Wednesday night was the 75th Annual Texas League All-Star Game. The game matched the North All-Stars made up of the Tulsa Drillers, Northwest Arkansas Naturals, Arkansas Travelers and Springfield Cardinals against the South All-Stars with the San Antonio Missions, Frisco Roughriders, Midland RockHounds, and Corpus Christi Hooks making up the roster for the home team. The South All-Stars would use the home field advantage by beating the North All-Stars 3-2 in a wonderful display of pitching by the South’s pitching staff.
The San Antonio Missions played host of the All-Star game with Wolff Stadium providing the back-drop for some of Minor League Baseball’s brightest young stars.
The Drillers were well represented in the games, as the team sent seven players to participate in the festivities. Tim Wheeler, Wilin Rosario, Scott Beerer, Darin Holcomb, Ben Paulsen, Christian Friedrich, and Joe Torres were all selected to take part on the Texas League North team.
The game started out slow for the North All-Stars and Tulsa starters Wheeler, Paulsen, and Rosario. The trio combined to go 0-9, as the North failed to score until the top of the sixth.
Tulsa Drillers starter Christian Friedrich came in relief of the North All-Star starter Garret Richards in the second inning, with most pitchers in the game only throwing one inning.
Friedrich pitched his one inning, giving up three hits and one earned run. Friedrich was eventually took the loss for the North All-Star team however the stats were not counted towards Texas League records.
Scott Beerer recorded the Drillers only hit of the night. The left fielder pinch-hit for Wheeler in the seventh inning. Beerer singled on a fly ball that landed out of the reach of the right fielder.
Joe Torres, who replaced injured Drillers reliever Stephen Dodson on the North roster, came into the game in the eighth inning.
After Torres gave up a leadoff double he went on to record the next two outs before being replaced by Michael Blazek.
The North All-Stars only produced two runs on seven hits as the South pitchers had their way all night long. The game was a great display of future major league hopefuls shining on the brightest night the Texas League has to offer.
The six games will mark the first time the Drillers have played the two South Division teams since mid-April. Tulsa has a combined 6-6 record against the Hooks and Missions this season.
Each of the six games of the homestand will start at 7:05PM.
The homestand is filled with great promotions, including a pair of Fireworks Shows on Friday, July 1 and Monday, July 4. The homestand will begin with Thirsty Thursday / Guys Night Out on Thursday, June 30. Saturday, July 2 will feature a 4th of July themed cap giveaway, while Sunday, July 3 will be Here’s To The Heroes, Military Appreciation Night. The homestand will conclude with $2 Tuesday on July 5.
A complete list of promotions with descriptions is below.
Tickets for all six games are now on sale at the ONEOK Field Ticket Office at 201 N. Elgin Ave. and at TulsaDrillers.com. Tickets are also available by calling the Ticket Office at (918)744-5901.
Beerer Power Surge: Scott Beerer entered the All-Star Break on a hot streak, hitting .440 with 4 home runs and 9 RBI in his last 6 games.
Friedrich Tough: Over the past month, Christian Friedrich has been one of the top starting pitchers in the Texas League. In his last six starts, dating back to May 30, Friedrich is 3-2 with a 2.43 ERA and 33 strikeouts in 37 innings pitched. He is holding league batters to a .255 average in those six outings.
Hot Weather, Hot Bat: As the weather has warmed up, so has second baseman Tommy Field’s bat. Field is hitting .277 in the month of June with 17 RBI, while posting an impressive .369 on base percentage. His five home runs in the month tie him with Beerer and Tim Wheeler for the team lead.
Attendance: The Drillers are currently second in the Texas League in average paid attendance, attracting 5,593 fans per opening at ONEOK Field.
4th of July: Because of the scheduled post-game Fireworks display, the July 4 game will not be a $1.00 Dog Night.
TULSA DRILLERS SCHEDULE & PROMOTIONS
(June 30-July 5)
Thursday, June 30. . . Corpus Christi Hooks (7:05PM) – Gates Open at 6:00PM
THIRSTY THURSDAY / GUYS NIGHT OUT
It’s another Thirsty Thursday and a special night for the guys courtesy of Z104.5, The Edge! Several great prizes will be given to lucky guys, including a Wii gaming system, two tickets to see Def Leppard at the BOK Center, two tickets to a meet and greet function with the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders at ONEOK Field and two tickets to see Jonathan Tyler and Northern Lights at the Cain’s. In addition, 12 ounce servings of Bud and Bud Light and 21 ounce servings of Pepsi products will be on sale for only $1 each. Live music will be provided by Brandon Clark.
