The MLB Playoffs get rolling tonight with the Oakland A’s visiting the Kansas City Royals in the AL Wild Card game on TBS. Tomorrow night the Pittsburgh Pirates host the San Francisco Giants on ESPN. There are former Chiefs to watch in both games as we wait for the St. Louis Cardinals-LA Dodgers series to get started on Friday night in California.
The A’s and Royals have already set their lineups for tonight’s 7pm game (right) and Chiefs fans will recognize some familiar names. In fact the top three batters in Bob Melvin’s lineup played in Peoria on their way to the Major Leagues. Coco Crisp was with the Chiefs at the end of the 2000 season, Sam Fuld spent all of 2005 in center field at Dozer Park and Josh Donaldson was the Chiefs catcher in 2008 before the Cubs traded him to Oakland. Tonight they all return to the post-season and are in Oakland’s starting lineup. The other two Chiefs connections for this game, Jeff Samardzija (2006) with Oakland and Casey Coleman (2008) with the Royals, are not on the Wild Card game active rosters. It is safe to assume that if Oakland wins tonight, Samardzija will get the ball against the LA Angels of Anaheim in the ALDS. If that happens we will be guaranteed a Chiefs vs. Chiefs matchup when he faces Albert Pujols (2000).
In the National League Wild Card game on Wednesday, expected former Chiefs infielder/outfielder Josh Harrison (2005) to be leading off and playing third base for the Pirates. He is the only former Chiefs player on either the Pirates or Giants though Pittsburgh pitching coach Ray Searage had the same role in Peoria in 1995 and 1996.
We will get more into former Chiefs on the other playoff team rosters when rosters are set Thursday and Friday for the ALDS and NLDS. The number could hit double digits for former Chiefs playing in the 2014 MLB post-season and may reach as high as 15 if Tony Campana (Angels), Jason Motte (Cardinals) and Samardzija appear in games.
The most former Chiefs to appear in an single post-season is 14, set in 2006, and 10 different players appeared in post-season games last year. The number has reached double digits six times and with the post-season starting tonight, 2014 could very well be the seventh!
Another strong weekend for former Chiefs in the Majors including a Walkoff Home Run, Playoff Clinching, a MLB first HR and a MLB first RBI. Overall 36 players appeared in games Friday – Sunday with 12 playing in the Friday Dodgers-Cubs game at Wrigley Field (11 on Cubs and Darwin Barney on the Dodgers). The Cardinals joined the Dodgers, Angels, Nationals and Orioles in the playoffs yesterday so the amount of ex-Chiefs headed for October baseball continues to grow. Of the teams still vying for playoff spots there are Chiefs on Detroit, Pittsburgh and Oakland.
Speaking of Oakland, lets start there with a big Sunday for Josh Donaldson (2008). With Oakland fading in the playoff race and battling into extras against the lowly Phillies, Donaldson collected three hits and finished the game in style:
Down in Miami, Justin Bour (2010) started all three games against Washington and went 4-for-11 with three RBI and on Friday night he launched his first MLB Home Run!
Speaking of firsts, the Cubs Rafael Lopez (2012) picked up his first hit and first RBI as a Major Leaguer on Friday against the best pitcher in the game, Clayton Kershaw:
And the first MLB triple for Jorge Soler (2012) produced a run as well
Albert Pujols (2000) has the Angels in the playoffs and continues to climb up the career MLB lists. With this Saturday home run he has 519, two behind Frank Thomas, Willie McCovey and Ted Williams for 20th on the All-Time list. He also has 101 RBI for the season and 1599 for his career with 1095 extra-base hits.
Two more home runs came from the Cubs-Dodgers series with Arismendy Alcantara (2011) and Welington Castillo (2007) going deep (Castillo’s is only available as a link)
And on the mound Chris Archer (2009) set a new career-high with 10 wins as he beat the White Sox on Saturday with 6 1/3 shutout innings and just two hits allowed.
Of other players of note over the weekend, Yadier Molina (2002) had two doubles and four hits against the Reds while Jason Motte (2003) picked up his first win since 2012 on Saturday! Josh Harrison (2008-09) had four more hits and enters the last week of the season leading the NL in batting average .3184 to .3183 over Justin Morneau. Harrison would be just the 2nd former Chiefs player to win a MLB batting title after Pujols did so in 2003.
Yes there is one MiLB game left in the season, (tonight the Triple-A Championship game takes place in Charlotte as the Pacific Coast League Champions Omaha take on the International League Champions Pawtucket on NBC Sports Network) but all the league playoffs are over so let’s take a look through the rosters and box scores and check in on former Chiefs in MiLB playoffs. Though Casey Coleman (2008) helped Omaha all season, he is now up with the Kansas City Royals so there are no former Chiefs in tonight’s game.
