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Knights Daily Update

Game 1 of the WCL Championship Series is tonight

August 15, 2012

It all starts tonight.

The Knights play host to the Wenatchee AppleSox tonight in Game 1 of the West Coast League's Championship Series, starting at 6:40 p.m. at Goss Stadium. Left-handers Dylan Stuart (Knights) and Trevor Lubking (AppleSox) are the projected starting pitchers.

Tickets are $11 for reserved, $5 for GAs, and punch cards are still valid. They are available at the downtown offices in the Madison Plaza until about 3:30 today; they are also available online, via e-mail at tickets@corvallisknights.com, or at the stadium starting at 6 p.m.

It's our final home game of the summer; Game 2 and Game 3 (if necessary) will be played on Friday and Saturday at Paul Thomas Sr. Stadium in Wenatchee.

So come cheer on the Knights. There's certainly no guarantee we'll win, but we had a team barbeque for the players and our interns after yesterday afternoon's practice and both groups sounded as if they'll be ready to go tonight.

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Here's a series preview from today's Corvallis Gazette-Times, which has given us excellent coverage all summer long.

And here's a story from The Wenatchee World newspaper on tonight's game, and on the consistent success of the Knights and the AppleSox, the WCL's "signature" programs. I thought this quote from veteran Wenatchee coach Ed Knaggs summed it up perfectly:

"Part of the (reason for both teams' success) is continuity - ownership as well as the coaching side of it. Like us, they create good relationships with schools and their players. Our players have a good experience in Wenatchee, and their players have a good experience in Corvallis."

I spoke with coach Knaggs in the press box after the third game of our series against the AppleSox, and we both joked about seeing each other again in August. Turns out we were both right.

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We could set a franchise attendance record with a big crowd tonight. But even if we don't, the final number will be the second-highest in franchise history, and a pretty nice accomplishment, considering the lousy June weather, our lack of weekend dates, and no WCL All-Star Game to give us a nice bump.

We've drawn 40,685 for 21 dates, a 1,271 per-game average (all games, not just league games). That's third in the WCL, behind Bend and Walla Walla. Complete WCL attendance figures can be found here.

We're a mere 116 fans behind last year's pace, when we drew a record 42,447 fans, going into tonight's game. We drew 1,646 for our 33rd and final home game in 2011 (the championship-game win over Walla Walla), so we must draw 1,763 tonight to set the record.

We drew only 12,000 in 2007, our first season in Corvallis, so our growth has been remarkable. Thank you!

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Former Knights' pitcher Matt Boyd (2010) of Oregon State was named the Cape Cod League Pitcher of the Week. He plays for the Orleans Firebirds.

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Clearwater first baseman Jim Murphy (2007) was 1-for-4 with a run and two RBIs in a 4-0 win over Tampa on Tuesday to earn Corvallis Knights Major League Player of the Day honors. Clearwater is :Philadelphia's affiliate in the Class A (advanced) Florida State League.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Boise pitcher Eddie Orozco (2008-09) pitched a scoreless inning and had two strikeouts to lower his ERA to 1.40 and close Boise's 5-0 win over Salem-Keizer. Boise is the Cubs' affiliate in the Class A (short) Northwest League.

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West Coast League expansion continues to be a hot topic. Victoria, B.C., will join the league next year; Medford is also a go if improvements can be made at Harry & David Stadium.

There's also talk of going to Yakima, Wash., to fill the void left by the impending departure of the Northwest League's Yakima Bears, who will relocate to Hillsboro for the 2013 season. Redding and Chico, Calif., have been mentioned as possible sites of future franchises as well.

And talk continues to swirl about the possible teams in the Portland suburb of Milwaukie and in the Idaho resort city of Coeur d'Alene.

Here's more in the Milwaukie situation from The Oregonian. And here's more on Coeur d'Alene from The Spokesman Review newspaper of Spokane.

The WCL could have an entirely different look by 2014.


WCL's premier programs meet in Championship Series

August 14, 2012

The two most successful franchises in the West Coast League's eight-year history will meet in the 2012 Championship Series.

The Corvallis Knights and Wenatchee AppleSox, winners of a combined six titles, will open the best-of-3 series at 6:40 p.m. at Goss Stadium. It will be the third time since 2008 the teams have met in the finals; the Knights prevailed in 2008, the AppleSox in 2009.

Tickets are $11 for reserved, $5 for GAs and punch cards are valid. They are available at Knights offices in the Madison Plaza today and Wednesday; online at corvallisknights.com; via e-mail at tickets@corvallisknights.com, or at Goss Stadium on Wednesday, starting at 6 p.m.

Wenatchee won the regular-season series 4-2. It swept the Knights in Wenatchee on June 8-10; the Knights took 2 of 3 in Corvallis on July 9-11.

Left-hander Dylan Stuart of UC Riverside (3-2, 3.19) is Wednesday's projected starter for the Knights, who clinched their finals berth on Sunday night with a 3-0 victory over Cowlitz to sweep of the West Division playoffs. Corvallis won Game 1 on Saturday, 3-1 in Longview.

It took Wenatchee three games, but the AppleSox punched their finals ticket on Monday night with a 6-3 win over Bellingham in Game 3 of the East Division playoffs. The Bells won Game 1 Bellingham 1-0 on Saturday night, but the AppleSox prevailed 4-1 on Sunday in Game 2 to force Monday's rubber game.

Wenatchee has not announced a starting pitcher; lefty Trevor Lubking of Pacific Lutheran (2-1, 3.56) had 10 regular-season starts and pitched only one inning against Bellingham. However, he hasn't pitched more than three innings at a time since July 26.

Game 2 is set for 7:05 p.m. Friday at Paul Thomas Sr. Field in Wenatchee. Lefty Greg Mahle of UC Santa Barbara (2-1, 2.75) is the projected starter for the Knights; he no-hit Cowlitz on Aug. 3 in his last start.

Game 3, if necessary, is set for 7:05 p.m. Saturday in Wenatchee. All three games will be broadcast on KEJO-AM 1240.

Corvallis won the WCL title in 2008 and 2011, and lost in the finals in 2007 and 2009. Wenatchee won titles in 2005, 2006, 2009 and 2010, and lost in the finals in 2008.

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Here's the story on the Bellingham-Wenatchee rubber game on the game from The Wenatchee World newspaper. The AppleSox rallied from an early 2-0 deficit for the 6-3 win.

