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Knights Daily Update

Knights sign Australian standout

October 1, 2014

Happy Wednesday, everyone. Great start to the MLB baseball playoffs last night with a thrilling game in Kansas City, where the Royals rallied to eliminate Oakland 9-8 in 12 innings. So let's get on with the news.

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The Knights have signed of junior outfielder Hayden Calvert of Corban University. A native of Canberra, Australia, Calvert is a 5-foot-10, 190-pound switch-hitter who graduated from Lake Ginnivderra High School.

Hayden hit .333 (4-12) in four games at Corban in 2014, with two doubles, two runs and five RBIs. He played one season at Arizona Western College (2013) before transferring to Corban, and played for the World Championships U17 Australian Team in 2009.

Welcome to the team, Hayden.

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Speaking of the MLB baseball playoffs, some Knights' alums will be in action today when San Francisco plays at Pittsburgh in the NL Wild-Card Game.

Catcher Andrew Susac (2009) and infielder Matt Duffy (2010) will play for the Giants. Catcher Chris Stewart (2001) is on the Pirates' roster; infielder Brent Morel (2006-07) could be but the final playoff roster won't be revealed until later today.

Stewart, who formerly played for the Giants, gives the Pirates a "secret weapon" against San Francisco starter Madison Bumgartner, according to this story on csnbayarea.com. Chris was out 2001 MVP and the special guest at our 2013 Hot Stove Night event.

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That is all for today. Have a great day and we will see you on Thursday.


Knights sign pair from UCSB

September 30, 2014

Happy Tuesday, everyone. Let's get on with the news.

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The Knights have signed freshman pitcher Christopher Clements and freshman shortstop Clayton Fisher of UC Santa Barbara for the 2015 season.

Clements is a 6-foot-1, 195-pounder from Pacific Grove High School in Pacific Grove, Calif. He was 6-2, 0.88 as a senior, with 78 strikeouts in 56 innings. As a junior, he was 14-0 with an 0.71 ERA and 93 strikeouts in 78 innings. He was a 2013 North-South Showcase participant and the Mission Trail League Pitcher of the Year.

"Chris is a very polished pitcher," UCSB coach Andrew Checketts said. "He has great fastball command and solid off-speed stuff. He possesses an advanced feel for the strike zone and is a proven winner."

Fisher is from La Quinta, Calif., and played at La Quinta High School. He hit .436 as a senior, with 44 hits, 27 runs and eight doubles in 28 games.

"Clay is one of the top defensive shortstops in California," Checketts said. "He can run, has the arm strength to stick at shortstop after college and is a solid offensive player that will fit into our team's offensive approach."

Welcome to the team, guys.

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We wanted to pass along a nice story from Best Coast Baseball reporter Jacob F. Garcia, who was in Corvallis for a game this past summer, on the West Coast League. So, please click here and check it out. We look forward to seeing Jacob again next summer.

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Right-handed pitcher Mikey Wright of San Jose State, an honorable-mention all-West Coast League pick in 2014, will return to Victoria in 2015. The HarbourCats have also signed two players from Sacramento State. Here is more on that story, from Our Sports Central.

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That is all for today. Have a great day and we will see you on Wednesday.


More signings for Knights

September 29, 2014

Happy Monday, everyone. Hope you all had great weekends and are excited about starting a new week. So let's get on with the news.

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The Knights have signed Western Oregon redshirt junior pitcher Gary Steindorf, a 6-4, 220-pounder from Liberty High School in Hillsboro. He did not pitch in 2014 but was 6-4, 4.20 in 14 games in 2013, with 52 strikeouts in 75 innings. He was 0-0, 2.89 in eight games in 2012, with six strikeouts in 9.1 innings.

Steindorf pitched briefly for the West Coast League's Kitsap BlueJackets in 2013 and was 0-3, 7.07 in four starts, with nine strikeouts in 14 innings.

We have signed Cal Poly commit Craig Colen, a right-handed pitcher who will graduate from Lowell High School in San Francisco in 2015. He was 6-3, 1.16 in 16 games as a junior in 2014, with 77 strikeouts in 66.1 innings.

The Knights also signed WOU junior catcher Colby Rice to 10-day contract. The West Salem graduate played at Western Nevada JC the past two seasons.

Welcome to the team, guys.

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Another good day for two alums with the San Francisco Giants in a 9-3 win over San Diego on Sunday in their regular-season finale. Catcher Andrew Susac (2009) was 1-for-3 and infielder Matt Duffy (2010) was 1-for-1 with an RBI as a pinch-hitter. They will play against Pittsburgh on Wednesday in the NL Wild Card game.