Triple – A Pacific Coast League:
- Memphis Redbirds – St. Louis Cardinals: Memphis lost in the first round 3-0 to the above mentioned Omaha Storm Chasers. Three former Chiefs played in the PCL first round series. Mike Mayers (2013) started one game on the mound and took a loss with a final line of 4ip, 8h, 5r, 2bb, 3k. Zach Petrick (2013) also made a start with a no-decision and a line of: 6ip, 6h, 2r, 0er, 1bb, 4k. Sam Tuivailala who is now with the Cardinals pitched once allowing two hits over one scoreless inning and he struck out two. Of the three, only Petrick was in Memphis all season going 7-6 with a 4.62 ERA over 24 games and 20 starts. He struck out 82 batters in 115 innings.
- Reno Aces – Arizona Diamondbacks: Reno also lost to Omaha, 3-2 in the PCL Finals. Brett Jackson (2009) played in four games for Reno and was 0-for-3 with three walks and two runs scored. He has since been promoted to the Diamondbacks as a September call-up and made his Arizona debut last weekend.
Triple – A International League:
- Durham Bulls – Tampa Bay Rays: In the past we have seen former Chiefs Chris Archer, Jeff Beliveau, Brandon Guyer, Russ Canzler and Robinson Chirinos in Durham. In 2014 it was Hak-Ju Lee (2010) playing in 93 regular season games and two post-season games. Lee returned this season from an horrific 2013 knee injury and batted .203/.287/.276 in those 93 regular season games. Lee scored 36 runs with nine doubles, 23 RBI, four homers and 12 stolen bases. In two post-season games he was 0-for-3 as the Bulls fell to the above-mentioned Pawtucket Red Sox 3-2 in the IL Finals.
Double-A Eastern League:
- Portland Sea Dogs – Boston Red Sox: It’s not often that we get a former Chiefs in the Eastern League. But this season the Sea Dogs had a fantastic campaign before bowing out in the first round of the playoffs to Binghamton 3-2. Behind the plate was Michael Brenly (2009) for one of those playoff games. Brenly was 0-for-3 with a walk and a run scored in the post-season. He played in 46 games for Portland putting up a slash line of .168/.245/.273. Brenly had seven doubles, two homers and 18 RBI in the regular season.
Double-A Southern League:
- Chattanooga Lookouts – Los Angeles Dodgers: Loaded with talent this season, the Lookouts sprinted to the Southern League playoffs and cruised through round one before being upset by the Jacksonville Suns in the Finals. On the pitching staff was Nick Struck (2010) who threw a 5-inning rain-shortened no-hitter for the Chiefs in 2010. In the 2014 SL playoffs, Struck made one start allowing two unearned runs on three hits over four innings in a no-decision. He struck out four and did not issue a walk. This season with Chattanooga, Struck made 19 starts and posted a 5-6 record with a 5.47 ERA. He struck out 58 and walked 45 over 104 1/3 innings.
Double-A Texas League:
- Frisco Roughriders – Texas Rangers: Frisco lost in the first round to Midland 3-1 as Erik Hamren (2009) pitched twice. Covering 1 2/3 innings he allowed one earned run on one hit and three walks. Hamren pitched for Frisco 15 times in the regular season earning a save and a 0-1 record to go along with an ERA of 1.13. He struck out 21 and walked eight over 16 innings.
Advanced – A California League:
- Bakersfield Blaze – Cincinnati Reds: It has been six years since Marquez Smith (2007-08) played in Peoria and he just turned in a fantastic season with Bakersfield including a playoff run. In four playoff games and a series loss to Visalia, Smith went 5-for-10 with a double, two RBI and eight walks (six intentional walks). Smith had a mind boggling season for Bakersfield with a slash line of .323/.438/623. He hit 29 home runs and drove in 126 runs in 120 games. Smith added 32 doubles among his 137 hits and drew 83 walks. He also hit one Double-A home run to finish the 2014 season with an even 30.
