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Knights Daily Update

Let the offseason begin

August 20, 2014

Happy Wednesday, everyone.

Another season in the books. It's disappointing not to repeat as champions, but when you're one of the two teams playing on the final day of the season, and if you can win a championship with one more victory, it's still been a very successful summer.

Now the front office winds down a little, then starts the review and building process for the 2015 season. Signing should start to be announced sometime in September, and we expect to have another contending team next season.

In the meantime, the Blog will continue, but obviously in an abbreviated form because there is just not as much news to report. You can also keep up with the West Coast League through its great new website; we suggest you bookmark it.

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Two of our minor-league alums have changed teams.

* The Diamondbacks returned third baseman Taylor Ard (2009)to Missoula of the Pioneer League after a short stay with South Bend in the Midwest League.

* Outfielder Mitch Haniger (2010)is on rehab assignment with the Arizona Rookie League Diamondbacks from double-A Mobile in the Texas League. He is recovering from a hyperextended elbow.

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Erie (AA Eastern, Tigers) first baseman Dean Green (2008) was 2-for-5 with a double and three RBIs in a 7-0 win over Binghamton on Tuesday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Ogden (R Pioneer, Dodgers) second baseman Jimmy Allen (2011) was 1-for-3 with a double and an RBI in a 4-3 win over Orem.

* Johnson City (R Appalachian, Cardinals) outfielder Blake Drake (2013) was 2-for-6 with two runs in a 12-8 win over Bristol.

* Rays (R Gulf Coast League, Rays) outfielder Cade Gotta (2011) was 1-for-2 with a double and an RBI in a 5-4 loss to the Red Sox.

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Here are the updated stats of our minor-league position-playing Corvallis Knights alums, as part of our weekly "Knights in the Pros" feature. Pitching stats will appear on Thursdays.

DAYTON ALEXANDER (A Vermont, A's): The outfielder from Feather River JC (2011) is hitting .209 (23-110) in 35 games, with no homers and seven RBIs.

JIMMY ALLEN (A Ogden, Dodgers): The second baseman from Cal Poly (2011) is hitting .274 (40-146) in 42 games, with 15 RBIs.

DAVID ANDRIESE (A Jamestown, Pirates): The outfielder from UC Riverside (2010-11) is hitting .233 (20-86) in 30 games, with a homer and nine RBIs.

TAYLOR ARD (A Missoula, Diamondbacks): The first baseman from Washington State (2009) is hitting .250 (7-28) in nine games, with two homers and six RBIs.

DAVID ARMENDARIZ (A Mahoning Valley, Indians): The outfielder from Cal Poly Pomona (2011) is hitting .138 (4-29) in seven games, with one RBI.

ALEX BURG (AA Jacksonville, Marlins): The catcher/outfielder from Washington State (2008) is hitting .264 (60-227) in 76 games, with seven homers and 29 RBIs.

BLAKE DRAKE (R Johnson City, Cardinals): The outfielder from Concordia (2013) is hitting .262 (53-202) in 55 games, with five homers and 27 RBIs.

GRANT FINK (A Lake County, Indians): The third baseman from Missouri Western (2011) is hitting .223 (84-377) in 109 games, with 11 homers and 52 RBIs.

ROCKY GALE (AAA El Paso, Padres): The catcher from Portland (2007, 2009) is hitting .297 (62-209) in 70 games, with 33 RBIs.

DREW GARCIA (AAA Colorado Springs, Rockies): The second baseman from UC Riverside (2007) is hitting .240 (69-288) in 92 games, with four homers and 36 RBIs.

RYAN GORTON (A Stockton, A's): The catcher from Oregon State (2011) is hitting .198 (21-106) in 31 games, with no homers and seven RBIs.

CADE GOTTA (A Gulf Coast League Rays, Rays): The outfielder from San Diego Christian (2011) is hitting .241 (35-145) in 42 games, with no homers and 19 RBIs.

DEAN GREEN (AA Erie, Tigers): The first baseman from Oklahoma State/Barry University (2008) is hitting .321 (115-358) in 100 games, with seven homers and 48 RBIs.

MITCH HANIGER (ARL Diamondbacks): The outfielder from Cal Poly (2010) is hitting .100 (1-10) in three games, with no homers or RBIs. He is on injury rehab from AA Mobile.

DANNY HAYES (A Kannapolis, White Sox): The first baseman from Oregon State (2010) is hitting .287 (124-432) in 119 games, with 11 homers and 69 RBIs.

KAVIN KEYES (R ARL Mariners, Mariners): The infielder from Oregon State (2013) is hitting .227 (17-75) in 21 games, with a homer and nine RBIs.

