Archive for the '70 in 70' Category

Game 107: BlueClaws (62-44) vs Lake County (51-54)

Wednesday, August 5th, 2009

Welcome back to FirstEnergy Park on a gorgeous Wednesday for today’s game between the BlueClaws & Lake County Captains…LCO won the opener last night 4-3…game notesaudio (at 10:50).

LWD: RHP Heitor Correa (7-5, 3.84)
LCO: RHP Trey Haley (3-6, 5.80)

Walk-a-thon…Haley has walked a cool 50 hitters this year in his 54 innings, including 18 in his last three starts (13 innings pitched).

New Look…no Travis d’Arnaud or Jim Murphy today for Lakewood…Jeremy Hamilton bats 3rd then Vladimir de los Santos, Travis Mattair, Brendan Akashian and Korby Mintken.

9:03: Lakewood is just 9-11 in day games this year, 53-33 at night. We’ll see what holds.


70 in 70: Number 2

Tuesday, April 7th, 2009

Just two days to go until the BlueClaws April 9th opener (with the World Series trophy). Today’s entry goes back a few months into the January Hall of Fame elections in which Jim Rice was elected after years of heated debate among the baseball writers. Why Jim Rice?

Jim Rice became the second player elected to the Hall of Fame after signing autographs at a BlueClaws game. Rice was here last year. Goose Gossage signed at FirstEnergy Park in 2005 and was elected last year.

The BlueClaws invited the four highest vote-getters among those that missed the HOF cut this year: Bert Blyleven, Jack Morris, Lee Smith, and Andre Dawson, with hopes that they would be able to see the obvious connection.

70 in 70: Number 3

Monday, April 6th, 2009

Three days to go until the BlueClaws April 9th opener. Remember, open practice Tuesday night at 6 pm (details here), before the Thursday opener. But to the task at hand, as we wind down 70 in 70, today’s entry goes back to 2007, the summer when the BlueClaws welcomed their three-millionth fan.

It happened on July 16th. There was one enormous line heading into the one open turnstile. When the night started, the BlueClaws were just 344 fans away, so the process wasn’t all that time consuming, though it was dramatic. Lou Ameika followed in his wife Susan, fan 2,999,999, or Mrs. Ameika would have been the one who received the following:

  • Two BlueClaws season tickets
  • Autographed team bat and ball
  • First pitch on the field before that night’s game
  • 1/2 inning on the radio (Lou was outstanding)

Note: Mrs. Ameika surely benefitted from some of these gifts.

The BlueClaws are about 405,000 short of four-million, which will be broken sometime this summer. Stay tuned for the prize structure. I’m sure it will be worth the while of Mr. Four-million.

70 in 70: Number 4

Sunday, April 5th, 2009

We released the roster yesterday. The players will fly up from Clearwater tonight. Baseball is four days away with the World Series trophy the guest of honor on Opening Night at FirstEnergy Park Thursday night. We’re also winding down 70 in 70 here in our tenth and final week. Today’s entry looks at Cole Hamels, 2003 Lakewood BlueClaw and 2008 World Series MVP.

Number four for the number of postseason wins that Mr. Hamels picked up last year. As you can see here, Hamels was dominant over five postseason starts. He allowed no more than two runs in any of his five starts, and went 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA. Stretching back into the regular season, Hamels allowed more than two earned runs once after August 1st, which is outstanding.

For his efforts in the World Series, which included eight shutout in game 1 and six innings/two runs in game five (pre-rain), he was given the World Series MVP.

“This is something that you have to live for,” Hamels said. “Going out there, I knew I had a job to do. I had the support of these fans, I had my teammates behind me and all I had to really do was just go throw a baseball as well I knew how.”

By the way our Hamels rehab in Lakewood on Opening Night dream (which was never a consideration) is officially dead. Hamels will pitch Thursday in the Phils’ fourth game of the season.

70 in 70: Number 5

Saturday, April 4th, 2009

All requests for leave of absence on account of grandmother’s funeral, sore throat, housecleaning, lame back, turning of the ringer, headaches, brain storm, cousin’s wedding, general ailments or other legitimate excuses must be made out and handed to the boss not later than 10 am on the morning of the game.