Advanced – A Florida State League
- Daytona Cubs – Chicago Cubs: The Daytona Cubs lost to the Fort Myers Miracle in the FSL Finals 3-1 with 10 different former Chiefs participating in their seven playoff games. On the mound six ex-Chiefs pitched in relief: Gerardo Concepcion (2012) 3g, 3ip, 0er, 3bb, 4k; Michael Jensen (2012) 2.2ip, 4h, 2r, 1bb, 1k; Austin Kirk (2011) 2g, 3.1ip, 0r, 3bb, k; Stephen Perakslis (2012)
3g, 5.1ip, 7h, 2er, bb, 6k, 1-1 record; Starling Peralta (2011-12) 2g, 2ip, 3h, 0er, 4bb, k; Jose Rosario (2012) 3g, 7.1ip, 3h, 04r, 4bb, 8k; Yao-Lin Wang (2012) 3ip, 4h, 1er, 3k. At the plate three former Chiefs played for Daytona in the post-season: Wes Darvill (2012) played in 3 games going 2-for-8 with a double and a run scored; Marco Hernandez (2012) played in 6 games going 6-for-22 with two runs scored and four RBI; Bijan Rademacher (2012) played in six games going 9-for-23 with a home run, double, two runs scored and six RBI.
- Kane County Cougars – Chicago Cubs: A handful of former Chiefs played for Kane County this season as they won the MWL Championship. Some moved on before the playoffs started by Yasiel Balaguert (2012), Jacob Rogers (2012) and Ben Wells (2012) all played in the Cougars post-season run. Balaguert played in six games going 4-for-26 with one run scored, three RBI and four walks. Rogers was 7-for-27 in seven games with two homers, five RBI, four runs scored and six walks. Wells pitched once out of the bullpen with 2ip, 1h, 0r, 1k.
Short-Season A – New York/Penn League
- State College Spikes – St. Louis Cardinals: The Spikes won the NYPL Championship with eight players who have been in Peoria, seven this season. Two did not appear in their playoff run but the other six contributed greatly. Robelys Reyes (2014) played in six games going 4-for-22 with a 2b, 3b, rbi and walk. Jake Stone (2014) was 2-for-13 in four games with a run scored and two walks. Brett Wiley (2013) played in three games going 3-for-10 with a 3b, r and rbi. Kenny Peoples-Walls (2014) did not play in the post-season run. On the mound Brandon Lee (2014) pitched twice without allowing a run or hit over 3ip. Josh Lucas (2013-14) earned a save and pitched four times. In 5.1ip he allowed seven hits and one run while striking out eight. Joe Scanio (2013-14) pitched twice allowing four hits over five scoreless innings with one walk and five strikeouts. Jeff Rauh (2014) did not pitch in the playoffs.
What a great weekend in the Majors for former Chiefs players. With the weekend callup of Brett Jackson by Arizona and the addition last week of Sam Tuivailala in St. Louis there have now been 44 former Chiefs players on MLB rosters in 2014! Ten of those players made their MLB debuts: Arismendy Alcantara, Javier Baez, Dallas Beeler, Justin Bour, Ryan Buchter, Eric Jokisch, Rafael Lopez, Jorge Soler, Matt Szczur and Tuivailala.
It was a great weekend for former Chiefs in the Majors. From the young rookies to the strong veterans, nearly every series in the Majors was impacted by an Ex-Chiefs player. Here are some of the highlights with video (some embedded, and others as links depending on MLB’s permissions) and articles from team websites and beat reporters going in reverse order.
So many highlights from Sunday but we have to start with a Triple Play. Josh Harrison (2008-09) started the 5-4-3 around the horn TP for the Pirates. Ironically the ball was hit by another former Chiefs OF Matt Szczur (2010-11) but more on him later:
In addition to starting the first triple play in PNC Park history, Josh also went 2-for-5 with two RBI and a run scored in the game. He leads the NL with a .317 batting average.
The main story from the Phillies-Marlins game was the implosion of Philly closer Jonathan Papelbon and his ejection. But that meltdown was keyed by former Chiefs first baseman Justin Bour (2011) who tied the game with a pinch-hit single. The appearance was the first ever in the Majors as a pinch-hitter for Bour and led to the Marlins 4-run 9th inning to beat Papelbon and the Phils.
In Toronto, Tampa Bay earned the win as Chris Archer (2009) delivered nine strikeouts over seven innings, Brandon Guyer (2008) collected three hits and two doubles and Jeff Beliveau (2009-10) earned his first career save.
Out in Seattle, Sam Fuld (2005) and Coco Crisp (2000) helped the A’s beat the Mariners. Crisp had two hits, a double and scored a run. Fuld had a RBI single and as the second batter of the game, went deep!
Yadier Molina (2002) had three hits, a double and scored a run as the Cardinals swept the Rockies.
