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Brooks Hatch Blog: Knights Add Cal Poly Lefty Chase Watkins

Happy Wednesday, everyone, from the world-wide headquarters (WWHQ) of the Corvallis Knights, your 2016-2017 and 2018 West Coast League champions!

Only 26 more days until our May 28 opener on Weyerhaeuser Science, Engineering & Art Day game at Goss Stadium!


We have signed Cal Poly freshman left-hander Chase Watkins (pictured, above) for the 2019 season.

Watkins is a 6-foot-4, 205-pounder from St. Francis Central Coast Catholic High School in Watsonville, Calif. His father, Brad, played football at Washington State and his mother, Kim, swam at Stanford.

He is 0-1, 3.38 in nine games this season, with 14 strikeouts in 21.1 innings.

Watkins was 6-3, 1.83 as a high school senior, with 85 strikeouts in 56.2 innings. Watkins earned first-team all-Santa Cruz Coast Athletic League honors for the second straight year and also was a first-team Cal-Hi Sports all-state small schools honoree and team MVP.

As a junior, he was 2-2 with a 1.23 ERA and one save, with 57 strikeouts in 28.1 innings. He was also a first-team All-Santa Cruz Coast Athletic League and first-team All-CIF-Central Coast Section basketball player, with 1,320 career points, the second-most in school history.

Watkins was also named the Division V Boys Athlete of the Year in the state of California by Cal-Hi Sports, and the Watsonville Register-Pajaronian newspaper’s Male Student-Athlete of the Year for the second consecutive year.

Welcome to the Knights, Chase.


Just a heads-up: Our annual Weyerhaeuser Science, Engineering & Art Day at Goss Stadium has been moved up a day to Tuesday, May 28.

We made the change because it’s possible Oregon State will host an NCAA Regional that may include BYU. BYU will not compete on Sundays and the NCAA accommodates the Cougars in their scheduling.

That would require moving the regional up a day to May 29-June 1, bumping SEA Day. So, with OSU and BYU both having banner years, we are getting ahead of things and moving the date so that SEA Day does not get cancelled.

And make sure to save the date for our first Nectar Creek Fan Faire celebration, set for 5:30-9:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 13. We will turn Goss Stadium into a 13th century castle with the help from the Shrewsbury Renaissance Faire!

Come shop the concourse with Shrewsbury Renaissance Faire vendors, drink mead and enjoy a game of rounders on the field. Players will be available for autographs and there will be live music! This will be a fun event to kick off our 13th season in Corvallis.

Full concessions will be available. Jugglers, belly dancers, fiddlers and more! See you there.


The Colorado Rockies sent alum pitcher DJ Johnson (2008-09) to Albuquerque, their affiliate in the triple-A Pacific Coast League, on April 28. He was 0-1, 5.59 in 12 games, with nine strikeouts in 9.2 innings.

“I think he needs to go down, get his confidence back, get the ball in the strike zone, improve that walk rate and get back to being the pitcher we saw in Spring Training and last year,” Rockies manager Bud Black told

Johnson earned a Sept., 2018 callup after recording a 3.90 ERA and 18 saves in 50 appearances in Albuquerque. He then had five scoreless appearances before giving up two homers to Washington.

Colorado put Johnson on its postseason roster, and he struck out two Milwaukee batters in a Game 1 loss in the National League Division Series. He then earned a place on Colorado’s opening day roster by allowing just one run in 10.1 innings during spring training.


The Los Angeles Dodgers sent alum catcher Rocky Gale (2007, 2009) back to Oklahoma City in the triple-A Pacific Coast League on April 27 after they activated Russell Martin from the injured list. The former University of Portland star hit .167 (2-14) in four games, with one run, in his fourth stint in MLB.


Alum Nick Duron (2015) has signed with the Southern Illinois minors in the independent Frontier League. The former Clark College right-handed pitcher was released by Boston earlier this year after spending three years in their minor-league organization.


Western Oregon junior Austin Crowson (2016) the GNAC Baseball Pitcher of the Week after he threw the fifth no-hitter in GNAC history on April 25, beating Concordia 2-0 in the second game of the doubleheader.

Crowson allowed four walks and struck out one in the seven-inning no-hitter. He did not allow a base runner until two outs in the third inning and retired 11 straight to end the game.

In other Player of the Week news:

  • Oregon State junior catcher Adley Rutschman (2016) was nominated for Pacific-12 Conference Player of the Week honors, but was not selected.
  • Portland’s Chad Stevens (2017-18) and Connor Knutson (2018) were nominated for West Coast Conference Player and Pitcher of the Week honors, but were not selected.


We are thrilled to announce our 2019 regular-season schedule. Next summer’s slate features 32 home dates and gets started at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, May 28, with our eighth annual Weyerhaeuser Science, Engineering & Art Day game at Goss Stadium.

After a nonleague series at the Humboldt Crabs, we open the West Coast League schedule at Walla Walla on June 4. Our WCL home opener is June 14, against the Cowlitz Black Bears.

Like last season, start times for Monday-Saturday games is 6:30 p.m. Sunday games will start at 3 pm. Fireworks games will have special start times, either 7:15 p.m. or 7:05 p.m.

The Knights 2019 home schedule features six Thursday games, six Friday games, five Saturday games, five Sunday games, one Monday game, four Tuesday games and five Wednesday games.

Reserve the best seats in the house for the 2019 season now by emailing [email protected] or by calling (541) 752-5656; single-game tickets are also on sale. Also, our entertainment schedule is available by clicking here.

Here’s the entire 2019 schedule:

MAY: 28, Portland Sea Dogs. 31, at Humboldt Crabs.

JUNE: 1-2, at Humboldt Crabs. 4-6, at Walla Walla. 7-9, at Victoria. 14-16, Cowlitz. 18-20, Bellingham. 21, Gerding Construction. 22-24, at Yakima Valley. 25-27, Ridgefield. 28-30, Yakima Valley.

JULY: 1, Hayesville Hammers. 2-3: Portland. 4, at Portland. 5-7, at Ridgefield. 8-10, at Port Angeles. 11, Mid-Valley Southpaws. 12-14, Kelowna. 18, Chaffey Baseball. 19-21, Walla Walla. 22-23, All-Star Game, at Bend. 24, at Portland. 25, Portland. 26, at Portland. 27-29, at Bend. 30-31, Bend.

AUGUST: 1, Bend. 2-4, at Cowlitz. 6-8, at Bellingham. 9-11: Wenatchee.


Some news from elsewhere in the West Coast League:

  • The Wenatchee AppleSox continue their long preparation for the historic 20th season in team history by adding to their roster. After a flurry of additions across the past two weeks, the AppleSox have now increased their roster size to 22 members. Over the last two weeks, head coach Kyle Krustangel announced 11 new players from six different schools. Please click here for more information, from Our Sports Central.
  • The Kelowna Falcons are pleased to announce reigning West Coast League MVP Trent Tingelstad will return to the team for the 2019 season. Please click here for more information, from Our Sports Central.
  • The West Coast League announced a new agreement with the Southern Umpires Association, set to begin this summer. The SUA will provide ten umpires, who will staff the great majority of the WCL’s U.S.-based games during the upcoming season. Please click here for more information, from Our Sports Central.


That’s all for today. Have a great week and we will see you next week!


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