Chicago Cubs' affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League. He has 56 strikeouts in 109.1 innings.

That's all for today. Gave a great weekend and we will see you on Wednesday at our playoff opener!


WCL division champions, 2007-13

August 8, 2013

Well, it's now official. The Corvallis Knights are the champions of the West Coast League's South (formerly North) Division for the seventh year in a row.

A tradition that started our first summer in Corvallis was extended last night when we wrapped up this year's title with a 7-1 victory over the Bend Elks. That gives us a four-game lead, with only three league games remaining.

So, we've reached Goal 1. Goal 2 is a winning the South Division playoff series, and Goal 3 is winning the WCL Championship Series.

Here's the playoff schedule.

* We'll open the best-of-3 South Division playoff series at either Bend or Medford on Tuesday night. Game 2 will be at Goss Stadium on Aug. 14; Game 3, if necessary, will be Aug. 15.

* The best-of-3 WCL Championship Series will start at on Aug. 17 at either Walla Walla or Wenatchee. After a travel day, Game 2 will be at Corvallis, Bend or Medford on Aug. 19. Game 3 (if necessary) will be on Aug. 20.

Playoff tickets are now on sale. Season-ticket holders' seats will be held until end of business on Monday, August 12 before being released to the general public for sale.

And when it's over, we'll put the bats, balls and uniforms into storage, and start the planning for the 2014 season. It seems as if the 2013 season just started, and now it's almost over.

Now, on with today's news.

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Tonight is infielder Seth Heck's final game with the Knights, as he must report to Mississippi State, his new college. Seth joined us as a 10-day signee from Tacoma Community College, earned a full-time gig, and became one of our more versatile and valuable players.

Seth hit .272 in 46 league games, with five doubles, seven steals and 14 RBIs. We wish him the best of luck down in Starkvegas (Starkeville) with the Bulldogs, who finished second to UCLA at this year's College World Series.

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Last night's crowd of 1,104 pushed our season attendance to 38,685 for309 dates, an average of 1,290 per opening. So with Fireworks Night tonight, plus at least one home playoff game on Aug. 14, we've got a shot to break our all-time record of 42,447, established in 2011, and to hit our preseason goal of 45,000 fans.

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Some notes of interest:

* Third baseman Cody Lenahan had three RBIs last night and now leads the WCL with 36. He has 13 RBIs in his last six games.

* Pitcher Elliot Surrey leads the WCL in ERA at 1.27.

Catcher/outfielder Dane Lund is seventh in the WCL with a .344 average. He's tied for the WCL lead with 22 stolen bases (in 23 attempts, a .956 average). He has walked (20) or been hit by a pitch (7) 27 times, and has a .456 on-base percentage, second-highest in the WCL.

* The Knights have a league-record 129 stolen bases. The next-highest team (Medford) has 73.

* The Knights have a league-low 2.76 ERA. Bellingham is second at 3.40.

* We swept our last five home league series (Wenatchee, Walla Walla, Medford, Kelowna, Bend) and have a 15-game WCL home winning streak. We were 23-4 overall at Goss in league games this season. We're 22-5 in WCL games and 25-5 overall since July 1.

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Salem (A Carolina, Red Sox) pitcher Kyle Kraus threw three perfect innings, had two strikeouts and got the win in a 6-3 victory over Wilmington on Wednesday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* South Bend (A Midwest, Diamondbacks) third baseman Carter Bell (2009) was 1-for-3 with a run, a triple and an RBI in a 5-2 win over Fort Wayne.

* Clinton (A Midwest, Mariners) first baseman Taylor Ard (2009) was 2-for-5 with an RBI in a 7-5 win over Quad Cities.

* Mahoning Valley (A New York-Penn, Indians) pitcher Trevor Frank threw two scoreless innings and had four strikeouts in a 7-0 kiss to Lowell.

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That's all for today. Remember, fireworks tonight, and our first home playoff game is Aug. 14 against Bend or Medford.


One win away from a title

August 7, 2013

We're one win away from another division title.

Our 6-3 victory over Bend on Tuesday night gave us a three-game lead over the Elks with four games to play. One more win by us, or one more loss by the Elks, and we win the South (formerly West) Division for the seventh summer in a row.

