Thursday, June 30, 2011

How The Other 3/4 Lives: TD Bank Park

TD Bank Ballpark, "The Jewel of The Atlantic League," opened its gates on June 7, 1999 for the first ever Somerset Patriots home game in front of 6,506 fans. In a special Opening Day Ceremony, Governor Christie Todd Whitman and New Jersey officials gave their seal of approval for what would become one of the most successful minor league ballparks throughout the nation.

The 6,100 seat ballpark is the home to 70 Somerset Patriots games during an Atlantic League season. The ballpark was designed by Clark Caton and Hintz and SSP Architecture and built by Epic Construction.

Down the left field line, the Patriots host special group outings in the Picnic Area and Executive Party Deck TD Bank Ballpark features twenty luxury suites that are used by groups throughout the season. The luxury suites also have balcony seating for fans to watch games outdoors.

Down the right field line, TD Bank Ballpark has a grassy area called the Turf Club, an open area where fans can sit on the grass or bring beach towels to sit on to enjoy the game by the Patriots bullpen.

TD Bank Ballpark is a multi-use facility that has been the home of the Big East Baseball Championship Tournament and County Baseball Tournaments during the season. In the off-season, the ballpark is the site of the Big Apple Circus and the New Jersey State Fair.

TD Bank Ballpark is also the home of the Somerset County Park Commission conc
erts that have featured music legends such as Tony Bennett and Willie Nelson and pop sensation Jessica Simpson.

Sharks Routed By Patriots

Derrick Gordon pitched seven innings and the Patriots hit three home runs en route to a 10-2 victory over the Camden Riversharks. The loss snaps the Riversharks’ season-best four-game winning streak.

Gordon (4-0) allowed just one run in seven innings on seven hits while striking out seven batters. He is now 2-0 against the Riversharks this season.

The Riversharks scored the games’ first run in the top of the 1st when Pedro Feliz drove in Juan Francia with an RBI single.

Somerset struck right back in the bottom of the 1st against ‘Sharks starter Yorman Bazardo. After Michael Hernandez tied the game at 1-1 with an RBI double, Josh Pressley hit a two-run double to left-center field to give the Patriots a 3-1 lead.

Hernandez finished the game 2-for-5 with 2 RBIs.

In his first start in a Riversharks uniform, Bazardo (0-1) lasted just two innings surrendering three runs on four hits while striking out two batters.

The Patriots blew it open in the middle innings as they scored three runs in the bottom of the 6th highlighted by a two-run error by Juan Francia to make it 7-1 Somerset.

Somerset put the game out of reach in the bottom of the 7th when Josh Pressley, Jeff Nettles, and Justin Huber hit back-to-back-to-back solo home runs off ‘Sharks reliever Mumba Rivera to give the Patriots a 10-1 lead.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Sharks Win Fourth Straight, Are The Juggernaut

The top of the Riversharks order came through with big hits, Eddy Camacho pitched six effective innings, and the bullpen shut the door on the Somerset Patriots tonight at TD Bank Park. The Sharks cruised to a 6-2 victory, their fourth straight.

The Riversharks have now won 7 of their last 10 games thanks to quality pitching and timely hitting, something that was sorely lacking at the beginning of the 2011 season.

The scoring got started early tonight, in the first inning Brian Burgamy belted a solo home run over the left field wall to put the Sharks up 1-0.

The Patriots tied the game in the bottom of the inning when Fernando Cortez singled, stole 2nd base and scored on a throwing error by shortstop Danny Richar.

The Sharks scored twice more in the third and fourth innings. A Lloyd Turner double in the third scored Ruddy Yan, and Toby Hall's sac fly in the fourth scored Noah Hall to make it 3-1.

Things really got going in the top of the fifth, when the Sharks first three batters all singled off Patriots starter Bill Pulsipher to load the bases. Then Pedro Feliz singled in Juan Francia, Noah Hall's sac fly to center scored Lloyd Turner, and Danny Richar singled to score Brian Burgamy, making it 6-1 Sharks.