ADAM MELKER (AA Arkansas, Angels): The outfielder from Cal Poly is hitting .242 (59-244) in 74 games, with five homers and 28 RBIs.

JIM MURPHY (AAA Lehigh Valley, Phillies): The first baseman from Washington State (2007) is hitting .243 (88-362) in 105 games, with 10 homers and 43 RBIs.

CHRIS RABAGO (A Tri-Cities, Rockies): The shortstop from UC Irvine (2012-13) is hitting .221 (29-131) in 35 games, with 10 RBIs.

JAKE RODRIGUEZ (A Tri-City, Astros): The catcher from Oregon State (2010) is hitting .087 (2-23) in seven games, with a homer and two RBIs.

NICK TORRES (A Eugene, Padres): The outfielder from Cal Poly (2012) is hitting .246 (32-130) in 33 games, with two homers and 16 RBIs.

JUSTIN VIELE (A Aberdeen, Orioles): The shortstop from Santa Clara (2010) is hitting .185 (25-135) in 45 games, with no homers and 14 RBIs.

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That is it for today. See you on Thursday.


Knights suffer tough loss in Finals finale.

August 19, 2014

Happy Tuesday everyone.

Another tough night in Bellingham. We lost 3-2 to the Bells in Game 3 of the West Coast League Championship Series, so the Bells won their first title since joining the league (along with the Knights) in 2005.

We had our chances to win on Sunday and on Monday, but did not get the big hit. There were also several very curious calls by the umpiring crew that went against us, one of which killed a possible big rally in the sixth inning last night.

But that is baseball; the Bells have no control over what the umpires do, so again, congrats to a very worthy and talented championship team that had the best record in the league, and to a management group that has revitalized that franchise. Here is more on Monday's game, from Our Sports Central and even more from the Bellingham Herald newspaper.

The Knights' brass will take a few days off, and then start building the team for the 2015 season. Look for the signings to start sometime in September.

We will be short today, but here is some more Knights news.

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Victoria's Hunter Mercado-Hood was the final regular-season WCL Player of the Week. Here is more on that story, from the WCL website.

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The Toronto Blue Jays have claimed alum Matt Hague (2005) on waivers from the Pittsburgh Pirates, and have assigned him to Buffalo in the triple-A International League. Hague is the "Slider Guy" in some of our promotional material.

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Ogden (R Pioneer, Dodgers) second baseman Jimmy Allen (2011) was 3-for-4 with a run, a triple and two RBIs in a 7-1 win over Helena on Monday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* El Paso (AAA Pacific Coast, Padres) catcher Rocky Gale (2007, 2009) was 2-for-4 and raised his average to .302 in a 7-4 loss to Memphis.

* Binghamton (AA Eastern, Mets) pitcher Greg Peavey (2007) allowed three runs and had five strikeouts in 5.1 innings and got the win in an 11-4 victory over Erie.

* Burlington (A Midwest, Angels) reliever Greg Mahle (2012) pitched an inning of scoreless relief, struck out the side and had a no-decision in a 2-1 loss to Kane County.

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That is it for today. See you on Wednesday.


Decisive game of WCL Championship Series tonight

August 18, 2014

Happy Monday everyone.

It's now a one-game season. The Knights and Bellingham Bells will play Game 3 of the West Coast League Championship Series at 7:05 tonight at Joe Martin Field in Bellingham.

The Bells forced the decisive game by winning 4-1 on Sunday night. We won the opener, 4-3, in Corvallis on Friday night. Righty Chris Haddeland (4-4, 3.03) of Linfield is our probable starter; righty Gabe Cramer (2-2, 4.21) of Stanford goes for the Bells.

Here is more on Sunday's game, from Our Sports Central and even more from the Bellingham Herald newspaper.

And here is some more Knights news, and a few items from elsewhere in the West Coast League, which has a great new website for you to bookmark.

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Friday night's crowd of 706 increased our final 2014 attendance to 43,433, the second-highest in franchise history. We just missed breaking last year's all-time record of 43,529. More than 260,000 fans have attended Knights game since we moved to Corvallis for the 2007 season.

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The Pittsburgh Pirates have recalled third baseman Brent Morel (2006-07) from triple-A Indianapolis for the third time this season. He went 0-for-1 on Sunday in a loss to the Nationals.

Another alum in the majors, San Francisco catcher Andrew Susac (2009), was 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run in a 5-2 win over the Phillies. Here is video of Susac's RBI single from MLB.com.

