Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Reaction to Hill and Minix signings

Here's my reaction to the Jeremy Hill and Travis Minix signings.

I wasn't too shocked when I found out the Jeremy Hill had re-signed with the Ducks. Not only was Jeremy a key member of last seasons bullpen but he's also an assistant coach at Hofstra University, and an instructor at Cage 16.

He's a great set up guy who can go a few extra innings if needed. What's impressive about Jeremy is he keeps himself in amazing shape, so he's always ready to go out of the bullpen. He also brings big league experience to the Ducks.

Minix is a nice addition to the Ducks bullpen. Minix doesn't have overpowering stuff, and normally throws in the low 90's, but has the ability to get people out; something that the Ducks lacked in their 2011 playoff run. Another thing I like about Minix is versatility out of the bullpen. He can make a spot for the Ducks, or close out a game.

Great additions to the 2012 roster today!

Bluefish resign former MLB closer, Jorge Julio

The Bridgeport Bluefish have re-signed former big league closer Jorge Julio for the 2012 season.

Jorge Julio played in the major leagues for 9 seasons from 2001-2009 with 9 different teams which included the Baltimore Orioles, New York Mets, Arizona Diamondbacks, Florida Marlins, Colorado Rockies, Cleveland Indians, Atlanta Braves and Milwaukee Brewers.

Julio came to the Bluefish in 2011, and was electric, posting a 1.15 ERA with 28 saves in 55 innings.

Ducks sign first two players for 2012

The Ducks have started to solidify their bullpen by signing relievers Jeremy Hill (resigned) and Travis Minix for the 2012 season.

Jeremy Hill was a a 5th round selection (139th overall) by the Kansas City Royals in the 1996 MLB Amateur Draft. Originally, Hill was a catcher but became a pitcher in 2001.

He played 8 seasons in the Royals organization, and made it to the major leagues in 2002 & 2003.

In 2003, he was traded from the Royals to the Mets in exchange for Graeme Llyod.

Hill pitched in the Mets organization for three seasons with his best coming in 2004 when he was 2-3 with a 2.23 ERA with Binghamton.

From 2006-2010, Hill played for Newark (Atlantic League), Moncalva (Mexican League), and for the Angels organization.
.
In 2011, Hill joined the Ducks and was a major part of their bullpen going 8-2 with a 2.91 ERA in 68 innings pitched.

Righty, Travis Minix was a 23rd round selection (685th overall) by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in the 1999 MLB Amateur Draft.

He played six seasons in the Devils Rays organization before joining the Phillies organization in 2005.

He pitched for the Phillies organization from 2005-2008, with his best season coming in 2006 with Scranton/Wilkes Barre when he was 1-3 with 2.40 ERA in 40 innings pitched.

From 2008-2011 he played for the Somerset Patriots and was a important part of their bullpen over those 4 seasons.

In 2011, he split time between Somerset and Gary Southshore of the American Association.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Bluefish unveil 15th Anniversary logo

Today the Bridgeport Bluefish unveiled their 15th Anniversary logo.

















I like the logo but it looks strikingly similar to the old Florida Marlins logo.

Patriots sign sign INF Dan DeGeorge and RHP Joe Augustine

The Somerset Patriots have announced the signings of infielder Dan DeGeorge (resigned) and right handed pitcher Joe Augustine.

Dan DeGeorge
played three season in the Indians organization before being released last year and signing with the Somerset. He had .256 batting average in 58 games for the Patriots.

Joe Augustine
a native of New Brunswick, New Jersey played two seasons in the Kansas City Royals organization before signing with the Southern Illinois Miners of the Frontier League in 2009. He played played three seasons with the Miners; his best coming in 2010, when he posted a 10-3 record with a 1.97 ERA in 114.1 innings pitched.

"Reving" up for another championship. York signs four!

The two-time defending Atlantic League champion York Revolution re-signed pitchers Kris Regas, and Dumas Garicia, and added former Road Warrior, Omar Javier.

The team also re-signed player-coach Liubiemithz Rodriguez.

The righty, Regas is a former Mets and Tigers farmhand. He split time between Lancaster, and York last season. He was 0-0 with 1 save with the Barnstomers before being traded to York on September 7th or future considerations. He only pitched 3.2 innings for the Revolution during the regular season but did not give up a run.


Last season, Dumas Garcia signed with the Revolution on August 2, 2011 after being released by the Blue Jays organization. He had a 2-3 record with a 4.70 ERA in 32.1 innings pitched for York.

Omar Javier played three seasons (2007-2009) in the Cardinals organization before signing with the Road Warriors in 2011. He was 0-6 with a 5.65 ERA in 43 innings.

Also signed was player-coach Liubiemithz Rodriguez. Rodriguez played 8 season in the White Sox organization and made it to the major leagues in 1999 . He's been a member of the Revolution since 2009. Last season he hit .231 with 1 home run and 23 RBI's.

