Johnny Cueto

Albert Pujols Home Run

August 15, 2015: Angels @ Royals

This was my first ever visit to Kaufmann Stadium. I have been to every other Midwest MLB city to see a game at least once, but never Kansas City (I have been to Cincinnati, but only to Riverfront Stadium and not Great American Ballpark yet). I finally got to scratch this one off my list. I really liked the ballpark. The game was sold out but it did not feel crowded. There were not long lines for the bathrooms or the concessions. We were in the 300 level though, maybe it was different elsewhere. We also got really lucky that there were 3 of us, and we happened to get these 3 seats that were in a row by themselves next to a suite. We had a great view. The layout is really not that different from US Cellular Field in Chicago but it just has a different feel. The seating level I was on for this game doesn’t really exist in the Cell. But the big upper deck and nice outfield concourse is why I say they are kind of similar. We had a great view as you can tell from the pictures.

George Brett

George Brett

Mike Sweeney

Mike Sweeney

Before the game started they had a ceremony to induct Mike Sweeney into the Royals Hall of Fame. It was a neat ceremony. George Brett was on hand and did speak for a couple minutes.

When I saw the pitching matchup, I knew the Royals had a good chance to win. Johnny Cueto was pitching for them versus Matt Shoemaker for the Angels. Cueto struggled a bit early, giving up 5 hits in the first two innings. But he got help with double plays and baserunning errors by the Angels. After giving up all those hits (and several other hard hit balls that were outs) he really settled down. The only blemish was the homer by Albert Pujols in the 2nd inning. As a Cardinals fan it was cool to see Albert go deep. Trout had a bad day, and he and Albert were pulled from the game after the 6th inning to rest with the game out of reach, down 9-1.

Kauffman Stadium

The view from our seats

The Royals simply pounded Shoemaker. After Albert homered in the top of the 2nd, Salvador Perez crushed a solo homer into the fountain to tie it up. That opened the floodgates. The Royals had a barrage of singles and doubles with some walks mixed in to score 5 more runs that inning. Shoemaker was pulled from the game in favor of another former Cardinal, Fernando Salas. Salas got out of that inning finally but did allow a run in the next inning. The Royals were winning 7-1 at that point. They got 2 more runs in the 6th inning to make it 9-1. The Angels had a rally going in the 9th inning where they got 3 more runs, but Luke Hochevar finally got a strikeout to end it.

Jarrod Dyson had a big game for the Royals with 3 hits, 3 RBI and 2 runs, and 2 stolen bases. I was also really impressed with Salvador Perez. In addition to the moonshot of a home run, he also picked a runner off of first base, and had 1 more hit and RBI.

Albert Pujols Home Run

Albert Pujols Home Run

Albert Pujols HR

Albert Pujols HR

Albert Pujols Mike Trout

Albert Pujols Mike Trout

Ben Zobrist

Ben Zobrist

Eric Hosmer

Eric Hosmer

Johnny Cueto

Johnny Cueto

Fernando Salas

Fernando Salas

Mike Trout

Mike Trout

Salvador Perez

Salvador Perez

Colby Rasmus

The 2006 Midwest League All Star Game

I’m highlighting Colby Rasmus in this post because I have the best pictures of him. However, 8 future MLB players did appear in this game.
Colby played 78 games for the Swing of the Quad Cities in 2006. He hit 11 HR and 22 doubles in 341 plate apperances and had a .884 OPS. Pretty impressive numbers for a 19 year old! He’s been a productive MLB player, playing in over 800 games so far and with a career OPS over .750. He was National League Player of the Week for the week of June 6, 2010 and he hit a career best 23 HR for the Blue Jays in 2012.
Roth being interviewed after winning HR Derby

Roth being interviewed after winning HR Derby

The Swing hosted this All-Star game in 2006, and Colby represented the home team in it along with Jaime Garcia, another future Cardinals player, and a couple other players. Colby also hit in the Home Run Derby the day Randy Roth, won the home run derby. Other future MLB players who played in this game were
before the game. However, another Swing player,
Jay Bruce
Will Venable
Adam Moore
Wade Davis
Johnny Cueto
Justin Upton
Nick Adenhart

Yes, that is the same Nick Adenhart that played 4 games for the Angels and tragically died in a car accident in 2009. He was the starting pitcher in this game for the West, and he went 1 inning and allowed 1 run. Jaime Garcia took the loss in this game, giving up 3 runs in the inning he pitched.