So, we know there will be four and possibly five franchise alums in postseason playoffs, which start Tuesday. Catcher Chris Stewart (2001) and third baseman Brent Morel (2006-07) and the Pirates are also in (although we are not sure if Morel is on the playoff roster), as is pitcher Bud Norris (2005) of the Orioles.

Stewart suffered a left-wrist injury on Sunday when he was struck by Johnny Cueto's bat on the backswing, but he said he would be good to go on Wednesday. Here is more on that story, from mlb.com.

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Toronto purchased the contract of infielder Matt "Slider Guy" Hague (2005) from triple-A Buffalo and placed him in its 40-man roster. He is now protected from the Rule 5 draft.

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That is all for today. Have a great day and we will see you on Tuesday.


Knights sign TCC pitcher Justin Vernia

September 26, 2014

Happy Friday everyone. The weekend awaits but we have some news before we close shop for the week.

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The Knights have signed sophomore pitcher Justin Vernia of Tacoma Community College for the 2015 season. A 6-foot-1, 200-pounder from Issaquah High School in Renton, Wash., he was 7-0 with a 1.08 ERA over seven starts and won the team's Cy Young Award in 2014.

He was a first-team KingCo all-star as a senior in 2013, when he went 6-3 with a 1.93 ERA and 74strikeouts. Knights' pitching coach Connor Lambert, now the director of operations at Utah, was his pitching coach at TCC.

Welcome to the team, Justin.

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Another good day for two alums with the San Francisco Giants in a 9-8 win over San Diego that clinched a playoff berth. Catcher Andrew Susac (2009) was 1-for-2 with a run and pinch-hitter Matt Duffy (2010) was 0-for-0 but drove in a run.

There are now five alums in postseason baseball. Catcher Chris Stewart (2001) and third baseman Brent Morel (2006-07) and the Pirates are also in (although we are not sure if Morel is on the playoff roster)), as is pitcher Bud Norris (2005) of the Orioles. Norris is having a great year and won his 15th game on Wednesday, a career high.

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The Klamath Falls Gems have signed pitcher Kody Kuhlman of the University of Portland and Northwest Nazarene utility/pitcher Jesse Hilyard. Both are local products; Kuhlman played at Klamath Union High, Hilyard at Henley. Here is more on that story from the Klamath Falls Herald and News newspaper.

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That is all for today. Have a great weekend, see you on Monday, and go Beavs!


Harrison McGhee to return in 2015

September 25, 2014

Happy Thursday everyone. My yard is already starting to green up from the rain, but thankfully it will be gone by the weekend so we will have a dry Fall Festival. Now, on with the news.

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The Knights have signed junior pitcher Harrison McGhee of Concordia University for the 2015 season. He is our second returnee, joining pitcher Merrick Patito of Chaffey College. A 5-foot-10, 195-pound righthander from Ramona, Calif., McGhee was 0-2, 5.30 in 14 games for the Knights in 2014, with 32 strikeouts in 39 innings as a starter and a reliever.

An NAIA-West all-star in 2014 at Concordia, Harrison was 5-3 with a 1.45 ERA in 12 games, with 96 strikeouts in 86.2 innings. He led the Cascade Collegiate Conference in strikeouts and was third in ERA.

Welcome back, Harrison.

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Good night on Wednesday for two alums with the San Francisco Giants in their 9-1 loss to the Dodgers and ace Clayton Kershaw. Catcher Andrew Susac (2009) was 2-for-4 and pinch-hitter Matt Duffy (2010) was 1-for-1.

The Giants still need one more win to clinch a playoff berth and give the Knights five alums in postseason baseball. Catcher Chris Stewart (2001) and third baseman Brent Morel (2006-07) and the Pirates are already in (although we are not sure if Morel is on the playoff roster). So is pitcher Bud Norris (2005) of the Orioles. Norris is having a great year and won his career-high 15th game on Wednesday, against the Yankees.

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Here is the Yakima Herald Republic's story on standout Vince Fernandez of the Pippins, the WCL's top prospect, according to Perfect Game.

As we reported earlier this week, the Knights had four players on that list: Dalton Kelly (5); Justin Calomeni (9); Brandon Choate (10), and Logan Ice (14). Alum Gabe Clark (2013) was 17th.

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That is all for today. Have a great day and we will see you on Friday.