The above is a traditional workplace sign was from back when games were exclusively played during daylight hours. We bring it here for today’s 70 in 70 because today’s item, number 5, has to do with this year’s 11:05 am games. Five 11:05s on the following dates:

  • April 21st, May 6th, May 27th, July 15th, and August 5th

Note that all are Wednesdays, except April 21st, a Tuesday. April 21st is the first Senior Day Tuesday (TD Bank). Seniors eat free, Baseball Bingo, and post-game bocce on the field (call Ryan at 732-901-7000 x 162 for more information).

May 6th and 27th are education days (info here), and July 15th and August 5th are camp days.

70 in 70: Number 6

Friday, April 3rd, 2009

Six days to go until the BlueClaws April 9th opener against Delmarva. Remember, the World Series Trophy will be in attendance that day. You can take your picture with the same trophy on the field and in the locker room when the Phillies won the World Series in October. Remember to bring your own camera!

Today’s 70 in 70 entry looks at the 200(6) BlueClaws South Atlantic League Championship team. Some notes…

  • The team started 0-9, which basically knocked them out of contention for the first-half title, though they won 37 of their last 60 first-half games.
  • A second-half tour-de-force saw them go 47-23, coasting into the playoffs.
  • The BlueClaws beat Lexington in the first-round two games to none before handling Augusta three games to one to win the team’s first and only SAL title.

Players on that team and where they are now:

  • Carlos Carrasco went 12-6 that year. He’ll open 2009 with Lehigh Valley and the Phils top pitching prospect could pitch in the big leagues this year.
  • Josh Outman won 14 games. Traded to Oakland in July, he’ll open 2009 as a member of the A’s rotation.
  • Matt Maloney won the SAL’s top pitcher award after going 16-9 with a 2.08 ERA. Now a member of the Reds organization, he’ll go to AAA Louisville again this year.
  • Jeremy Slayden hit .310 in 2006 and will likely open 2009 with Lehigh Valley.
  • Now one of the top catching prospects in baseball, Lou Marson will catch every day at Lehigh Valley and is considered the Phillies catcher of the future.

70 in 70: Number 7

Thursday, April 2nd, 2009

GalvisJust one week to go until the BlueClaws Opener…One week from tonight, 6:35 against Delmarva, the first pitch of the 2009 season. Today’s 70 in 70 entry looks at the most flexible way to enjoy BlueClaws baseball, the FlexiBushel.

Here is a pretty detailed story on the plan, but basically…

  • Seven undated ticket vouchers good for seven different BlueClaws games.
  • Value-pricing ($63 compared to $70 for same tickets ordered individually).
  • Ability to use the tickets whenever you want.
  • FREE tickets to a show at the Surflight Theatre and Monmouth University football.

There you have it. Don’t know your schedules in advance? No problem. The flexibility of a gymnast.

70 in 70: Number 8

Wednesday, April 1st, 2009 is day 8, just one more day until the BlueClaws are exactly one week from our Opening Day on April 9th. For number eight we dedicate it to you, our amazing fans, who have lead the South Atlantic League in attendance in each of our eight seasons of baseball.

The fans are what makes everything we do here at the BlueClaws possible and we are forever grateful for your loyalty and support over the past eight seasons.

In 2009, the BlueClaws are on track to welcome our 4 millionth fan to FirstEnergy Park. In doing so, the BlueClaws will become the fastest team in New Jersey Minor League Baseball history and in South Atlantic League history to have 4 million fans. Click here for the story of Lou Ameika, our 3 millionth fan to see all the perks and prizes he received.



So here’s to you, our fans, and to many more fun-filled summers in Lakewood. Thanks.

70 in 70: Number 9

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009

FirstEnergy ParkWe are now inside of ten days to go until BlueClaws Opening Day on April 9th. Nine days away from the BlueClaws opener at which time the BlueClaws will begin their ninth season of baseball at the Jersey Shore. Here’s a brief history:

  • 2001: Team goes a combined 60-79, no playoffs
  • 2002: Team goes a combined 69-70, no playoffs
  • 2003: Team goes a combined 57-81, no playoffs
  • 2004: Team goes a combined 70-67, including 39-30 in the second half, but no playoffs
  • 2005: Team goes a combnied 56-83, no playoffs
  • 2006: Team goes 84-55, including 47-23 in the second half, WINS SAL TITLE
  • 2007: Team goes a combined 69-65, no playoffs
  • 2008: Team goes a combined 80-60, the best record in the SAL North, but misses the playoffs
  • 2009: We’ll find out soon enough

All told, 25 former BlueClaws have played in the major leagues, with likely more to come this year (Jason Donald).