Jay Bruce

Photo from Quad City Times

The East won the game over the West by a score of 7-1. Colby went 2 for 4, and Roth went 1 for 2. Here is a recap of the game from the Quad City Times. You can see Jay Bruce homered, and Justin Upton had a good game:

Quad City Times: Midwest League All-Star Game Scoreboard

EAST FIRST: Justin Upton (South Bend) doubled, took third on a groundout by Jay Bruce (Dayton), scored on a sacrifice fly to left by Jeff Baisley (Kane County). Cory Patton (Lansing) struck out. 1 run, 1 hit, 0 errors, 0 left. East 1-0.
WEST FIRST: Tarrence Patterson (Beloit) singled, was caught stealing. Paul Kelly (Beloit) struck out. Colby Rasmus (Quad-Cities) doubled, scored when Randy Roth (Quad-Cities) doubled to left. Ryan Norwood (Peoria) grounded out. 1 run, 3 hits, 0 errors, 1 left. Tied 1-1.
EAST THIRD: Upton struck out. Bruce singled, stole second. Baisley struck out. Patton singled, scoring Bruce. Anthony Recker (Kane County) reached on an infield single, advancing Patton. Kyle Blanks (Fort Wayne) singled to left, scoring Patton, advancing Recker. Daryl Jones (Fort Wayne) singled to left, scoring Recker, advancing Jones. Michael Hollimon (W. Michigan) struck out. 3 runs, 5 hits, 0 errors, 2 left. East 4-1.
EAST SEVENTH: Bruce doubled. Eric Eymann (Dayton) walked. Bruce stole third. Will Venable (Fort Wayne) struck out. Eymann stole second. Bruce scored on a sacrifice fly by Craig Tatum (Dayton). Eymann was thrown out attempting to take third. 1 run, 1 hit, 0 errors, 0 left. East 5-1.
EAST NINTH: Upton walked, stole second, scored when Bruce homered to right. Eymann popped out. Venable struck out. Tatum flew out. 2 runs, 2 hits, 0 errors, 0 left. East 7-1.

Box Score of the game on MiLB.com

Some additional pictures:

2006 Midwest League All Star Game

Players signing autographs before the game

Colby Rasmus 2006 Midwest League All Star Game

Colby Rasmus batting in the Home Run Derby

Ronald Garth, Adam Moore, Jeff Dominguez, Casey Craig, and Edgar Guaramato

Not sure on the order, but the Rattlers were represented by Ronald Garth, Adam Moore, Jeff Dominguez, Casey Craig, and Edgar Guaramato

Johnny Cueto Dayton Dragons

April 20, 2006 – Dayton Dragons @ Swing of the Quad Cities

The Dragons won this early season game 8-4. Three future MLB players appeared in this one:

Johnny Cueto Dayton Dragons

Photo from MiLB.com

Johnny Cueto
Jay Bruce
Colby Rasmus

The game was tied 2-2 until the 6th inning, when the Dragons rallied for 6 runs. The Swing scored 2 runs in the bottom of the 9th but that was it. As is normally the case, these future MLB players usually have a good game when I see them. Johnny Cueto threw 5 innings and gave up 2 ER. He struck out 7, walked 2 and allowed a home run to Colby Rasmus. Colby had 1 other hit besides the home run, and was 2 for 5. This was Rasmus’ first HR on the season. Meanwhile, Jay Bruce homered for the Dragons. He had a big game going 2 for 4 with 4RBI and 2R.

Jay Bruce Dayton Dragons

Photo from Bus Leagues Baseball

Cueto went 8-1 for the Dragons in 2006 at age 20. He had a 2.59 ERA and .878 WHIP. He threw 76.1 innings before moving up to the Sarasota Reds. Cueto also threw a rain-shortened no-hitter that year, and had a 19 inning scoreless streak. Wish I could have seen the no-hitter because I still haven’t seen one.

Bruce played in 117 games for the Dragons at age 19. He hit 16HR and had a .871 OPS. He also had 81RBI and 69R, which are pretty big numbers for 117 games. Here is a nice bio from back in the day and also where I got the picture from.

I’ll be talking more about Rasmus in other posts becuase as a home team player, I saw him play a ton. He probably deserves his own separate post. I also have some pictures of my own to share.