Paul DeGrocco Video Interview

Well Ducks fans here's our first ever video interview! It's with Ducks On-Field promotions host, Paul DeGrocco.

Paul who's been with the Ducks since 2002, is the best host I've ever seen at any level. He cares about the organization and the Ducks fans!

Aside from being the Ducks host, Paul is a great actor/comedian who has appeared in many productions on Long Island and around the northeast. He's contributed a lot of time to teaching his trade to the Long Island community.

This video is awesome, and Paul deserves all the credit! (I can only take credit for asking the questions via an email.)



Also, be sure to check out his web site http://www.PaulDeGrocco.com

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Richard Giannotti re-signs with Blue Crabs

Sources close to the situation have confirmed that Richard Giannotti has re-signed with the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs for the 2012 season.

Giannotti was a 38th round selection (1133rd overall) by the Anaheim Angels in 2004 out of The University of Miami.

He played three seasons in affiliated ball with the Angels and Cardinals organizations before coming to the Atlantic League with Nashua in 2008.

Giannotti joined the Southern Maryland in 2009. He has 12 home runs with 79 RBI's in three seasons with the Blue Crabs.

Sunday Morning Coffee 1/22-1/28

In case you missed what was up on LI Ducks Blog this week, here's our review of the week we call our "Sunday Morning Coffee"

This week we finally released the first card in our much anticipated 2012 LI Ducks Blog, Long Island Ducks set. Check out card #1 - Ray Navarrate.

Monday, January 23, 2012
Joe Cotton Interview -
In 2004, Cotton had a career year for the Ducks going 5-1 with a 1.91 ERA and 2 saves in 42.1 innings pitched. He was a major part of the Ducks bullpen, which helped them win the 2004 Atlantic League Championship...more

York resigns Ramon Castro and Salvador Paniagua; also acquire Santos Luis - The two-time defending Atlantic League Champions York Revolution made a splash on Monday resigning infielder Ramon Castro, and catcher Salvador Paniagua....more

Skeeters take seven players in expansion draft including Josh Banks -The Sugar Land Skeeters selected seven players including 2011 Duck Josh Banks in the Atlantic League Expansion Draft Friday...more

Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Flexfit announced as official head wear of Ducks and Bluefish - Flexfit was announced as the official head wear of Long Island Ducks and Bridgeport Bluefish on Tuesday...more

Southern Maryland resigns pitchers Michael Schlact, Ben Moore, and outfielder Casey Benjamin - The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs resigned pitchers Michael Schlact, Ben Moore, and All-Star outfielder Casey Benjamin on Tuesday...more

Patrick Osborn on Tuesday's signings of Schlact, Moore and Benjamin - Patrick Osborn weighed in on the resigning of Michael Schlact, Bob Moore, and Casey Benjamin by the Blue Crabs for the 2012 season...more

Michael Schlact on resigning with Southern Maryland - I got a chance to chat with Michael Schlact about resigning with the Southern Maryland today...here's what he said...more

Jamie Quinn named Hofstra assistant coach - Congratulations to Jamie Quinn who was named assistant coach for the Hofstra University Pride! ...more

Wednesday, January 25, 2012
You know him on the field, now check him out off of it! Paul DeGrocco! - Paul is a great actor/comedian who has appeared in many productions on Long Island and around the northeast. He has also contributed a lot of time to teaching his trade to the Long Island community...more

Thursday, January 26, 2012
Indy Interview, Jim Ed Warden - Jim Ed Warden is the best closer in Atlantic League history...period. Warden was a 6th round selection(187th overall) by the Cleveland Indians in the 2001 MLB Amateur Draft out of Tennessee Tech University...more

Friday, January 27, 2012
Luis Lopez resigns with the Bluefish - On January 25th, Luis Lopez announced via his twitter account that he has resigned with the Bridgeport Bluefish for the 2012 season...more

Friday, January 27, 2012

Luis Lopez re-signs with the Bluefish

On January 25th, Luis Lopez announced via his twitter account that he has re-signed with the Bridgeport Bluefish for the 2012 season.







Lopez had to stints in the major leagues with Toronto in 2001 and Montreal in 2004.

In 2008, Lopez signed with the Bluefish and has been a mainstay ever since.

He has 623 hits, 38 home runs, 325, and a .282 batting average in his Atlantic League career.

Here's a great interview with Bridgeport Bluefish Luiz Lopez from MLB Reports.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

CARD RELEASE! First Custom Ducks card

Here's an exclusive view of our 2012 Long Island Ducks custom card set.

All fans should feel free to print off any of the cards using this template on our website!


Jim Ed Warden Interview

Jim Ed Warden is the best closer in Atlantic League history...period.

Warden was a 6th round selection(187th overall) by the Cleveland Indians in the 2001 MLB Amateur Draft out of Tennessee Tech University.