That could happen tonight, as we finish the series with the Elks at 6:40 p.m. Lefty Elliot Surrey (4-1, 1.26) is our scheduled starter. He's been one of our most successful pitchers, so I like our chances.

So, we'll see you at the ballpark.

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No officials records exist, but there's a good chance shortstop Peter Van Gansen set a club record on Monday and Tuesday by banging out seven straight hits against Bend.

The rising sophomore at Cal Poly had three singles, a triple and four runs against the Elks on Monday. He then added three straight RBI singles on Tuesday before grounding out in his final at-bat.

The hot streak raised his average from .282 at the start of the week to .318 heading into tonight's series finale. He now ranks 13th overall in the WCL in hitting.

Third baseman Cody Lenahan has 10 RBIs in his last five games and is now tied for second in the WCL with 33. He's a rising junior at Portland. He's also bumped his average to a season-high .316 by hitting .360 (9-25) in his last seven games.

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Salem-Keizer (A Northwest, Giants) pitcher Chris Johnson (2011) of Portland made the Northwest Conference South Division all-star team. He gave up two runs in the all-star game at Everett on Tuesday night. He is 4-3, 2.31 in 58.1 innings, with 58 strikeouts.

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San Antonio (AA Texas, Padres) catcher Rocky Gale (2007, 2009) was 3-for-4 with three RBIs on Tuesday in a 4-2 win over Arkansas to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

Padres (Arizona Rookie League) pitcher Max Beatty (2010-12) pitched 1.1 scoreless innings, with two strikeouts, in a 2-1 win over the Giants.

* San Jose (A California, Giants) shortstop Matt Duffy (2010) was 2-for-4 with two doubles and a run in a 7-3 loss to Visalia.

* West Michigan (A Midwest, Tigers) first baseman Dean Green (2008) homered in a 6-3 win over Dayton.

* Great Falls (R Pioneer, White Sox) first baseman Danny Hayes (2010) was 1-for-4 with a run, a double and two RBIs in a win an 8-4 win over Helena.

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Last night's crowd of 1,168 pushed our season attendance to 37,581 for 29 dates, an average of 1,296 per opening. So with two dates left, plus at least one home playoff game, we've got a shot to break our all-time record of 42,447, established in 2011, and to hit our preseason goal of 45,000 fans.

* Tonight is Mid-Valley Dental Night. We play the Bend Elks in our final West Coast League regular-season home game of the summer.

* Thursday is PEAK Internet Fireworks Night, presented by Pioneer Telephone, and a Block 15 Thursday. We'll have a great fireworks display after our final home game of the regular season. We play the Portland Lobos, the select U-19 team we also faced back on June 4 in our season opener.

But we can't do it without you, so come on out to the ballpark and watch what we think is the top team in the WCL!

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There's talk of a second possible summer collegiate league in the Upper Midwest, a region presently dominated by the Northwoods League. Here's more on that story, from Baseball Digest.

That's all for today. Get out to the ballpark tonight, ad we'll be back tomorrow with another edition of the blog.


What a night at Goss!

August 6, 2013

Wow, what a night at Goss Stadium on Monday!

A big win over second-place Bend, lots of extra-base hits, a great (1,706) crowd, warm weather ... what wasn't to like?

We'll do it all again tonight, starting at 6:40 p.m. Righty Chris Bishop (3-2, 2.45) of Pacific Lutheran, one of our most efficient pitchers of late, is our starter. It's a Bi-Mart $2 Tuesday; all GA seats are $2 with your Bi-Mart card. It's also a $2 Tuesday for Coors Light.

Now, on with the news.

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Remember, if we finish in first place in the South Division, we'll open the divisional playoffs on the road on Aug. 13 and then play at home on Aug. 14 and (if necessary) Aug. 15. If we take second, we're home on the 13th and away on the 14th and 15th.

The WCL Championship Series starts on Aug. 17 at the North representative's stadium. Game 2 is Aug. 19; game 3 is Aug. 20, if necessary.

Punch cards are still good for the playoffs, but season-ticket holders have to purchase tickets if they want their same seats.

