US PRO PLAYERS
OF THE WEEK

Welcome to our NEW feature for 2006 that is designed as an additional enhancement to our updated statistical information about Australian players who fly our flag in the US Professional Leagues. Time permitting, we hope to track the performances of players for the previous week (or five or six days) and to make our assessment for 'Flintoff & Dunn's US PRO PLAYER OF THE WEEK'. We may then be able to expand this into a 'PRO PLAYER OF THE MONTH' to add to our 'PRO PLAYERS OF THE YEAR' that we have published at the end of previous seasons... Stand by!
Like everything we do, we certainly don't expect that everyone will agree with our assessments from week to week and we don't pretend to know every intimate event or situation that might affect a given player from time to time. Our assessment will be based purely on the statistics produced from the past week with no particular emphasis on at what level the performance has been achieved. 
In any case, we will be happy if this effort sparks interest and debate for Australia's baseball community and we will always be happy to hear what you think!

*** MANY Thanks to our statistical auditor PETER WOOD for supplying the reference data ***

  To view the latest Statistics for Australian Players in the US Professional Leagues

 

'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE YEAR - 17 OCT 2006


Chris Snelling

Flintoff & Dunn's MLB Australian Player of the Year 2006

There could not be too much doubt about Chris SNELLING taking our vote as Australian Major League Player of the Year for 2006, not just because of his remarkable and courageous comeback from years of injury torment, but also because he was the only Aussie to really cement a regular selection in a big league team during this season.

Chris made 30 appearances for the Seattle Mariners towards the end of the season and, although his performances tapered over the final couple of weeks, he still batted .274 with three home runs, including two in one game.

Next in line was the unlikely Aussie veteran Peter MOYLAN who made 13 appearances for the Atlanta Braves to finish with a 4.50ERA after a some scoreless outings towards the end of a miserable season for his team. ‘Big Pete’ had a couple of nasty innings during his initial stint in the majors, but he did come back stronger during his second term, even though he was often used in meaningless and blowout situations.

Moylan’s Atlanta team mate Phil STOCKMAN seemed headed for even better things until injuries de-railed his promising season after only four games and it was not sufficient for us to consider him at the major league level this year. Likewise for Justin HUBER who made only five appearances for the Kansas City Royals. We will be hoping that both Phil and Justin are given more extensive opportunities in 2007, along with Chris and Pete of course.


Vernon Wells

Flintoff & Dunn's MLB Former AMLB Import Player of the Year 2006

It was a much tougher task to evaluate and separate the former AMLB imports who appeared in the major leagues this season as there are 21 of our “old boys” still kicking around in the ‘bigs’, some more notably than others!

While we were very tempted to give the award to Gary MATTHEWS Jnr., as a sentimental vote for producing such a terrific season with the Texas Rangers after years of struggle to establish himself as a journeyman, in the end we could not ignore the imposing numbers of Toronto Blue Jays All-Star slugger Vernon WELLS.

Matthews batted .316 with 19 home runs and 79 RBI’s as a consistent leadoff guy for Texas, but he was clearly overshadowed by Wells’ tally of .307/32/105 as the cleanup guy for the contending Blue Jays.

Also very close behind was New York Mets catcher Paul LoDUCA who batted .316/5/46 despite the rigours of catching almost every day for the Mets team that could be headed for the World Series (at the time of writing). Wells’ former Toronto team mate Shea HILLENBRAND was also batting .301 before his controversial departure from Canada to join the San Francisco Giants. Hillenbrand hit a combined 21 “jacks” for both teams in 2006.

One player to emerge from relative mediocrity with an impressive power surge in 2006 was perennial backup catcher David ROSS who broke through as the No.1 guy for the Cincinnati Reds and he responded with 19 “big flys”. Another journeyman Preston WILSON was as inconsistent as ever with both the Houston Astros and the St.Louis Cardinals, but he did manage to strike occasionally for a combined 15 home runs.

The only new face to our ‘major leaguers list’ was John HATTIG who batted an impressive .375 from only 16 at bats with the Toronto Blue Jays.

Once again, by far the standout pitcher again in 2006 was the only regular starter Kevin MILLWOOD who continues to be a very reliable “horse” for every team he has represented. ‘Big Kev’ supplied his usual innings-eating service for the Texas Rangers this year and, while he had a slow start and a disappointing finish to the season, he had a sustained patch of sheer brilliance during the middle of the season to finish with a 16-11, 4.52ERA season with 53 walks and 152 strike outs.

Chad PARONTO (Atlanta Braves), Ron MAHAY (Texas Rangers) and Matt Herges (Florida Marlins) were the best of a none too impressive list of middle-relievers during 2006. In this category none of our former AMLB imports owned a winning record or a significant number of saves.

See You all again when the US Pro Leagues start in 2007!

  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE YEAR - 11 OCT 2006

Flintoff & Dunn's CLASS 'AAA' PLAYER for 2006

Once again Flintoff & Dunn congratulate all of our Australian players who were good enough to play at the 'AAA' level in 2006... this is by no means an insignificant achievement in the world of baseball. We certainly hope that this will provide a stepping stone to the big leagues, or back to the 'bigs' for those who have been there before. 

Travis BLACKLEY, returning from injury, Mathew KENT, Richard THOMPSON and Dean ZORN, were all promoted, or given a taste, late in the year and will hope to build upon this in 2007. More seasoned players Craig ANDERSON, Adam MORRISSEY and John STEPHENS, who split time in both 'AAA' and 'AA', are still in the mix.