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Salem (A Carolina, Red Sox) pitcher Kyle Kraus (2009-10) allowed one run in six innings, had four strikeouts and got the win in a 9-1 victory over Myrtle Beach on Sunday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Batavia (A New York-Penn, Marlins) pitcher Ben Wetzler (2011) allowed one earned run in five innings and had two strikeouts in a 4-3 win over Jamestown. He was not involved in the decision.

* Eugene (A Northwest, Padres) outfielder Nick Torres (2012) was 3-for-8 with two RBIs and a run in a 9=-7, 17-inning loss to Hillsboro.

* Lake County (A Midwest, Indians) reliever Trevor Frank (2012) pitched .2 innings and had a strikeout to get his 15th save in a 4-1 win over Fort Wayne.

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Here is some news from elsewhere in the West Coast League:

BEND: Here is a review of the Elks' season, from reporter Grant Lucas of the Bend Bulletin newspaper.

KLAMATH FALLS: Here is a review of the Gems' season, from reporter Steve Matthies of the Klamath Falls Herald and News newspaper.

WENATCHEE: The AppleSox have promoted pitching coach AJ Proszek to head coach to succeed Ed Knaggs, who is stepping down after 14 seasons. Here is a more on that story from the Our Sports Central website.

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That is it for today. Cheer for the Knights tonight, and we will see you on Tuesday.


Game 1 of Championship Series tonight at Goss!

August 15, 2014

Happy Friday everyone.

We conclude our 2014 home schedule at 6:40 tonight against Bellingham in Game 1 of the West Coast League Championship Series.

The Bells were the West Division champions, and they compiled the best regular-season record (37-17) in the league. They then swept Yakima Valley to advance to the finals for the first time since the introduction of divisional play in 2007.

Tickets are $10 for reserved and $6 for general admission, and available at all the usual outlets. If you already ordered tickets online and printed at home, your print is good for Friday night. Punchcards are good as well.

Saturday is a travel day. Games 2 and Game 3 (if necessary) will be at 7:05 p.m. at Joe Martin Field in Bellingham, since the Bells earned home field advantage throughout the playoffs. If you can't go, tune in to Alex Kuhn on KEJO-AM 1240 for all the action. For more details on the games in Bellingham, please click here.

It took some wheeling and dealing to get those final two games to Bellingham, because of construction issues at Joe Martin. Here are more details on that, from the Bellingham Herald newspaper.

And here is some more Knights news, and a few items from elsewhere in the West Coast League, which has a great new website for you to bookmark.

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Nice story in today's Corvallis Gazette-Times by reporter Jesse Sowa about the Knights and our winning tradition. Please click here to read it.

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Right-hander Jackson Lockwood (8-2, 2.83), a rising junior at the University of Portland, will start Game 1 of the finals for the Knights. He lost 4-1 at Bellingham on July 17, as he allowed two-run homers in the first and second innings.

Corvallis won the regular-season series 2-1, as we defeated the Bells 2-0 and 2-1 in the final two games of the series. Angel Landazuri and Brandon Choate combined for the shutout in the second game, and Justin Calomeni, Chris Haddeland and Choate combined on a four-hitter in Game 3. The Bells did not play in Corvallis this year because of the unbalanced schedule.

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We have drawn 42,727 fans in 33 openings this season. That's 830 less than 2013 in a comparable number of home dates; the Knights drew a franchise-record 43,557 fans in 33 total openings last summer. Hopefully we will break that record tonight in Game 1 of the WCL Championship Series.

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Arkansas (AA Southern, Angels) outfielder Adam Melker (2008-09) was 3-for-5 with two RBIs and a run in a 9-6 win over San Antonio on Thursday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Erie (AA Eastern, Tigers) first baseman Dean Green (2008) was 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI in a 9-4 loss to Binghamton.

* Indianapolis (AAA International, Pirates) third baseman Brent Morel (2007) was 2-for-4 with a triple, two RBIs and a run in a 10-6 loss to Toledo.

* Jacksonville (AA Southern, Marlins) pitcher James Nygren (2009) had one strikeout in two scoreless innings in a 5-4 win over Chattanooga.

* Lake County (A Midwest, Indians)reliever Trevor Frank (2012) (2012) pitched a perfect ninth and got his 13th save in a 4-3 win over Dayton.

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Here is some news from elsewhere in the West Coast League:

VICTORIA: The HarbourCats have hired Graig Merritt as their new head coach. He succeeds Bob Miller, who resigned after a year as head coach and a season as co-head coach with Dennis Rogers of Riverside City College. Here is more on that story from the Our Sports Central website.

YAKIMA VALLEY: Here is a photo essay from the Yakima Herald-Republic on the Pippins' first season.