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Last night's Wilson Motors Night crowd pushed our season attendance to 36,413 for 28 dates, an average of 1,300 per date. So with three dates left, plus at least one home playoff game, we've got a shot to break our all-time record of 42,447, established in 2011, and to hit our preseason goal of 45,000 fans. But we can't do it without you, so come on out to the ballpark and watch what we think is the top team in the WCL!

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Lansing (A Midwest, Blue Jays) pitcher Matt Boyd (2010) allowed one run on three hits and had two strikeouts in four innings of a 2-0 loss to Fort Wayne on Monday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors. It was the first run he's allowed this season in nine innings.

No honorable mentions today. Many of the leagues had the day off, or had an abbreviated schedule, so there were pretty slim pickings.

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That's all for today, See you at the ballpark tonight, and back here on Wednesday.


Big series with Bend on tap

August 5, 2013

We've got a huge series with the Bend Elks on tap for this Monday-Wednesday at Goss Stadium. We took 2 of 3 from the Elks in Bend on June 25-27 and we'll be in great shape for another South (formerly West) Division title if we can duplicate that this week.

We hold a one-game lead over the Elks in the battle for the South Division regular-season championship. Also, we can clinch a playoff berth with one win in our final six games. The top two finishers in the division advance to the postseason, which starts Aug. 13 at the second-place team's venue.

Corvallis and Bend have combined for 10 of the last 12 berths in the South (formerly West) Division playoffs since the current format was adopted in 2007. They've met four times in the divisional playoffs (2008, 2009, 2010, 2011), with the Knights winning every year except 2010.

Bend's coaching staff features Alan Embree, a former major-league pitcher with 10 different teams from 1992-2009. He retired after the 2009 season and now lives in Bend.

The Knights conclude the home portion of the regular season on Thursday with a nonconference Fireworks Night game against the U-19 Portland Lobos, the same team they opened the season with back on June 4. The Knights close the regular season at Klamath Falls on Aug. 9-11; the WCL divisional playoffs start Aug. 13.

Now, on with today's news.

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The Knights have risen to No. 13 in Perfect Game's summer baseball rankings. Bend is No. 18. Perfect Game's final ranking of the nation's top 50 clubs will be released Monday, Aug. 18, once all summer leagues have completed play. Here's a link to the Perfect Game website.

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The weekend series with Kelowna drew 2,423 fans for two openings and pushed our season attendance to 34,707 for 27 dates, an average of 1,285 per date.

So with four dates left, plus at least one home playoff game, we've got a shot to break our all-time record of 42,447, established in 2011, and to hit our preseason goal of 45,000 fans. But we can't do it without you, so come on out to the ballpark and watch what we think is the top team in the WCL!

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One minor-league move to announce. Pitcher Scott Lyman (2010) has been promoted to Jupiter, Miami's affiliate in the advanced-A Florida State League. He has been pitching for Greensboro in the low-A South Atlantic League.

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WCL powerhouse Wenatchee, the defending champion, has used a record number of players this season searching for a winning combination. Here are the details, from The Wenatchee World newspaper.

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Alum Brandon Jackson (2012) of Oregon State is having a big year for the Eau Claire (Wisc.) Express in the Northwoods League. Here's the story from the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram newspaper.

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Great Falls (R Pioneer, White Sox) first baseman Danny Hayes (2010) was 2-for-4 with two runs, two doubles and four RBIs on Sunday in a 13-4 win over Helena to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Brevard County (A Florida State, Brewers) outfielder Mitch Haniger (2010) was 1-for-4 with a run, a double and an RBI in a 9-6 win over Charlotte.

* West Michigan (A Midwest, Tigers) first baseman Dean Green (2008) was 2-for-5 with two runs in a 10-3 win over Dayton.

* Hillsboro (A Northwest, Diamondbacks) reliever Jimmie Sherfy (2011) pitched a scoreless inning and had one strikeout in a 6-0 loss to Vancouver.

* Richmond (AA Eastern, Giants) pitcher Josh Osich (2008) pitched a scoreless inning and had a strikeout in an 8-3 win over New Hampshire.

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That's all for today. Get on out to the stadium this week and support the Knights!