He signed with the Indians organization on June 12, 2001 and was sent to Appalachian League where he was 4-5 with a 4.27 ERA for the Burlington Indians.

Warden played seven season in the Indians organization with his best season coming in 2006 with Akron where he had a 5-2 record with a 2.90 ERA and 13 saves in 59 innings.

In December 2006, Warden was selected by the Philadelphia Phillies in the MLB Rule V draft and went to spring training with them in 2007. However, he didn't make the opening day roster out of spring training and was returned to Indians organization.

In 2007, Warden was promoted to Triple-A Buffalo where he had a 1-1 record.

Warden split time between Harrisburg and Columbus in 2008 with the Washington Nationals organization.

In 2009, Warden signed with Southern Maryland Blue Crabs. He made an instant impact with 13 saves and a 1.13 ERA in only 24 innings pitched.

Warden's success didn't go unnoticed. On June 13, 2009 he had his contract purchased by the New York Mets and he was assigned to Double-A Binghamton. Warden continued his dominance and was eventually promoted to Buffalo (Triple-A) in the International League.




In 2010, Warden returned to Southern Maryland and established himself as the best closer in the league by going 6-4 with a 2.60 ERA and 30 saves. He was named an Atlantic League All-Star that season.

Warden a Southern Maryland fan favorite came back for his third season with the Blue Crabs in 2011, and had another tremendous season going 2-5 with a 2.76 ERA and 28 saves.

On January 18, 2012 Warden resigned with the Blue Crabs for the 2012 season.


CM: Favorite baseball team? Favorite baseball player?

JW: I don't really have one now, but growing up I loved the Yankees.. and Don Mattingly was the man. Jeremy Owens is getting close to Donnie Baseball though.

CM: What was it like playing college baseball at Tennessee Tech?

JW: It was a lot of fun but tough... I had 3 different head coaches in 4 years

CM: You played at Tennessee Tech with Ducks closer Bubbie Buzachero, and your current teammate with the Blue Crabs Casey Benjamin. What was that like? What do you think of those guys?

JW: Two of my best friends in the world... great guys...outstanding baseball players

CM: You were drafted in the 6th round (187th overall) by the Cleveland Indians in the 2001 MLB Amateur Draft. Do you remember where you were when you found out? What was your reaction?

JW: I was sitting at my parents house with my dad and a friend from high school... I thought I was going about 10 rounds later. I was ecstatic.

CM: Early in your career you were a starter. When did you or the Indians organization decide you were going to be a closer?

JW: Initially I just moved to the bullpen, because I really didn't do that well in the rotation. I never started a season as a closer with the Indians.. I always just ended up doing it by the end of the year.

CM: You played seven season in the Indians organization. What was your favorite memory?

JW: My favorite memories are my teammates... there wasn't one year where I didn't have the time of my life... but if I had to pick one year it has to be 2005, that was the year I switched to throwing sidearm and it change my career.
CM: You played with your manager Patrick Obsorn in the Indians organization. What was that like? Has he changed much since he was a player?

JW: He was the same man he is now... very competitive but at the same time very laid back and a great baseball guy

CM: You have an odd distinction of playing for Buffalo (Triple-A) in two different season for two different organizations (Indians in 2007 and Mets in 2009). What was that like?

JW: In 2007, I played there in April and May, and in 2009 I played there in August so the biggest differences were the weather but Buffalo always has unbelievable fans.

CM: You never made it to the major leagues. Did you ever feel that you were close to getting called up?

JW: I made it to one of the last days of camp with the Phillies in 2007 as a Rule 5 pick so that was a tough pill to swallow when I got sent back, and there were times in 2008 with the Nationals that I thought I might get called up.

CM: In 2010, you signed with the Blue Crabs. What were your first thoughts of Southern Maryland and the Atlantic League?

The Atlantic League is a great place to extend your career and I love playing in Maryland. I wouldn't play anywhere else unless it was affiliated ball.

CM: Since 2010 you've been one of the most dominant closers in the Atlantic League. What do you contribute to your success?

JW: A lot of my success is bred from knowing that is my game when everything is on the line at the end of the game...knowing that even if I gave up the lead the day before that my manager whether its been Oz or Butch has all the faith in the world in me and my ability to finish the game.

CM: 2012 will be your fourth season with the Southern Maryland. What do you think of the Blue Crabs organization and it's fans?

JW: I love our fans they are the best in the league.

CM: What do you love most about being a closer?

JW: Just being out there when the last out is made.

CM: What's your favorite park in the Atlantic League?

JW: I would have to say Regency Furniture Stadium in Waldorf. It fits to my style of pitching.

CM: What are your thoughts on signing autographs? What if someone ask you to sign 20 cards?

JW: I love it... if somebody asks me to sign 20 cards it might take all of 2 minutes to sign them. Its an honor.