Of the others who played 'AAA' ball during 2006, Peter MOYLAN and Phil STOCKMAN both progressed to make their major league debuts with the Atlanta Braves and each can be well satisfied with their achievements. Recent major leaguers Glenn WILLIAMS, Justin HUBER and Trent DURRINGTON were not given an opportunity in the majors this year while Chris SNELLING was able to resume his major league career after his litany of injuries. 

Of those who played all season in 'AAA', pitcher Adrian BURNSIDE had the best win/loss ratio of 3-0, but this came as a middle reliever and "set-up guy" as he didn't register a start or a save for the season; nonetheless he was a very good performer for his team. Glenn Williams took a while to get going after his injury from the previous season, but in his last ten games he had a healthy .323 average as a hopeful sign of better things ahead in 2007.

After considering  all performances at 'AAA' level, the final choice rested between one pitcher (the qualification at this level was 30.0 IP) and one hitter. Justin Huber topped the lists for average, slugging, doubles and home runs to easily lead all Aussie hitters and he was certainly close to winning. However, in the final analysis, the performance of pitcher Phil Stockman in his 33.1 innings stood out. Among his credentials for this award were his Ks to BB ratio of 4 to 1, ERA of 0.81, 2 saves and an opponents batting average of .123. Put the package together and his results at 'AAA' level were absolutely first class, to say nothing of his equally impressive debut in the majors. 

While all of the 'AAA' players mentioned should have plenty to look forward to, it is with great pleasure that we congratulate all Aussie players for their sterling efforts and announce that:

Flintoff & Dunn’s CLASS 'AAA' PLAYER of the YEAR for 2006 is:

 PHIL STOCKMAN (Richmond Braves)

18G    2SAVES    33.1IP   13H   10BB    41K                         

Season:  0.81 ERA

Next Week:  MLB Aussies & former AMLB Imports

  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE YEAR - 2 OCT 2006

Flintoff & Dunn's CLASS 'AA' PLAYER for 2006

According to our minimum qualification marks of 40 at bats for hitters or 20 appearances for pitchers, only four hitters and six pitchers qualify for selection as F&D's 'AA' Player of the YEAR for 2006.

In this category it was obvious that our offensive stars would take the award with Adam MORRISSEY (.313), Brett RONEBERG (.303), Trent OELTJEN (.299), and Andrew GRAHAM (.291) all having terrific seasons. While they would appear hard to split, our analysis of the traditional statistics lists proved that RONEBERG was the clear stand out!

In MOST statistical categories Roneberg led the lists, topping the important categories of runs, hits, doubles, home runs and RBI's. Also playing at 'AAA' level, Morrissey led the averages and slugging, while Oeltjen's 10 triples and 23 stolen bases easily led those categories. It was also significant to find that Roneberg's numbers improved considerably towards the end of the season. In the last few weeks of the season he averaged .343, while his slugging percentage also climbed to .514! While all of those players mentioned can be very satisfied with their efforts for 2006 Brett Roneberg should be really delighted with a tremendous "bounce back" year after his injury woes in 2005. It will be a giant source of satisfaction and perhaps relief for him to have his professional career back firmly on the rails. 

Among pitchers, only Tristan CRAWFORD had a winning season, but there were a few other very good performers. Paul MILDREN started 28 times and had 2 complete games, with 1 CG shutout, and led the stats lists with 7 top placings.

Former major leaguer Travis BLACKLEY started 25 times and earned promotion to 'AAA' as a hopeful sign of his return to better things in 2007. Richard THOMPSON had 10 saves and Ryan ROWLAND-SMITH had a low 2.85 ERA in the regular season, which he improved to 1.35 ERA in last 10 games. Craig ANDERSON, who won 3 games with no losses, and had the lowest ERA of 2.28 did not qualify, but he deserves special mention. Craig also boasted a remarkable 7 to 1 strike out to walk ratio. 

While all of the 'AA' players mentioned should have plenty to look forward to, it is with great pleasure that we congratulate all Aussie players for their sterling efforts and announce that:

Flintoff & Dunn’s CLASS 'AA' PLAYER of the YEAR for 2006 is:

 Brett RONEBERG (Altoona Curve)

109G   400AB   63R   121H   19D   1T   10HR    74RBI  

Season:  .303 AVG

Next Week:  Class 'AAA'

  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE YEAR - 25 SEP 2006

Flintoff & Dunn's CLASS 'A' PLAYER for 2006

We have grouped all 'A' class players together for the purposes of this selection.

Once again we will start with the pitchers and again some consideration will be given to evidence of improvement and the way players may have performed towards the business end of the season.

During the season Major Leaguers Grant BALFOUR and Phil STOCKMAN, while recovering from injury, appeared with distinction at this level but did not have sufficient appearances to warrant consideration for this category.

Wayne LUNDGREN (ERA 2.60), Scott MITCHINSON (ERA 4.20) and David WELCH (ERA 2.41) all had winning seasons. Tim COX had a very good ERA of 2.80 from 103 innings, with a 5 to 1 ratio of Ks to BBs.

By far the standout pitcher was David WELCH. He had a winning season (8-6) and it was significant that he went 6-0 in his last 10 appearances. He led the statistics tables in WINS, ERA, STARTS, and STRIKE OUTS, and was the only pitcher to pitch a COMPLETE GAME SHUT OUT.