Brett Jackson (2009) picked up his first MLB At-bat of the 2014 season as a 4th inning pinch-hitter for Arizona. And Robinson Chirinos (2005) went 3-for-5 with two RBI then talked to the Rangers TV network after Texas swept Atlanta:
Back to the Cubs/Pirates game, Matt Szczur capped a great weekend in Pittsburgh by robbing the reigning NL MVP with this fantastic diving catch:
Matt also went 1-for-3, Eric Jokisch (2011) threw 2 2/3 scoreless innings and struck out two and Javy Baez (2012) stole a base.
On Saturday there were six former Chiefs in the Cubs -Pirates game at Matt Szczur hit his first MLB home run!
As you can see at the end of the clip, they had some trouble getting the ball for Matt but eventually did.
Earlier in the game Javy Baez also went deep
but again it was Josh Harrison who stole the show and got the Pirates even as they went on to win the game.
Not many players hit homers off Cy Young winner Felix Hernandez in Seattle. but on Saturday Josh Donaldson (2008) sure did:
On Friday night there were NINE former Chiefs who played in the Cubs-Pirates game in Pittsburgh. Baez, Welington Castillo (2007), Arismendy Alcantara (2011), Logan Watkins (2010), Blake Parker (2006/2008), Rafael Lopez (2012), Szczur and Zac Rosscup (2012) with the Cubs and Harrison with Pittsburgh. Jorge Soler (2012) was gone from the Cubs for the weekend on paternity leave.
Harrison was 3-for-4 with two runs scored and Baez crushed another baseball:
To cap off this post lets go back to how we started, with defense. Nice catch in Toronto Friday night by Guyer for the Rays!
We didn’t get to know Jorge Soler all that well in 2012, as the then 20-year-old, joined the Peoria Chiefs on August 10 and played in just 20 games. However he made quite the impact on those who saw him play with a .338 average, three homers, five doubles and 15 RBI in those 20 games. He also stole four bases and drew six walks to just six strikeouts. Injured off and on over the two years since, Soler made his MLB debut last night (162nd former Chief in the Majors) for the Cubs, exactly two years after playing in his 14th Midwest League game. In his first at-bat, he did this:
We saw the power with the Chiefs and while they all came on the road, fortunately all three of his Peoria home runs are on YouTube. The first is from my account and includes my Chiefs Radio Network call. The other two are fan videos from Wisconsin and Kane County (Go to 1:45, ball clears the LF deck and lands in the trees):
As for Chiefs in MLB history, Soler is the 7th former Chiefs player to homer in his first at game:
- Hector Villanueva: June 1, 1990 off Ken Dayley at Busch Stadium in his 2nd AB after pinch hitting.
- Alex Cabrera: June 26, 2000 off Yorkis Perez (Hou) in Arizona as a pinch hitter in first MLB At-Bat.
- Keith McDonald: July 4, 2000 off Andy Larkin (Cin) at Busch Stadium as a pinch hitter in first MLB At-Bat
- Eliezer Alfonzo: June 3, 2006 off Orlando Hernandez at Shea Stadium in his 3rd at-bat
- Brandon Guyer: May 6, 2011 off Zach Britton at Camden Yards in 1st at-bat
- Javier Baez: August 5 off Boone Logan at Coors Field in 6th at-bat (12th inning game winner)
- Jorge Soler: August 27 off Mat Latos in Cincinnati in 1st at-bat
Two other Chiefs have homered in their first MLB at-bats but not in their first game*. Both are pitchers:
- Gene Stechschulte: April 17, 2001 off Armando Reynoso (Ari) at Busch Stadium as a pinch-hitter in the 6th inning of a 17-4 Cardinals loss. The homer was in his 26th MLB appearance in his 2nd MLB season. He didn’t even pitch in the game, just batted for Mike James with St. Louis down 15-1.
- Mark Worrell: June 5, 2008 off Tim Redding at Nationals Park. Homered in his 2nd MLB game as a reliever, a 2-run homer in the 6th inning of a 10-9, 10-inning loss. Another former Chief, Joe Mather his his 1st MLB home run in the 10th inning of this game as well.
*Thanks to both Dave Eminian and Kevin Capie of the Peoria Journal Star for providing Associated Press information on the above lists.
As Greg Maddux goes into the Baseball Hall of Fame today, here’s a look back at two posts from January (when he was elected) combined into one post as we honor the first former Peoria Chiefs player ever elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame, here is a tribute to Greg Maddux by the numbers and with pictures. Congrats Greg!
Start with our 2010 Jersey Retirement ceremony in Peoria:
A look at Maddux by the numbers:
1 – Hits allowed by Maddux against Cedar Rapids on May 14 at home in a rain-shortened six inning game.