CM: What was your reaction the first time you saw yourself on a baseball card?

JW: I though I looked really skinny.

CM: Did you collect baseball/sports cards when you were a kid?

JW: I had as many baseball cards as I could get... mostly Don Mattingly.

CM: If you could play catch with one person dead or alive who would it be?

JW: Abraham Lincoln... I bet he had nasty stuff.

(Picture on baseball card provided by Paul Hadsall)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

You know him on the field, now check him out off of it! Paul DeGrocco!

You've know him for years as the on field host of the Long Island Ducks, now check out Paul DeGrocco off the field at http://www.PaulDeGrocco.com.






Paul is a great actor/comedian who has appeared in many productions on Long Island and around the northeast. He's also contributed a lot of time to teaching his trade to the Long Island community.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Michael Schlact on re-signing with Southern Maryland

I got a chance to chat with Michael Schlact about re-signing with the Southern Maryland today...here's what he said.

"I'm really excited to have the opportunity to return to Southern Maryland this season. The Blue Crabs are a great organization, and it's going to be exciting to compete for the championship this season. With the team that Patrick is putting on the field, it should make for a fun summer of baseball!"

Patrick Osborn on Tuesday's signings of Schlact, Moore and Benjamin

Patrick Osborn weighed in on the resigning of Michael Schlact, Bob Moore, and Casey Benjamin by the Blue Crabs for the 2012 season.

"Mike (Schlact) pitched extremely well for us last year and it was his first full season coming off of shoulder surgery. I expect an even bigger and better season from Michael this year."

"Ben (Moore) came to us late last season and made an immediate impact. He's a 2 time pitcher of the year in the American Association and I'm really excited about having him. He's a huge addition!"

"Casey (Benjamin) is one of the better all-around baseball players I've ever seen. He will be back at second base this year and his bat will fit nicely in the middle of our lineup."

Jamie Quinn named Hofstra assistant coach

Congratulations to Jamie Quinn who was named assistant coach for the Hofstra University Pride!

Quinn will be working with the catchers and the bullpen next season. Link
Prior to joining the Hofstra staff he was a volunteer assistant coach with the Long Island University BlackBirds.

Quinn who is the bullpen coach for the Ducks, is also the director of "Catch 14" catching clinics.

Read our interview with him!

Southern Maryland re-signs pitchers Michael Schlact, Ben Moore, and outfielder Casey Benjamin

The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs re-signed pitchers Michael Schlact, Ben Moore, and All-Star outfielder Casey Benjamin on Tuesday.

Michael Schlact was a 3rd round selection (81st overall) by the Texas Rangers in the 2003 MLB Amateur Draft. He pitched 7 seasons in the Rangers organization before signing with the Blue Crabs in 2011. He had a 6-4 record with a 4.61 ERA in 107.1 innings pitched last season.

Ben Moore signed as an unrestricted free agent by the Yankees in 2003. He pitched two seasons in the Yankees organization before going to the Northern League where he played for Joliet, Calgary and Winnipeg from 2005-2007. In 2008, he signed with the Sioux Falls Canaries in the American Association, where he we would play until 2011. On August 31, 2011 he was traded to Southern Maryland for future considerations. He finished the 2011 season with a 3.38 ERA in 16 innings pitched.

Casey Benjamin
signed as an unrestricted free agent with the Texas Rangers 2003. He played 7 seasons in the Rangers organization, advancing as high as Triple-A in 2009. In 2010, he signed with Southern Maryland and hit .304 with 20 home runs and 66 RBI's in 112 games. He was named an Atlantic League All-Star that season. In 2011, he hit .270 with 13 home runs and 58 RBI's in 98 games.

Flexfit announced as official head wear of Ducks and Bluefish

Flexfit was announced as the official head wear of Long Island Ducks and Bridgeport Bluefish on Tuesday.

“We’re excited to be able to partner with Flexfit, a company whose values are in lockstep with ours on providing our players and fans with cutting edge, high caliber headwear. Flexfit has established itself as a world leader in the category and we’re working on some exciting new looks and designs for all to enjoy this upcoming season.” said Ducks President/GM and Bluefish Senior VP Mike Pfaff on the Ducks web site.

I was looking at Flexfit's web site today, and they have a huge variety of different styles of hats. The Ducks have always had pretty cool hats, and I hope that continues.

Here's a post I did a few months ago reviewing the Ducks 2011 uniforms. I made a suggestion about a black crown, orange bill hat I'd to see them produce. Hopefully Flexfit will make it a reality.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Joe Cotton Interview

Joe Cotton was an 18th round selection (526th overall) by the Philadelphia Phillies in the 1996 MLB Amateur Draft out of Bowling Green State University.

Cotton pitched in the Phillies organization for five seasons with his best season coming in 1999 with Reading where he was 4-1 with a 2.00 ERA.