Knights sign Washington catcher Andy Cosgrove

September 24, 2014

Happy Wednesday, everyone. The rain is back, but we needed it and it is not supposed to hang around very long, so all is well. Now, on with the news.

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The Knights have signed freshman catcher Andy Cosgrove of Washington, a 6-foot-2, 190-pounder who graduated from Juanita High School in Kirkland, Wash.

He was a second-team KingCo all-star in 2014, when Juanita made it to the state-championship game before losing 1-0 to Lakeside. Here is more on Cosgrove from The Kirkland Reporter newspaper. He also played for the Baden team in the Seattle Premier League this past summer.

Welcome to the team, Andy.

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Alum Andrew Naderer (2013) of Grand Canyon University was named to the Cape Cod League's postseason all-star team. He played for the Brewster Whitecaps and had a 2.27 ERA with 27 strikeouts in 35.2 innings pitched in 10 appearances.

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The Bellingham Bells have promoted Stephanie Morrell to assistant general manager, effective immediately. Previously, Morrell served as the team's marketing director. Here is more on that story from the Our Sports Central website.

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That is all for today. Have a great day and we will see you on Thursday.


Knights sign Chapman RHP Matt Smith

September 23, 2014

Happy Tuesday, everyone. Looks as if the rain might be returning finally but we sure had a great run of sunny, warm weather.

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The Knights have signed junior right-hand pitcher Matt Smith of Chapman University, a Division III school in Orange, Calif. Smith was 5-2 with a 2.94 ERA, and had 47 strikeouts in 52 innings over 14 appearances.

A 6-foot-4, 215-pounder from Palos Verdes High School in Lunada Bay, Calif., Smith was 2-5 record with a 5.53 ERA in 13 games as a freshman in 2013 and led the team with 59 strikeouts. He was the 2012 Bay League Pitcher of the Year as a PVHS senior and earned first-team all-league and first-team all-CIF honors in leading his team to the Bay League championship.

Welcome to the team, Matt.

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Alum Andrew Susac (2009) of Oregon State and the San Francisco Giants drove in the winning run in the 13th inning on Monday as the Giants defeated the Dodgers 5-2. Here is video of the hit from MLB.com; sorry about the annoying ad.

Andrew is hitting .264 (19-72) with three homers and 16 RBIs in 30 games for the Giants since being called up from triple-A Fresno in late July. He certainly has made a case to stick with the club for the entire season in 2015.

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Two alums had great seasons in the independent Frontier League.

* Washington (Pa.) Wild Things third baseman Carter Bell (2009) hit .289 (89-308) in 88 games, with 11 doubles, four triples, four homers, 37 RBIs and 30 steals in 35 attempts. Carter played at Oregon State and spent three years in the Arizona organization before being released before the 2014 season.

* Evansville reliever Eric Massingham (2006-07) was 0-0 with a 0.75 ERA in 10 games with the Otters, who acquired him in a trade with Southern Maryland of the Atlantic League in July. Mass had eight saves and 13 strikeouts in 12 innings.

He played at Cal Poly and earned all-WCL postseason honors both years he played for us. He also plays for the Canberra Cavalry in the Australian Baseball League.

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Former Knight Matt "Slider Guy" Hague (2005) has been assigned to the Buffalo Bisons of the triple-A International League by Toronto. They originally designated him for assignment on Sept. 2.

The Blue Jays claimed Hague on waivers in August from Pittsburgh, and he hit .377 in 13 games, with a homer and 10 RBIs at Buffalo. He reached the majors several times with Pittsburgh, who drafted him out of Oklahoma State in 2008. He also played 93 games at triple-A Indianapolis in 2014 and hit .267 (88-330), with 14 homers and 66 RBIs.

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That is all for today. Have a great day and we will see you on Wednesday.


Washington freshman Bremer signs for 2015

September 22, 2014

Happy Monday, everyone. Hope you all had great weekends.

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The Knights have signed University of Washington freshman pitcher Noah Bremer, a 6-foot-5 righty from Berkeley High School in Berkeley, Calif.

He was 10-1, 0.38 as a senior, with 110 strikeouts in 92 innings in 14 appearances. He was 4-4 with a 1.05 ERA in 2013, and was a first-team West Alameda Foothills Conference all-star both seasons.

"Noah is the potential weekend guy we are all looking for in the Pac-12," Washington coach Lindsay Meggs said. "He is already 87-90 (MPH) with good fastball command and much more in the tank.

"And while the velocity is only going to improve with Noah's long and loose frame, it's really his command of both the curve ball and changeup that sets him apart. Plus, his makeup is off the charts.