Friday, July 1. . . Corpus Christi Hooks (7:05PM) – Gates Open at 6:00PM
FRIDAY NIGHT FIREWORKS
The Drillers offer you a chance to get an early start to the Independence Day Celebration with another great Friday Night Fireworks Show at ONEOK Field compliments of Danny Beck Chevrolet and 98.5 KVOO.
FRITOS® FAMILY NIGHT
It is also FRITOS® Family Night with six lucky families being chosen to participate in a number of behind-the-scenes activities at the ballpark. Fans can also present a FRITOS® Corn Chips sack at Black Gold Outfitters to receive 10% of their purchases.
Saturday, July 2. . . Corpus Christi Hooks (7:05PM) – Gates Open at 6:00PM
GRAND SLAM SATURDAY / INDEPENDENCE DAY CAPS
It’s a Grand Slam Saturday and we will give you the chance to show off your pride in the Drillers and our country with one of these great caps! The first 1,500 fans, ages 5 and over, will receive a Drillers cap that features a flag “T” compliments of ONB Bank and NewsChannel 8. The caps will be given away only at the Oil Derrick and Arvest Entrances.
Sunday, July 3. . . San Antonio Missions (7:05PM) – Gates Open at 6:00PM
HERE’S TO THE HEROES, MILITARY APPRECIATION NIGHT
The Drillers honor and pay tribute to our armed forces as all active duty personnel or retired members of the military will receive free admission to the game. The Drillers will be wearing special camouflage jerseys that will be available in a silent auction during the game with all proceeds benefiting the Folds of Honor Foundation. Major Dan Rooney, the founder of Folds of Honor, will be on hand to throw out the ceremonial first pitch. It’s all courtesy of Anheuser-Busch.
FAMILY FUNDAY SUNDAY / KIDS EAT FREE
The first 500 kids, ages 12 and under, will receive a voucher that is redeemable for a free hot dog, milk, and an ice cream dessert at the concession stands courtesy of Borden Dairy, K95.5FM and 2 News Works For You.
From 6:15-6:30PM, a pair of Drillers players will be in Black Gold Outfitters signing autographs for all fans. After the game, all kids will be allowed on the field to run the bases.
Finally, kids are encouraged to wear their bathing suits to enjoy a giant waterspout from the Tulsa Fire Department and EMSA!
ELGIN STREET COOKOUT
Before the game, a giant cookout will be held on Elgin Street with games and inflatables for kids and $1.00 cheeseburgers for everyone, compliments of KRAFT singles.
Monday, July 4. . . San Antonio Missions (7:05PM) – Gates Open at 6:00PM
INDEPENDENCE DAY FIREWORKS SHOW!
Baseball and Fireworks provide the perfect way to cap off a great holiday weekend! Following the game, the skies in downtown Tulsa will be filled with a spectacular fireworks display courtesy of River Spirit Casino and the News On 6. The first 5,000 fans will receive mini American Flags, and Pearl Harbor survivor Arles Cole will throw the ceremonial first pitch prior to the game.
Tuesday, July 5. . . San Antonio Missions (7:05PM) – Gates Open at 6:00PM
The ultimate night of discounts returns to ONEOK Field with $2 Tuesday presented by Pepsi, Warehouse Market, Mix 96 and 2 News Works For You. General Admission tickets on the outfield lawn are only $2.00 each, while all other tickets are discounted $3.00 off normal prices. In addition, hot dogs, Mazzio’s Pizza slices, 21 ounce Pepsi fountain drinks, jumbo soft pretzels and souvenir programs will be on sale for only $2.00 each.
KRAFT SINGLES TUESDAY NIGHT TICKETS
Buy one, get one FREE from Kraft Singles! Fans presenting an outer wrapper from a package of Kraft Singles can purchase two regular priced tickets for the price of one! Only one ticket discount can be used when purchasing tickets
On Thursday Major League Baseball and Baseball America announced the rosters for the 2011 All-Star Futures Game, to be played in Phoenix on July 10. The game will be played by a two 25-man rosters made up of 10 pitchers, two catchers, five outfielders, and eight infielders. All of whom are considered top prospects in each of their respected organization and position.
