• Injury brings new face to Sky Sox

    Fri, April 18, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    t551_main_logoInfielder Rafael Ynoa, who hit the RBI single that scored Kyle Parker in the 10th inning on Thursday night, was put on the disabled list with a left calf contusion.

    Extended Spring Training player Angelys Nina, 25, of the Dominican Republic was called up and started at second base on Friday night. The 2007 Rockies free agent signee spent last season with Double-A Tulsa (.280 average, 51 RBIs, 19 stolen bases).

    Notes

    Both Sky Sox home wins have come in walk-off fashion in the 11th inning. … 2013 PCL all-star third baseman Ryan Wheeler sat out for the second straight game after starting the first 13 contests. … The Sky Sox return home for a four-game homestand against new division rival Iowa Cubs April 24-27.

  • Sky Sox juggle line-up for Thursday’s game

    Thu, April 17, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    Third baseman Ryan Wheeler took his first day off this season after starting all 13 games so far. He was the only Sky Sox to play the same position all season.

    The lineup juggling ended up giving designated hitter Matt McBride his first start this season in right field.  McBride, who is listed as a catcher on the Colorado Springs roster, also has two starts in left field, one at first base and  and none behind the plate.

    Right fielder Kyle Parker (12 games) gets his first game at first base with usual first baseman Ben Paulsen (12 games) moving into the designated hitter spot usually held by McBride.

     

  • New turf passes first test, faces another tonight

    Wed, April 16, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    t551_main_logoSunday’s snow and rain was the first real weather challenge for the new turf at Security Service Field. The new grass passed with flying colors thanks in part to having the snow melt with the arrival of the Monday morning sun.

    That early melt and a stiff breeze, which later produced a wind chill that postponed Game 2 of the scheduled doubleheader that night, also dried the surface quickly. That was in stark contrast to last year’s 10-year-old surface. Here is the original Gazette article about the field work this offseason.

    “It was definitely good to see,” Sky Sox assistant general manager Mike Hobson said.

    The turf will face another challenge with a 90 percent chance of rain on Wednesday night that could allow some surface water to develop. Fortunately, Wednesday’s 11 a.m. matinee should be completed before the rains, which should give the field time to dry out before a 6:35 p.m. game on Thursday.

    The playing surface continues to improve as the new sod grew and took better hold over the past 45 days growing and taking better hold. There is still a small spray of dirst when a baseball hits the turf since sand is used to fill the seams in the sod until the roots grow sideways and fill those gaps in.

    “That’s to be expected any time you have new sod,” Hobson added. “The players seem happy with the field. They are on it all the time and they let us know if there is a divot or any problem that comes up with a new surface.”

    Center fielder Jason Pridie said the field has held up well.

    “It’s been good,” he said. “You have some of the new turf problems but nothing you wouldn’t expect.”

  • Oklahoma City at Sky Sox series preview

    Tue, April 15, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    FriedrichactionOklahoma City RedHawks at Sky Sox

    Schedule: 6:35 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, 11 a.m. Wednesday, Security Service Field

    Tuesday’s scheduled starters: OKC RHP Mike Foltynewicz (0-1, 11.57 ERA) vs. Colorado Springs LHP Christian Friedrich (0-1, 7.00).

    Pacific Coast League ramifications: Colorado Springs can pick up some ground on the PCL American North division leaders.

    Top Astros prospects

    CF George Springer –  The outfielder is Houston’s No. 2 prospect according to baseballamerica.com, which named him as a minor league all-star. He was one of the five finalists for the USA Today Minor League Player of the Year award. He became the third Minor Leaguer in 40 years to hit 30 home runs and steal 40 bases, and he finished three homers shy of the first 40-40 season in the minors in at least 50 years.

    RHP Mike Foltynewicz – Tuesday’s scheduled starter is the No.-4 ranked prospect. His fastball (mid to upper 90s) has surpassed 100 mph and makes him a closer prospect down the road.

    1B Jon Singleton – Houston’s seventh-ranked prospect was acquired in a trade for outfielder Hunter Pence and cash on July 29, 2011 with Philadelphia. MLB.com rates Singleton as the top first baseman prospect in the minors.

    RF Domingo Santana — Houston’s eighth-rated prospect, now 21, made his pro debut at age 16 in the Gulf Coast League and was part of the Pence trade.

    This name might ring a bell

    RHP Collin McHugh – Friday’s scheduled starter (0-0, 6.43) is a former Sky Sox player (2-2, 4.63) who came to the Rockies organization in a 2013 midseason trade with Mets.

    Game promotions: $2 Tuesdays; Wednesday, Math Day Matinee; Craft Brew Thursday; Friday Night Fireworks.