It was pleasing to see that most batters showed significant improvement in later part of the season. Many increased their batting average by large decimal points, Trent D’ANTONIO (100) and Josh DAVIES (40) stood out and did even better in their power numbers. Trent lifting his Slugging % from below .400 to .765, helped by his 12 home runs, and Josh, with his 5 triples, from .350 to .590! The consistent David SUTHERLAND had the best BB to K ratio (40/57) although his normally lofty batting average tapered towards the end of a long season this year.

Despite these good performances catcher Michael COLLINS had the best all round statistics amongst the batters. Michael had 7 TOP placings from the 11 statistics used AVG., GAMES, RUNS, DOUBLES, and RBIs included.

It was a tough decision again, but on this occasion we felt that the pitching boys deserved “top billing” for the Class ‘A’ category, so:

It is with great pleasure that we congratulate all Aussie players for their sterling efforts and announce that 
Flintoff & Dunn’s CLASS 'A' PLAYER of the YEAR for 2006 is:

 David WELCH (West Virginia Power)

25G   16GS   1CG-SHO   1SV   100.2IP   23BB    85SO  

Season:  8-6, 2.41AVG

Next Week:  Class 'AA'

  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE YEAR - 19 SEP 2006

Flintoff & Dunn's ROOKIE LEAGUE PLAYER for 2006

Australia ’s representation In the US Rookie Leagues comprised 14 Pitchers and 8 Position Players for the 2006 season. 
To qualify for consideration as F&D’s Rookie League Player of the Year, we set the minimum qualification marks of 10 appearances for pitchers and 40 At Bats for batters. In addition, with the inconsistent playing time experienced by some players and a sometimes large disparity in appearances, we have also placed some emphasis on the way the season concluded when most rookie players were reasonably active.

Considering pitchers first, only four had winning seasons (Hayden BEARD, Donavon HENDRICKS, John HUSSEY and Matt WILLIAMS), while Bradley TIPPETT had an outstanding ten Saves.  

In a comparison of performances in the usual TOP 10 statistic Lists, HUSSEY led the way, with the next best being TIPPETT and BEARD. Significantly John HUSSEY also had the lowest ERA of 2.44 with Brad TIPPETT very close on 2.53. No other Aussie Rookie League player managed to keep his ERA below 3.00.  

Two of the offensive players really stood out for 2006… Victorian second-season man Daniel BERG and Queensland’s new “Son of a Gun” professional Jay NILSSON. Mathew LAWMAN and Clint NAYLOR also featured prominently among the stats TOP 10 lists and they too can be very satisfied with their efforts this season.

To narrow down the offensive category, Daniel BERG had more first placings in the TOP 10 Lists, but some of these were because he had approximately 100 more ABs than Jay. In the regular season NILSSON had the better AVG (.276 to .253), and the better Slugging % (.474 to .466), although BERG was finishing the season very strongly and his additional at bats also come into consideration here. BERG played in just about every defensive infield position throughout the season but this did not seem to disrupt his offensive output when it mattered most.

While it was a "coin toss", Daniel BERG edged out Jay NILSSON for the offensive honours this year but we can assure you that Jay will also be one to watch in coming years.

It is also our adjudication that, among all Australian Rookie League players, the offensive performances certainly overshadowed our pitchers on this occasion and with this in mind…

It is with great pleasure that we congratulate all Aussie players for their sterling efforts and announce that 
Flintoff & Dunn’s ROOKIE LEAGUE PLAYER of the YEAR for 2006 is:

 Daniel BERG  (R - Elizabethton Twins) 

51G   174AB   35R   44H   13D   3T   6HR  27RBI   .466SLG

Season:  .253AVG

Next Week:  Single A-Advanced, Single A and Single A Short Season

  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 10 SEPTEMBER 2006

Congratulations to this weeks selection of our F&D Pro Player of the Week.

With most of the minor leagues grinding to a conclusion for this year, this will be the last PRO PLAYER OF THE WEEK for this season. There should be no questions asked about our selection this week of Alan DE SAN MIGUEL who really came home with a bang after a fairly lean season offensively! His two games (very few had more than two games during this period) produced a batting average of .750, the highest for the season albeit from such a small sample of at bats.

It was also good to see Brad HARMAN finally show his true ability with a .429 Avg from his 7 at bats. 
Only a few pitchers were able to show their wares in this period, but Ryan ROWLAND-SMITH, Peter MOYLAN and Mathew WILKINSON each had an outing and kept the batters scoreless.

KEEP WATCHING THIS SPACE - Next week we will commence a summary of the best Aussies at each level of Pro Baseball, starting with ROOKIES.

 Allan de SAN MIGUEL  (A - Beloit Snappers)
2G   4AB   1R   3H   .750AVG

Season:  .208AVG

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Brad HARMAN (A+ Clearwater Thrashers) 2G   7AB   1R   3H   1D   .429AVG
Michael COLLINS (A+ Rancho Cucamonga Quakes) 2G   5AB   1R   2H   1D   .400AVG
'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 3 SEPTEMBER 2006

Congratulations to this weeks selection of our F&D Pro Player of the Week.

What a magnificent week for batters. Cream of the crop and this week's Pro Player of the Week is Seattle Mariners Chris SNELLING. Recently recalled to the "Show", Chris hammered some top line Major League pitchers, including 2 HOME RUNS in one game. In his 11 game stint, from 24 Aug to 1 Sept, his batting Avg. was .361 and his slugging % was .694.
His stats below speak for themselves.

