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Greetings from Pohlman Field

Last night was a tough loss for the Chiefs to start this 6-game road trip and 3-game series. If you missed the Game Recap here it is. The Chiefs bullpen has been fantastic all season so hopefully last night was just a blip on the radar as we sprint to the finish here in the first half.

Tonight Alex Reyes takes the hill for his third outing against Beloit this season. Reyes has faced Beloit twice this season and pitched really well both times. On April 28 here in Beloit he retired the first 12 Snappers and allowed two runs on one hit over five innings while striking out eight to earn the win. Seven days later he lost to Beloit 1-0 allowing one run on five hits over six innings with two walks and eight strikeouts. Of the batters in the Beloit lineup tonight six have faced Reyes going a combined 3-for-26 with eight strikeouts and three walks. BJ Boyd has the most success going 2-for-5.

Reyes is 3-1 on the road this season with a 2.81 ERA and 33 strikeouts over 25.2 innings. He is holding opponents to a .157 average on the road while the MWL hits .254 against Reyes in Peoria. Alex struggled in May going 1-4 with a 5.67 ERA in five starts while the average against was .222 after being .164 in April. Here’s hoping facing the Snappers, a team he has success against, will get Reyes back to his April form (2-0, 2.60 ERA).

 

Here is the lineup IMG_3117that will back him as we get our first look at Robelys Reyes at second base. Vaughn Bryan gets a day off tonight and so does Richy Pedroza who has a 4-game hit streak. The Chiefs scored three runs on eight hits over five innings against tonight’s Beloit starter Lee Trivino on May 7. CJ McElroy was on base twice with a run scored, RBI and stolen base. Carson Kelly and Steve Bean each had RBI while Bean added a single. Kenny Peoples-Walls, Mason Katz and Ronald Castillo also had hits and are in the lineup tonight. Juan Herrera did not face Trivino on May 7 as Cesar Valera started at SS and collected two hits. Every player in the Chiefs lineup tonight that was on the roster in May had a hit off Trivino except Kelly who had a RBI groundout and scored a run.

Burlington beat Quad Cities last night while Wisconsin walked off Cedar Rapids and Kane County walked off Clinton in extra innings. Its a tight wild card race now and here are the overall standings:

W L PCT GB Home Away Div Streak Last10
Kane County 39 20 .661 - 24-6 15-14 30-17 W1 7-3
Peoria 31 27 .534 7.5 16-11 15-16 25-22 L1 4-6
Quad Cities 30 28 .517 8.5 17-12 13-16 25-21 L2 6-4
Burlington 29 28 .509 9.0 16-12 13-16 22-24 W2 6-4
Clinton 29 28 .509 9.0 12-15 17-13 23-23 L1 4-6
Wisconsin 27 31 .466 11.5 15-14 12-17 20-27 W2 5-5
Cedar Rapids 27 32 .458 12.0 14-16 13-16 20-27 L2 5-5
Beloit 25 33 .431 13.5 15-15 10-18 21-25 W1 3-7

So the Chiefs have a 1-game lead on Quad Cities with Burlington and Clinton 1.5 games back. Clinton at Kane County and Quad Cities at Burlington start at 6:30 tonight while Cedar Rapids plays at Wisconsin at 7:05. The same teams matchup Friday night before everyone switches opponents on Saturday.

 

Ready for the final First Half push

The push for a playoff spot starts today for the Peoria Chiefs and the rest of the Western Division. Beloit and Burlington have 13 games left (Completing a suspended game from April this Sunday) while the other six teams have 12 games left. Here are the standings heading into Tuesday’s game. The first half ends Sunday, June 15 and the top two teams will make the playoffs.