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That is it for today. See you tonight for Game 1 of the WCL Championship Series. Don't forget to buy those finals tickets!


We host Bellingham on Friday night

August 14, 2014

Wow.

What a game at Goss Stadium last night, where Kevin Kline's two-run, walkoff homer with one out in the last of the ninth gave us a 2-1 win over Bend that advanced us to the West Coast League Championship Series for the seventh time in the past eight years.

Baseball is a funny game. With one out, we were almost dead in the water when Marc Gallegos hit a grounder to third base that should have been the second out. Instead, it is bobbled, Gallegos is safe on the error, and Kline jacks the next pitch into the parking lot for the game-winning home run.

We trail for almost the entire game, then win it on two pitches and end Bend's summer for the fourth time in the last seven years.

Now it is on to the finals. We will face the Bellingham Bells, the West Division champions who compiled the league's best regular-season record (37-17) and then swept Yakima Valley to advance to the finals for the first time since the introduction of divisional play in 2007.

The Knights will host Game 1 of the Championship Series at 6:40 p.m. Friday. Bellingham was able to gain access to Joe Martin Field despite ongoing construction, and since the Bells earned home field advantage throughout the playoffs, they will host Game 2 at 6:35 p.m. Sunday. Game 3 (if needed) will be at Bellingham at 7:05 p.m. Monday.

Tickets for Friday's game are $10 for reserved and $6 for general admission, and available at all the usual outlets. If you already ordered tickets online and printed at home, your print is good for Friday night. Punchcards are good as well.

Here is some more Knights news, and a few items from elsewhere in the West Coast League, which has a great new website for you to bookmark.

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Right-hander Jackson Lockwood (8-2, 2.83), a rising junior at the University of Portland, will start Game 1 of the finals for the Knights. He lost 4-1 at Bellingham on July 17, as he allowed two-run homers in the first and second innings.

Corvallis won the regular-season series 2-1, as we defeated the Bells 2-0 and 2-1 in the final two games of the series. Angel Landazuri and Brandon Choate combined for the shutout in the second game, and Justin Calomeni, Chris Haddeland and Choate combined on a four-hitter in Game 3. The Bells did not play in Corvallis this year because of the unbalanced schedule.

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Here is more on the WCL playoffs from Our Sports Central correspondent Bruce Baskin's "Post From the Coast" column.

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Wednesday's crowd of 794 raised the season attendance to 42,727 in 33 openings. That's 830 less than 2013 in a comparable number of home dates; the Knights drew a franchise-record 43,557 fans in 33 total openings last summer.

The Knights drew a franchise-record 43,557 fans last summer. We hope to break that in Game 1 of the WCL Championship Series.

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Erie (AA Eastern League, Tigers) DH Dean Green (2008) was a combined 3-for-7 with two runs, two doubles and three RBIs in a doubleheader sweep of Binghamton on Wednesday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Kannapolis (A South Atlantic, White Sox) first baseman Danny Hayes (2010) was 2-for-3 with a run and two RBIs in a 9-5 win over Lexington.

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That is it for today. See you on Friday for Game 1 of the WCL Championship Series. Don't forget to buy those finals tickets!


Knights prevail 2-1, take 1-0 series lead over Bend

August 13, 2014

Happy Wednesday, everyone.

Our quest for a repeat West Coast League championship got off to a great start last night as we won Game 1 of our WCL semifinal series against Bend 2-1.

Game 2 is set for 6:40 p.m. today at Goss Stadium; righty Chris Haddeland (4-4, 3.28) is the scheduled starter for the Knights, opposed by righty Kevin Hamann (3-2, 3.40) for the Elks.

Game 3 (if necessary) will be at 6:40 p.m. Thursday. The best-of-3 WCL Championship Series against either Bellingham or Yakima Valley starts Saturday at a to-be determined site. Bellingham won 4-1 on Tuesday at Yakima in the opener of that series.

The best-of-3 WCL Championship Series against either Bellingham or Yakima Valley starts Saturday at Goss Stadium. If we play Bellingham, the entire series will be at Goss Stadium because Joe Martin Stadium is being renovated; the Sunday travel day will be eliminated and games will be Saturday, Sunday and Monday, if necessary.

If we play Yakima Valley, Sunday is a travel day and Game 2 and Game 3 (if necessary) will be at the Yakima County Fairgrounds stadium on Monday and Tuesday.

Here is some more Knights news, and a few items from elsewhere in the West Coast League, which has a great new website for you to bookmark.

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Busy day on tap so no minor-league alum averages today or on Thursday. We will resume that feature next week.