  • Culberson sent down to Sky Sox; Chatwood starts against Giants today

    Sun, April 13, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    Culberson MUGThe Colorado Rockies announced that the club has activated right-handed pitcher Tyler Chatwood from the 15-day disabled list. To create room on the active roster for Chatwood, the club has optioned infielder Charlie Culberson to Triple-A Colorado Springs.  Chatwood (No. 27) is scheduled to make his season debut in today’s game against the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park (2:05 p.m. MT).

    Chatwood, 24, made his second Opening Day roster before being placed on the disabled list on April 2 with a left hamstring strain (retroactive to March 29). Chatwood made one rehab start for Triple-A Colorado Springs on April 8 at Round Rock and pitched 6.1 innings and allowed one run on five hits, while walking just one and striking out eight. Last year, he started 20 games for the Rockies and went 8-5 with a 3.15 ERA (111.1 ip, 39 er), 41 walks and 66 strikeouts. His eight wins were a season high and his 66 strikeouts were eight shy of matching his season high (74 in 2011). The Redlands, Calif. native made five appearances/four starts in Cactus League play and did not receive a decision (15.0 ip, 15 h, 9 r/7 er, 9 bb, 9 so).

    Culberson, 25, made his first Opening Day roster this year and appeared in nine games for the Rockies, going 2-for-18 with a double and 2 RBI. Last season, he split the year between Triple-A Colorado Springs and Colorado. With the Rockies, he played 47 games and hit .293 (29-for-99) with 5 doubles, 2 home runs, 12 RBI and 12 runs. The 6-foot right-hander has hit .245 (34-for-139) with 6 doubles, 2 home runs, 15 RBI and 12 runs in 62 Major League games.

     The Rockies have a full 40-man roster.

  • Sunday’s Sky Sox game postponed

    Sun, April 13, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    t551_main_logoSunday’s game between the Colorado Springs Sky Sox and the Round Rock Express was postponed due cold temperatures, rain and snow.

    The game is scheduled to be made up as part of a 4:05 p.m. Monday doubleheader consisting of two seven-inning games. The twin bill concludes the home series against the Express (6-4), which have won four of six against the host Sky Sox (5-5).

    Sunday’s tickets can be redeemed for any future Sky Sox 2014 regular season home game, except July 3, by exchanging them at the Security Service Field box office.

    The scheduled starters are: Game 1, Express, LHP Ryan Feirerabend (1-0, 5.87 ERA) vs. Yohan Flande (0-1, 9.00 ERA); Game 2, Express, Nick Tepesch (2-0, 0.69 ERA) vs. Christian Friedrich (0-1, 7.00).

    Tim Wheeler.jogMonday will be the second weather-caused doubleheader between the two teams this season after an April 7 rain-out in Texas.

    On Tuesday, the Sky Sox host Oklahoma City for Game 1 of a four-game PCL American Northern Division series.

    Through 10 games, outfielder Tim Wheeler, pictured, leads the Sky Sox with a .364 batting average and is tied for the team lead in RBIs (8) and home runs (2) with outfielder Kyle Parker. Outfielder Jason Pridie also has two home runs, leads the team with two stolen bases and is second with a .344 average.

  • Sun still shining for Round Rock at Sky Sox

    Sat, April 12, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    t551_main_logoMake sure to catch some baseball before the winter-like weather hits later tonight/Sunday morning.

    LHP Pedro Hernandez (91-0, 1.80 ERA) takes on Express righty Justin Germano (0-1, 0.00) at 1:35 today.

    Here are some pregame notes form Sky Sox historian Chris Moyer in his own words:

    Friday’s game time of 4 hour,s 37 minutes is the 4th longest HOME game in time (tied for 13th longest game overall)

    Longest game in innings and time between Express and Sky Sox (since 2005): Previous high in time:  3:33 – May 8th, 2010 (Home) (9-inning game)

    Only other extra-inning game between the two teams:  May 19th, 2013 (in Round Rock) (10 innings) (Only 3:19)

    It was the second home opener to go into extra innings.  The other instance: April 14th, 2006 against Tucson.  Tucson won that game 9-8 in 11 innings (in front of 6,215).

    The crowd of 7,562 is the second largest April regular season home game in Sky Sox regular season history, and third largest home opener.  On April 22nd, 1990, the home opener against the Tucson Toros drew 8,913, while the 3rd home opener during the 1988 season, the grand opening of Sky Sox Stadium on June 18th, 1988, drew 8,763. [The Sky Sox started the inaugural 1988 season with the first home series in Yuma, AZ, then at Spurgeon Stadium while Sky Sox Stadium was still under construction.]  (Two other Sky Sox exhibitions against the Colorado Rockies in April also drew in excess of 8,000: April 21st, 1994 exhibition drew 8,947, and April 29th, 1996 exhibition drew 8,629.)