2 – Round in which Maddux was drafted by the Cubs in 1984 out of Valley High School in Las Vegas, NV
4 – National League Cy Young Awards won by Maddux and NL ERA titles won.
8 – National League All-Star Selections.
10 – Maddux ranks in the Top 10 on the Chiefs single season list for Wins, Innings Pitched, Starts and Complete Games
12 – Number Maddux wore with the Chiefs in 1985
13 – Wins for Maddux in 1985 with the Chiefs. He was 13-9 with a 3.19 ERA and 125 strikeouts. Maddux finished fourth in the Midwest League in wins and starts, fifth in innings pitched and 13th in ERA.
18 – Maddux’s age on Opening Day 1985 when he started against Springfield in a 4-1 Peoria home win with a franchise debut record 12 strikeouts over 8 innings of work. The #18 also represents the number of Gold Gloves Maddux won, more than any player to ever play in the Majors.
21 – At-bats for Maddux in 1985 with the Chiefs (pre-DH). He hit .238 with a double and a RBI.
27 – Starts for Maddux with the Chiefs in 1985
31 – Number he wore in the Major Leagues, retired in Peoria, Chicago and Atlanta.
35 – MLB playoff appearances for Maddux
72 1/3 – NL record in 2001 for Maddux without issuing a walk
95 – Wins for Maddux as a Cub before signing a free agent deal in Atlanta in the winter of 1992.
97.2 – Percent of Hall of Fame ballots with Maddux’s name listed. Tom Seaver (98.8) in 1992 holds the all-time record.
300 – Win #300 came on August 7, 2004 against the San Francisco Giants
355 – Career wins, 8th all-time. One more than Roger Clemens and the most in MLB history since Warren Spahn retired in 1965 with 363.
546 – Career putouts. Most ever for a pitcher in MLB history.
740 – Career starts, 4th all-time.
999 – Career walks. Maddux is one of two pitchers (Fergie Jenkins) with more than 3,000 strikeouts and less than 1,000 walks issued.
1986 – Maddux debuted with the Cubs the season after he pitched in Peoria. His MLB debut came in the 17th inning of a September 2 game against Houston when he pinch ran for future Chiefs manager Jody Davis.
1988 – Maddux’s breakout season for the Cubs going 18-8
1992 – The first of four Cy Young Award seasons and the first 20 win season for Maddux.
1995 – The 1995 season was magical for Maddux and the Braves as he won his fourth straight Cy Young Award with one of the best pitching seasons in the last 40 years and the Braves won their first World Series in Atlanta. In 28 starts in 1995, Maddux issued just 23 walks and posted a 19-2 record with a 1.63 ERA.
2004 – Return to Chicago with a 16-11 season and a 4.02 ERA
2008 – Maddux’s final season. Split between San Diego and Los Angeles, Maddux made his final appearance in Chicago in game one of the NLDS with an inning of work against the Cubs at Wrigley Field. He then threw twice in the NLCS against the Phillies, which his final outing in game 5.
2010 – Maddux has his number 31 retired in Peoria on June 11.
3000 – Strikeout #3000 came against the Giants on July 26, 2005
3371 – Career strikeouts, 10th all-time.
Here’s a clip of Maddux pitching from 1985 on WTVP with Ed Hammond on the call:
Looking through my various spreadsheets I was able to get the result of 24 of Greg Maddux’s 1985 Chiefs starts. I didn’t have full box score lines on all of them but an hour with Microfilm at the Peoria Public Library allowed me to get all 27 results and box scores from the Peoria Journal Star archives. So here is the Greg Maddux Game by Game lines from 1985. Also includes an exhibition game in which Maddux pitched for AAA-Iowa against the Cubs, the Midwest League All-Star Game and a post-season start.
Date Result Opponent Line
April 12 W 4-1 vs. Springfield 8ip, 4h, 0r, 1bb, 12k. Team record K in debut
April 17 L 3-2 at Appleton 6ip, 3h, 3r, 2er, 2bb, 3k, E. Lost on UER.
April 22 W 8-1 vs. Beloit 7ip, 5h, 0er, 4bb, 9k. Win (2-1)
April 28 ND W 6-5 at Springfield 7ip, 7h, 5r, 1bb, 7k. Chiefs win in 9th
May 3 W 3-2 at Springfield CG 9ip, 7h, 2r, 2bb, 2k. Double at plate
May 8 W 8-3 vs. Burlington 6.1ip, 6h, 2er, 4k. Win (4-1)
May 14 W 2-1 vs. Cedar Rapids CG 6ip, 1h, 1r, 2bb, 3k. Rain shortened
May 20 L 7-3 at Madison 5.2ip, 10h, 7r, 4er
May 25 W 6-2 vs. Madison CG 9ip, 8h, 2r, 2bb, 6k Win (6-2)
May 30* L 5-1 vs. Chicago 3ip, 3r. First 2 IP Sho. Ron Cey 2r 2b.