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The AppleSox led the WCL in hitting with a .292 average. The hit a league-high 25 homers and scored a league-best 307 runs. The Knights ranked sixth in batting (.265), scored 251 runs (5th) and hit a league-low five homers.

However, Corvallis led the WCL in ERA (2.80), allowed a league-low 181 runs and held opponents to a .225 batting average, also tops in the league. Wenatchee was second in ERA (3.29), runs allowed (225) and opponent's batting average (.244).

Wenatchee's Taylor Sparks (UC Irvine) was second in the league batting race (.388) and hit .400 in all games. He had a league-high nine homers and 34 RBIs. Teammate Mitchell Gunsolus (Gonzaga) was third in batting (.371), and led the league in RBIs (48).

Corvallis pitcher Rob Dittrick (Pacific University) led the WCL in ERA (1.10) by nearly a full run over runner-up Arturo Reyes of Walla Walla (2.05).

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Wednesday's game will be a homecoming for several AppleSox. Pitchers Tony Bryant and Riley Wilkerson, and outfielder Ryan Howell all play at Oregon State.The Knights have Beavers as well (catcher Nate Esposito, pitchers Taylor Starr and Carlos Rodriguez).

Several other schools will be represented on each team.

* Wenatchee's Bryce Jackson and our Nate Blackham play at Washington State.

* Wenatchee's Trevor Lubking and Curtis Wildung and our Max Beatty play at Pacific Lutheran.

* Wenatchee's Ryan Drobny and our Nick Torres, Alex Michaels and Bryan Granger play at Cal Poly.

* And Wenatchee's Jeff Stephens and Taylor Sparks and our Chris Rabago play at UC Irvine.

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Some more notes of interest:

* The Knights and Wenatchee are the two winningest programs in WCL regular-season history. The Knights have 248 league wins since its 2005 inception, the AppleSox 241.

* Wenatchee leads the all-time regular-season series, 24-21. The Knights are 11-4 vs. Wenatchee at Goss Stadium, but are 8-16 at Wenatchee's Paul Thomas Sr. Field. The Knights were 2-4 vs. Wenatchee at Mt. Hood CC in 2005 and 2006 before moving to Corvallis for the 2007 season.

* Either the Knights or AppleSox have played in every WCL Championship Series. Wenatchee advanced in 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009 and 2010; the Knights advanced in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2012.

* The teams have combined for six of the seven WCL championships. Wenatchee won in 2005, 2006, 2009 and 2010, the Knights in 2008 and 2011.

* Coaches Ed Knaggs of Wenatchee and Brooke Knight of Corvallis have combined for six WCL Coach of the Year awards. Knaggs was honored in 2005 and 2010, Knight in 2008 and 2011, and they shared the award in 2009.

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Nine alums of the programs are now playing in the major leagues.

The big-league Knights are pitchers Tommy Hanson (Atlanta), Bud Norris (Houston) and Marc Rzepczynski (St. Louis) and catcher Chris Stewart (New York Yankees). The big-league AppleSox are pitchers Jason Hammel (Baltimore), Tom Milone (Oakland) and Clay Mortensen (Boston).

Several other alums have considerable MLB experience, but are currently in AAA: 3b Brent Morel (White Sox) and 1B Matt Hague (Pittsburgh) of the Knights and OF Cole Gillespie (Arizona) for the AppleSox.

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Former Knights pitcher Jace Fry of Oregon State recently had Tommy John surgery on his left elbow. Here's an update on his recovery from the Corvallis Gazette-Times.

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Springfield outfielder Adam Melker (2008-09) was 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI in a 5-2 win over Corpus Christi on Monday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors. Springfield is St. Louis's affiliate in the double-A Texas League.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Great Lakes outfielder Nick Akins (2007) was 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI in a 5-4 win over Lansng. Great Lakes is the Dodgers' affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

* Everett first baseman Taylor Ard was 1-for-4 with a double, a run and an RBI in a 5-1 win over Spokane. Everett is Seattle's affiliate in the Class A (short) Northwest League.

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


On to the Championship Series

August 13, 2012

Now, it's on the the Championship Series!

Our win over Cowlitz last night advanced us to the West Coast League's Championship Series for the fifth time in the past six summers. We'll play either Wenatchee or Bellingham at 6:40 p.m. Wednesday at Goss Stadium in Game 1 of the best-of-3 finals.

Wenatchee and Bellingham are tied at 1-1 in their best-of-3 East Division playoff series. Game 3 is tonight at Wenatchee.

It doesn't really matter who we're playing. Both opponents defeated us 4-2 in the regular-season series, but most of those games were played early in the season, before our entire club was here. We last played Bellingham on July 5, and Wenatchee on July 11.

That was long before we hit our stride. We're 13-2 in our last 15 games, are now 39-22 overall, and will be rested and ready when either the Bells or AppleSox come to town.

Thursday is a travel day; Game 2 is Friday and Game3 (if necessary) is on Saturday. Then, the season's over, we'll kick back for a few weeks and then start preparing for the 2013 season.

But right now, the first order of business is winning on Wednesday. And we'd love to have you at the ballpark. Tickets are $11 for reserved, $5 for GAs, and it's the final time this summer to use any remaining inventory on punchcards.

The downtown ticket office is open Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday; tickets are available online, and the stadium ticket office opens at 6 p.m. Wednesday.

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Wenatchee defeated Bellingham 4-1 on Sunday night to even their East Division playoff series at a game apiece. Here are the details from The Wenatchee World newspaper.

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Our Sunday night crowd of 889 was a franchise record for a first-round playoff game. They've traditionally been tough draws, as they are played on short notice on weekend nights when people may already have plans because they're not regular-scheduled games.

That crowd boosted our season total to 40,685, the second-highest total in team history. We're just 116 fans behind last year's record pace and can still set a record for the sixth year in a row with a great turnout on Wednesday.

So get on down to the ballpark, and bring a friend for a great night of affordable family fun.

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Everett 1B Taylor Ard (2009) was 2-for-5 with a homer, an RBI and a run scored in a 7-6 win over Spokane on Sunday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors. Everett is Seattle's affiliate in the Class A (short) Northwest League.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Visalia 3B Carter Bell (2009) was 2-for-5 with two runs in a 13-11 loss to Inland Empire. Visalia is Arizona's affiliate in the Class A (advanced) California League.