Team W L Pct GB
Kane County 38 20 .655
Peoria 31 26 .544 6.5
Quad Cities 30 27 .526 7.5
Clinton 29 27 .518 8
Burlington 28 28 .500 9
Cedar Rapids 27 31 .466 11
Wisconsin 26 31 .456 11.5
Beloit 24 33 .421 13.5

And here are the remaining schedules:

Team Ju 4-6 Ju 7-9 Ju 10-12 Ju 13-15
Kane County vs. CLI vs. CR at PEO at BEL
Peoria at BEL at QC vs. KC vs. CLI
Quad Cities at BUR vs. PEO at CR vs. WIS
Clinton at KC vs. WIS vs. BUR at PEO
Burlington vs. QC vs. BEL (4) at CLI at CR
Cedar Rapids at WIS at KC vs. QC vs BUR
Wisconsin vs. CR at CLI vs. BEL at QC
Beloit vs. PEO at BUR (4) at WIS vs. KC

So as you can see the Chiefs are one of only two teams in the league to play their final six games IMG_3112at home. On the downside, Quad Cities only plays teams below them in the standings with the exception of the three head-to-head games against us this weekend.

On the news side, the Chiefs landed five players on the Midwest League All-Star team Wednesday. Check out who made the team on our website. Congrats to Chris Perry on being named the Cardinals Pitcher of the Month for May after going 2-0 with a sub-1 ERA and 40 strikeouts in 19 2/3 innings with just three walks. Also we made two Roster Moves today. Congrats to Jimmy Bosco on his promotion. Today’s lineup is to the right and here is the upcoming rotation:

Tonight: LH Chase Brookshire
Thursday: RH Alex Reyes
Friday: LH Jimmy Reed
Saturday: RH Blake McKnight
Sunday: LH Rob Kaminsky
Monday: RH Arturo Reyes

Good Morning From the Ballpark

Tough loss for the Chiefs yesterday afternoon with two blown leads in the 9th and 11th innings. The Chiefs did get great staring pitching from Jimmy Reed on Monday and have three straight quality starts from Arturo Reyes, Alex Reyes and Reed. Reed threw 88 pitches on Monday over a career-high 7 1/3 innings and started batters with first pitch strikes on 20 of the 25 Cougars he faced. He also retired 15 straight from the 3rd to the 8th innings.

VelazcoINST copyIt was great seeing Gerwuins Velazco star in his first action of the season. The dugout celebrated in a big way during his 4th inning home run and you can tell Velazco is popular with his teammates. He has come to the park every single day of the season, put in his work and caught bullpens all while being on the DL and not playing in games. Monday was his chance and he had four hits with a homer and a double that helped the Chiefs get the lead in the 11th. He is back in the lineup today as you can see to the right.

The Chiefs have not been swept in Kane County since September 1-3, 2010 and have not been swept by a Cubs affiliate was a two game series against Lansing on the road July 26-27, 1999. The last sweep by a Cubs affiliate in more than a 2-game series was by Rockford June 9-12, 1995.

After Tuesday’s game the Chiefs will have 18 games left in the half, 12 at home. We will host Burlington and Kane County the next six days before a June 3 off-day. The Chiefs travel to Beloit and Quad Cities (3 each) before hosting Kane County and Clinton to finish the half. Hopefully we’ll see Justin Ringo back in the homestand and possibly IMG_3068Ronald Castillo soon as well.

As you’ll see in Tuesday’s Game Notes there is some uncertainty with the Chiefs rotation in the coming homestand. Michael Holback starts on Wednesday but the rest of the Burlington series is TBA.

Here are the updated Western Division Standings. With the two losses here in Kane County it is getting quite packed in the 2-5 slots as the Cougars pull away.