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We're sad to announce that Wenatchee coach Ed Knaggs is stepping down after 14 seasons with the AppleSox. He is a first-class guy who always represented his team and our league with distinction. Here is more on that story, from Our Sports Central.

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Here is more on the WCL playoffs from Our Sports Central correspondent Bruce Baskin's "Post From the Coast" column.

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Our regular-season attendance was 41,933 in 32 openings. That's a regular-season record, but 373 less than 2013 in a comparable number of home dates because last year we had only 31 regular-season home games and the 32nd date was a playoff game.

The Knights drew a franchise-record 43,557 fans last summer. We could break that tonight, or for sure on Thursday or in Game 1 of the WCL Championship Series, should we advance that far.

For complete WCL attendance figures (league games only), please click right here.

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Rays (R Arizona Rookie League, Rays) outfielder Cade Gotta (2011) was 2-for-3 with a run and two walks in a 5-1 win over the Twins on Tuesday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

No honorable mentions. Rain washed out a lot of games yesterday so top performances were hard to come by.

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That is it for today. See you tonight for Game 2 of the Bend series! Don't forget to buy those playoff tickets!


Bend series starts tonight

August 12, 2014

Happy Tuesday, everyone.

Our quest for a repeat West Coast League championship resumes tonight when we face Bend at 6:35 p.m. at Vince Genna Stadium in the opening game of a best-of-3 semifinal series with the Elks.

Right-hander Angel Landazuri (4-0, 2.43) will start Game 1 for the Knights, who won the season series 5-4 despite losing 2 of 3 to the Elks at Goss Stadium last week. A rising sophomore at UC Riverside, Landazuri had six strikeouts and allowed two runs and five hits in winning 6-2 on Aug. 5 in his lone appearance against the Elks.

"The Bend games are always exciting," Knights coach Brooke Knight said. "The rivalry continues on Tuesday and I know our guys are looking forward to strapping it on and doing battle. It should be one heck of a series."

Corvallis won 10 of its final 11 league series and went 24-9 during that span to pull away from Bend and Medford in the South Division pennant race.

"I'm really proud of this club," Knight said. "We have come a long way on the mound. We had early command struggles that demanded attention and perseverance. Our entire pitching staff has really competed well in the second half of this season.

"There has been some tangible growth with many of our guys. The team chemistry is as good as we've had, and there are some outstanding personalities in this group."

Game 2 is set for 6:40 p.m. Wednesday at Goss Stadium; Game 3 (if necessary) will be at 6:40 p.m. Thursday. Tickets are $10 for reserved, $6 for GA and available through the usual outlets.

The best-of-3 WCL Championship Series against either Bellingham or Yakima Valley starts Saturday at Goss Stadium. If we play Bellingham, the entire series will be at Goss Stadium because Joe Martin Stadium is being renovated. The Sunday travel day will be eliminated and games will be Saturday, Sunday and Monday, if necessary.

If we play Yakima Valley, Sunday is a travel day and Game 2 and Game 3 (if necessary) will be at the Yakima County Fairgrounds stadium on Monday and Tuesday.

Here is some more Knights news, and a few items from elsewhere in the West Coast League, which has a great new website for you to bookmark.

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You can learn more about Knights' outfielder Phil Leopold of Bellarmine University by clicking here and reading this story from our website. Phil has been a great addition to our team.

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Our regular-season attendance was 41,933 in 32 openings. That's a regular-season record, but 373 less than 2013 in a comparable number of home dates because last year we had only 31 regular-season home games and the 32nd date was a playoff game.

We ranked 42nd among all summer league teams in league attendance. For a complete look at summer league attendance figures, please click here and check out the numbers compiled by Ballpark Business, or click here for the same numbers in a different format, from Ballpark Digest.

Either way, nine WCL clubs finished in the top 50, easily making us the top league in the western third of the United States. The Knights drew a franchise-record 43,557 fans last summer; we could break that this year if we advance to the WCL Championship Series.

For complete WCL attendance figures (league games only), please click right here.

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Jamestown (A New York-Penn, Pirates) outfielder David Andriese (2010-11) was 1-for-3 with a run, three RBIs and two walks in a 10-5 win over Aberdeen on Monday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Kannapolis (A South Atlantic, White Sox) first baseman Danny Hayes (2010) was 2-for-4 with a double, a run and his 64th RBI in a 10-0 win over Lexington.

* Tri-City (A Northwest, Astros) shortstop Chris Rabago (2012-13) was 1-for-2 with an RBI and two walks in a 7-5 loss to Vancouver.