* San Jose OF Alex Burg (2008) was 1-for-3 with a solo homer in a 3-2 loss to Lancaster. San Jose is San Francisco's affiliate in tdhe Class A (advanced) California League.

* Clearwater 1B Jim Murphy (2007) was 1-for-4 with a double and two RBIs in a 4-3 win over Lakeland. Clearwater is Philadelphia's affiliate in the Class A (advanced) Florida State League.

* Tucson C Rocky Gale (2007, 2009) was 2-for-4 with a run in a 20-3 loss to Omaha. Tucson is San Diego's affiliate in the triple-A International League.

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Some news from around the WCL:

KITSAP: The BlueJackets were last in the WCL in attendance this season and they plan to do something about it in 2013, according to The Kitsap Sun newspaper.

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That's all for today. See you on Tuesday on the Blog, and see you at the ballpark on Wednesday!


It's on to Cowlitz on Saturday

August 10, 2012

It's another great day down here at the WWHQ after last night's big win at Klamath Falls, which eliminated the Gems from the West Coast League playoffs.

So now it's off to Longview, Wash., where we'll face the Cowlitz Black Bears at 6:35 p.m. Saturday in Game 1 of the best-of-3 West Division playoffs at venerable David Story Field, one of the cooler venues in the WCL.

Game 2 will be played at Goss Stadium (the best venue in the WCL) at 6:05 p.m. Sunday. Game 3 (if necessary) will also be at Goss Stadium at 6:40 p.m. Monday.

Tickets are $11 for reserved (customary sections A, C, D, E) and still $5 for GA. They're available at the WWHQ in Madison Plaza until 5:30 p.m. today; online; via e-mail at tickets@corvallisknights.com, or at the stadium on Sunday, starting at 5 p.m.

We need a big crowd at the ballpark on Sunday to help our team, and to get us even closer to breaking our season record for attendance. See you there!

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There was also a festive mood at David Story Field in Longview, Wash., last night. Cowlitz trounced Bend 5-0 to stay alive, and then was rewarded with its first playoff berth when the Knights knocked off Klamath Falls.

This story in The Daily News of Kelso-Longview describes the scene as the Black Bears listened to the final innings of the Klamath Falls-Corvallis game over the stadium PA system (they should have tuned into Kevin Burke and the Knights' broadcast instead) while their playoff future was determined.

Anyway, we're glad to be headed north. We've got a great relationship with the Black Bears; their interns have attended a game at Goss Stadium in each of the past two seasons. They put on a great show at their ballpark, their staff is super-friendly, and we're also looking forward to visiting the all-you-can-eat party deck in left field!

The atmosphere in Cowlitz is great. Our final game there last season drew an overflow crowd of 1,863, a franchise record for the Black Bears (not sure if they topped that this year). We expect another overflow crowd on Saturday night.

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The Black Bears will have one less quality pitcher for the playoffs. WCL all-star Felipe Perez, a UCLA signee, instead signed with the Arizona Diamondbacks on Thursday night for $400,000.

Here are the details, from the Los Angeles Times newspaper.

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The Knights are 7-0 against Cowlitz this season. We won two two-game series in Longview early in the summer, then swept a three-game set at Goss Stadium on Aug. 2-4 in our final home series.

That doesn't mean a thing, however. They're playing well, we're playing well, both teams are 0-0, and they can gain momentum by winning Game 1 at home.

And one thing's for sure: We can't walk anywhere near as many hitters as we did in the four games at Klamath Falls (27), especially at David Story Field, where it's only 300 feet down the left-field line and 340 to the left-center power alley.

I'm sure pitching coach Connor Lambert will address that at practice this afternoon. And our projected starters for Saturday and Sunday, right-handers Trevor Frank of UC Riverside and Rob Dittrick of Pacific University, have combined for just 15 walks in 78.1 innings this summer.

If we throw strikes, I like our chances.

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Visalia third baseman Carter Bell (2009) was 3-for-5 with a double, a run scored and three RBIs on Thursday to earn Corvallis Knights Player of the Day honors. Visalia is Arizona's affiliate in the Class A (advanced) California League. Carter played at Oregon State.

Lots of honorable mentions today.

* Elizabethton catcher Bo Altobelli (2010) was 4-for-4 with a run scored in a 4-3 win over Johnson City. Elizabethton is Minnesota's affiliate in the Class A (rookie) Appalachian League. Bo played at Texas Tech.

* San Jose's Alex Burg (2008) was 2-for-5 with two doubles and four RBIs in a 7-3 win over Stockton. San Jose is San Francisco's affiliazte in the Class A (advanced) California League.

* Binghamton pitcher Greg Peavey (2007) gave up four runs in 6.1 innings, had four strikeouts and got the win in a 6-4 victory over New Britain. Binghamton is the Mets' affiliate in the Class A Eastern League. Peavey played at OSU.

* Lakeland first baseman Dean Green was a combined 2-for-8 with a homer and four RBIs in a doubleheader split with Daytona. Lakeland is Detroit's afiliate in the Class A (advanced) Florida State League; he played at Oklahoma State and Lee University.

* Arizona Athletics' outfielder Dayton Alexander (2011) was 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run in a 9-4 win over the Mariners. He plays for Oakland's team in the Arizona Rooke League.

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Here are the updated stats on all our Corvallis Knights minor leaguers (all stats through Thursday's games):

NICK AKINS, Dodgers (2007): The former Vanguard outfielder is hitting .270 (31-115) with six homers and 16 RBIs for the Great Lakes Loons in the Class A Midwest League.

DAYTON ALEXANDER, Athletics (2011): The former Feather River College outfielder is hitting .333 (6-18) with a homer and five RBIs for the Arizona Rookie League A's.

BO ALTOBELLI, Twins (2010): The ex-Texas Tech catcher is hitting .208 (10-48) with five RBIs for Elizabethton in the Class A Appalachian League.

TYLER ANDERSON, Rockies (2009): Now with the Asheville Tourists in the Class A South Atlantic League, the ex-Oregon star is 9-2, 2.53, with 59 strikeouts in 96 innings.

MATT ANDRIESE, Padres (2009): Now with Lake Elsinore in the Class A California League, the pitcher from UC Riverside is 8-7, 3.19, with 101 strikeouts in 118.2 innings.

TAYLOR ARD, Mariners (2009): Now with Everett in the Class A Northwest League, the ex-Washington State first baseman is hitting .286 (59-206) with eight homers and 42 RBIs.

