Flintoff & Dunn's NEWS ARCHIVE
OCTOBER 2007

It is intended that this page will maintain a historical record of previous news published on this site. From time to time we will archive old or outdated news on our "WHAT'S NEW" & "AUSSIES IN THE US LEAGUES" pages. It may interest some people to read the developments in chronological order right here.

ARCHIVED NEWS FROM OCTOBER 2007 BEGINS BELOW:

ARCHIVE
OCT 2007

To make things easier for our loyal suscribers we will adopt a new format of
providing news involving
AUSTRALIAN Players in yellow text, while 
news about former AMLB IMPORT Players will be in white text.

 

  
  19 DEC 2007 - TIM STANFORD SIGNS WITH TEXAS


T
im Stanford

'Flintoff & Dunn' congratulate Australia's recent professional baseball signing, 17yo NSW RH pitcher
TIM STANFORD who is the latest to sign a professional contract with the Texas Rangers organisation.

The following story was transposed incomplete from the BJS web site:

As a youngster Tim was a swimmer with a great future . From 8yo to his early teens every indication was that Tim was heading for big things in the pool. He was his schools age champion for 7 straight years and got to a worthy 2nd in the State Championships. He had just as much success on the track field becoming the Athletic Champion for his middle school and achieving state level at many track and field events.

However, his decision to play T Ball at the age of 6 with the Galston Baseball Club was to have the most profound affect on his sporting career.   Whilst at Galston he competed in the U12 Association Cup  & the U14 State Cup before moving at the age of 14 to the Kellyville Club, having enjoyed his first NSW representative experience in the NSW U14 team which won the National Championships in Alice Springs.

He continued to  blossom and not only made the U16 NSW team in 2005 but was invited to the prestigious Major League Academy on the Gold Coast as a 15yr old and gained selection in the Australian AA team which won the Bronze Medal at the World Championships in Mexico.  

At the completion of his junior playing days Tim made a momentous decision to move across Sydney to the Canterbury Club to work with veteran pitching coach Barry Holland who he had worked with as a scholarship holder at the NSW Institute.  

That move proved to be successful but not without frustration.  He made State selection in the U18's in 2006 & 2007 as well as the NSW Schoolboys in 2006 but despite some early outstanding performances his progress was patchy due to struggles with his health until it was discovered that he had a number of allergies that was having a negative affect on his ability to train and perform and specifically reduced his ability to increase his velocity.   

At 6' 1" Tim has a mid to high 80's FB with effective offspeed and good control and presence on the mound.   Having just finished his HSC Tim is ready for pro baseball and will get a visa and head to Arizona to commence his first spring training next March.  He is the first Australian signed by the Rangers and they have to hope that Jim Colborn has as much success with Tim as he had with his other Aussie signings.

  

  
  7 NOV 2007 - DEEBLE & HERGES IN WORLD SERIES
Here is an update of what some Aussies and former AMLB imports have been doing in the US major leagues:


Jon Deeble

While ‘Flintoff & Dunn’ had no real intention to provide any major league coverage beyond the representation of Australian players at the end of the regular season, we will pay a final tribute to a couple of former ABL stars who featured in the World Series.

Let’s start with Australia ’s head-coach and AROOS manager JON DEEBLE who, quite incredibly, collected his THIRD World Series ring. These days the former ABL all-rounder, who both pitched and batted with considerable success during his playing career, is part of the minor league setup with the 2007 World Champion Boston Red Sox. He also collected World Series rings with the 2004 Red Sox and the 2003 Florida Marlins. Deeble is an inaugural inductee into ‘Flintoff & Dunn’s AMLB HALL OF FAME’ after his outstanding career with Melbourne’s Monarchs and Reds, but we don’t suppose that this would pale his three large “trinkets” from baseball’s biggest event?

We must also recognise the performance of former ABL import MATT HERGES (Adelaide Giants 1999) who resurrected his career in quite spectacular style with the Colorado Rockies who made it all the way to the World Series for the first time this year. Apparently veteran pitcher Herges had to “beg” for a minor league opportunity with the ‘Rox’ after struggling in recent seasons, with eight years in the big leagues behind him. Not only did he work his way back into their major league roster, but he became a vital component among Clint Hurdle’s setup relievers.

Herges helped to pitch the Rockies into their first World Series, then he performed quite brilliantly in the fall classic against the might of the Boston Red Sox offence. Although Boston went on to sweep their way to the World Championship, Herges stood tall with 1.1ip 0h 0er 1bb 1k in Game 1, 1.0ip 1h 0er 1bb 0k in Game 2 and 1.0ip 0h 0er 0bb 3k in Game 3, to leave him with an unblemished ERA. We are suggesting that he will not have to beg for another opportunity next season!


Matt Herges

 

 

 

  2 OCT 2007 - HERGES & BLUM IN PLAYOFF!
Here is an update of what some Aussies and former AMLB imports have been doing in the US major leagues:


Matt Herges

Just when ‘Flintoff & Dunn’ may have been thinking that we could drowse off into our hibernation at the end of the minor leagues and the major league regular season, we were left with one last significant report… and what a game it was! With identical regular season records the Colorado Rockies were pitted against the San Diego Padres in a nerve-jangling single-game playoff for the National League Wildcard berth in the post season. Maybe more than any other sport, our beloved game of baseball rarely fails to deliver on such occasions, with one of the most dramatic barn-burner games you could possibly imagine. Just briefly, after 12 innings of tantalising baseball where fortunes fluctuated regularly, we headed into the 13th inning with the scores still deadlocked at 6-6. The parochial Colorado crowd were crestfallen when a Hairston home run jolted the visiting San Diego into a two run lead and, with the all-time saves record holder Trevor Hoffman ready to close the deal; the game looked all but over! Sorry folks, this is baseball we’re talking about… it ain’t never over until it’s over! Almost predictably the Rockies rallied after a Matsui leadoff double and snatched the game after a big RBI from their MVP candidate Matt Holliday… 9-8 after 13 innings… what a game!!