Each roster would be made up of players entirely from either the United States or the rest of the World.
The Rockies were one of a hand full of teams that were selected to have more than one player participate in the game.
Nolan Arenado will represent the Rockies as one of the corner infielders on the United States team. Arenado was a high school shortstop who has now moved to third base and might end up as Todd Helton’s heir at first base in Colorado. His power bat should play at either position.
Colorado will also send Tulsa Drillers catcher Wilin Rosario to take part as the back-up catcher for the World team. This will be Wilin’s second appearance in the All-Star Futures Game as he is ranked one of the top catching prospects in all of Minor League Baseball.
Rosario was actually having his breakout season last year, but a torn ACL in August cut that short. He has picked up where he left off, though, offering premium tools at the plate and behind it.Rosariois currently second on the Drillers with 11 home runs through the first half of the season.
The Drillers are looking for 2 mature employees to join the Black and Gold Merchandise crew! We are looking for employees who are willing to work every home game through September. The prospective employees must have previous register experience, pocess an outgoing personality, be time flexible, trustworthy and customer service oriented. Knowledge of t-shirt heat presses a plus.
To apply please attach your resume and send it via e-mail to Merchandise Assistant Lyndsay Larrivey at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Drillers are looking for qualified Camera Operators to join the game day production crew! You must be 21+. Previous experience in live events, camera work on a Canon XL camcorder (or similar), and TV production is highly recommended. Knowledge of the game of baseball is a must.
To apply, attach your resume to an e-mail and send to Video Production Manager David C. Ruckman – email@example.com.
Tim Wheeler leads a group of eight Tulsa Drillers players that have named to the North Division All-Star Team that was announced today by the Texas League. The North Division will face the South Division in San Antonio on Wednesday, June 29 in the annual game.
Wheeler and catcher Wilin Rosario were named starters, while infielders Darin Holcomb and Ben Paulsen and outfielder Scott Beerer were named reserves.
Tulsa pitchers Stephen Dodson, Christian Friedrich and Juan Nicasio were also elected to the North Division squad.
Nicasio is currently with the Colorado Rockies and will only participate in the game if he is returned to the Drillers’ roster.
Players are determined for the two squads based on voting by league managers and media members.
The eight players tied Tulsa with San Antonio and Frisco for the second most representatives in the game. Arkansas has nine players that were voted to participate in the game.
Bishop Kelley product Dallas Kuechele and Henryetta product Sawyer Carroll were named to the South Division squad.
Complete rosters and staffs for the two sides are below
NORTH DIVISION ROSTER
1B Matt Adams Springfield
2B Ryan Mount Arkansas
3B Luis Jimenez Arkansas
SS Darwin Perez Arkansas
C Wilin Rosario Tulsa
DH Anthony Seratelli NW Arkansas
OF Alex Castellanos Springfield
OF Mike Trout Arkansas
OF Tim Wheeler Tulsa
RES Darin Holcomb Tulsa
RES Ryan Jackson Springfield
RES Ben Paulsen Tulsa
RES Salvador Perez NW Arkansas
RES Scott Beerer Tulsa
P Orangel Arenas Arkansas
P Michael Blazek Springfield
P Ryan Brasier Arkansas
P Maikel Cleto Springfield
P Stephen Dodson Tulsa
P Christian Friedrich Tulsa
P Juan Nicasio Tulsa
P Trevor Reckling Arkansas
P Garrett Richards Arkansas
P Matt Shoemaker Arkansas
MGR Brian Poldberg NW Arkansas
CH Terry Bradshaw NW Arkansas
CCH Larry Carter NW Arkansas
TR Tony Medina NW Arkansas
SOUTH DIVISION ROSTER
1B Michael Spina Midland
2B Vince Belnome San Antonio
3B James Darnell San Antonio
SS Wladamir Sutil Corpus Christi
C Ali Solis San Antonio
DH Mike Bianucci Frisco
OF Leonys Martin Frisco
OF Jermaine Mitchell Midland
OF J.D. Martinez Corpus Christi
RES Grant Green Midland
RES Tommy Mendonca Frisco
RES Renny Osuna Frisco
RES Jose Felix Frisco
RES Sawyer Carroll San Antonio
P Anthony Bass San Antonio
P Brad Brach San Antonio
P Xavier Cedeno Corpus Christi
P Adalberto Flores Frisco
P Ethan Hollingsworth Midland
P Casey Kelly San Antonio
P Dallas Kuechel Corpus Christi
P Justin Miller Frisco
P Martin Perez Frisco
P Jorge Reyes San Antonio
MGR Doug Dascenzo San Antonio
CH Jimmy Jones San Antonio
CH Tom Tornincasa San Antonio
TR Nate Stewart San Antonio
Courtesy of Kevin Henry from the Tulsa Examiner:
Lars Davis is in an interesting position for the Tulsa Drillers.