Tough end to a good road trip

August 2, 2013

We lost last night at Kelowna in the final game of our 6-game Canadian road trip, 2-1 in 10 innings on an error.

But we still went 4-2 overall, and remain in first place (tied with Bend) in the South Division. And we're still 3.5 games ahead of third-place Medford, with nine games to play. That's important because the first two teams in each division advance to the postseason.

We head home from Kelowna today; it's a 13-hour trip so we won't be back in Corvallis until early evening. But we still should have plenty of time to rest up for the weekend series with the Falcons at Goss Stadium that begins our final homestand.

Here's what's on tap from Saturday through next Thursday:

Saturday is a $1,000 Kids Dash for Cash Night, presented by Dr. Curtis E. Trammell.

* Sunday is a doubleheader; catch two games for the price of one. It's also our unused season-ticket night. Season-ticket holders can redeem any unused ticket for a $1 GA ticket to that night's game.

* Monday vs. Bend is Wilson Motors Night. Free GA tickets are available at the dealership (as long as they last), on the corner of 5th Street and Buchanan Avenue in Corvallis.

* Tuesday vs. Bend is a Bi-Mart $2 Tuesday. Show your Bi-Mart card to purchase a GA ticket for $2. Coors Light is specially priced.

* Wednesday vs. Bend is Mid-Valley Dental Night.

* Thursday vs. the Portland Lobos U-19 club (not the WCL Portland Lobos) is our second Fireworks Night, compliments of PEAK Internet and Pioneer Telephone. We're auctioning off our camo jerseys, and it's our final Block 15 Thursday.

So, we'll see you at the ballpark. Help us set a franchise attendance record (the current mark is 42,447, set in 2011), and help us reach 45,000 for the season! We're at 32,884 at the moment.

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Another Knight from Tacoma Community College will be playing Division I baseball next season. Catcher/reliever Chad Michaud is headed for Utah Valley State in Orem. Other Tigers/Knights headed for Division I destinations in 2013-14 are pitcher Brandon Choate (Washington) and infielder Seth Heck (Mississippi State).

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Alum Miles Kizer's (2010) Dallas American Legion baseball team, the Wilson Dirtbags, won its first two games at the state tournament in Medford. It plays the Salem Canyon Crushers at 7 tonight in the undefeated game.

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Here's another story on new West Coast League president Dennis Koho, this one from The Daily News of Kelso-Longview.

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Tucson (AAA Pacific Coast, Padres) pitcher Matt Andriese (2009) allowed one run on six hits and had four strikeouts on Thursday but received a no-decision in a 2-1 loss to Memphis to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Salem (A Carolina, Red Sox) pitcher Kyle Kraus (2009, 2010) allowed no earned runs and had two strikeouts in two innings in a 5-0 loss to Lynchburg.

* Lansing (A Midwest, Blue Jays) pitcher Matt Boyd threw three hitless, scoreless innings and had three strikeouts in his starting debut. He had a no-decision in a 12-6 win over South Bend.

* Salem-Keizer (A Northwest, Giants) pitcher Chase Johnson (2011) allowed four hits and one run, had three strikeouts in five innings and got the win in a 9-3 victory over Spokane.

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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 .231 (21-91) with no homers and four RBIs in 36 games with Beloit, Oakland's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

BO ALTOBELLI (2010): Bo is hitting .316 (6-19) with no homers or RBIs in six games for Elizabethton, Minnesota's affiliate in the Class A Appalachian League.

TAYLOR ARD (2009): Taylor is hitting .238 (76-320) with six homers and 40 RBIs in 93 games with Clinton (Iowa), Seattle's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

CARTER BELL (2009): Carter is hitting .217 (40-184) with three homers and 15 RBIs in 54 games with South Bend, Arizona's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

ALEX BURG (2008): Alex is hitting .267 (54-202) with four homers and 32 RBIs in 57 games with Jupiter, Miami's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League.

MATT DUFFY (2010): Matt is hitting .316 (12-38) with one homer and two RBIs in 10 games for San Jose, San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A California League.