June 4 L 3-1 at Quad Cities 7ip, 6h, 3r, 2er, 6k. Dante Bichette 2-3 2b
June 9 W 9-7 at Quad Cities 8.2ip, 9h, 7r, 6er, 5bb, 7k
June 14 L 4-1 at Beloit 7ip, 9h, 4r, 3er, 2bb, 6k
June 20 W 9-4 vs. Wisconsin 6.1ip, 10h, 4r, 1bb, 2k
June 25 W 11-6 at Springfield 6.1ip, 9h, 6r, 5er, 1bb, 3k. 3-4, rbi
June 30 W 4-1 vs. Cedar Rapids CG 9ip, 5h, 1r, 0bb, 8k
July 5 W 12-2 at Waterloo CG 9ip, 7h, 2r, 3bb, 6k
July 8** ND L 4-2 Midwest League 1ip, 0h, 0r, 0bb, 0k
July 13 ND W 5-4 vs. Madison 5ip, 7h, 4r, 3bb, 3k
July 18 ND L 4-2 (12) at Madison 8.1ip, 7h, 2r, 1er, 0bb, 2k
July 23 L 8-7 vs. Quad Cities 4.1ip, 7h, 6r, 3bb, 2k. QC scored 6 in 4th
July 28 W 6-2 at Burlington 6.1ip, 5h, 2r, 2bb, 4k
Aug 2 L 1-0 vs. Clinton 8ip, 7h, 1r, 2bb, 3k
Aug 7 L 4-1 vs. Wausau 6ip, 4h, 3r, 1er, 3bb, 6k. Mickey Mantle in att
Aug 13 G2 ND L 3-2 at Wausau 5.2ip, 6h, 2r, 1er, 4bb, 1k
Aug 18 W 8-3 at Clinton 5.2ip, 6h, 1r, 2bb, 6k Win (13-7) last win
Aug 23 L 5-4 at Burlington 6.1ip, 7h, 4r, 3er, 2bb, 1k
Aug 28 ND W 9-8 vs. Quad Cities 5ip, 9h, 5er, 4k. Chiefs clinch Division title
Sept 2 L 4-1 vs. Quad Cities CG 9ip, 3h, 4r, 0er, 2bb, 5k
Sept 7*** L 5-3 vs. Kenosha 4.1ip, 8h, 5r, 1k. Game 2 MWL Finals
*exhibition game between the Iowa Cubs & Chicago Cubs in Des Moines, IA
**Midwest League All-Star Game in Cedar Rapids, IA
***Midwest League Finals Game 2 vs. Kenosha
The Chiefs will have to negotiate the second half of the Midwest League season without their most consistent reliever as All-Star Chris Perry was promoted to Palm Beach after Tuesday’s game. It is going to be “next man up” in the bullpen but will likely take a team effort to replace what Perry meant to the Chiefs through 87 games this season.
Perry turned in one of the best seasons for any reliever in the Chiefs 32 year history. In 28 games he went 4-0 with a 2.20 ERA covering 49 innings of work. Perry saved three games, earned five holds and finished off eight contests. He struck out 80 batters while walking just 15 over his 49 innings. The numbers lead to a 0.90 WHIP, a 14.7 K/9IP ratio and a .165 opponents average against.
So where do all those numbers rank among the Midwest League leaders and in Chiefs history? Glad you asked.
As for the Midwest League, Perry leaves the Chiefs ranking 2nd in the league in reliever K/9IP, 4th in reliever opponents average against and fourth in relievers WHIP.
If you sort the 32 year Chiefs history by pitchers who threw at least 49 innings (Perry’s total) you’ll get 302 names. There are 70 who like Perry, pitched only in relief. Of those 302, Perry is #1 in strikeouts per 9 innings and his 14.7 number beats the previous high by one full strikeout. Ben Julianel posted a 13.7 number in 2003 over 51 2/3 innings.
Perry’s 0.90 WHIP ranks fourth among relievers behind Jared Blasdell 0.75 in 2002, Alex Maestri 0.87 in 2007 and Brian Reed 0.89 in 1995. Of those three Maestri made four starts in 48 games and totaled 83 2/3 innings while Reed pitched 60 times for 61 innings and Blasdell threw 65 2/3 innings in 53 appearances.