* Johnson City (R Appalachian, Cardinals) outfielder Blake Drake (2013) was 2-for-5 with a run in a 3-2 win over Kingsport.

* Rays (R Arizona Rookie League, Rays) outfielder Cade Gotta (2011) was 2-for-4 with two runs in a 14-9 loss to the Twins.

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That is it for today. See you on Wednesday for Game 2 of the Bend series! Don't forget to buy those playoff tickets!


Playoff picture all set

August 11, 2014

Happy Monday, everyone.

Another regular season is in the books following our 6-5 loss at Medford on Sunday night. And what a regular season it was.

The Knights finished at 40-19 overall and 35-19 in the WCL. We won 10 of their final 11 series and went 24-9 over that span to pull away from Bend to capture our eighth consecutive division title.

We have won 35 or more league games since the 54-game schedule was adopted for the 2011 season. Corvallis has a league-best 141 WCL victories in the past four seasons.

We open a best-of-3 WCL playoff semifinal series at Bend at 6:35 p.m. Tuesday at Vince Genna Stadium. UC Riverside rising sophomore Angel Landazuri (4-0, 2.43) is our projected starter.

Game 2 is set for 6:40 p.m. Wednesday at Goss Stadium; Game 3 (if necessary) will be at 6:40 p.m. Thursday. Tickets are $10 for reserved, $6 for GA and available through the usual outlets.

The best-of-3 WCL Championship Series against either Bellingham or Yakima Valley starts Saturday at Goss Stadium. If we play Bellingham, the entire series will be at Goss Stadium because Joe Martin Stadium is being renovated; the Sunday travel day will be eliminated and games will be Saturday, Sunday and Monday, if necessary.

If we play Yakima Valley, Sunday is a travel day and Game 2 and Game 3 (if necessary) will be at the Yakima County Fairgrounds stadium on Monday and Tuesday.

Here is some more Knights news, and a few items from elsewhere in the West Coast League, which has a great new website for you to bookmark.

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Kevin Kline tied for second in the WCL in homers (8) and was third in RBIs (45), both team records. Dalton Kelly tied for sixth in homers (7) and was sixth in RBIs (35).

Grant Melker had two stolen bases on Sunday to set the West Coast League record (29). He also scored twice to finish the summer as the league-leader with 41 runs.

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Our regular-season attendance was 41,933 in 32 openings. That's a regular-season record, but 373 less than in 2013 in a comparable number of home dates. Last year we had only 31 regular-season home games and the 32nd date was a playoff game.

The Knights drew a franchise-record 43,557 fans last summer. We should break that this summer, for sure if we advance to the WCL Championship Series.

For complete WCL attendance figures (league games only), please click right here.

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Alum Andrew Susac (2009) of the San Francisco Giants was 2-for-4 with a double and three RBIs on Sunday in a 7-4 loss to the Royals. San Francisco shortstop Matt Duffy (2010) was 1-for-3 so alums combined for three hits and three RBIs for the same team!

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Nice story about the WCL in the Seattle Times newspaper by reporter Ashley Scoby. Former Knights' catcher Nate Esposito (2012) is featured; please click here to read all about it.

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Batavia (A New York-Penn, Marlins) pitcher Ben Wetzler (2011) had three strikeouts in four scoreless innings and got a non-decision in a 5-2 win over Brooklyn on Sunday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Kannapolis (A South Atlantic, White Sox) first baseman Danny Hayes (2010) was 2-for-4 with a double in a 5-3 loss to Hagerstown.

* El Paso (AAA Pacific Coast, Padres) catcher Rocky Gale (2007, 2009) was 3-for-4 with a run and raised his average to .303 in a 7-5 loss to Salt Lake.

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Some news from elsewhere in the WCL:

VICTORIA: Manager Bob Miller will not return next year. Here is a more on that story from Our Sports Central.

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That is it for today. See you on Tuesday. Don't forget to buy those playoff tickets!


Off to Medford for final series of the regular season

August 8, 2014

Happy Friday, everyone.

Another loss last night, 6-3 to Bend on a Fireworks Night at the ballpark. It is the first time since June 23-24 that we've lost two games in a row, and the first time since June 27-29 that we lost a series.

Oh well, that's baseball. Now it's on to Medford, where Derrick Mahlum pitches tonight and Jason Snodgrass pitches on Saturday. Jake Otness could get the ball on Sunday, although that's not 100 percent confirmed.

We still have at least one more home game, in the playoffs, which start on Tuesday. Playoff tickets are on sale now, at $10 for reserved and $6 for GA, the same as in the regular season.