Team W L Pct GB
Kane County 34 17 .667
Peoria 27 23 .540 6.5
Clinton 25 23 .521 7.5
Burlington 25 24 .510 8
Quad Cities 24 26 .480 9.5
Wisconsin 23 26 .469 10
Beloit 23 27 .460 10.5
Cedar Rapids 23 28 .451 11

Tuesday’s schedule
Cedar Rapids at Beloit 11am
Wisconsin at Clinton 5pm (resuming Monday’s suspended game Wis 2, Cli 0 in 4th)
Quad Cities at Burlington 6:30 pm

Wednesday
Burlington at Peoria
Kane County at Clinton
Wisconsin at Cedar Rapids
Beloit at Quad Cities

Monday Game Notes, Lineup & More

The Chiefs dropped the opener of this crucial three-game series last night to Kane County 7-3. Check out the Game Recap if you missed any of the action. More importantly the Chiefs lost red-hot first baseman Justin Ringo to a ninth inning shoulder injury and he is not in the lineup today. Ringo doubled in the ninth and looked like he was going for third when he got a stop sign from 3rd base and dove back into second ahead of the relay throw. Ringo dislocated his shoulder but stayed in to finish the game after getting medical treatment at second base. With the holiday today and an 11 am game tomorrow, its unlikely Ringo will see a specialist until Wednesday about his shoulder. He injured it before and is not taking BP today. I’d make an (educated) guess that we won’t see him play before Wednesday at the earliest. With Ronald Castillo also on the DL, that’s a lot of firepower on the bench for the Chiefs right now (5 HR, 14 2b, 34 RBI).

Here are today’s Game Notes for a 1pm holiday start and the lineup as we see Gerwuins Velazco for the first time in 2014. Velazco hit .206 with a homer and 11 RBI in 77 games last season. His lone home run was against the Cougars at Dozer Park in July.

IMG_3060

 

Here are some photos from last night, Cougars autographs and the ZOOperstars in action:

And here are the updated standings with today’s matchups. The Chiefs and Cougars play at 11am Tuesday.

Team W L Pct GB
Kane County 33 17 .660
Peoria 27 22 .551 5.5
Clinton 25 23 .521 7
Burlington 24 24 .500 8
Quad Cities 24 25 .490 8.5
Wisconsin 23 26 .469 9.5
Cedar Rapids 23 27 .460 10
Beloit 22 27 .449 10.5

Cedar Rapids at Beloit 2pm (Tuesday 11am)
Quad Cities at Burlington 2pm (Tuesday 6:30 pm)
Wisconsin at Clinton 2pm (Tuesday 6:30 pm)

Sunday Game Notes, Lineup & More

Nate's Stat Line Sunday A tough loss for the Chiefs last night in Burlington which you can read about in the Game Recap. While we were losing in Burlington, Clinton was winning here at Kane County to avoid a sweep. The Chiefs came straight up to Geneva last night and got to the hotel at about 2:15 am. It’s strange having a Sunday night game, but nice at the same time with the late travel. Already today Clinton lost to Wisconsin 3-2 and Burlington won game one of a DH against Quad Cities 12-4 so here are the updated standings

Team W L Pct GB
Kane County 32 17 .653
Peoria 27 21 .563 4.5
Clinton 25 23 .521 6.5
Quad Cities 24 24 .500 7.5
Burlington 23 24 .489 8
Wisconsin 23 26 .469 9
Beloit 22 26 .458 9.5
Cedar Rapids 22 27 .449 10

Cedar Rapids is playing Beloit while Quad Cities and Burlington have game two today as well. Those games are not updated in the standings.

Here are today’s Game Notes and our lineup listed next to a photo of the Chiefs taking BP in Kane County.

IMG_3057 IMG_3046The Chiefs will play Kane County six times in the next nine games and nine times in the next 18 games. How the Chiefs do against the first place Cougars will likely determine whether a playoff spot in clinched before June 15.

Saturday Game Notes & Lineup

Nate's Stat Line SaturdayThe Chiefs fell last night 8-3 here in Burlington and have a chance to win the series with Arturo Reyes on the mound tonight. After the game tonight we will head straight to Kane County instead of commuting back to Peoria and leaving tomorrow. It’s a nice bonus to be able to get straight to the next destination and get some sleep before a 6:30 Sunday night series-opener against the Cougars.

Here are today’s Game Notes and lineup

IMG_3046

Here are the updated standings after last night’s MWL action. With Clinton and Kane County going head to head tonight it is important for the Chiefs to win this game against an under .500 Bees team so they either add to the Wild Card lead over Clinton or pick up a game on Kane County.