"His older brother Tyler pitches in the Cubs' organization so Noah has been around it for a long time. This guy is going to be special."

His father, Matt, is his high school coach. His mother, Shelly Neufeld, played college basketball at California.

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The Klamath Falls Gems have signed Ty Wyatt of Willamette University for the 2015 season. He was the only freshman selected first-team All-Northwest Conference in 2014. Here is more on that story, from the Our Sports Central website.

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Medford has announced several staff changes and signings for the 2015 season. Highlights include the departure of former Knight Griffin Boyd (2010-11) from the front office, and the hiring of the first female play-by-play broadcaster in the WCL. Please click here for more information on that story.

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That is all for today. Have a great day and we will see you on Tuesday.


Knights sign Bellarmine star Jes Staples

September 19, 2014

Happy Friday, everyone. It is the end of the week and the official end of summer is upon us but Knights-related news knows no season. So let's get right to it.

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The Knights have continued our Bellarmine University connection, first established in 2014 with the addition of outfielder Phil Leopold, a 10-day signee who ended up making the team and becoming a major contributor.

The latest Bellarmine Knight to join the Corvallis Knights is junior outfielder Jes Staples. He hit .330 in 2014 and led Bellarmine with 63 hits, five triples, 16 steals and 33 runs. He also had 19 multi-hit games and won a gold glove for his outfield defensive work.

As a pitcher, he was 1-2 with a 0.93 ERA in seven games, with 12 strikeouts in 29 innings.

Last summer, Staples played for the Lexington Hustlers in the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League. He hit .310, with 36 hits, 10 steals, 10 RBIs, and 20 runs scored in 27 games. He made the all-star team and went 2-for-2 with a walk, an RBI, a run scored and steal in the all-star game. He had 12 multi-hit games overall and five three-hit games.

He is a 5-foot-11, 160-pound lefty from Lafayette High School in Lexington, Kent. Welcome to the team, Jes.

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Former Corvallis Knights broadcasters Jason Schwartz (2010) and Kevin Burke (2012) had another successful season behind the mic at their 2014 jobs in Lancaster Calif., and Traverse City, Mich., respectively. Please click here and check out this story on our website to read all about it.

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The sale of the Bend Elks to Let's Play Ball LLC is about to be finalized. Here is more on that story from the Our Sports Central website.

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That is all for this week. Have a great weekend, go Beavs, and we will see you on Monday.


Knights sign LHP Brady Williams of CMU

September 18, 2014

Happy Thursday, everyone. We have more Knights- and West Coast league-related news to report, so let's get right to it.

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The cornerstone of every Corvallis team is a strong pitching staff and 2015 should be no different for the Knights.

We have signed junior lefty Brady Williams of Central Michigan University for next summer. The 6-foot-4 graduate of Ridgefield High School in Ridgefield, Wash., pitched at Linn-Benton in 2013 and then moved north to Chemeketa CC in 2014 after LBCC dropped its (since re-instated) program.

Williams was 5-2, 2.42 in 11 games at Chemeketa in 2014, with 37 strikeouts in 48.1 innings. He was 1-0, 3.21 in nine games at LBCC in 2013, with 17 strikeouts in 14 innings.

He is the third pitcher to sign with the Knights, joining Cal Poly sophomore Slater Lee and RHP Merrick Patito of Chaffey College, a returnee from 2014.

Welcome to the team, Brady.

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Alum Matt Duffy (2010) of the San Francisco Giants drove in the winning runs in the top of the ninth as the Giants edged Arizona 4-2 on Wednesday night to move to within two games of the first-place Dodgers in the NL West.

Duffy improved to 4-for-10 as a pinch-hitter. Here is video of his big hit. He has done a great job for the Giants since being recalled from double-A Richmond this summer, where he was the Eastern League's all-star shortstop.

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We missed this story over the summer. Here is a nice profile on an original Corvallis Knight, left-handed pitcher Daniel Bibona (2007) of UC Irvine, from the Big West Conference website. He is now the UCI pitching coach.

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We also missed out on some West Coast Conference accolades for some former Knights. Portland pitcher Jackson Lockwood (2014), infielder Cody Lenahan (2013) and infielder Caleb Whalen (2012) all earned WCC all-academic honors. Lockwood (3.46 cumulative GPA in business) earned first-team honors; Lenahan and Whalen earned honorable mention. Here is more on that story, from the WCC website.

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That is all for today. Have a great day and we will see you on Friday.