You can purchase playoff tickets by clicking here. Season-ticket holders can reserve their seats up until the day of the game, at which time they go on sale to the general public is not spoken for.

Fans will purchase a ticket and it will be good for August 12 or 13, depending on which date we host. Bend and Wenatchee are still in contention for that final playoff berth so we're not yet sure who we will play in the first round, or where.

If Bend wins twice this weekend against Klamath Falls, it wins the wild card and we will go to Bend on Tuesday for Game 1 of the best-of-3 divisional series. If Wenatchee somehow picks up two games and pulls ahead of the Elks (Bend has the tiebreaker, so Wenatchee must finish in front), then all bets are off.

Here is some more Knights news, and a few items from elsewhere in the West Coast League, which has a great new website for you to bookmark.

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Thursday night's crowd of 2,463 raised the season total to 41,933 in 32 openings. That's 373 less than 2013 in a comparable number of home dates; the Knights drew a franchise-record 43,557 fans last summer.

For complete WCL attendance figures (league games only), please click right here.

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Salem (A Carolina, Red Sox) pitcher Kyle Kraus (2009-10) had three strikeouts in two scoreless innings and got his third save in a 5-2 win over Lynchburg on Thursday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Lake County (A Midwest, Indians) third baseman Grant Fink (2011) homered, doubled, drove in a run and scored four times in a 12-11 loss to Fort Wayne.

* Kannapolis (A South Atlantic, White Sox) first baseman Danny Hayes (2010) homered in an 8-1 loss to Hagerstown.

* Burlington (A Midwest, Angels) pitcher Greg Mahle (2012) had two strikeouts in a scoreless inning in a 4-2 loss to Clinton.

* Jacksonville (AA Southern, Marlins) pitcher James Nygren 92009) allowed one run in three innings and had two strikeouts in a 6-2 loss to Mississippi.

* Lehigh Valley (AAA International, Phillies) first baseman Jim Murphy (2007) was 2-for-5 with an RBI and a run in a 5-2 win over Toledo.

* Johnson City (R Appalachian, Cardinals) outfielder Blake Drake was 2-for-4 with two runs in a 5-2 win over Burlington.

* Rays (R Gulf Coast League, Rays) outfielder Cade Gotta was 2-for-5 with a double, a run and an RBI in a 10-6 loss to the Red Sox.

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Some news from elsewhere in the WCL:

YAKIMA: Here is a column on the success of the Pippins, from reporter Roger Underwood of the Yakima Herald newspaper.

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That is it for today. Have a great weekend and we will see you on Monday.


Fireworks tonight after game with Medford

August 7, 2014

Happy Thursday, everyone.

It is hard to believe, but we play our final regular-season home game tonight, against the Bend Elks. Seems like just yesterday the countdown to the 2014 season was at 100.

It's a Fireworks Night, so that means a 7:15 p.m. start. We then head to Medford for a weekend series with the Rogues to conclude the regular season.

Of course we still have at least one more home game, in the playoffs, which start on Aug. 12. Playoff tickets are on sale now, at $10 for reserved and $6 for GA, the same as in the regular season.

You can purchase playoff tickets by clicking here. Season-ticket holders can reserve their seats up until the day of the game, at which time they go on sale to the general public is not spoken for.

Fans will purchase a ticket and it will be good for August 12 or 13, depending on which date we host.

Here is some more Knights news, and a few items from elsewhere in the West Coast League, which has a great new website for you to bookmark.

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Remember, tonight is PEAK Internet Fireworks Night, presented by Pioneer Telephone, and a Block 15 Thursday, presented by KLOO-FM. We play Bend again, starting at 7:15 p.m.

There will be a big crowd, so if you want a good seat, get there early. See you at the ballpark!

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Wednesday's crowd of 1,303 raised the season total to 39,470 in 31 openings. That's 1,668 less than 2013 in a comparable number of home dates, but we will do some catching up tonight, with a big Fireworks Night gathering. The Knights drew a franchise-record 43,557 fans last summer.

For complete WCL attendance figures (league games only), please click right here.

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Alum Peter Van Gansen (2013) of Cal Poly and the Eau Claire Express was 0-for-2 with two walks and a run on Tuesday at the Northwoods League's Big League Dreams doubleheader at Madison. The top 100 players in the league assemble for a day of workouts in front of Major League scouts, followed by a doubleheader.

Van Gansen's North Two team lost 11-6 to the South Two team. He was our only alum to participate.