Davis, selected by the Colorado Rockies in the third round of the 2007 First-Year Player Draft out of the University of Illinois, currently serves as the backup catcher to Wilin Rosario, ranked #2 among all Colorado Rockies prospects in their farm system. Yet, when Davis has his chances behind the plate, he is making the most of his opportunities, hitting .318 in 19 games with two homers and six RBIs in his 66 at-bats.
I recently had the chance to talk to Davis about his season, his outlook, and his thoughts on the injury to San Francisco catcher Buster Posey.
Kevin Henry: How do you prepare knowing you’re not going to play everyday?
Lars Davis: The biggest thing is my mindset. I have to work on my mental game as much as my physical game. It’s taken me a few seasons to realize that, but I know I have to do what I can to help the team win when I am in there. That can be on any given day. I know I always have to play good defense and always help my pitchers in every way I can.
Henry: You know you only have a certain number of at-bats in your current situation. Does that change your philosophy when you’re batting?
Davis: I’m always looking for a good pitch to hit. Every time I get in there, I want to put my best swing on the ball. I can’t get a hit every time, but I can always put my best swing out there.
Henry: Earlier you mentioned defense and you have earned the reputation as a very solid defensive catcher. What did you do in the offseason to work on that?
Davis: I worked a lot with Marv Foley (Colorado’s catching coordinator) and really learned a lot from him. I really worked hard on my throws and blocking the ball in the dirt.
Henry: How long does it take for you to development relationships with your pitchers so you know what needs to be called and when?
Davis: That’s always an ongoing process. I’ve been with some of our pitchers since we were all drafted together. Some of our pitchers are new arms in the bullpen. I try to learn what they feel comfortable throwing in certain situations and go from there.
Henry: As a catcher, what were your thoughts when you saw Buster Posey go down in that collision at home plate?
Davis: It’s a tragedy to lose a player like Buster to an injury. As a catcher, you know there is a risk there and that an injury like that is a risk you face. A lot of people are debating who was right or wrong there, but I don’t feel strongly one way or the other. Collisions at home plate are part of the game. They’ve been part of the game forever. Look at Pete Rose in the All-Star Game. We see it happen all of the time, and I think we’ll keep seeing it happen.
Henry: This is your second season with the Drillers. What do you think of the makeup of this year’s team?
Davis: I think we have a fantastic club. We have a lot of returning players from last season and a lot of guys on this team who knows what it takes to win.
With the first pick the Rockies had in the 2011 Draft they picked up Oregon left-handed starter Tyler Anderson. Anderson could arguably be one of, if not the greatest pitcher to come out of the University of Oregon. His advanced arm and knowledge of pitching should bode well for his quick movement through the system.
What does this mean for Tulsa Drillers fans?
Well in the last two years the Rockies have either drafted college position players or high school pitchers in the top few rounds. These traditionally are the two types of drafted prospects that either end up as busts, or take the longest to develop the necessary skills to have a successful playing career.
According to some scouts Tyler Anderson may not have the highest ceiling in the draft, but he is a guy who won’t take long to hit a big league rotation and will not have to wait long to hear his name! Be ready for this one soon Drillville!
With their second pick the Rockies selected Irving High School (Irving, TX) shortstop Trevor Story. Story is currently committed to play at Louisiana Tech University in Ruston, Louisiana but it will be hard for the 18 year-old to turn down first round money.
The position player was the first the Rockies had selected in the first round since they drafted Chris Nelson ninth overall in the 2004 draft. In his senior year at Irving, Story hit .484 with 10 doubles, 3 triples, 8 home runs and 29 runs batted in.
This Monday night will signal the start of the 2011 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. The Colorado Rockies will have two picks out of the top 60. Their first selection will be at number 20 in the first round and their second will be at 45 in the supplemental first round to compensate for the loss of Octavio Dotel to the Toronto Blue Jays in the off-season.