In 2001, Cotton joined the Oakland A's organization was assigned to Double-A Midland where he went 6-1 with a 2.77 ERA.

Cotton joined the Ducks for the 2003 season, and went 0-4 with a 4.10 ERA.

In 2004, Cotton had a career year for the Ducks going 5-1 with a 1.91 ERA and 2 saves in 42.1 innings pitched. He was a major part of the Ducks bullpen, which helped them win the 2004 Atlantic League Championship.

After the 2004 season Cotton retired from baseball.

CM: Favorite Baseball player?

JC: My favorite player would have to be broken into former and current, so Pete Rose and Chase Utley.

CM: If you could play catch with one person dead or alive, who would it be?

JC: That would be my Grandfather. He was in his mid 70's when I was born so we never got to play catch. He was a huge baseball fan.

CM: You made it to AAA, but never to the majors what are your thoughts
on that?

JC: I kind of disappointed that I never got a shot at the big leagues. I put together a few great seasons in Double-A and I was just not in the right place at the right time. My thought was always, "I get all those prospects out in the minor leagues so why would that change in the big leagues? However, I'm very grateful and blessed for the chance to play the game I love for I long as I did.

CM: How did you become a Duck?

JC: Don McCormack was a coach in Phillies system when I was there and years later when I was released by Oakland he gave me a call to come join the Ducks. There were a lot ex-Phillies that Don brought on board.

CM: 2004 was such a special season, what was your favorite moment?

JC: My favorite moment was the final out in Camden to win the Championship. It was a moment I'll never forget, mainly because it was the last baseball game I ever played in. That season I played hurt and ended up having rotator cuff surgery a few months later which ended my career. It was a great way to go out though.

CM: 2004 was also a breakout season for yourself, you were 5-1 with a 1.98 era, what contributed to your success that season?

JC: It was a great season for our team and me individually. I had some great years in High-A and Double-A so I knew I could perform at a high level, but it was just one of those years that everything went my way. When I did miss my spots or when I got hit around the ball somehow ended up in someones glove for an out. We had a great defensive team and two catchers that called a good game....that's always a plus (laughing out loud).

CM: Who was your favorite teammate with the Ducks?

JC: I loved all my Duck teammates but if I most choose it would be Rusty McNamara and Jason Johnson. We all came up in the Phillies organization and became pretty close. Rusty and I were roommates on the road and at home for many seasons in the minors. He's like a brother to me. Jason is a great family man and was always a true mentor spiritually for me.

CM: You played 2 seasons for the Ducks (2003 and 2004), When you left what were your feelings toward Ducks fans?

JC: The Duck fans were(are) great..hands down the best fans I played for in my career. I was very proud to help bring home a championship for them in 2004

CM: Since you've retired from baseball, what are you doing?

JC: I've coached at some baseball academies and coached along with Rusty for the Rochester Honkers in the Northwoods league in 2009. Our squad won the championship that year and Rusty was named "Manager of the Year," and I received "Coach of the Year" for our efforts.

Currently I run the loss prevention program for Home Depot in Clearwater Florida. I'm married to my beautiful wife Amy and we have two handsome boys, James (10 )and Michael (7)

York re-signs Ramon Castro and Salvador Paniagua; also acquire Santos Luis

The two-time defending Atlantic League Champions York Revolution made a splash on Monday re-signing infielder Ramon Castro, and catcher Salvador Paniagua.

Castro hit .323 with 14 home runs, and 62 RBI's for the Revolution last season and was also named to the "Baseball America All-Independent Team".
While Paniagua hit .251 with 6 home runs in 57 games for the Revolution.

York also acquired right handed pitcher Santos Luis from the Lincoln Saltdogs in the American Association for cash considerations.

Luis started the 2011 season with the Portland Sea Dogs in the Boston Red Sox organization where he was 1-1 with a 5.72 ERA. He eventually got released and signed with the Saltdogs where he went 1-1 with a 0.83 ERA in 21 games.

Skeeters take seven players in expansion draft including Josh Banks

The Sugar Land Skeeters selected seven players including 2011 Duck Josh Banks in the Atlantic League Expansion Draft Friday.

Banks was selected in the 2nd round (50th overall) in the 2003 MLB Amateur Draft by the Toronto Blue Jays.

From 2007-2010 he had brief stints in the major leagues with Toronto, San Diego, and Houston.

In 2011 Banks had a 1-1 record with a 4.24 ERA in 3 games for the Ducks.