CODY BARTLETT, Blue Jays (2007): Now playing for the Class A Gulf Coast Blue Jays, the ex-Washington State infielder is hitting .130 (6-46), with no homers and two RBIs.

CARTER BELL, Diamondbacks (2009): Now with Visalia in the Class A California League, the former Oregon State infielder is hitting .243 (53-218) with one homer and 23 RBIs.

MICHAEL BLAKE, Diamondbacks (2010): Now with Missoula in the Class A Pioneer League, the ex-Mt. Hood/Hawaii pitcher is 0-0, 3.86, with one save and 18 strikeouts in 11.2 innings.

ALEX BURG, Giants (2008): Now with San Jose in the Class A California League, the former Washington State catcher/infielder/outfielder is hitting .272 (73-268) with eight homers and 36 RBIs.

MATT DUFFY, Giants (2010): The former Long Beach State infielder is hitting .247 (45-182) with one homer and 16 RBIs for Salem-Keizer in the Class A Northwest League. vROCKY GALE, Padres (2007, 2009): The former Portland catcher is back with Tucson in the triple-A Pacific Coast League and is hitting .127 (10-79), with eight RBIs.

DREW GARCIA, White Sox (2007): Now with Charlotte in the triple-A International League, the former UC Riverside infielder is hitting .253 (74-293), with five homers and 44 RBIs.

SAM GAVIGLIO, Cardinals (2009): Now with Quad City in the Class A Midwest League, the ex-Oregon State pitcher is 7-7, 4.21, with 95 strikeouts in 107 innings.

DEAN GREEN, Tigers (2008): Now with Lakeland in the Florida State League on a rehab assignement, Green is hitting .265 (18-68), with one homer and 15 RBIs.

MITCH HANIGER, Brewers (2010): The the former Cal Poly outfielder hit .286 (14-49), with a homer and eight RBIs, for the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers in the Class A Midwest League before suffering a season-ending knee injury.

CHRIS JOHNSON, Giants (2011): Now at Salem-Keizer in the Class A Northwest League, the ex-Portland pitcher is 1-2, 4.73, with 30 strikeouts in 32.1 innings.

D.J. JOHNSON, Diamondbacks (2008-09): Now with Visalia of the Class A California League, the former Mt. Hood/Western Oregon pitcher is 2-2, 4.95, with three saves and 26 strikeouts in 20 innings.

KYLE KRAUS, Red Sox (2009-10): Now with Lowell in the Class A New York-Penn League, the former Portland pitcher is 0-0, 2.61, with three saves and eight strikeouts in 10.1 innings.

SCOTT LYMAN, Marlins (2010): The ex-UC Davis star is 1-6, 7.96 with the Greensboro Grasshoppers of the Class A South Atlantic League, with 40 strikeouts in 46.1 innings.

THOMAS McCARTHY, White Sox (2010): Now with Great Falls in the Class A Pioneer League, the ex-Kentucky third baseman is hitting .278 (27-97) with one homer and 10 RBIs.

ADAM MELKER, Cardinals (2008-09): Now with Springfield in the double-A Texas League, the former Cal Poly outfielder is hitting .257 (69-269), with seven homers and 24 RBIs.

BRENT MOREL, White Sox (2007): Now on injury rehab from the White Sox with Charlotte in the triple-A International League, the former Cal Poly star is hitting .200 (13-65), with no homers and four RBIs.

JIM MURPHY, Phillies (2007): Now with Clearwater in the Class A Florida State League, the former Washington State infielder is hitting .265 (104-393), with 14 homers and 71 RBIs.

JAMES NYGREN, Marlins (2009): Now with Greensboro in the Class A South Atlantic League, the ex-Oregon State pitcher is 6-1, 5.68, with 10 saves and 33 strikeouts in 63.1 innings.

EDDIE OROZCO, Cubs (2008-09): Now with the Boise Hawks in the Class A Northwest League, the former UC Riverside pitcher is 2-1, 1.65, with 17 strikeouts in 16.1 innings.

JOSH OSICH, Giants (2008): Now with San Jose in the Class A California League, the ex-Oregon State pitcher is 0-2, 3.91, with a save and 26 strikeouts in 25.1 innings.

GREG PEAVEY, Mets (2008): Now with Binghamton in the double-A Eastern League, the ex-Oregon State pitcher is 6-7, 5.40, with 67 strikeouts in 115 innings.

NICK STRUCK, Cubs (2010): Now with Tennessee in the Class AA Southern League, the former Mt. Hood pitcher is 13-10, 3.64, with 102 strikeouts in 131 innings.

ANDREW SUSAC, Giants (2009): Now with San Jose in the Class A California League, the ex-Oregon State catcher is hitting .229 (67-292), with seven homers and 38 RBIs.

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That's all for this week. Remember, we're at Cowlitz at 6:35 p.m. Satdurday (KEJO AM 1240) and home on Sunday at 6:05 and possibly Monday at 6:400 if a third game is necessary.


Finally, some resolution to the playoff picture!

August 9, 2012

We'll finally have some resolution to the West Coast League's muddled West Division playoff picture tonight with the end of the regular season.

We play at Klamath Falls and Bend plays at Cowlitz. The outcome of those games will determine who we face in the best-of-3 playoff series, and exactly when it will start. Here's the scenario:

* If Klamath Falls wins, or if the Gems and Cowlitz each lose, the Gems take second place and Game 1 will be played Friday night at Kiger Stadium in Klamath Falls.

* If the Gems lose and Cowlitz wins, they tie for second and Cowlitz advances because it won the regular-season series. Game 1 would then be Saturday night in Longview.

Either way, Game 2 is set for 6:05 p.m. Sunday at Goss Stadium. Game 3, if necessary, would be at 6:40 p.m. Monday, also at Goss Stadium.

The East Division playoff series between top-seeded Wenatchee and Bellingham starts on Saturday night in Bellingham. Game 2 and Game 3 (if necessary) will be in Wenatchee on Sunday and Monday.

The WCL Championship Series will start on Wednesday at the West Division representative's stadium. Thursday is a travel day and the series will conclude in Bellingham or Wenatchee on Aug. 17 and 18, if necessary.

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Some Knights/WCL news briefs:

* Pitcher Aaron Corwin will attend Seattle University next season after transferring from Texas Tech following a coaching change. He's expected to have immediate eligibility.

* Left fielder Nate Blackham of Washington State returned to the lineup last night and had two hits and two RBIs. He's been sidelined since July 25 with a nasty calf bruise.