And, just for our own interest, a couple of former ABL imports were involved in the action. Back-up infielder GEOFF BLUM (Hunter Eagles 1995) did his usual solid job for the San Diego Padres with 1-4 (.252) and a run scored, but he was also guilty of leaving four team mates stranded on base. Reliever MATT HERGES (Adelaide Giants 1999) was one of the undoubted heroes for the ‘Rox’ when he put up blanks in the 10th, 11th and 12th innings for his team with a lion-hearted 3.0ip 1h 0er 3bb 1k (2.96ERA).

WRAP-UP: Unless Australia’s RICHARD THOMPSON gets a chance to pitch for the Los Angeles Angels later in the post season, there will not be any of our Aussies on show this October. Of course we will continue to keep an eye on what MATT HERGES might do for the Rockies, but it is unlikely that we will bring any further reports from the US until next season rolls around.

Our sincere thanks to all those SUBSCRIBERS who took the trouble to visit our web site regularly and especially to those who provided us feedback throughout another great year of US professional baseball. Next Monday we will conclude our PRO PLAYER OF THE YEAR Awards with our Major League guys and then we will, of course, turn our attentions to the upcoming local news and the 2008 Claxton Shield.


Geoff Blum

 

 

 

  1 OCT 2007 - HUBER HITS & BALFOUR HOLDS!
Here is an update of what some Aussies and former AMLB imports have been doing in the US major leagues:


Grant Balfour

 

 

 

 


Geoff Blum

 

 


Travis Blackley

Aussie pitcher GRANT BALFOUR finished his 2007 comeback season on a positive note with one of his typically high-voltage relief innings for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, helping them to beat the Toronto Blue Jays 8-5 in the final game of the regular season. ‘Balf’ was blowing smoke when he started the bottom of the sixth inning with John-Ford Griffin struck out swinging on four pitches and Curtis Thigpen struck out swinging on five pitches. His chore was completed when Hector Luna lined out to centre field. Grant was cranking up to 96mph with nine of 14 pitches thrown for strikes during his 1.0ip 0h 0er 0bb 2k (7.66ERA) that produced his first hold for the season. His team mate GARY GLOVER (Sydney Storm 1999) collected his 11th hold of the year with  0.2ip 0h 0er 0bb 0k (4.89ERA).

Another Australian to finish the 2007 season on a positive note was JUSTIN HUBER who made sure that he ended the season with a major league hit, batting 1-2 (.100) for the Kansas City Royals in their 2-4 loss to the Cleveland Indians. Justin was given another start at left field and he was far more patient against ‘Tribe’ starter Aaron Laffey than he was against C.C Sabathia in his previous start. In the bottom of the second inning Huber grounded out to the second baseman, then he lashed a single to the short stop in the fifth to eventually score a run. He was finally replaced by pinch hitter Ross Gload in the seventh innings as most teams gave their roster players one last appearance on the final day of the regular season.

GEOFF BLUM (Hunter Eagles 1995) will be hoping that his San Diego Padres can win their nerve-wracking one game playoff against the Colorado Rockies for a post season berth after being such a valuable utility player for the team this season. Blum ended the regular season strongly with another 2-5 (.252) effort with two RBI’s during their 6-11 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers in the last game of the regular season.

Posting another useful scoreless inning for the Atlanta Braves was RON MAHAY (Gold Coast Cougars 1996) who pitched a workmanlike 1.0ip 0h 0er 0bb 0k (2.55ERA) in their 0-3 defeat by the Houston Astros.

... and from yesterday's late finishing game: 

Aussie left hander TRAVIS BLACKLEY returned for his second big league start this season but, unlike his first outing, this was not a pleasant experience. His inflated line of 3.2ip 7h 5er 1bb 0k (7.27ERA) earned him a no-decision pitching for the San Francisco Giants in their 5-6 defeat by the Los Angeles Dodgers after 10-innings. However, to be fair, his effort was better than the raw numbers may appear and he did start the game in promising fashion until the wheels started falling off for the struggling Giants’ team as they have done so often this season. Travis started with a blank in the bottom of the first inning with two fly outs and a pop-up working around a one out single by Wilson Valdez. He put up another blank in the bottom of the second with two fly outs and a ground out after just 12 pitches. His troubles started in the bottom of the third with a leadoff triple by Chin-Lung Hu, but he gave himself a chance with a pop-up and a ground out getting him within one out of escaping damage in the frame. But, a Wilson Valdez walk was then followed by a Matt Kemp RBI double before he ended the inning with another pop-up. Blackley ran into more trouble in the fourth when he was greeted by a Russell Martin home run to left field, followed by one out singles from Andy LaRoche and Chin-Lung Hu. His day was done when a sacrifice bunt was followed by a two-out, two RBI single to centre field from Juan Pierre. It was not the way he'd have liked to end the 2007 season.


Justin Huber

 

 

 

 


Ron Mahay

 

 

 

If anyone takes the trouble to contact us with any reasonably substantiated news of interest to AMLB supporters, we will publish this news on this site! Click these to contact Adrian Dunn or Peter Flintoff.