AKRON RUBBERDUCKS WEEK 10 & MLB DRAFT
Coming home after a three game series that turned into a four game series with a doubleheder to make up a rain out earlier in the season. The Ducks split the series 2-2. Now the Duck return home to face the Reading Fightin Phils. Reading is the East division leaders with a 39-19 record and are 7-3 in the last 10 games, while the Ducks are 3-7 in their last 10.With the Ducks in a slump for the first time this year can they breakout and win the big games when needed? At the end of the series this will show if the Ducks can win the big games against good team.
Game one: Weather called for rain so I did not go. The rain did not arrive until a few hours after the game was completed. Good thing I did not go, because I would have probable left early since the Duck lost 11-1.
Game two: Summer game times have started and games now start at 7:05pm. Season ticket holders can enter at 5:05pm. I arrived around 5:30pm to see the the end of the second group and all of the last group of Reading's BP. I got three baseballs and gave them away to two kids and one begging mother who said she never got one before. Not sure if she is going to keep it for herself or give to one of her kids. I have two Phils player baseball cards where I got one signed before the game (Rhys Hoskins Phils #19 prospect) and one after the game (Jorge Alfaro Phils #9 prospect). I also got a third out toss up game used ball for Duck's Nellie Rodriguez (I keep ALL game used baseballs). The game was pretty close where both staring pitchers pitched to the 7th inning where the score was tied 2-2. Both pitching staff where on their "A" game with the two teams totaling 35 strikeouts and giving up 11 hits. The game would go into extra inning and the Phils would win on a solo homerun by Rhys Hoskins in the 11th inning 3-2.
The Ducks need to find out what's going on. There has been a lot of roster transactions with Advance A players getting their first taste of AA pitching so, this might be the reason for them, but the main core group of players have been in AA all season. When you get only 4 hits and strikeout 17 times as a team something is not clicking.
Game three: Hiromi keeps telling me I have to many baseball, I took three with me to give away. As I got to BP I would get 9 more baseballs (two were toss ups after I called their name) and one game used foul ball toss up by Eric Stamets. I gave 10 balls away (half way to my season goal of giving away 100 baseballs)while still taking three balls home. Funny how thing workout, after walking around the stadium giving the baseballs away to kid with gloves (today's goal) I sat down in my seat and that inning is when Eric tossed me the ball. Give away 10 BP baseball get one game used. Like I said before I will keep ALL game used and any toss ups. I worked to get them by knowing the player name and asking for the ball (please and thank you), Most kids just yelling "here, here, here" or "hey number xx" then running off to show their parent without saying anything to the player. Clint Frazier has not signed in a few weeks, so I moved from my normal spot close to the dugout to mid field by the rain tarp. He was the DH today, so he is responsible for bring the ball bag back to the dugout after warming up and is the last player to leave the field. Most times since the player has the ball bag they just return to the dugout, but today I said "Mr Frazier can you sign for me please" and he came to me first. It's always good to get one of the teams top prospects. I would get a total of 5 Duck autographs.
Luigi Rodriguez made his AA debut and it was a good one going 2-4 with an RBI. The game was close (2-2) until the 3-run homer from Reading that took the air out of the crowd and the team, I saw another first when Akron pitcher Louis Head strikeout 4 batter in one inning. The first batter strikeout but the ball got away from the catcher and the runner advanced to first. The next three batter all strikeout swinging. The Ducks had a little rally in the ninth but a perfect throw from Reading outfielder Dylan Cozens to gun down Joe Sever at the plate to end the game. Ducks lose 6-2. The Ducks once again had more strikeouts than hit (10/8). That makes two nights in a row. Any time any team does that it not going to be a good night.
Week 10 Haul
Week's total: 2 games, 14 balls (13 give-a-way), 7 autographs
Games: 0 day 2 night 0 doubleheader Home record: 0-2
Akron's total: 25 games, 110 balls (50 give-a-way), 85 autographs, 2 bat, 6 SGA,
Games: 7 day 18 night 0 doubleheader Home record: 18-7
2016 baseball season total: 40 games, 151 balls (55 give-a-way), 170 autographs, 9 bats
2016 MLB DRAFT
1st round and 25th overall pick (LHP) Eric Lauer to the Padres. Previously drafted in 2013 17th round and 505th overall to the Blue Jays.
7th round and 222nd overall pick (RHP) Andy Ravel to the Blue Jays. Previously drafted in 2013 21st round and 630th overall to the D-Backs.
13th round and 394th overall pick (1B) Conner Simonetti to the Nationals. Previously drafted in 2013 35th round and 1,065 overall pick to the Reds.
(No picture with him ... yet!)
All these players decided not to sign out of high school and attend college turned out better for them as they got coached by the Kent State coaching staff who are former Major Leaguers in pitching coach Mike Birkbeck and head coach Jeff Duncan.
Now I need pictures with them in there MiLB/MLB uniforms.