GRANT FINK (2011): Grant is hitting .221 (19-86) with one homer and nine RBIs in 26 games for the Indians, Cleveland's affiliate in the Arizona Rookie League.

ROCKY GALE (2007, 2009): Rocky is hitting .241 (40-166) with one homer and 14 RBIs in 51 games for San Antonio, San Diego's affiliate in the double-A Texas League.

DREW GARCIA (2007): Drew is hitting .278 (20-72) with one homer and five RBIs in 26 games with Colorado Springs, Colorado's affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League.

RYAN GORTON (2011): Ryan is hitting .211 (15-71) with one homer and three RBIs in 24 games for Vermont, Oakland's affiliate in the Class A New York-Penn League.

DEAN GREEN (2008): Dean is hitting .241 (7-29) with no homers and four RBIs in eight games for West Michigan, Detroit's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League while on rehab assignment from Lakeland, its affiliate in the Class A Florida State League.

MITCH HANIGER (2010): Mitch is hitting .244 (55-225) with six homers and 24 RBIs in 60 games for Brevard County, Milwaukee's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League.

DANNY HAYES (2010): Danny is hitting .215 (20-93) with two homers and 16 RBIs in 24 games for Great Falls, the White Sox affiliate in the Class A Pioneer League.

ADAM MELKER (2008, 2009): Adam is hitting .258 (64-248) with eight homers and 27 RBIs in 84 games for Springfield (Mo.), St. Louis's affiliate in the double-A Texas League.

BRENT MOREL (2007): Brent is hitting .277 (79-285) with five homers and 45 RBIs in 77 games with Charlotte, the Chicago White Sox's affiliate in the triple-A International league.

JIM MURPHY (2007): Jim is hitting .279 (109-390) with 19 homers and 65 RBIs in 108 games for Reading (Pa.), Philadelphia's affiliate in the double-A Eastern League.

JAKE RODRIGUEZ (2010): Jake is hitting .224 (11-49) with a homer and seven RBIs in 16 games for Tri-City, Houston's affiliate in the Class A New York-Penn League.

ANDREW SUSAC (2009): Andrew is hitting .252 (66-262) with 12 homers and 46 RBIs in 83 games for Richmond (Va.), San Francisco's affiliate in the double-A Eastern League.

JUSTIN VIELE (2010): Justin is hitting .274 (26-95) with one homer and nine RBIs in 29 games with the Orioles of the Arizona Rookie League.

TYLER ANDERSON (2009): Tyler is 1-1, 0.60 in three games with Tri-City, Colorado's affiliate in the single-A Northwest League. He has 15 strikeouts in 15 innings.

MATT ANDRIESE (2009): Matt is 1-4, 3.98 in seven games for Tucson, San Diego's affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League. He has 25 strikeouts in 40.2 innings.

MAX BEATTY (2010-12): Max is 1-1, 3.38 in six games with the Arizona Rookie League Padres, with 12 strikeouts in 10.2 innings.

MATT BOYD (2010): Matt is 0-0, 0.00 in three games for Lansing, Toronto's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League, with six strikeouts in five innings.

A.J. BURKE (2012): A.J. is 0-3, 8.10 in eight games with the Arizona Rookie League Athletics, with 11 strikeouts in 10 innings.

TREVOR FRANK (2012): Trevor is 0-3, 3.80 in 11 games for Mahoning Valley, Cleveland's affiliate in the Class A New York-Penn League. He has one save and 20 strikeouts in 21.1 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 2-1, 1.23 in five games with Salem-Keizer, San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A Northwest League. He has 18 strikeouts in 22 innings.

CHRIS JOHNSON (2011): Chris is 4-3, 2.31 in 10 games with Salem-Keizer, San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A Northwest League, with 58 strikeouts in 58.1 innings.

KYLE KRAUS (2009, 2010): Kyle is 2-2, 4.46 in nine games with Salem, Boston's affiliate in the single-A Carolina League. He has 19 strikeouts in 36.1 innings.

SCOTT LYMAN (2010): Scott is 1-0, 1.69 in one game with Jupiter, Miami's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League, with two strikeouts in 5.1 innings.