* Catcher Dane Lund, one of the hottest Knights, will be back in the lineup tonight after missing two games while attending orientation at San Jose State. He'll play for the Spartans next year after spending two seasons at Mt. Hood CC.

* The Knights have established a WCL record for stolen bases. They have 103; Kitsap set the old record (97) last season.

* Klamath Falls has set a WCL record for strikeouts, with 403. The Knights set the old mark of 401 in 2011.

* Kitsap broke the WCL record for most losses in a season with an 8-6 loss in Wenatchee on Wednesday night. It has 39 losses headed into tonight's season finale; the old record was 38, set by now-defunct Moses Lake in 2009. The Jackets (14-39) play six more games this year than the Pirates did in 2009.

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Great Falls 3B/Corvallis native/ex-Kentucky star Thomas McCarthy (2010) hit his first professional homer and went 2-for-4 with two RBIs in a 4-2 loss to Billings on Wednesday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors. Great Falls is the White Sox' affiliate in the Class A (short) Pioneer League.

Honorable mention goes to:

* San Jose catcher Andrew Susac (2009) was 2-for-5 with two runs and an RBI in a 14-12 loss to Stockton. San Jose is San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A (advanced) California League.

* Everett first baseman Taylor Ard (2009) was 1-for-4 with a homer and two RBIs in an 8-6 loss to Boise. Everett is Seattle's affiliate in the Class A (short) Northwest League.

* Boise pitcher Eddie Orozco (2008-09) pitched a scoreless inning and had one strikeout to save the aforementioned 8-6 win over Everett. Boise is the Cubs' affiliate in the Class A (short) Northwest League.

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Some WCL-related news:

* The former Spokane RiverHawks franchise, on haitus since the 2009 season, could be revived in 2014 in nearby Coeur D'Alene if fund-raising for a new stadium is successful. Here are the details from Ballpark Digest. And here's even more on the story from the Coeur D'Alene Press newspaper.

Coeur D'Alene would be a great addition to the WCL, and if expansion goes as hoped by 2014 our footprint could include British Columbia (Kelowna, Victoria); Washington (Bellingham, Kitsap, Wenatchee, Cowlitz, Yakima, Walla Walla), Oregon (Corvallis, Bend, Klamath Falls, Medford), California (Chico, Redding) and Idaho (Coeur D'Alene).

* And here's more from the Portland Tribune newspaper on the possibility of the WCL, or the single-A Northwest League, putting a team in Milwaukie.

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

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Wow, what a night in Klamath Falls!

August 8, 2012

We're still shaking our heads in amazement down here at the WWHQ about the incredible finish to last night's game in Klamath Falls, when we scored five runs with two outs in the ninth to shock the Gems 7-6.

It's the largest ninth-inning comeback in Corvallis Knights history. And it makes up for our June 8 loss at Wenatchee, when the AppleSox rallied for three runs with two outs and nobody on in the last of the ninth to beat us 7-6. I guess it proves again that baseball is a cyclical game, and that over time, things do even out.

Here's a story on last night's game from the Klamath Falls Herald & News newspaper.

Our comeback win also made an even bigger mess of the West Coast League West Division pennant race. Klamath Falls and Cowlitz are now tied, with two games left.

Two games ago, Klamath Falls was in the driver's seat. Now it appears Cowlitz has the upper hand, as one more win by the Black Bears, coupled with a Gems' loss, would send Cowlitz into the playoffs.

Here's how it shakes out:

* If Cowlitz wins tonight and Klamath Falls loses, Cowlitz is in because it can do nothing worse than a tie for second, and it has the tie-breaker over the Gems.

* If Klamath Falls wins and Cowlitz loses, we wait until Thursday, since Cowlitz could still tie the Gems.

* If Klamath Falls and Cowlitz both win or both lose tonight, they stay tied and nothing is decided.

* Bend is eliminated. The best it can do is tie Cowlitz, and the Black Bears have the tie-breaker.

* A three-way tie for second place is still possible, if Klamath Falls and Cowlitz both lose their final two games. If that happens, Cowlitz would advance, as it won the regular-season series against Klamath Falls and Bend.

Either way, the Knights are in. If we play Klamath Falls, the playoffs start there on Friday; if it's Cowlitz, they start in Longview on Saturday.

Our home games are set for 6:05 p.m. on Sunday and at 6:40 p.m. on Monday, if necessary. And if we make the WCL Championship Series, we will host Wenatchee or Bellingham in Game 1 on Aug. 15.

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The Knights are back in the "also receiving votes" catagory in Perfect Game USA's summer college baseball Top 30 rankings, compiled by reporter Allan Simpson. Wenatchee (13) is the only ranked West Coast League team; Bellingham also received votes.

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Here are some photos from Greg Mahle's Aug. 3 no-hitter against Cowlitz, from the Nine Inning Knowitall website.

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The city of Milwaukie is taking preliminary steps at investigating the possibility of a West Coast League expansion team, according to this story in Ballpark Digest and this story in The Oregonian.

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Charlotte second baseman Drew Garcia (2007) was 3-for-4 with a double in a 12-2 win over Indianapolis. Charlotte is the White Sox' affiliate in the triple-A International League.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Arizona Rookie League Athletics' outfielder Dayton Alexander (2011) was 2-for-4 with a double in a 4-0 win over the ARL Rangers.

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Some news from around the West Coast League:

WENATCHEE: The playoffs will mark the end of an era for the AppleSox, as veteran pitching coach Rob Hippi will leave the club afterwards and conclude a seven-year association with the team. Hippi is returning to his alma mater, Central Washington University, as its new pitching coach.


We are the champions - again!

August 7, 2012

Lots of smiles down at the Knights' WWHQ, and down in Klamath Falls, last night and this morning as we celebrate our sixth consecutive West Coast League West Division championship.

Whoop! Whoop!

We clinched the crown on Monday night with a 9-3 victory over the Klamath Falls Gems at Kiger Stadium. We now lead the second-place Gems by five games, with three games remaining.

So all that's left is to finish the final three games of the series, and to get ready for the best-of-3 West Division playoffs. This is where the story gets complicated, however.

The top two teams from each division advance (Wenatchee and Bellingham have wrapped up 1-2 in the East). Klamath Falls is one game ahead of Cowlitz and two games ahead of Bend, with three games to play.