Team W L Pct GB
Kane County 32 16 .667
Peoria 27 20 .574 4.5
Clinton 24 22 .522 7
Quad Cities 23 23 .500 8
Wisconsin 22 25 .468 9.5
Burlington 21 24 .467 9.5
Cedar Rapids 22 26 .458 10
Beloit 21 26 .447 10.5

Friday Game Notes, Lineup & More

Nate's Stat Line FridayA great win for the Chiefs last night, check out the recap and the fantastic outing by Rob Kaminsky. Was nice to see the Chiefs bounce back as well with the two runs in the 9th. The Chiefs have won 15 road games, more than any other Midwest League team. The Chiefs have also won six straight road games for the first time since 2010. The last time the Chiefs won 7 straight road games was June 24-July 4, 2008, Ryne Sandberg’s second year as manager. That stretch was part of an overall 11-game win streak as the Chiefs started the 2008 second half 17-7.

Here are the longest road win streaks in team history

  • 9 – May 27-June 17, 2006: includes the Chiefs clinching the First Half Western Division title with a series win over 2nd place Kane County. The steak ended on the final day of the first half, the day after the Chiefs clinched the division
  • 8 – July 19 – August 8, 1992. Streak ended August 15 with a 4-1 loss at Burlington
  • 7 – June 24 – July 4, 2008. Streak ended July 5 with a 9-2 loss at Quad Cities as Cardinals first-round pick Brett Wallace hit his professional Home Run.
  • 6 – August 4-21, 2010. Streak ended August 22 with a 4-2 loss at Clinton
  • 6 – August 7-23, 1988. Streak ended August 23 with a  3-0 loss at Burlington in game 2 of a double header

Here are tonight’s Game Notes. Note that since the Game Notes were printed Burlington has changed starting pitchers from Garrett Nuss to Yancy Almonte. Nuss has left the team on paternity leave for the birth of his child. Tonight will mark Almonte’s Burlington debut and first start of the season. Burlington is also switching Saturday’s starter from Eliot Morris to Victor Alcantara. Here is tonight’s lineup with Vaughn Bryan in CF for the first time and both Carson Kelly and Juan Herrera back in the lineup.

photo 2 (4)

photo 1 (3)

The Chiefs are currently taking BP (pic to the right) and below is a look at up to date standings after the Chiefs won here last night and Kane County took game one from Clinton lats night. Remember the top two teams when the half ends on June 15 make the playoffs. The Chiefs have nine games against Kane County (6 at home) and three at home against Clinton. Clinton and Kane County have eight games left head-to-head this half.

W L PCT GB
Kane County Cougars 31 16 .660 -
Peoria Chiefs   27 19 .587 3.5
Clinton LumberKings 24 21 .533 6.0
Quad Cities River Bandits 22 23 .489 8.0
Cedar Rapids Kernels 22 25 .468 9.0
Beloit Snappers 21 25 .457 9.5
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers 21 25 .457 9.5
Burlington Bees 20 24 .455 9.5

Thursday Game Notes & More

Nate's Stat Line May 22Good afternoon from Burlington, Iowa where the Chiefs start an important 12-game stretch heading into the final off-day of the first half (June 3). These next 12 days the Chiefs will exclusively play the only two teams in the Western Division we have yet to see: Burlington (Angels) and Kane County (Cubs). Burlington started the season 15-9 but is now just 20-23 after a 1-12 stretch from May 1-14. They have won 4 of 6 coming into this series with last night’s game in Quad Cities being suspended after Modern Woodmen Park lost power.  We will host Burlington next Wednesday – Friday.