    While the 7-run deficit is big for the Sky Sox, the largest come-from-behind deficit at home was 10 runs on April 30th, 1996 against Tacoma.  (Tacoma led 10-0 after 2½ innings, and the Sky Sox rallied to win that game 11-10.) (4 in 5th, 3 in 6th, 3 in 7th, 1 in 8th)

    It was the second grand slam homer hit by a Round Rock player against Sky Sox pitching, first time at Security Service Field.  The other instance took place in Round Rock on August 1st, 2007 as Cody Ransom hit in the 5th inning against Mike Esposito.

    The last time a Sky Sox pitcher allowed a grand slam homer and the Sky Sox still won the game:  

    August 1st, 2006 (at Memphis):  Memphis’ Derek Wathan hit a 9th inning grand slam off Zach McClellan, but the Sky Sox held on to beat the Redbirds 10-8 at Autozone Park. 

    The last time a Sky Sox pitcher allowed a grand slam homer at HOME and the Sky Sox still won the game:  August 19th, 2001 (home vs. Salt Lake):  Salt Lake’s Trent Durrington hit a grand slam off Andy Larkin in the 5th inning.  The Sky Sox beat Salt Lake, 18-10.

    The last time a Sky Sox player hit a walk-off homer in extra innings:  May 25th, 2013 by Ben Paulsen, a 2-run HR off Fresno’s Jamie Dunnington in the 12th, as the Sky Sox beat Fresno, 7-5.

    The last time a Sky Sox player hit a walk-off 3-run homer in extra innings: August 22nd, 2011 by Ryan Spilborghs, a 3-run HR off Salt Lake’s Horacio Ramirez in the 10th, as the Sky Sox beat Salt Lake, 9-7.  (Spilborghs became the first Sky Sox player to have a lead-off homer and walk-off homer in the same game.)

    There have been two other instances in Sky Sox history, where a game ended with the exact scenario of 11-10 in 11 innings, and both situations feature late comebacks:

    – June 5th, 1998 vs. Memphis (Home)  [Sky Sox led 6-1 after 5 innings, Memphis rallied with one run in the 6th and four runs in the 7th. Tied 6-6 after regulation. Memphis scored 4 runs in the top of the 11th inning, Sky Sox rallied with 5 runs in the bottom of the 11th inning, highlighted by Edgard Clemente's game-winning 3-run double, 11-10 Sky Sox.]

    – July 26th, 2012 vs. Reno (Road, at Aces Ballpark)  [Reno led 10-4 after 6 innings, the Sky Sox rallied with 3 runs in the 7th and 3 runs in the 9th (from a Matt McBride 2-run double, and Hernan Iribarren game-tying single).  Tied 10-10 after regulation.  Reno wins in the 11th on a Coty Woods wild pitch allowing Tyler Bortnick score the winning run, 11-10 Reno.]

     

     

  • Sky Sox pregame: Home opener notes

    Fri, April 11, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    Sox the FoxHome Opening Series, Round Rock at Sky Sox

    Schedule: 6:35 p.m. Friday; 1:35 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; 6:35 p.m. Monday, Security Service Field

    Friday’s scheduled starters: Round Rock, LHP Michael Kirkman (0-0, 18.00 ERA) vs. Colorado Springs LHP Tyler Matzek (1-0, 1.80).

    Pacific Coast League ramifications: It is way too early, but the Sky Sox (4-4) could use a strong homestand, which will include American Northern division foe Oklahoma City Tuesday through Friday, after going 1-3 in Texas.

    Top Express prospects

    None of the Texas Rangers’ top 20 according to mlb.com or the top 10 according to BaseballAmerica.com are playing for Triple-A Round Rock (4-4)

    These Express names might ring a bell

    3B Kevin Kouzmanoff was acquired by the Rockies from Oakland for OF Eliezer Mesa on Aug. 23, 2011. In 2009, he set a National League record for third basemen with a .990 fielding percentage, committing three errors in 311 chances. He is batting a team-high .313 after Thursday’s 14-8 win over Colorado Springs.

    LF Bryan Peterson has a team-high 12 RBIs and three home runs in seven games.

    RHP Justin Germano, Tuesday’s Game 1 starter threw the first nine-inning perfect game in Triple-A Columbus history on July 26, 2011 to earn Milb.com honors for Minor League Moment of the Year and Best Single-Game Performer.

    RHP Scott Baker was the 2010 opening day starter for the Twins.

    Game promotions: Friday, Opening Night fireworks; magnet schedule giveaway; Saturday, magnet schedule giveaway; Sunday, 50-cent hot dogs; Kids Club, Sox The Fox birthday, magnet schedule giveaway; Monday, kids eat free.