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Binghamton (AA Eastern, Mets) pitcher Greg Peavey (2007) had four strikeouts, allowed four hits and no runs and got the win in a 5-1 victory over Richmond on Wednesday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors. He is now 9-2 at Binghamton between stints with triple-A Las Vegas in the PCL.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Lake County (A Midwest, Indians) pitcher Trevor Frank (2012) had one strikeout in a scoreless inning and earned his 11th save in a 3-0 win over West Michigan.

* Ogden (R Pioneer, Dodgers) second baseman Jimmy Allen (2011) was 1-for-3 with a double in a 3-0 win over Missoula.

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Here are the updated stats of our minor-league pitching alums, in Part 2 of our weekly "Knights in the Pros" feature. Hitting stats appeared in Wednesday's Blog.

TYLER ANDERSON (AA Tulsa, Rockies): The pitcher from Oregon (2009) is 4-4, 2.10 in 19 games, with 86 strikeouts in 94.1 innings.

MATT ANDRIESE (AAA Durham, Rays): The pitcher from UC Riverside (2009) is 11-6, 3.55 in 23 games, with 108 strikeouts in 134.1 innings.

MAX BEATTY (A Eugene, Padres): The pitcher from Pacific Lutheran (2010-12) is 1-1, 3.60 in 11 games, with 18 strikeouts in 20 innings.

MATT BOYD (A Dunedin, Blue Jays): The pitcher from Oregon State (2010) is 5-2, 1.07 in 13 games, with 88 strikeouts in 75.2 innings.

A.J. BURKE (A Vermont, A's): The pitcher from Western Oregon (2012) is 4-2, 3.80 in 10 games, with 39 strikeouts in 47.1 innings.

TREVOR FRANK (A Lake County, Indians): The pitcher from UC Riverside (2012) is 4-4, 2.91 in 40 games, with 11 saves and 50 strikeouts in 46.1 innings.

JACE FRY (A Great Falls, White Sox): The pitcher from Oregon State (2011) is 1-0, 1.13 in six games, with seven strikeouts in eight innings.

SAM GAVIGLIO (AA Springfield, Cardinals): The pitcher from Oregon State (2009) is 5-10, 4.45 in 20 games, with 105 strikeouts in 109.1 innings.

JUSTIN HEPNER (Gulf Coast League Marlins, Marlins): The pitcher from San Diego State (2011) is 0-0, 16.88 in two games, with no strikeouts in 2.2 innings.

CHASE JOHNSON (A Augusta, Giants): The pitcher from Cal Poly (2011) is 3-6, 4.62 in 19 games, with 71 strikeouts in 85.2 innings.

CHRIS JOHNSON (A Augusta, Giants): The pitcher from Portland (2011) is 0-1, 9.00 in one game, with no strikeouts in two innings. He is on the 7-day disabled list.

KYLE KRAUS (A Salem, Red Sox): The pitcher from Portland (2009-10) is 5-3, 4.21 in 22 games, with two saves and 47 strikeouts in 68.1 innings.

SCOTT LYMAN (A Jupiter, Marlins): The pitcher from UC Davis (2010) is 5-8, 2.84 in 19 games, with 74 strikeouts in 109 innings.

GREG MAHLE (A Burlington, Angels): The pitcher from UC Santa Barbara (2012) is 0-1, 2.35 in nine games, with 18 strikeouts in 15.1 innings.

JAMES NYGREN (AA Jacksonville, Marlins): The pitcher from Oregon State (2009) is 3-2, 3.35 in 29 games, with two saves and 30 strikeouts in 53.2 innings.

JOSH OSICH (AA Richmond, Giants): The pitcher from Oregon State (2008) is 1-0, 3.78 in 28 games, with 27 strikeouts in 33.1 innings.

GREG PEAVEY (AA Binghamton, Mets): The pitcher from Oregon State (2007) is 9-2, 2.58 in 14 games, with 75 strikeouts in 90.2 innings.

SCOTT SCHULTZ (A Hillsboro, Diamondbacks): The pitcher from Oregon State (2011) is 3-3, 3.83 in nine games, with 20 strikeouts in 42.1 innings.

JIMMIE SHERFY (AA Mobile, Diamondbacks): The pitcher from Oregon (2011) is 3-1, 5.02 in 29 games, with a save and 33 strikeouts in 28.2 innings.

NICK STRUCK (AA Chattanooga, Dodgers): The pitcher from Mt. Hood CC (2009) is 2-6, 6.57 in 16 games, with 45 strikeouts in 74 innings.

BEN WETZLER (A Batavia, Marlins): The pitcher from Oregon State (2011) is 0-1, 3.83 in seven games, with 17 strikeouts in 21.2 innings.

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That is it for today. See you tonight for our game against Bend, and back with the Blog on Friday, when we close out another week.