Here's the complete list of selected players:

Josh Banks -Long Island
Logan Kensing - Bridgeport (going to spring training with Pirates)
Ryan McKeller - Camden
Iggy Suarez - Lancaster
Ryan Houston - Somerset
Octavio Maritnez - York
Ben Harrison - Southern Maryland

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Sunday Morning Coffee 1/15-1/21

In case you missed what was up on LI Ducks Blog this week, here's our review of the week we call our "Sunday Morning Coffee"





Sunday, January 15, 2012
Sean Gregory Interview -
A native of West Islip,NY Sean Gregory attended the University at Albany where he had a 4.69 ERA with 13 wins, and 13 saves in 96 games pitched for the Great Danes. In 2009, Gregory was named an America East All-Star...more

Monday, January 16, 2012
Hayes and Wilson not returning to Camden in 2012 - According to Shark Bytes, Camden Manager Von Hayes and Hitting Coach Kevin Wilson will not be returning to the Camden Riversharks next season...more

Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Jim Ed Warden resigns with Blue Crabs - According to the Atlantic League web site, Jim Ed Warden has resigned with the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs for the 2o12 season...more

Patrick Osborn on resigning of Jim Ed Warden
Jim Ed Warden on resigning with Southern Maryland

Vote for the Somerset Patriots 15th Anniversary team - This season the Somerset Patriots will be celebrating their 15th anniversary, and they've given the fans a chance to vote for who will be on their 15th Anniversary team...more

Thursday, January 19, 2012
Indy Interview, Josh Pressley - Josh Pressley was originally drafted in the 4th Round (132nd overall) by the Tampa Bay Rays (Devil Rays) in the 1999 MLB Amateur Draft...more

Barnstormers sign Adam Godwin - The Lancaster Barnstormers have signed speedy outfielder Adam Godwin for the 2012 season...more

Godwin thankful to resign with Lancaster

Friday, January 20, 2012
NEW POLL QUESTION: Who has the best logo in the Atlantic League?

Sugar Land expansion draft selections to be announced Monday - According to a league GM, the Sugar Land Skeeters have made their selections in the expansion draft today, but those picks will not be announced until Monday via a press release from the Skeeters...moreLink
Saturday, January 21. 2012
Mike Loree shined on Wednesday in the Puerto Rican Championship Series - Loree, the 2011 Atlantic League Pitcher of the Year scattered 7 hits over 5 innings allowing only 1 earn run in the Criollos de Caguas win over the Indios de Mayaguez...more

Terry Tiffee signs minor league deal with Miami Marlins - Former Lancaster Barnstormer, Terry Tiffee signed a minor league contract with the Miami Marlins on Friday...more

POLL RESULTS: Your favorite former Mets player who also played for the Ducks?

Own a Southern Maryland Blue Crabs game used road jersey - I thought this was pretty awesome! You can purchase a game used road jersey from select Southern Maryland Blue Crabs players...more

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Own a Southern Maryland Blue Crabs game used road jersey

I thought this was pretty awesome! You can purchase a game used road jersey from select Southern Maryland Blue Crabs players.

Some notable jerseys are still available including Jim Ed Warden and Kody Kirkland. There are also some blank jerseys with numbers.

Fans Sound Off: Who do think will be the first player the Ducks sign?

I was just wondering about who the fans think the first player the Ducks will sign will be?

You can post your comments in the comments section below!

POLL RESULTS: Your favorite former Mets player who also played for the Ducks?

Here are the results from last weeks poll question, "Favorite former Mets player who also played for the Ducks?"

Jose Offerman was the surprise winner (I'm sure non-duck fans helped with that).

Carl Everett was second, while Bill Pulsipher and Edgardo Alfonzo were tied for third.

Terry Tiffee signs minor league deal with Miami Marlins

Former Lancaster Barnstormer, Terry Tiffee signed a minor league contract with the Miami Marlins on Friday.

Tiffee was originally drafted by the Minnesota Twins in the 26th round (779th overall) of the 1999 MLB Amateur Draft.

In 2011, Tiffee hit .293 with 13 home runs and 46 RBI's for the Barnstormers in 52 games prior to be signed by the New York Yankees organization.

Mike Loree shined on Wednesday in the Puerto Rican Championship Series.

Mike Loree shined on Wednesday in the Puerto Rican Championship Series.

Loree, the 2011 Atlantic League Pitcher of the Year scattered 7 hits over 5 innings allowing only 1 earn run in the Criollos de Caguas win over the Indios de Mayaguez.

Loree will open the season in camp with the Pittsburgh Pirates, and hopefully get a roster spot with one of their minor league teams.

Check out our interview with him!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Sugar Land expansion draft selections to be announced Monday

According to a league GM, the Sugar Land Skeeters have made their selections in the expansion draft today, but those picks will not be announced until Monday via a press release from the Skeeters.

I'm sure the Skeeters don't want to formally announce anything about their selections until Monday because the want to me sure players who were selected have been notified.

NEW POLL QUESTION: Who has the best logo in the Atlantic League?

NEW POLL QUESTION: Who has the best logo in the Atlantic League?







Godwin thankful to resign with Lancaster

Yesterday, Adam Godwin signed with the Lancaster Barnstormers for the 2012 season.

We were able to catch up with Adam, and here's what he had to say about signing with the Barnstormers.