WHOA!! We certainly sympathise with supporters of  Glenn WILLIAMS (Avg .500 Slugging .938), Danny BERG (Avg .500 Slugging 1.250), Brett RONEBERG (Avg .444), and sensationally Clint NAYLOR (Avg .667). 
But two things stand out in Chris' favour - firstly, had had many more at bats -
secondly, while it is not part of our selection criteria, he did achieve it in the 'bigs' which cannot be overlooked as a "tie breaker"!!  
WELL DONE CHRIS... your return to the top level of baseball is a truly remarkable story!


Best of the Pitchers over their last 10 appearances was David WELCH with 6 Wins and a Save from 40IP, (ERA 1.80).

 Chris SNELLING  (MLB Seattle Mariners)
11G  36AB   8R  13H   4D  1T  2HR  .369AVG   .694SLG

Season:  .359AVG

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Glenn WILLIAMS (AAA  Rochester RedWings) 4G  16AB   3R   8H   2D   1T   1HR   .500AVG
Daniel BERG (R  Elizabethton Twins) 2G   8AB    2R   4H   2D   1HR  .500AVG  1.250SLG
Brent RONEBERG (AA  Altoona Curve) 5G  18AB   3R   8H   1HR  .444AVG
Clint NAYLOR (R  AZL Padres) 2G   3AB    3R   2H   3D   .667AVG
David WELCH (A  West Virginia Power) 10G  6W   1S  40.0IP  30H  5BB  41K  1..80ERA
Tristan CRAWFORD (AA  New Britain RockCats) 10G  3W   22.1IP  18H   5BB  23K  1.61ERA
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 27 AUGUST  2006

Congratulations to this weeks selection of our F&D Pro Player of the Week.

Before announcing this week's Pro Player of the Week, we wish to thank our good friend and Victorian baseball great Grant Weir who was first to let us know the good news of promotions for Richard THOMPSON to AAA Salt Lake, Travis BLACKLEY to AAA Tacoma Rainiers and Brendan WILSON to Single A Cedar Rapids.  Grant also advised that Josh DAVIES has now played ALL infield positions, left field and DH, while Michael COLLINS in one game this week went 5 for 5, threw out a runner and stole a base. We join Grant in congratulating all of those LA Angels hopefuls.
The winner of our prestigious Pro Player of the Week is Trent OELTJEN who batted .464 in his 8 games, while also slugging .786 in the process. We hasten to add we expect some protests from supporters of several others, in particular the other Trent... MR. D'ANTONIO who hit 4 Home Runs in his 8 games... this is not a simple job folks! 
Not that this comes into it, but it is somehow fitting for Trent OELTJEN to win the award for the first time after having been among the "Honourable Mentions" so many times this season.

 Trent OELTJEN  (AA New Britain Rock Cats)
8G   28AB  7R  13H   3T  HR  .464AVG 

Season:  .309AVG

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Tim KENNELLY ( A- SS Batavia Muckdogs ) 6G  19AB   1R  8H  1D  1T  .421AVG
Trent D'ANTONIO ( A Greensborough Grasshoppers) 8G  30AB   6R  11H  2D   4HR  .367AVG
Brent RONEBERG ( AA Altoona Curve ) 5G  14AB   1R  5H   .357AVG
Michael COLLINS ( A+ Rancho Cucamonga Quakes) 6G  23AB   1R  8H   3D   .367AVG
David WELCH ( A West Virginia Power ) 2 G   2 W    8.0 IP  5H   2BB  7K   0.00 ERA
Ryan ROWLAND-SMITH ( AA San Antonio Missions) 3G   6.2IP  1H   3BB  10K   0.00ERA
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 20 AUGUST  2006

Congratulations to this weeks selection of our F&D Pro Player of the Week.

I know that we say this nearly every week, but it is really hard to distinguish between quite similar performances... and, surprise, surprise, this week has been no different! This week we were unable to separate JOSHUA DEAN and MATT RYAN as our joint PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK, by a narrow margin from MATT LAWMAN who didn't match the RBI production of DEAN or RYAN and Justin HUBER who also put up excellent numbers in 'AAA' ball. Some of our other "regulars" on this page were also under serious consideration again, including Andrew GRAHAM, Glenn WILLIAMS, Trent OELTJEN, Daniel BERG and Michael COLLINS

And, while it may not be fully reflected in statistics, we could not fail to mention Australia's 15th major leaguer CHRIS SNELLING who made his long-awaited return to the majors this week with the Seattle Mariners after seasons of injury torment... GOOD ON YOU CHRIS!

We are sorry to report that, due to a dreaded computer crash, our "stats man" unfortunately lost his base stats for pitchers that we need to use for a two-week span, so we are back to assessing this past week alone. Maybe best of the pitchers was CRAIG ANDERSON with two wins from his two starts, while TIM COX also pitched splendidly. Anderson though may not be too pleased to have "slipped" back to playing high 'A' ball at the moment.

Just to round it off, although we don't include our Independent League guys in these awards, we were pleased to note that our 2006 Claxton Shield star BRAD DUTTON has emerged from a miserable season offensively to really heat up his bat this past week. And, while he has cooled off lately, PAUL RUTGERS still maintains some terrific offensive numbers.