If the Gems hold on, Friday's travel day will be cancelled and the playoffs will start on Friday at Kiger. Saturday will be the travel day, and we'd play Game 2 at 6:05 p.m. on Sunday and Game 3 (if necessary) at 6:40 on Monday at Goss Stadium.

But if Cowlitz or Bend tie or overtake the Gems (both teams have the tie-breaker over the Gems) and take second, Friday will be a travel day and Game 1 will be Saturday at Cowlitz or Bend. Game 2 and Game 3 (if necessary) would be played at Goss on Sunday at 6:05 p.m. and Monday at 6:40 p.m.

So check in at our website, check with the Corvallis Gazette-Times and Albany Democrat-Herald and check your e-mails because we'll announce the playoff schedule as soon as possible.

Season-ticket holders will be able to purchase their regular seats. Reserved seats will be $11, GAs will be $5, and punch cards are still valid.

Either way, the best-of-3 WCL Championship Series starts on Wednesday, Aug. 15, at the West team's stadium. Aug. 16 is a travel day and Game 2 and Game 3 (if necessary) will be at Wenatchee or at Bellingham on Aug. 17 and Aug. 18.

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Knights first baseman/pitcher Greg Mahle of UC Santa Barbara earned the West Coast League's Player of the Week award for July 30-Aug. 5 for his pitching and hitting, highlighted by his Aug. 3 no-hitter of Cowlitz.

Fortunately for us, the fine folks at KEZI were at the game. Here's reporter Stephen Nelson's story on Mahle's gem, the first in Corvallis Knights history, and the fourth in the history of the Knights' franchise.

And speaking of KEZI, here's their interview with Knights' closer Taylor Starr, shot several hours before Mahle's no-hitter.

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Our Fireworks Night season finale drew a crowd of 2,273, our second-largest of the season and our third of 2,000 or more this summer. We drew 2,930 for the July 2 fireworks, and 2,162 for our June 6 Science and Art Day event.

Saturday upped our season attendance to 39,796 in 31 home dates, an average of 1,283 per opening. We set a regular-season franchise record for total attendance, and are only 408 fans behind last year's record total of 42,447.

We can break that mark if we reach the WCL Championship Series. That would be quite an accomplishment, considering the lousy June weather, our lack of consistent weekend dates, and that last year we included the crowd at the WCL All-Star game we hosted (2,570) in our total.

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Former Oregon State/Knights (2009) pitcher Sam Gaviglio of Quad Cities allowed two hits and struck out eight over six shutout innings and got the win in a 3-1 triumph over Burlington on Sunday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors. Quad Cities is St. Louis's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Former Long Beach State/Knights (2010) shortstop Matt Duffy of Salem-Keizer was 2-for-4 with two RBIs in a 4-2 win over Spokane. Salem-Keizer is San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A (short) Northwest League.

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The possible future of a minor-league or West Coast League team in Milwaukie will be decided tonight at that city's City Council meeting. Here are more details from The Oregonian.

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


Great night at Goss Stadium

August 3, 2012

It was a great night at Goss Stadium on Thursday, where we blasted the Cowlitz Black Bears 8-2 to draw oh-so-close to clinching a berth in the upcoming West Division playoffs.

We can wrap up our sixth straight playoff berth with a win tonight, coupled with a Bend loss. That would guarantee us no worse than a second-place finish; the top two teams in each division advance to the postseason.

We also had a festive, cowbell-clanging crowd of 1,297, upping our season total to 36,144, second-best in the West Coast League and the second-highest total in franchise history. We're 848 behind last year's record pace (42,447), but we've got good promotions for tonight's and Saturday's home games.

* Tonight is our second $1,000 Kid's Dash for Cash, presented by Dr. Curtis E. Trammell. Children 12 and under can battle for $1,000 in $1 bills on the infield. Game time is 6:40 p.m.

* Saturday is Pioneer Telephone Fireworks Night. It promises to be just as spectacular as our July 2 event, which many fans called our best-ever. Game time is 7:15 p.m., and tickets are going fast.

We also hope to have several home playoff games, but those dates won't be firmed up until later this weekend or early next week.

Either way, we'll see you at the ballpark.

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The Knights did not receive any votes in the most recent Perfect Game USA top 30 summer baseball rankings, compiled by reporter Allan Simpson. Wenatchee (16) and Bellingham (28) are the only WCL teams in the top 30; Kelowna is in the "also receiving votes" catagory.

We have been ranked as high as No. 13 this season, and I suspect we'll receive some votes in the next rankings if we stay on the hot streak that's seen us win 4 of our last 5 WCL games and 6 of our last 7 overall games to improve to 32-21 overall.

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We found this story on the WCL and the Bend Elks in The Seattle Times. It's a short, but nice, read. And here's more from the Oregonian on the possibility of a WCL expansion franchise someday coming to Milwaukie, if the city ever builds a suitable ballpark.

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Clearwater first baseman Jim Murphy, our 2007 MVP, hit a 3-run homer in the eighth inning to break a 2-2 tie in a 5-2 win over St. Lucie on Thursday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors. Clearwater is Philadelphia's affiliate in the Class A (advanced) Florida State League. The former Washington State star was hitting .324 in his last 10 days entering Thursday's action.

Honorable mention goes to:

* Charlotte second baseman Drew Garcia hit a 3-run double in an 8-1 win over Louisville. Charlotte is the White Sox' affiliate in the triple-A International League.

* Lowell reliever Kyle Kraus (2009-10) pitched a perfect ninth inning for his third save in a 4-2 win over Jamestown. Lowell is Boston's affiliate in the Class A (short) New York-Penn League; Kraus played at Portland.

* Springfield outfielder Adam Melker (2008-09) was 2-for-4 with a run in a 5-0 win over Arkansas. Springfield is St. Louis's affiliate in the double-A Texas League. He played at Cal Poly.

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That's all for today. Remember, Dash for Cash tonight and Fireworks on Saturday.


Final homestand starts tonight

August 2, 2012

Our final homestand of the regular season starts at 6:40 tonight when we play the first of three games against the Cowlitz Black Bears.

It's a key series. We lead the Black Bears by three games in the West Coast League's West Division and the outcome will go a long way in determining the identity of the West Division's playoff teams.

Righty Trevor Frank (0-1, 0.81) of UC Riverside is our starter, opposed by WCL all-star Mikey Murray (3-3, 3.61) of Hawaii Pacific for the Black Bears. On Friday, lefty Greg Mahle (1-1, 5.06) is our starter, opposed by Leko Galusha (2-3, 3.80) of Lower Columbia for the Black Bears. Saturday's starters are undetermined.