"I'm blessed and thankful for the opportunity to put on a Barnstormers jersey and get paid to play the game that I love so much!"

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Barnstormers sign Adam Godwin

The Lancaster Barnstormers have signed speedy outfielder Adam Godwin for the 2012 season.

Godwin was originally drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 11th round (346th overall) of the 2005 MLB Amateur Draft.

He played five season in the Dodgers organization before signing with the New Jersey Jackals of the Can-Am League in 2010.

Godwin started the 2011 season with the Barnstormers but was traded to Southern Maryland after only playing in 19 games in Lancaster.

He hit .326 with 37 stolen bases in 72 games for the Blue Crabs.

Josh Pressley Interview

Josh Pressley was originally drafted in the 4th Round (132nd overall) by the Tampa Bay Rays (Devil Rays) in the 1999 MLB Amateur Draft.

On July 2, 1998 he signed with the Devil Rays and was sent to the GCL (Gulf Coast League) Devil Rays where he hit .304 with 1 home run and 16 RBI's in 36 games.

Pressley spent the 1999 and 2000 season with the Charleston RiverDogs in the South Atlantic League. He hit .275 with 15 home runs with 115 RBI's in those two seasons.

In 2001, Pressley was promoted to double-A Orlando but broke his wrist and only played 30 games.

Pressley started 2002 in double-A Orlando again and hit .304 with 4 home runs, and 34 RBI's in 93 games before he was promoted to triple-A Durham.

On December 15, 2002, Pressley was traded to the New York Mets along with Russ Johnson for Rey Ordonez and cash.

Pressley played two seasons in the Mets organization. His best season came in 2004 with Binghamton when he hit .300 with 3 home runs and 63 RBI's in 101 games.

From 2005 to 2006 Pressley played for four different organizations including Kansas City Royals, Florida Marlins, St. Louis Cardinals, and Boston Red Sox.

In 2007, Pressley signed with the Somerset Patriots and would be become a mainstay at first base over the next five seasons.

In 2008, Pressley lead the Patriots to the Atlantic League championship. That season he hit .354 with 30 home runs, and 101 RBI's and was named "Atlantic League Player of the Year."

In his five season with the Patriots he hit .308 with 96 home runs, and 378 RBI's.

On January 12, 2012, Pressley would have his rights traded to the expansion Sugar Land Skeeters.

CM: Growing up in Florida who was your favorite baseball team? Favorite player?

JP: I actually spent the majority of my childhood in Maine and was born in Maine. I didn't move to Florida until I was around twelve. We had three channels on our TV and the Red Sox were always on. So at an early age I became a Red Sox fan. I carried that with me to Florida and have been ever since. My favorite player would probably have been Bo Jackson.

CM: You were drafted in the 4th Round (132nd overall) in the 1998 MLB Amateur Draft? Do you remember where you were? What was your reaction?

JP: I'm not exactly sure to be honest. I believe I was in school on a normal school day. I had a pretty good idea that the Rays were going to take me so it wasn't a huge surprise. I was extremely honored to be taken in the draft no matter where it was and for the Rays to have believed in me like they did. They have always been a class organization even before their success at the big league level.

CM: Did you feel pressure to perform right away being drafted so high, and by a team so close to where you grew up?

JP: The Rays did a very good job of not putting pressure on me and allowing me to enjoy being on the field. I never felt pressure to perform because of my draft position. Of course, there is pressure to perform in the professional game at any level. Pressure isn't always a bad thing though.

CM: What was your reaction the first time you saw yourself on baseball card?

JP: It was surreal. I was a card collector as a kid so to see myself on a topps card was a pretty cool feeling.

CM: You played in the Rays (Devil Rays) organization for five season, what was your favorite memory? Favorite teammate?

JP: I have so many great memories playing with Tampa Bay. They gave me an opportunity to live a dream and I will be forever great full for that. I can't really say that I have a favorite memory. My first major league spring training was a great baseball experience for me in general. They had a lot of veteran free agents that year and I was only 19. I learned so much from those players that spring about how to act as a professional and respect the game.

It would be wrong of me to say I have one "favorite" teammate. I've been blessed to play on some great teams with some guys that I will be lifelong friends with. I could never narrow it to just one.

CM: You made it triple-A three times in your minor league career. Did you think you were going to get called up the Majors?

JP: There was a few times I thought I may have been close. One would actually have been in 2005 when I was in AA. Who knows how close or how far I ever was. Unfortunately things like that aren't in our control.

CM: In 2006, you played for three different organizations (Florida, St. Louis and Boston). What was that like?

JP: It was a whirlwind. I never was really in one place long enough to take in the organizations. Being in camp with Boston was an unreal experience though. It seemed like every time I finally learned all my teammates names I was off to a different team. That was one of my toughest years professionally.

CM: In 2007, You signed with the Somerset Patriots. What were the circumstances of you signing with the Patriots?