 Joshua DEAN  (R - Elizabethton Twins) 
4G    12AB  3R   5H   5RBI  1HR   .417AVG 

Season:  .231AVG

 Matt RYAN  (R - AZL Angels) 
4G    15AB  3R   6H   8RBI   3D    .400AVG 

Season:  .262AVG

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Matt LAWMAN (R  GCL Twins) 4G   15AB  3R  6H  1D   .400AVG
Justin HUBER (AAA  Omaha Royals) 11G  40AB  7R  15H  4D  2HR  .375AVG
Craig ANDERSON (A+ Frederick Keys) 2G    2GS   2W   11.0IP  6K   5.73ERA
Tim COX (Greenville Drive) 1G    1W   6.0IP   1H    0ER   0.00ERA
Shane LINDSAY (A  Asheville Tourists) 1G    1W   5.0IP   1H    1ER   1.80ERA
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 13 AUGUST  2006

Congratulations to this weeks selection of our F&D Pro Player of the Week.

While we would never be swayed by "the power of suggestion", we at 'Flintoff & Dunn' are quite delighted to confirm the enthusiasm of justifiably proud parents Mark & Rosie (who e-mailed us recently) with our nomination of JOSH DAVIES as our PRO PLAYER OF THE WEEK after his quite outstanding form! Yes, we agree that Josh has been able to deliver in spite of inconsistent playing time which can be a fact of life in the US minors. And, it has to be said, young Josh had to be OUTSTANDING to take the award from a host of terrific performances by emerging young Australian stars. Andrew GRAHAM deserves special mention for the way that he has stepped up since his promotion to 'AA' level, while New Britain team mates Tristan CRAWFORD and Trent OELTJEN must be staking solid claims for 'AAA' action!

We are also awarding a belated JOINT Pro Player of the Week to WA pitching prospect BRENDAN WISE after his stats were verified by 'Flintoff & Dunn' devotee Nathan Davis... many thanks Nathan as we had lost some of our background stats last week... I'm sure you'll agree with Nathan and ourselves that Brendan deserves the late accolades!

While they haven't managed to often get among the weekly honours so far this season, 'Flintoff & Dunn' would like it to be known that we admire, perhaps even more, the consistency of SA pitcher PAUL MILDREN (10-7, 3.85ERA) who cannot be too far away from a crack at higher honours and young Queensland giant DAVID SUTHERLAND (.288) who has been an excellent player at every level he has played, both in Australia and among the US professionals!

 Josh DAVIES  (A - Cedar Rapids Kernels) 
3G    11AB  2R  6H   .545AVG 

Season:  .202AVG

 Brendan WISE  (A-ss - Oneonta Tigers) 
3G   2GS    17.0IP  2WINS   1.59ERA 

Season:  3.40ERA

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Matt LAWMAN (R  GCL Twins) 5G   14AB  2R  6H   .429AVG
Andrew GRAHAM (AA  Eerie Seawolves) 4G   15AB  4R  6H  2D  1HR  .400AVG
Tristan CRAWFORD (AA New Britain Rock Cats) 5G    2W   10.1IP  10K   0.87ERA
Trent OELTJEN (AA New Britain Rock Cats) 8G   26AB  6R  10H   2D   1HR   .385AVG
Josh ROBERTS (A-ss Mahoning V. Scrappers) 6G   22AB  4R  7H  3D   6RBI   .319AVG
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 7 AUGUST  2006

Congratulations to this weeks selection of our F&D Pro Player of the Week.

With ten players batting over .300, and another six batting over .350, the selection this week was as hard as ever. Queensland catcher Joel NAUGHTON with his Average of .556, and Trent D'ANTONIO's outstanding .462 would normally win the selection hands down. And, under normal circumstances, Brett RONEBERG would have been a strong candidate to win for the second week in succession! But, there is one thing you can say about baseball, it is seldom "NORMAL".

Another demonstration of power hitting wins Daniel BERG his second PRO PLAYER of the week award in the last three weeks. Daniel, in his 4 games and 13ABs, had 3 doubles and a HR among his 6 hits to equal Trent's .462, while Berg delivered a power surge to post an awesome .930 Slugging %.

Because so many pitchers only get one outing per week we have lengthened the qualification period to TWO weeks for pitchers to come up with our Honourable Mentions.

 Daniel BERG  (R - Elizabethton Twins) 
4G  13AB  2R  6H  2D  1HR   4RBI   .462AVG 

Season:  .248AVG

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Joel NAUGHTON (A-SS  Batavia Muckdogs) 4G     9AB  1R  5H  1D  .556AVG
Trent D'ANTONIO (AA  Jupiter Hammerheads) 4G   13AB  3R  8H  1D  .462AVG
Brett RONEBERG (AA Altoona Curve) 5G   16AB  4R  6H   2D  1HR  10RBI  .375AVG
Allan DE SAN MIGUEL (A Beloit Snappers) 3G     8AB  2R  3H   3RBI  .375AVG
Trent DURRINGTON (AAA Pawtucket Red Sox) 4 G   11 AB  4R  4H   1 D   1 RBI   .364AVG
Travis BLACKLEY (AA San Antonio Missions) 4G   2W    22.2IP  7BB  18K  3.57ERA
Adam BRIGHT (A+ Modesto Nuts) 3G   1W     5.1IP   2K   0.00ERA
Richard THOMPSON (AA Arkansas Travellers) 4G   1SV    7.1IP  1H   8K   0.00ERA
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 31 JULY  2006

Congratulations to this weeks selection of our F&D Pro Player of the Week.