We can possibly clinch a playoff berth by winning the series. We helped ourselves a lot last night with an 8-3 victory at Kitsap, which gave us a 2-1 series victory.

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Outfielder Nick Torres of Cal Poly was 4-for-5 on Wednesday and is our hottest Knight. He is 12-for-25 (.480) in his last six WCL games and has raised his league average 56 points to .256.

He has a six-game WCL hitting streak and an eight-game overall hitting streak. Let's hope he keeps it going against the Black Bears.

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Our attendance is 34,847 for 28 dates, an average of 1,245 per game. It's our second-highest overall, trailing only last year's record of 42,447, accomplished in 33 dates, including the All-Star Game.

We're 1,023 behind that record pace, but we can still beat it with a strong finish. So help us out, starting this weekend, when there will be a lot going on at Goss Stadium.

* Tonight is a Block 15 Thursday and $1 hot dog night. It's also 70's night, presented by Special Occassions, so dig out your leisure suits, headbands and other clothing from that era and join the fun. Game time is 6:40 p.m.

* Friday is our second $1,000 Kid's Dash for Cash, presented by Dr. Curtis E. Trammell. Children 12 and under can battle for $1,000 in $1 bills on the infield. Game time is 6:40 p.m.

* Saturday is Pioneer Telephone Fireworks Night. It promises to be just as spectacular as our July 2 event, which many fans called our best-ever. Game time is 7:15 p.m., and tickets are going fast.

So come on out to the ballpark!

Here's a link to the WCL attendance for all team's league games. The WCL will set an attendance record for the sixth year in a row when all is said and done, and we have a very good chance of finishing second.

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Interesting story in Ballpark Digest about the improbability of the WCL expanding to Milwaukie, should that city ever build a new ballpark and try to lure some form of summer baseball to that Portland suburb.

There's also a story on this in The Oregonian, accompanied by a photo taken at a 2011 Knights game from when the paper was in town for a story on the WCL.

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We don't have a Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day, for today, as the schedule was light and none of our Knights in the minors did much of anything anyways.

So today we'll give you updated stats on all our minor leaguers one day early, since Fridays during a homestand are pretty busy (all stats through Wednesday's games):

NICK AKINS, Dodgers (2007): The former Vanguard outfielder is hitting .250 (22-88) with two homers and 11 RBIs for the Great Lakes Loons in the Class A Midwest League.

DAYTON ALEXANDER, Athletics (2011): The former Feather River College outfielder is hitting .143 (1-7) with a homer and three RBIs for the Arizona Rookie League A's. He was recently re-assigned there after starting the season with Vermont in the Class A New York-Penn League.

BO ALTOBELLI, Twins (2010): The ex-Texas Tech catcher is hitting .136 (6-44) with five RBIs for Elizabethton in the Class A Appalachian League.

TYLER ANDERSON, Rockies (2009): Now with the Asheville Tourists in the Class A South Atlantic League, the ex-Oregon star is 9-2, 2.49, with 51 strikeouts in 90.1 innings.

MATT ANDRIESE, Padres (2009): Now with Lake Elsinore in the Class A California League, the pitcher from UC Riverside is 8-6, 3.30, with 97 strikeouts in 111.2 innings.

TAYLOR ARD, Mariners (2009): Now with Everett in the Class A Northwest League, the ex-Washington State first baseman is hitting .282 (49-174) with seven homers and 35 RBIs.

CODY BARTLETT, Blue Jays (2007): Now playing for the Class A Gulf Coast Blue Jays, the ex-Washington State infielder is hitting .130 (6-46), with no homers and two RBIs.

CARTER BELL, Diamondbacks (2009): Now with Visalia in the Class A California League, the former Oregon State infielder is hitting .238 (49-206) with one homer and 19 RBIs.

MICHAEL BLAKE, Diamondbacks (2010): Now with Missoula in the Class A Pioneer League, the ex-Mt. Hood/Hawaii pitcher is 0-0, 2.70, with one save and 17 strikeouts in 10 innings.

ALEX BURG, Giants (2008): Now with San Jose in the Class A California League, the former Washington State catcher/infielder/outfielder is hitting .267 (63-236) with eight homers and 31 RBIs.

MATT DUFFY, Giants (2010): The former Long Beach State infielder is hitting .239 (38-159) with one homer and 13 RBIs for Salem-Keizer in the Class A Northwest League.

ROCKY GALE, Padres (2007, 2009): The former Portland catcher is back with Tucson in the triple-A Pacific Coast League and is hitting .136 (9-66), with eight RBIs.

DREW GARCIA, White Sox (2007): Now with Charlotte in the triple-A International League, the former UC Riverside infielder is hitting .256 (69-270), with five homers and 39 RBIs.

SAM GAVIGLIO, Cardinals (2009): Now with Quad City in the Class A Midwest League, the ex-Oregon State pitcher is 6-7, 4.46, with 87 strikeouts in 101 innings.

DEAN GREEN, Tigers (2008): Now with Lakeland in the Florida State League on a rehab assignement, Green is hitting .256 (11-43), with no homers and eight RBIs. The former Oklahoma State/Barry infielder hit .306 (67-219), with nine homers and 38 RBIs, with West Michigan in the Class A Midwest League before being injured.

MITCH HANIGER, Brewers (2010): The the former Cal Poly outfielder hit .286 (14-49), with a homer and eight RBIs, for the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers in the Class A Midwest League before suffering a season-ending knee injury.

CHRIS JOHNSON, Giants (2011): Now at Salem-Keizer in the Class A Northwest League, the ex-Portland pitcher is 1-2, 4.61, with 28 strikeouts in 27.1 innings.

D.J. JOHNSON, Diamondbacks (2008-09): Now with Visalia of the Class A California League, the former Mt. Hood/Western Oregon pitcher is 1-2, 4.00, with three saves and 22 strikeouts in 18 innings.

KYLE KRAUS, Red Sox (2009-10): Now with Lowell in the Class A New York-Penn League, the former Portland pitcher is 0-0, 3.24, with two saves and eight strikeouts in 8.1 innings.

SCOTT LYMAN, Marlins (2010): The ex-UC Davis star is 1-6, 8.27 with the Greensboro Grasshoppers of the Class A South Atlantic League, with 40 strikeouts in 41.1 innings.

