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Gettin' Ziggy With It (Season 2, Vol. 3)

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Hey, everyone! It’s good to be back up and running on AN! I’ve had a little extended period of time without much Internet access, and now it looks as if I’ll be good to go for virtually the rest of the season.

The season’s gotten off to an up-and-down start for the River Cats. We’re currently 12-11 (tied for 1st place in the PCL Pacific South) and looking forward to opening up an 8-game homestand tonight.

Our first homestand was awesome! We had great crowds, received our championship rings from last season, and went 5-3 to get our season going in the right direction. This last road trip took us to a couple good hitter’s parks (actually, isn’t most of the PCL that way?!?). Las Vegas (always a fun trip) and Colorado Springs (maybe the prettiest city in America) hosted us for 4 games apiece. Now we’re back home to face Omaha and Iowa for the next 8 nights.

The A’s have already gotten some help from the AAA club, calling up Joey Devine, Kirk Saarloos, Dallas Braden, Greg Smith. Also, we had Chad Gaudin and Justin Duchscherer make rehab starts for us, so the River Cats seem to be doing their part to help the parent club thus far.

The season’s gotten off to a pretty good start for me personally. Dating back to last season’s all-star break, when I really started feeling comfortable with the submarine delivery, I’ve posted a 1.36 ERA over 33 innings. This year, we haven’t really had too many defined roles in the bullpen, so the opportunities have come in a variety of situations. I’ll try to keep the stats updated with each journal entry throughout the year…

My 2008 Season Stats: 7 G, 9 IP, 8 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 7 K, 0 BB

Quick Q & A:

For a guy in your position, how much do Spring Training numbers matter in terms of the club's perception of you vs. how good your pitches were? Does the club keep track of "good pitches" vs "bad pitches" in addition to the results of the pitches? -- WaddellCanseco

I’m sure the numbers didn’t overly excite the coaching staff, but I think they knew (and they told me so) that I pitched better than the numbers indicated. Plus, spring training, while it is a chance to show a little of what you can do, is a time where everyone is still trying to get into mid-season form. So I think a little rustiness from most players is to be expected. Facing hitters 4 times in a 4-week span isn’t going to keep very many relief pitchers sharp, which is why it was important for me to get to minor league camp and start facing hitters more regularly before the season started.

If I'm in town working a game with credentials, is there a good time to say hello before the game? -- Flashfire

I think you found the perfect time. The pictures on your website from one of our Tucson games look great. Thanks for introducing yourself, and feel free to say ‘hi’ anytime you see me when I’m not in the middle of a game.

Hope to make a Rivercats game this year and see you pitch! I hope that I get a chance to meet you too and give you a present for the baby. Will your family be joining you in sac this year? -- IM4Oakgal

That’d be great. Please make it a point to introduce yourself! There are some outside circumstances that have an affect on it, but Kristi and Kaylin have spent some time in Sacramento already this year, and I’ll definitely be seeing them a lot more this year than in the past. Hopefully it will be permanent sooner rather than later.

It’s great to see the A’s doing well, isn’t it? Hopefully they can keep it up and make this an exciting season for at least PART of the Bay Area :-) Have a great week! See ya at the ballpark!