This week F&D had difficulty in overlooking young Rookie Matt RYAN who had an incredible week, batting .375 in his 5 games for the AZL Angels, but the big decision had to be made between Glenn WILLIAMS .320 for Twins AAA team Rochester Redwings, and the eventual selection Brett RONEBERG.
Brett continued his positive return from injury with a remarkable .348 d1splay for the Pirates AA Altoona Curve, and is this weeks winner of our PRO Player of the Week. Surely Brett must now come under strong consideration for promotion.
Among a number of strong pitching performances was the continued good form of Brad TIPPETT. His 13 games for the GCL Twins have produced 3 Wins, 8 Saves, and an outstanding 1.13 ERA.

 Brett RONEBERG  (AA Altoona Curve)
7G   23AB  1R  8H  1D  4RBI  .348AVG 

Season:  .290AVG

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Glenn WILLIAMS ( AAA  Rochester Redwings ) 8G   25AB  3R  8H  1D  .320AVG
Trent DURRINGTON (AAA Pawtucket Red Sox) 6G   16AB  3R  5H  .310AVG
Matt RYAN ( R  AZL Angels ) 5G   16AB  4R  6H  1T  .375AVG
Brad TIPPETT (R  GCL Twins) 3G   1Win  2Sv  4.1IP  1BB  1K  0.00ERA
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 24 JULY  2006

Congratulations to this weeks selection of our F&D Pro Player of the Week.

Last week F&D would not have pleased everyone by preferring a young rookie pitcher Brad TIPPETT, to outstanding established performers Justin HUBER and Trent DURRINGTON.
Justin this week increased his season batting avg by .170  points by hitting an outstanding.455 with 2 Homers, and Trent lifted his avg by .150, when he hit an only slightly lower .421. These figures should help Huber press his claims for a return to the 'bigs' at Kansas City, while Trent will always find it tough to crack the powerful Boston Red Sox ML roster.

However F&D has never been afraid to flirt with controversy... so here we go again.

This weeks PRO Player of the Week is Daniel BERG, of the Elizabethton Twins. Daniel lifted his batting average by a whopping 53 points. In 11 games his line read 11 runs, 11 hits, 2 doubles, a triple, and 2 homers. Seldom is it our privilege to see such a fine all round  batting performance. Following his "breakthrough" performance at the 2006 Claxton Shield, the young Victorian is clearly a player on the rise.

 Daniel BERG  (R - Elizabethton Twins) 
11G   11R   11H   2D  1T  2HR  9RBI   .297AVG

Season:  .239AVG

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Justin HUBER (AAA  Omaha Royals) 6G   22 AB  10H   1D  2HR  .773SLG   .455AVG
Trent DURRINGTON (AAA Pawtucket Red Sox) 5G   19AB    8H    1D   .421AVG
Paul MILDREN (AA Carolina MudCats) 2G   2Wins  13.2IP  3BB  11K   2.05ERA
Adrian BURNSIDE ( AAA Syracuse SkyChiefs) 3G   4.0IP  2H   1BB  2K   0.00ERA
Richard THOMPSON ( AA Arkansas Travellers ) 3G   1Save  5.0IP  1H   3K   0.00ERA
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 17 JULY  2006

Congratulations to this weeks selection of our F&D Pro Player of the Week.

WOW, what a week! It is only natural that we should start this week’s PRO of the Week by mentioning Trent OELTJEN and Brett RONEBERG. Trent was the lead off hitter for the World team in the MLB FUTURES GAME and Brett was the MVP of the 'AA' Eastern League All-Star Game. WELL DONE BOYS! For More info, click here.

Is it just an coincidence that Justin HUBER batted .500 for the week in his 4 games? Justin, as our readers know, was the last Aussie player to appear in the FUTURES game as a prelude to him reaching the major leagues. Not far behind was evergreen Trent DURRINGTON, who batted .467 in his 5 games. Normally, either of these would be a certainty for our award of Pro Player of the Week. BUT not this week!

Last week we said we would be keeping an eye on Brad TIPPETT, and we have done just that. In what must be one of the most outstanding starts to a pro career, Brad has now appeared in 9 games, and we have had to check his results several times as they are almost unbelievable. 6 SAVES and 2 WINS, with a 0.00 ERA, and 11 Ks. No wonder his GCL TWINS are clear on top of their league ladder. CONGRATULATIONS Brad you are our PRO Player of the WEEK.

Below you will find other exceptional performances, and I am pleased to be able to include Tim Kennelly. A visitor to the web Nathan Davis, pointed out that we had missed his good performances last week when we used a slightly different time frame for our stats. We hope this makes up for the previous omission Nathan.

If any others have comments we would be pleased to see them. See you next week!

 Brad TIPPETT (R GCL Twins) 
3G   2.2IP  2W  1SV   3K   0.00ERA  

Season:  0.00ERA

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Justin HUBER ( AAA  Omaha Royals ) 44G  12AB  6H  1D  .500AVG
Trent DURRINGTON (AAA Pawtucket Red Sox) 5G   15AB  7H  3D   .476AVG
Tim KENNELLY ( A Lakewood BlueClaws) 7G   26AB  8H  2D   .308AVG
Tim COX (A Greenville Drive) 4G  10.2IP  1W  5H  11K  0.00ERA
Tristan CRAWFORD ( AA New Britain RockCats ) 3G  3.1IP   6K   0.00ERA
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 10 JULY  2006

Congratulations to this weeks selection of our F&D Pro Player of the Week.