THOMAS McCARTHY, White Sox (2010): Now with Great Falls in the Class A Pioneer League, the ex-Kentucky third baseman is hitting .284 (21-74) with no homers and seven RBIs.

ADAM MELKER, Cardinals (2008-09): Now with Springfield in the double-A Texas League, the former Cal Poly outfielder is hitting .252 (62-246), with six homers and 19 RBIs.

BRENT MOREL, White Sox (2007): Now on injury rehab from the White Sox with Charlotte in the triple-A International League, the former Cal Poly star is hitting .240 (12-50), with no homers and two RBIs.

JIM MURPHY, Phillies (2007): Now with Clearwater in the Class A Florida State League, the former Washington State infielder is hitting .277 (101-365), with 13 homers and 68 RBIs.

JAMES NYGREN, Marlins (2009): Now with Greensboro in the Class A South Atlantic League, the ex-Oregon State pitcher is 6-1, 5.82, with 10 saves and 31 strikeouts in 60.1 innings.

EDDIE OROZCO, Cubs (2008-09): Now with the Boise Hawks in the Class A Northwest League, the former UC Riverside pitcher is 2-0, 1.32, with 14 strikeouts in 13.2 innings.

JOSH OSICH, Giants (2008): Now with San Jose in the Class A California League, the ex-Oregon State pitcher is 0-2, 3.91, with a save and 26 strikeouts in 25.1 innings.

GREG PEAVEY, Mets (2008): Now with Binghamton in the double-A Eastern League, the ex-Oregon State pitcher is 4-7, 5.67, with 59 strikeouts in 101.2 innings.

NICK STRUCK, Cubs (2010): Now with Tennessee in the Class AA Southern League, the former Mt. Hood pitcher is 11-10, 3.71, with 94 strikeouts in 119 innings.

ANDREW SUSAC, Giants (2009): Now with San Jose in the Class A California League, the ex-Oregon State catcher is hitting .218 (59-271), with seven homers and 32 RBIs.

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That's all for today. We'll wrap up the week on Friday.


Missed opportunity at Kitsap

August 1, 2012

We missed a great chance to put some more distance between us and the rest of the West Division pack on Tuesday night, but we lost 6-1 to the Kitsap BlueJackets. So, Cowlitz and Bend each sliced one-half game off our lead, as they split a pair in Bend. Idle Klamath Falls also picked up a half-game.

We're three games up on Klamath Falls and Cowlitz and 3.5 up on Bend. The Knights (25-21), Klamath Falls (22-24) and Cowlitz (22-24) all have eight games remaining; Bend (21-24) has nine.

But, that's baseball. We'll try to win the series tonight by taking the finale, which starts at 6:35 p.m. at the Kitsap County Fairgrounds. WCL all-star Jorge Perez of Grand Canyon University is our projected starter.

We'll return home after tonight's game for our final regular-season homestand, Thursday through Saturday against the Cowlitz Black Bears. The Black Bears made some roster moves on Tuesday that could effect the series, according to The Daily News newspaper of Kelso-Longview.

Now, about the series: There will be a lot going on at Goss Stadium.

* Thursday is a Block 15 Thursday and $1 hot dog night. It's also 70's night, so dig out your leisure suits, headbands and other clothing from that era and join the fun. Game time is 6:40 p.m.

* Friday is our second $1,000 Kid's Dash for Cash, presented by Dr. Curtis E. Trammell. Children 12 and under can battle for $1,000 in $1 bills on the infield. Game time is 6:40 p.m.

* Saturday is Pioneer Telephone Fireworks Night. It promises to be just as spectacular as our July 2 event, which many fans called our best-ever. Game time is 7:15 p.m.

The weather is supposed to be beautiful and there's no better place to be on a summer night than Goss Stadium!

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Wenatchee defeated Kelowna on Tuesday to clinch an East Division playoff spot. The AppleSox lead Bellingham by 2.5 games and Kelowna by six. Bellingham and Wenatchee open a three-game series at Wenatchee on Thursday.

The divisional playoff round is Aug. 11-13. The best-of-3 WCL Championship Series starts Aug. 15 at the West team's stadium; Aug. 16 is a travel day and the series will conclude on Aug. 17 and on Aug. 18, if a third game is necessary.

The individual awards will be announced in late August or early September and WCL Season 8 will officially be in the books. Then we'll start planning for 2013, when Victoria and (hopefully) Medford join our friendly Northwest fraternity.

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Former Knights' left-hander Tyler Anderson (2009) was named the South Atlantic League Pitcher of the Week for July 23-29 for his shutout of Charleston. Here are the details of the game that earned him the award.

Anderson pitched at Oregon from 2009-11 and became the first former Corvallis Knight to be drafted in the first round when he was Colorado's selection as the 20th overall pick in the 2011 MLB draft.

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Speaking of former Knights pitchers, Atlanta Braves ace Tommy Hanson (2005) has been placed on the 15-day disabled list for a strained lower back. Here are the details from MLB.com. Tommy starred for the old Aloha Knights, the precursor of the Corvallis Knights, in the first year of the WCL.

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Quad Cities pitcher Sam Gaviglio (2009) of Oregon State allowed one unearned run and had seven strikeouts over seven innings in a 5-1 win over Peoria on Tuesday to earn Corvallis Knights Minor League Player of the Day honors. Quad Cities is St. Louis's affiliate in the Class A Midwest League.

Honorable mention goes to:

* San Jose outfielder Alex Burg (2008), who was 2-for-4 weith a double, an RBI and a run in an 8-6 win over Bakersfield. San Jose is San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A (advanced) California League. Burg played at Washington State.

* Salem-Keizer pitcher Chris Johnson (2011) had eight strikeouts in five innings but was the loser in a 3-2 setback against Vancouver. Salem-Keizer is San Francisco's affiliate in the Class A (short) Northwest League. Johnson played at Portland.

* Greensboro's James Nygren (2009) pitched three innings of one-hit, scoreless relief in a 2-1, 11-inning loss to Savannah. Teammate Scott Lyman (2010) gave up one run in five innings in the same game. Greensboro is Miami's affiliate in the Class A South Atlantic League. Nygren played at Oregon State, Lyman at UC Davis.

* Springfield outfielder Adam Melker (2008-09) was 2-for-5 with a run in an 11-9 win over Arkansas. Springfield is St. Louis's affiliate in the double-A Texas League. Melker played at Cal Poly.

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