Perry’s .165 average against is also fourth behind Brandon DeJaynes .151 in 2003,
Blasdell at .155 in 2002 and Heath Slocumb .162 in 1989.
Perry’s 80 strikeouts are tied for 8th among all Chiefs pitchers with zero starts. The other pitcher with 80, Keith Glauber, needed 64 innings in 1996 to rack up 80 strikeouts. How dominant are Perry’s K numbers? Well put it this way, Michael Sodders holds the Chiefs single season strikeout record at 177 in 1989. His K/9 IP ratio is 7.7, or nearly half of what Perry posted in 2014.
Good luck in Palm Beach Chris!
With the Sunday night announcements of the 2014 MLB All-Star Teams, the Chiefs will have four former players on rosters for the first time ever. This ASG will also be the first time former Chiefs have started on both teams (Josh Donaldson & Yadier Molina). Below is a table listing all the former Chiefs who were named to MLB All-Star Games and their results from the game.
|1986||WALLY JOYNER||ANGELS||0-1||STARTING 1B|
|1988||RAFAEL PALMEIRO||CUBS||0-0, BB|
|1991||RAFAEL PALMEIRO||RANGERS||0-0, BB|
|1992||GREG MADDUX||CUBS||1.1 IP, 1H, 1R, 1HRA|
|1993||MARK GRACE||CUBS||0-3||STARTING DH|
|1993||DEVON WHITE||BLUE JAYS||1-2, 2B, R, RBI, SB|
|1994||GREG MADDUX||BRAVES||3IP, 3H, 1R, 2K||STARTING P|
|1995||HEATH SLOCUMB||PHILLIES||1IP, 1H, 0R, 2K||WIN|
|1997||GREG MADDUX||BRAVES||2IP, 2H, 1R, 1HR||STARTING P|
|1998||RAFAEL PALMEIRO||ORIOLES||2-2, R, RBI|
|1998||DEVON WHITE||DIAMONDBACKS||3-3, 3B, R|
|1998||GREG MADDUX||BRAVES||2IP, 3H, 1BB, 1K||STARTING P|
|1999||RAFAEL PALMEIRO||RANGERS||1-2, RBI||STARTING DH|
|2001||ALBERT PUJOLS||CARDINALS||0-0 BB|
|2003||ALBERT PUJOLS||CARDINALS||1-3, RBI||STARTING LF|
|2004||ALBERT PUJOLS||CARDINALS||2-3, 2 2B, 2RBI||STARTING 1B|
|2005||ALBERT PUJOLS||CARDINALS||1-2||STARTING DH|
|2006||ALBERT PUJOLS||CARDINALS||0-3, K||STARTING 1B|
|2007||PLACIDO POLANCO||TIGERS||0-1||STARTING 2B|
|2007||DANNY HAREN||A’S||2IP, 2H, 1R, 1BB, 2K||STARTING P|
|2008||ALBERT PUJOLS||CARDINALS||2-3||STARTING DH|
|2008||DANNY HAREN||DIAMONDBACKS||2IP, 2H, 0R, 1BB, 2K HOLD|
|2009||ALBERT PUJOLS||CARDINALS||0-3||STARTING 1B|
|2009||YADIER MOLINA||CARDINALS||1-2, R, RBI||STARTING C|
|2009||DANNY HAREN||DIAMONDBACKS||1IP, 1H, 0R, 0K|
|2010||ALBERT PUJOLS||CARDINALS||0-2, K||STARTING 1B|
|2010||YADIER MOLINA||CARDINALS||1-1||STARTING C|
|2013||YADIER MOLINA||CARDINALS||0-2||STARTING C|
|2014||YADIER MOLINA||CARDINALS||STARTING C|
|2014||JOSH DONALDSON||A’S||STARTING 3B|
Donaldson is the 9th different Chiefs player to be named a starter. Albert Pujols leads the way with 7 starts while 2014 will be the 4th for Yadier Molina. Greg Maddux made three starts while Placido Polanco, Danny Haren, Rafael Palmeiro, Mark Grace and Wally Joyner had one start each.
Pujols leads the way with 6 hits in 19 AB while Devon White has 4 hits and both Palmeiro and Molina have 3 each. Maddux threw 8.1 inning while Haren has 5 IP.