The Rockies first pick in the 2010 draft Kyle Parker, from Clemson, is having a solid first year Class-A ball. Through 46 games with the Asheville Tourists, Parker is hitting .286 with 7 home runs and 43 runs batted in. Formerly a quaterback at Clemson University, Parker has finally dedicated all of his time to baseball and it seems to be paying off.
The Rockies other top pick from the 2010 draft was right-handed pitcher Peter Tago. Tago was drafted out of high school last year and has appeared in only three games in his professional career. Through three starts he is 1-1, with a 4.73 earned run average. Tago is still very young and has a long way to go but again his career is only beginning.
By Kevin Henry (Tulsa Examiner)
Every day that Darin Holcomb can step on the field and take his position at third base for the Tulsa Drillers is a good day for the native of Spokane, Wash.
Holcomb missed all of last season suffering from spondylolisthesis, a condition where the L5 vertebrae in his lower back has slipped forward and is causing damage to L4 as well.
Holcomb, who was selected by the Colorado Rockies in the 12th round of the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, entered Saturday night’s action hitting .257 with four homers and 22 RBIs. I recently had the chance to sit down with Holcomb and talk about his back, the rough emotional season of 2010, and his hopes and goals for the future.
Kevin Henry: First and foremost, how is your back?
Darin Holcomb: It’s holding up. I can’t really ask for much more than that. I have my good and bad days. I have a series of stretches and core exercises that help me and I do those every day.
Henry: In previous years, you’ve said that your back has deteriorated as the season has gone along. What can you do to prepare for that, if anything?
Holcomb: It’s a long season and I usually really start feeling it around the All-Star break. I know that I have to grind through it and play through it. Surgery isn’t an option for me (it would mean the end of Holcomb’s career), so I have to keep up with my exercise routines and do the best that I can. I’ve had a ton of cortisone shots and they provide short-term relief.
Henry: How hard was missing all of last season for you?
Holcomb: It was really tough. I had never missed more than a week at one time before that. I think it was really hard on me mentally. I really didn’t know if I was going to be able to play this season or ever again. Having thoughts like that can really wear on you.
Henry: When did you know that you would actually be able to play this season?
Holcomb: I think it was when I started picking up my activities and started swinging again. I knew after that that I could at least get to spring training. My back held up there, so I knew I could keep playing. That was a huge relief for me. It was hard not seeing all of the guys, but when I got back, I felt like all of the hard work I did in 2010 was worth it.
Henry: Looking back, did you ever doubt that you’d be back on the field in 2011?
Holcomb: It crossed my mind, but I wanted to trust the rehabilitation process. My mindset was to keep working hard and good things would happen.http://b3.mookie1.com/2/ExaminerB3/ATTW/1H_11Q1/GEO33/300/11037341@x90
Henry: I’ve read that one of the side effects you face from your back problems is a loss of range in the field and power at the plate. How has that affected your play?
Holcomb: It does affect me. I have shooting pains down my leg in the field and I can’t use the lower half of my body at the plate. It hasn’t changed my swing because I’ve never been a big power hitter. I’ve always been more of a contact hitter.
Henry: One of your biggest supporters has been Tulsa hitting coach Dave Hajek. How important was it to have him in Tulsa during your “comeback” season?
Holcomb: It was very important. He knows me as a person and he knows my swing. When I heard I was coming back to Tulsa, he was the first guy I wanted to see. We work together every day and he helps me with my swing and the mental aspect of the game. I wasn’t worried about where they were going to send me after spring training, but coming back to Tulsa was my first choice because of Dave.
Henry: What goals do you have for the rest of the season?
Holcomb: I want to be productive and help my team win. I want to stay healthy and stay on the field. Like everyone else, I want to move up, but my main goal is to stay healthy and play every day.
Henry: When you see a teammate get called up like Juan Nicasio did recently, what does that do for your mindset?
Holcomb: It inspires me. To see that you can go from Tulsa to the big leagues shows that you’re really that close to reaching your dream. It makes everyone happy to see their teammate succeed and do well. It also shows that the process we’re going through and everything we’re doing, we’re doing the right way.
Henry: The Drillers are currently leading the Texas League’s North Division. What is it about this team that has helped it succeed so far?
Holcomb: Top to bottom, this is a solid team. We have good pitching and good defense, and we’re all pulling for each other. This is a team without cliques and we all get along. That helps a lot, and I think at the end of the year, it will help us a lot.