Kane County is in first place at 30-16, 3,5 games ahead of the Chiefs. In addition to the three games in Geneva over the Memorial Day weekend, the Chiefs will welcome the Cougars to Dozer Park May 30 – June 2. The Cougars will also return to Peoria June 10-12 so the current 1st and 2nd place teams in the West will go head-to-head 9 times over the next 21 games. Clinton and Kane County have not played yet either, though that changes tonight. In fact Kane Count’s next 15 games are against Peoria and Clinton so the top 3 will go head to head quite a bit over the next three weeks which will either shake things out for the two playoff spots, or allow one of the other teams to get hot and move into the race. Here are the standings at the moment

Kane Co. 30 16 .652 -
Peoria 26 19 .578 3.5
Clinton 24 20 .545 5
C. Rapids 22 24 .478 8
Q. Cities 21 23 .477 8
Wisconsin 21 24 .467 8.5
Burlington 20 23 .465 8.5
Beloit 20 25 .444 9.5

The top two teams make the playoffs in each half.

Here are Thursday’s  Game Notes. Michael Holback starts for the Chiefs tomorrow here in Burlington and Arturo Reyes gets the ball on Saturday. Today’s lineup is rather unique. It is the first game without Herrera, Kelly and Castillo (DL) and Mason Katz jumps up to the 4 slot while the Chiefs have all 3 switch-hitters in. In fact there are just two right-handed hitters.

photo (10)

Check out this article on Chiefs Clubhouse Manager Patrick Cramer who has 7 Championship rings through the Cardinals organization. Here’s a nice piece on Jason Motte’s return from the DL to St. Louis last night where he threw 1 2/3 scoreless.

Day Baseball with Game Notes

Looking forward to an 11:00 a.m. game today with a few thousand school kids at the stadium. LH Rob Kaminsky makes his home debut after pitching in Cedar Rapids and Clinton on the last two road trips. The weather isn’t cooperating at the moment with cool temperatures and rain. The tarp is on the field and hopefully will be off soon.

Here are today’s Game Notes and the lineup is the same as yesterday with just the C and DH switched:

photo (9)

The Chiefs lost 4-3 last night to the Rattlers, here are highlights:

and here is the pre-game interview on field with Chiefs Manager Joe Kruzel

Welcome Home Game Notes & Lineup

Home sweet home. The Chiefs are back at Dozer Park and ready for a 7-game homestand after earning the franchise’s first ever 4-game sweep at Cedar Rapids last night. In case you missed them late last night, here are the game recaps.

Notes about the road trip and the Chiefs 23-15 record

  • First 4-game sweep in CR ever
  • First 4-game sweep anywhere outside of Peoria since July 1-4, 2008 at Wisconsin
  • First 5-game road win streak since April 20-27, 2011
  • Chiefs just played 14 of 17 on the road going 10-7 in that stretch, 9-5 on the road.
  • At 9-5 the Chiefs have the 2nd best win percentage in the MWL in home games. The Chiefs play 13 of the next 19 games at home
  • With just 14 home games played the Chiefs have played the least amount of games at home in the MWL. All other teams have played at least 17 home games while Wisconsin (tonight’s opponent) has played 22 home games
  • At 14-10 on the road the Chiefs have the most road wins in the MWL
  • Overall the Chiefs have the 2nd best record in the MWL. If we were in the East, the Chiefs would have a 1/2 game lead on first place Dayton.
  • At 23-15 the Chiefs are off to their best 38-game start since the eventual 2002 MWL Champions went 24-14 through 38 games. Last year the Chiefs were 19-19 after 38 games. The last two Chiefs playoffs teams as a Cubs affiliate, 2009 and 2006, were both 21-17 after 38 games.

Here are today’s Game Notes and a Roster Move that sees Silfredo Garcia and Chris Thomas promoted to Palm Beach and Brandon Lee and Michael Holbeck joining the Chiefs.

Also here is tonight’s lineup:

McElroy CF
Herrera SS

Kelly C
Castillo RF
Peoples-Walls LF
Bean DH
Katz 2B
Stone 1B
Schulze 3B
McKnight RHP

With the Garcia promotion, Rob Kaminsky will start Friday at 11am. The Chiefs have not announced a starter for Saturday while RHP Arturo Reyes takes the hill Sunday afternoon in the series finale. Thanks for reading!

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