70 in 70: Number 10

Monday, March 30th, 2009

A birthday is just the first day of another 365-day journey around the sun. Enjoy the trip!  

Today’s 70 in 70 entry, and we’re down to number 10 by the way, looks at one of the ballpark traditions, the birthday party. We hold them here at FirstEnergy Park every night, and each package contains our magic number, ten, tickets for our birthday guests. Here’s the deal…

    • A Reserve seat to game
    • A personal pan pizza, bag of chips, a can of Coke and Mikey’s Ice Cream
    • One (1) Pinchy’s Playground ticket*
    • Birthday baseball for every child
    • A special baseball for the birthday child autographed by a BlueClaw!
    • Birthday child’s name on the scoreboard
    • Birthday child goes on field for “Happy Birthday” song
    • Birthday invitations

New for this year: Shawn & Sue, of the Ocean County Breakfast Show on 92.7 WOBM, will announce the first name and hometown of the birthday of the birthday child on the radio that day. It’s a special new wrinkle to the WOBM Birthday Package.

For more information, call 732-901-7000, option 3.

70 in 70: Number 11

Sunday, March 29th, 2009

A hot dog at a ballgame beats roast beef at the Ritz–Humphrey Bogart

Along those lines, here is some more information on our “All You Can Eat” package, a nine-game Thursday plan where you can eat as much as you want (hot dogs, hamburgers, pizza, chips) and get beer for $1.00. Five hot dogs, four slices of pizza, and two bags of chips, there’s our magic number.

70 in 70: Number 12

Saturday, March 28th, 2009

Hard to believe we’re just 12 days away from the BlueClaws opener on April 9th. Today’s entry takes an overview of the Phillies farm system, which Baseball America recently ranked as the 12th best in all of baseball. The significance here is the improvement, as the last five years the Phillies, in these same rankings have been very stagnant, finishing between 20th and 22nd each year.

The write-up in their annual Prospect Handbook notes that “Philly fans will have to just boo the Eagles because the Phils should be good for a while.”

Remember too, the Phillies system is very solid as it is now, but in the last few years it has been used to bring in help for the big league club.

“That’s what we’re here for,” said Steve Noworyta, Phillies Director of Minor Leagues. “We tell the guys, ‘there’s 29 other teams looking at you.’ We have to help out the big league club for us or get someone in here who can help out the big league club.”

Last year, both AA-Reading and AAA-Lehigh Valley had the worst records in their respective leagues, a sign that that much of the talent was isolated in the lower levels. Lakewood, for example, won their league title in 2006, Clearwater in 2007. The BlueClaws also fielded near-playoff teams in both 2007 and 2008. That talent is now making it’s way to the higher levels and these clubs should be more competitive this season.

One other important note…last year the Phillies had six picks in the top 110 and four of the first 71. They were not very active in free agency and were able to accumulate selections unlike in years past. This most recent offseason, the signing of Raul Ibanez means they will send their first-round selection to the Mariners.

Other rankings: Texas 1st, Yankees 15th, Mets 17th

70 in 70: Number 13

Friday, March 27th, 2009

Today’s 70 in 70 looks back at not just the longest game in BlueClaws history but also the longest game in South Atlantic League history. April 26th, 2006, the BlueClaws and Hagerstown Suns from FirstEnergy Park. The BlueClaws won the game 8-7 in 22 innings, and those 13 innings mark the reson for today’s 70 in 70 selection.

The game began at 6:35, with the first 2,000 fans received Ryan Howard “Rookie of the Year” statues. A seemingly normal game, the BlueClaws tied it at seven in the bottom of the seventh, and then nobody scored. They played 10 more innings that night, but because of a curfew rule (can’t start an inning after 12:30 am), the game had to be suspended.

It was finally finished 10 days later, the next time Hagerstown was in town, and John Urick walked with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 22nd inning to clinch the victory.

Check below the fold for some notes…


70 in 70: Number 14

Thursday, March 26th, 2009

FireworksAmazingly enough, just two weeks to go until the BlueClaws opener. Number 14 on our 70 in 70 countdown looks at everybody’s favorite promo night: Fireworks Fridays, once again presented by our good friends at Toyota World of Lakewood. In 2009, we’ll have 14 special fireworks shows, which have been described as the “biggest, brightest, most colorful shows at the shore.”

  • Twelve Friday night home games
  • May 24th (day before Memorial Day)
  • July 2nd