JAMES NYGREN (2009): James is 6-2, 2.22 in 29 appearances with Jupiter, Miami's affiliate in the Class A Florida State League. He has 23 strikeouts in 48.2 innings.

EDDIE OROZCO (2008, 2009): Eddie is 0-1, 7.71 in five games with Boise, the Chicago Cubs' affiliate in the Class A Northwest League, with nine strikeouts in seven innings.

JOSH OSICH (2008): Josh is 0-2, 7.50 in 10 appearances with Richmond, San Francisco's affiliate in the double-A Eastern League. He has two saves and 14 strikeouts in 12 innings.

GREG PEAVEY (2007): Greg is 0-0, 2.25 in one game with Binghamton, the New York Mets' affiliate in the double-A Eastern League. He has four strikeouts in four innings.

JIMMIE SHERFY (2011): Jimmie is 0-0, 0.00 in five appearances with Hillsboro, Arizona's affiliate in the Class A Northwest League. He has two saves and 10 strikeouts in five innings.

NICK STRUCK (2009): Nick is 5-8, 6.29 in 20 games with Iowa, the Chicago Cubs' affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League. He has 55 strikeouts in 103 innings.

That's all for today. See you at the ballpark on Saturday.


Knights have set stolen base record

August 1, 2013

Good morning everyone, and Happy Thursday.

Bad news from Kelowna last night, where we lost 8-5 to end our 8-game winning streak. However, we did finish July with a 16-4 record in West Coast League games, and a 19-4 overall mark. That's a great month, by any standard.

We have also shattered the WCL record for stolen bases. We set the former mark of 105 last year; this summer we've already swiped 109, with 10 league games left to play. Dane Lund leads us with 19; Grant Melker has 17 and Blake Drake has 15.

Game 6 of our long Canadian road trip is set for 6:35 p.m. today, when we close out the series at Kelowna. Lefty Elliot Surrey (4-1, 1.26), fresh off a 4-0 shutout of Medford on July 26 in his last start, is our scheduled starter.

We'll stay overnight in Kelowna and then make the 13-hour bus trip back on Friday. Maybe we can race Kelowna's bus; the Falcons will also drive to Corvallis on Friday and the teams will open a three-game series at Goss Stadium at 7:05 p.m. Saturday on a Kid's $1,000 Dash for Cash night, presented by Dr. Curtis E. Trammell. See you there.

Now, on with today's news.

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Free GA tickets are still available at Wilson Motors for our Monday night against Bend. Get to the dealership at 5th Street & Buchanan Avenue in Corvallis to get your ticket(s). The first pitch is scheduled for 6:40 pm.

And tickets are still available for the Aug. 8 Fireworks Night against the U-19 Portland Lobos (not the WCL Portland Lobos). Reserved seats are $11, GA are $5. Should be a great show and a super way to close out the regular season.

Our attendance has risen to 32,804 for 25 dates, an average of 1,312 per opening. We're 1,053 ahead of last year's number through a corresponding number of dates.

We're still on target to break our all-time record of 42,447, set in 2011. But we can't get there without your help, so get on out to the ballpark for our final homestand.

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New WCL president Dennis Koho has concluded his introductory tour of all the league cities. Here's a story of his visit to Wenatchee, from The Wenatchee World newspaper.

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Here's a story from the Klamath Falls Herald and News on Gems' pitcher Nick Sabo and his adjustment to Southern Oregon from his hometown of San Diego.

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Jupiter (A Florida State, Marlins) outfielder Alex Burg (2008) was 2-for-5 with two runs, a homer and three RBIs in an 11-2 win over Brevard County on Wednesday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Jupiter (A Florida State, Marlins) pitcher Scott Lyman (2010) allowed one earned run and had two strikeouts in winning the aforementioned game against Brevard County. He was recently promoted from Greensboro in the low-A South Atlantic League.

* Tri-Valley (A New York-Penn, Astros) catcher Jake Rodriguez (2010) was 1-for-4 with three RBIs in a 7-4 loss to State College.

* Hillsboro (A Northwest, Diamondbacks) reliever Jimmie Sherfy (2011) pitched a scoreless inning and had two strikeouts in a 7-1 win over Vancouver.

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That's all for today. See you on a TGIF.