JP: I had known Jeff Nettles from playing against him when he was with the Yankees and from being teammates with him in spring training. He had always told me I would love the league and the organization. When I didn't have an affiliated job he called up and asked me if I wanted to come to Somerset. I always respected Jeff and how he played the game. He got me into Somerset. If it wasn't for Nett I would never have known about the League or the Pats.

CM: What were you first thoughts of the Patriots and the Atlantic League?

JP: It was a very strong league. Coming in I think everyone may underestimate it because of its independent label. You learn quickly that this league is full of very good talent. There are plenty of players here that can play anywhere at any level of baseball.

CM: You had an incredible season in 2008. The Patriots won the Atlantic League championship and you were named "Player of the Year." What did that mean to you?

JP: 2008 was a special year. For some reason everything fell into place. Winning a Championship in Somerset was one of the best experiences of my career. To be named player of the year on top of that was a great honor. It's always great to be recognized amongst your peers. Without a lot of guys in that lineup I never would have received that award though. Brandon Larson was one of the most amazing hitters I've ever played with and Mike Ryan had a monster year in front of me. Those guys enabled me to sneak up on some people I think. I know I wouldn't have pitched to Lars or Ryno!!



CM: You were a member of the Patriots for five seasons. How do you view the fans and organization in Somerset? What do you think of Sparky Lyle?

JP: The Patriots are a first class organization. I have never been treated so well as a player as I was with the Patriots. They gave me an opportunity to mature as a player and become the player that I am today. From my experience they are the best organization in the league and one of the best in all the minor leagues. (sorry duck fans!)

Sparky is the definition of a players manager. He always keeps everyone lose but quietly demands winning. His record and reputation in the league speaks for itself. To be at the head of 5 Championships in the span of 12 years is pretty amazing.

CM:If you could play catch with one person dead or alive who would it be?

JP: Does it have to be a baseball player? If not Michael Jordan. I guess you could say he was a baseball player of sorts. As far as baseball players probably Nolan Ryan. I may end up trying take a swing though!

CM: Did you ask to be traded to Sugar Land? Why?

JP: Yes I did. I loved everything about Somerset and made some of my best memories in baseball there. It's very rare to have a chance to play so close to extended family for an entire season. Being that I am getting to the end of my playing career I wanted to take advantage of that opportunity. I really am thankful to Somerset for being so understanding of my situation. Their professionalism in the transaction proves again that they are a first class organization and put their players first.

CM: Are you excited about going to an expansion team?

JP: It is definitely exciting to be a part of an expansion team. The newness of the whole experience excites me. It's a unique situation to be in when everything that we do as a team will be a first for the organization. I've already had some conversations with Gary and am very excited with the direction the team is going and their commitment to putting a winning team on the field in the first year.

CM: What's one thing you want Skeeter fans to know about you?

JP: I'm pretty intense on the field and take my job very seriously, but off the field I'm actually a big prankster. I definitely enjoy a good prank and don't care if I'm the victim or the one pulling it. We won't get into details, but I definitely have some good ones up my sleeve. That and I may be the only person on earth that doesn't really like chocolate chip cookies.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Jim Ed Warden on resigning with Southern Maryland

Got a message from Jim Ed Warden about resigning with Southern Maryland.

"Coming back to Southern Marlyand is a no brainer for me. I get another chance to play for a great manager and a great friend and former teammate with Patrick. Also, I count my teammates in that locker room among my closest friends in the world, and to get a chance to extend my playing career with those guys in such a wonderful atmosphere and competitive league is all that I can really ask for at this point.

Patrick Osborn on resigning of Jim Ed Warden

I was able to catch up with Blue Crabs Manager Patrick Osborn today and ask him about the resigning of his closer Jim Ed Warden.

"It's comforting knowing Jim Ed will be back for another year. Not only do I think he's the best closer in the league, but his character and respect for teammates equals his pitching ability. He's a luxury to have and he solidifies the back end of a bullpen that I expect will be very good again." said Osborn

Vote for the Somerset Patriots 15th Anniversary team

This season the Somerset Patriots will be celebrating their 15th anniversary, and they've given the fans a chance to vote for who will be on their 15th Anniversary team.

Click on this link to vote!

The Patriots will also be releasing baseball card strips of the players selected at five different dates.

Luis Lopez interview on MLB Reports

Here's a great interview with Bridgeport Bluefish Luiz Lopez from MLB Reports.

Jim Ed Warden resigns with Blue Crabs

According to the Atlantic League web site, Jim Ed Warden has resigned with the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs for the 2o12 season.

Warden was a 6th round pick (187 overall) by the Cleveland Indians in the 2001 MLB Amateur Draft.

This will be his fourth season with the Blue Crabs. In his three previous seasons he had a combined 2.39 ERA with 71 saves in 132 innings pitched.