Well yesterday sure didn’t go according to plan as the Chiefs lost two games in the final at-bat and were swept out of the wild card lead by Quad Cities. Instead of controlling their own destiny in this final week of play the Chiefs now need help. Unless Peoria wins today by 11 they won’t have the tiebreaker against either Quad Cities or Burlington. A three-way tie benefits Burlington as they took 4 of 7 from QC this half. Here are the standings after Monday’s games:
|Midwest League Western|
The Chiefs spent every day between May 9 and June 8 in the Wild Card lead plus 18 of the 24 days between April 16 and May 9. All told the Chiefs were in one of the two playoff spots for al but 17 of the 67 days between April 3 and today.
Keep an eye on Wisconsin. The Rattlers have won six in a row and finish the half with three home games against Beloit and three games at Quad Cities. If the Rattlers stay hot they could come from nowhere on June 1 to steal the Wild Card bid.
On the good news side, both Carson Kelly and Zach Loraine were added to the MWL All-Star team today after injuries knocked out two Kane County reserves. That gives the Chiefs seven All-Stars.
Ronald Castillo returned to the DL today after re-aggravating the abdominal strain that cost him more than a week. The Chiefs are 4-8 without Castillo in the lineup since his original May 20 injury. In his place, Gerwuins Velazco has been activated and starts tonight at first base. Velazco gets a nod in the five slot tonight. In three games before injuring his hamstring on May 28 against Burlington, Velazco was 6-for-10 (.600) with a home run, double, RBI, walk and two runs scored.
Mason Katz DH’s tonight for the first time this season. Katz has 36 starts at first base and 21 starts at second base for the Chiefs but this is his first at DH.
Here are tonight’s Game Notes as All-Star Arturo Reyes returns to the hill. He was shuffled around the Chiefs rotation after tweaking his hamstring during his last start. Reyes finished the fifth inning of that May 29 starts but didn’t return for the sixth after the hamstring tightened up on a sac bunt back to him.
Thanks for reading and cheer hard for the Chiefs tonight who need a win to get back even with the Bandits and set up a thrilling six-game homestand to finish the half.
The Chiefs and River Bandits were one of three games in Iowa to be rained out on Saturday night. As you can see from the picture to the right the tarp was on the field and it was raining pretty hard all Saturday afternoon. Beloit at Burlington and Clinton at Wisconsin were both rained out as well. All three venues will have Sunday double header’s that impact the Wild Card race. The Wild Card is all that’s left to play for in the West. Kane County beat Cedar Rapids Saturday night in the only game that did get played and by virtue of that win and by holding the tiebreaker against the Chiefs, Kane County clinched the Division Title. With nine games left the Chiefs are nine games back and Kane County leads the season series (Tiebreaker #1) 4-2. The playoff appearance is the first for a Cubs affiliate in the Midwest League since Chris Archer, Brett Jackson, Ryan Flaherty, DJ LeMahieu and Jeff Beliveau among others got the Chiefs to the 2nd half Western Division title in 2009. That was also the Chiefs last playoff appearance so hopefully both droughts can end this week.
Here are the Western Division standings as we head into play on Sunday:
|Midwest League Western|
|Kane County Cougars||42||20||.677||-||27-6||15-14||33-17||W4||7-3|
|Quad Cities River Bandits||31||29||.517||10.0||17-12||14-17||26-22||W1||7-3|
|Wisconsin Timber Rattlers||29||31||.483||12.0||17-14||12-17||22-27||W4||5-5|
|Cedar Rapids Kernels||27||35||.435||15.0||14-16||13-19||20-30||L5||3-7|
As far as the Wild Card goes the Chiefs are +1 on QC, +1.5 on Burlington, +2.5 on Clinton, +3 on Wisconsin, +6 on Cedar Rapids and Beloit. These three games in Quad Cities are crucial. As far as tiebreakers go, the Chiefs lead QC 2-1 but do not have the tiebreaker against Burlington, Clinton or Wisconsin. The Chiefs tied the season series with Burlington and Wisconsin but the #2 tiebreaker is head to head runs scored and the Chiefs lose both of those.
As for today’s double header, the Chiefs will start Rob Kaminsky in game one at 1:15 pm and Blake McKnight in game two. The game one lineup is to the right. The Chiefs are still without big bats in Ronald Castillo and Justin Ringo (DL). As you can see in the Game Notes Arturo Reyes gets the ball in game three of the series Monday. That will set up Chase Brookshire, Alex Reyes and Jimmy Reed in the three-games at home against Kane County on Tuesday – Thursday. Speaking of the homestand check out the Promotional Highlights for the six games that includes appearances by Ozzie Smith, Spiderman/IronMan, three fireworks shows, Dueling Pianos, a Diamond Dig, two giveaways and much much more!