How exciting it is to announce that Chris SNELLING , the 15th Australian to reach the US major leagues, after being out for so long with injury, really hit his straps this week for the Mariners AAA club Tacoma Rainiers this past week. Batting .538 and Slugging .846, he was the standout amongst the batters, and could well be poised for a return to the "BIGS". F&D certainly hopes that it won't be long!!!
If we were to have a category of " Rising Star", then young NSW Pitcher Brad TIPPETT would have truly earned his nomination. In his first four appearances as a pro, he had the impressive figures of 4 Games 3 Saves and 0.00ERA. We will be watching him with eager anticipation.

 Chris SNELLING (AAA Tacoma Rainiers) 
4G   13AB  7H  1D  1HR   .364AVG   .846SLG

Season:  .298AVG

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Brad TIPPETT (R GCL Twins) 4G  3.0IP  3S  2H  2K  0.00ERA
Trent DURRINGTON (AAA Pawtucket Red Sox) 7G   24AB  9H  1D  1T  1HR  .375AVG
Glenn WILLIAMS (AAA Rochester Redwings) 8G   27AB  9H  4D  1HR  .333AVG
Brad HARMAN (A+ Clearwater Thrashers) 5G  18AB  6HD  .333AVG
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 3 JULY 2006

Congratulations to this week's selection of our 'F&D' Pro Player of the Week: 

It is with great pleasure that F&D nominates popular Victorian baseballer and former Melbourne REDS backup catcher Mathew KENT as this week's PRO PLAYER OF THE WEEK.

Since being picked up by Boston after his selection for Australia at the World Baseball Classic Mathew has struggled, going into this week with a .111 average, and only appearing in 20 games. Once again, this week, he struggled for recognition, but in the three games he did get, he batted a satisfying .364. Well done Matt. 
As forecast last week, Josh DEAN, Clint NAYLOR and Tim COX were among those starting their season, and they each received an Honourable Mention this week.

We will also use this space to CONGRATULATE a player who has often appeared on this page, TRENT OELTJEN, on his deserving selection for the prestigious MLB "Futures Game" as part of its ALL-STAR GAME extravaganza. Trent now finds himself on the same path that Aussie Justin Huber (a Futures Game MVP) followed all the way to the majors!

 Mathew KENT  (A+ Wilmington Blue Rocks)  
3G  11AB   4H   .364AVG 

Season:  .149AVG

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Josh DEAN

(R Elizabethton Twins) 3G  9AB  3H  .333AVG

Clint NAYLOR

(AZL Padres) 1G  3AB  1H  .333AVG

Chris SNELLING

(AAA Tacoma Rainiers) 5G  20AB  7R  6H  3D  .300AVG

Brad HARMAN

(A+ Clearwater Thrashers) 5G  20AB  4R  6H  1D  .300AVG

Tim COX

(Greenville Drive  A) 2G  7.2IP  2H  2BB  8K
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 26 JUNE 2006

Congratulations to this week's selection of our 'F&D' Pro Player of the Week: 
Batters took front stage this week, and the Player of the Week Adam MORRISSEY, stood out like a beacon
Showing great Aussie fighting spirit since dropping down to 'AA' Adam Morrissey has previously won this award and he has also featured in the "Honourable Mentions" several times.
 It was impossible to go past his hitting in the 10 games. Slugging .782 and batting .455 should surely help him in his fight for promotion. 

With the 'A' Short Season and Rookie Leagues now in full swing, F&D confidently expects to see many of Australia's "Up and Comers" to appear in this section in coming weeks.

Had he not earned an Honourable Mention this week, we were preparing ourselves to highlight the tremendous consistency of Queensland youngster DAVID SUTHERLAND who has hardly put a foot wrong in Claxton Shield or in his pro career so far... we will be looking for him to rise through the ranks in not too many years!

 Adam MORRISSEY (AA Frisco RoughRiders)
10 G  55AB  25H  7D  1T  3HR  .782SLG  .455AVG

Season: .329AVG

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Chris SNELLING

(AAA Tacoma Rainiers) 7G  31AB  12H  4D  1HR  .387AVG

Trent OELTJEN

(AA New Britain Rock Cats) 4G  16AB   6H  1D  .375AVG

David SUTHERLAND

(A Columbus Catfish) 2G   8AB   3H   .375AVG
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 19 JUNE 2006

Congratulations to this week's selection of our 'F&D' Pro Player of the Week: 
I sincerely hope that you will excuse us for being repetitive and predictable this week, but how could you possibly go past Phil STOCKMAN once again, having foreshadowed his elevation to become the 23rd Australian to reach the US majors. Not only did 'big Phil' make his debut but he has not yet allowed a run in his two big league appearances.

Honourable mentions are as listed below and clearly deserving with four of our most gifted New South Welshmen coming to the fore while the professional league seasons are warming up! Not quite making into our "Pro Player" features just yet, but worthy of special mention for his typical consistency is one of our unashamed favourites, BRETT RONEBERG, who is re-establishing his pro career after a nasty shoulder injury in 2005. He is batting a very healthy .310 from 187 at bats with the Pittsburgh Pirates 'AA' Altoona Curve and he must be in line for promotion to at least 'AAA' some time pretty soon!