    Season-long military promotion: All 72 home games will feature a “Military Family of the Game.” Fans can sign up their own family or nominate another by visiting the Fan Center at any home game or by contacting First Command Financial Services at (719) 599-8861 or (719) 465-5555.

    Sky Sox home opener roster

    Pitchers (13) — Christian Bergman, 25; Brooks Brown, 28; Greg Burke, 32; Manny Corpas, 31; Yohan Flande, 27; * Christian Friedrich, 26;  Pedro Hernandez, 24; Dan Houston, 27; Wilton Lopez, 30; Chris Martin, 27;  Nick Massett, 32; * Tyler Matzek, 23; * Rob Scahill, 27. 

    Catchers (three) — Matt McBride, 28; Michael McKenry, 28; Jackson Williams, 26  

    Infielders (five) — Drew Garcia, 27; Paul Janish, 31; Ben Paulsen, 26; * Ryan Wheeler, 25; Rafael Ynoa, 26.

    Outfielders (four) — * Corey Dickerson, 24; * Kyle Parker, 24; Jason Pridie, 30; Tim Wheeler, 26.         

    * on Rockies 40-man roster # MLB rehab assignment

  • Rockies call up INF Rutledge, send down RHP Lopez

    Wed, April 9, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    The Colorado Rockies announced today that the club has recalled infielder Josh Rutledge from Triple-A Colorado Springs. In addition, the club has optioned right-hander Wilton Lopez to Triple-A.

    Rutledge ( No. 14) will be dressed and available for today’s game against the Chicago White Sox at Coors Field at 1:10 p.m. MT.

    Rutledge, 24, began the year with Triple-A Colorado Springs where he has hit .389 (7-for-18) with a double, a home run, 4 RBI and 2 runs in 5 games. Last season, he began the year on the Rockies Opening Day roster as the starting second baseman and spent the majority of the year in the Majors. He played in 58 games with 56 starts at second and owned a .982 fielding percentage, while also playing 14 games at shortstop. In 161 career games with the Rockies, the Birmingham native has hit .254 (143-for-562) with 26 doubles, 6 triples, 15 home runs, 56 RBI and 82 runs.

    Lopez, 30, has pitched in 4 games for the Rockies this season after making the Opening Day roster for the second consecutive year. In those 4 games, he has pitched 6.1 innings and has allowed 8 runs on 18 hits with 4 strikeouts. In 292 career games, Lopez is 16-17 with 11 saves and a 3.54 ERA (305.1 ip, 120 er), 337 hits, 57 walks and 221 strikeouts.

    The Rockies currently have a full 40-man roster.

  • Sky Sox fall short in season opener, 2-1

    Fri, April 4, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    FriedrichColorado Springs opened the PCL season with a 2-1 loss at New Orleans.

    Lefthander Christian Friedrich got the nod for the Sky Sox (0-1), and started his third consecutive Opening Day and delivered arguably his best start.

    Friedrich tossed five innings, scattering four hits, allowing one run, while striking out nine batters. His only blemish was a solo-homer by Zephyr left fielder Kyle Jenson to lead off the second inning. The nine Ks were the most on Opening Day in Sky Sox history.

    New Orleans starter Brian Flynn protected the Zephyrs’ lead with six shutout innings, allowing just two hits and one walk, while striking out five batters. Flynn is the reigning ERA king in the Pacific Coast League.

    The Zephyrs’ 1-0 lead remained for much of the game until left fielder Tim Wheeler led off the eighth inning with a triple. In the next at-bat, catcher Michael McKenry hit a sacrifice fly to center field to score Wheeler and tie the game.

    New Orleans answered immediately in the bottom of the eighth against reliever Manny Corpas (0-1) with a lead-off single by Jensen, followed by a Justin Bour RBI double in the next at-bat. Corpas was able to get out of the inning with two fly outs and a ground out.

    In the ninth, a potential Sky Sox rally began when leadoff hitter and center fielder Jason Pridie singled to start the inning, but was later picked off at first by Zephyr closer Chris Hatcher., who allowed a walk but bounced back with two strikeouts to end the game.

    Zephyr Arquimedes Caminero (1-0) picked up the win with two innings of relief work.

    Sky Sox lefty Boone Logan (Major League rehab assignment) pitched a scoreless sixth inning striking out two, but did allow a single and a walk.

    Righty Rob Scahill also pitched a scoreless frame with one strikeout and one hit, a soft line-drive single.  

    Rutledge and Paulsen were the other two Sky Sox players with hits, both singles.

    The Sky Sox will take on the Zephyrs at 6 p.m. MT Friday night in New Orleans in Game 2 of the four-game series. On the mound will be a pair of righties, Christian Bergman for Colorado Springs and Bryan Evans for New Orleans.