 Phil STOCKMAN  (Atlanta Braves MLB)
2G  2IP  1H  2K  0.00ERA 

Season:  0.00ERA

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Trent OELTJEN

(AA New Britain Rock Cats) 5G  19AB  9H  1D  .474AVG

Trent D'ANTONIO

(A Greensboro Grasshoppers) 5G  19AB  8H  1D  3HR   .421AVG

Glenn WILLIAMS

(AAA Rochester Redwings) 6G  15AB  6H  2D  .400AVG

Chris SNELLING

(AAA Tacoma Rainiers) 3G  13AB  5H   .385AVG
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 12 JUNE 2006

Congratulations to this week's selection of our 'F&D' Pro Player of the Week: 
Despite a week in which many 'AUSSIES' performed  with great distinction, one performer stands out this week, namely Phil STOCKMAN. And does he stand out? At nearer to seven feet than six feet tall and with numbers like he has... ABSOLUTELY! To put the performance in perspective, of the 300-odd pitchers in the AAA US leagues, only six (6), who had pitched at least 20 innings, had an ERA of below 1.00. Phil STOCKMAN was 5th, as he lowered his ERA to 0.91.
Even then he had to stave off a significant number of other Aussie pros who receive Honourable Mention.

Having just recently found more Australians playing in Independent Leagues. ' F&D' are delighted to note that in typical Aussie fashion, Paul RUTGERS is fighting back with his Frontier League leading .439 AVG. Well done Paul! 

 Phil STOCKMAN  (AAA Richmond Braves)
2G  2.0IP  2H  5K

Season: 2 Saves, 0.91ERA

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Paul RUTGERS  

(IND Chillcothe Paints) 12 G  41 AB 18 H 3D  1 T  1 HR  .634SLG  .435AVG

Luke HUGHES 

(A+  Ft Myers Miracle) 6 G  22 AB  7 H  1D  .318AVG

Glen WILLIAMS 

(AAA Rochester Redwings) 7 G  19 AB  8 H  2D  .421AVG

Trent OELTJEN 

(AA New Britain Rock Cats) 7 G  20 AB 7 H  1 D  .350AVG

Adam MORRISSEY 

(AA Frisco Roughriders) 7 G  27 AB  11 H  4D  2HR  .407AVG  .777SLG

Josh HILL 

(A+  Ft Myers Miracle) 2G   1W   0.00ERA
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 5 JUNE 2006

Congratulations to this week's selection of our 'F&D' Pro Player of the Week: 
One of the great things about sport in general, and baseball in particular, is that cream generally rises to the top and some of Australia's baseball "cream" has clearly risen this week. Our leading choice this week is CHRIS SNELLING.
All Australians will be pleased to see that, coming back from injury, CHRIS is back in the swing. His average of .318 and slugging % of .591, in the past 6 games speaks for itself. See you soon back in THE SHOW Chris!
Providing stiff opposition were, Trent OELTJEN who had a better average from his most recent 7 games but he could not match Snelling's power output. 
John STEPHENS earned a win with under 2.00 ERA, while Phil STOCKMAN managed 2 outings without allowing a run. 

 Chris SNELLING (AAA Tacoma Rainiers)
6G  22AB  6R  7H  3D  1HR  -  .318 AVG

Season: .288/15/1

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Trent OELTJEN

(AA New Britain Rock Cats) 7G   24AB  8H  .333AVG

Phil STOCKMAN

(AAA Richmond Braves) 2G   2.1IP  4K   0.00ERA

John STEPHENS

(AAA Ottawa Lynx) 1W  1G  1GS   6.0IP  1.50ERA
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 29 MAY 2006

Congratulations to this week's selection of our 'F&D' Pro Player of the Week: 
Adam Morrissey showed that his “Honourable Mention” last week was no fluke, by taking out this week’s PRO of the WEEK Award. It was a quiet week in the main for our Aussies, but Adam’s  .500 Avge was the pick.

 Adam MORRISSEY (AA Frisco RoughRiders)
5G  20AB  10H  3D  - .500 AVG

Season: .421 - 37AB

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Luke HUGHES  

(A+ Ft Myers Miracle) 4 Gs  16 AB   7 H   .438AVG    
  'Flintoff & Dunn's PRO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK' - 23 MAY 2006

Congratulations to our INAUGURAL joint "winners" of our 'F&D' Pro Player of the Week: 
Not that it comes into our adjudication, but we are delighted to award two of the real stalwarts of Australian baseball and two of the "survivors" who have flown our flag in the US for several seasons.

 Matthew WILKINSON  (AA Tennessee Smokies)
5G  1W  8.1 IP  5H  2BB 8K  0.00 ERA

Season: 3-2, 3.44ERA

 Trent DURRINGTON  (AAA Pawtucket Red Sox)
5G  13AB  5H  2SB  .385 AVG

Season: .245/7/0

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

Phil STOCKMAN

(AAA Richmond Braves) 3G  1S   5.1IP  2H  7K    0.00 ERA

Adam MORRISSEY

(AA Frisco Roughriders) when sent from AAA to AA  - 3G 10AB  6H  .600AVG

Richard THOMPSON

(AA Arkansas Travellers) 3G  3.1IP  1H  6K    0.00ERA

Brad HARMAN

(A+ Clearwater Threshers) 4G  16AB  6H  2D    .385AVG