A solo home run by Patriots right fielder Michael Hernandez made it 6-2, but the Sharks bullpen combo of John Bale, Mike Koplove and Brian Stokes held Somerset in check to seal the win.

The Good: Brian "Mike Who?" Burgamy goes 2 for 4 with a home run. Lloyd Turner goes 2 for 5 with an RBI double and a single. John Bale, Mike Koplove and Brian Stokes combine for three scoreless innings in relief of Eddy Camacho.

The Bad: Patriots second baseman Matt Hagen was ejected in the eighth inning by home plate umpire James Pattison for arguing balls and strikes.

The Ugly: Lloyd Turner tried to go high-socked tonight. It didn't go well, as you can see. The guys at UniWatch will be informed...

Indians Sign Raul Padron

The Cleveland Indians have signed catcher Raul Padron, 26, to a free-agent contract and assigned him to the AA Akron Aeros. In 44 games with the Riversharks this season, Padron was batting .335 with 7 homers and 30 RBI's. His OPS was among the Atlantic League's best at .921

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Newest Addition To Sharks Pitching Staff Also Has One Of The Best Baseball Names Ever...

He's no Drungo Hazewood, but still...

Yorman Osorio Bazardo (born July 11, 1984 in Maracay Aragua State, Venezuela) is a right-handed Major League Baseball pitcher currently in the Camden Riversharks organization.

More on Bazardo here.

Sharks Flex Defensive Muscle In 5-2 Win Over Somerset

Carlos Vasquez pitched 7 solid innings, and the Sharks infield put on a defensive clinic en route to a 5-2 victory tonight over the Somerset Patriots.

Vasquez retired the first 9 batters he faced before Patriots centerfielder Joe Holden poked a single through the infield in the bottom of the 4th. But the threat was neutralized one batter later when Michael Hernandez grounded into a 5-4-3 double play.

The Sharks got on the board first in the top of the fifth, when Juan Francia's RBI single scored Drew Macias to make it 1-0.

Camden added 2 more in the top of the 6th. With Brian Burgamy on first, Pedro Feliz launched a home run over the left field wall of TD Bank Park to make it 3-0.

Every time Vasquez got into a little trouble, the defense came up big to bail him out. The infield turned three consecutive inning-ending double plays in the 4th, 5th and 6th innings.

The Patriots rallied in the bottom of the 7th when Jeff Nettles sac fly scored Michael Hernandez, and first baseman Justin Huber singled in Josh Pressley to make it 3-2.

But the Sharks added some insurance runs in the top of the 9th on base hits from Juan Francia, Lloyd Turner and Brian Burgamy to make it 5-2. And closer Brian Stokes retired the Patriots 1-2-3 in the bottom of the 9th to pick up his 4th save.

The Good: This was maybe the best Sharks game I've seen this season (besides the Noah Hall walk-off win earlier this month). Solid pitching (who would've thought), great defense, and clutch hits made it a VERY enjoyable night to be a Sharks fan.

Jay Marshall got the Sharks out of a HUGE jam in the bottom of the eighth without giving up a run. With runners on the corners and one out, Marshall got pinch hitter Wayne Lydon on an infield pop out. Norris Hopper hit a comebacker to the mound that Marshall was able to corral and throw to first for out number three.

The Bad: Coming on in relief of Vasquez, righty Mumba Rivera gave up a double and allowed catcher John Pachot to reach on an error before getting the hook.

The Ugly: The Patriots jerseys available for purchase in the team store, which have what look to be futuristic epaulettes on their sleeves. Think Mercury Mets.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Ben Davis On Comcast Network

Former Sharks pitcher (and Chester native) Ben Davis has been popping up on the Comcast Network from time to time as a Phillies analyst. Here's one of his latest appearances. Good to see Big Ben is doing well.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Padron Wins Game for Sharks in Extras

Raul Padron hit a walk-off, RBI double in the bottom of the 11th to give the Riversharks a dramatic 6-5 win over the Road Warriors. The extra-inning victory was the second one this week as Camden has now won three of their last four series.

Mike Koplove (2-1) pitched a scoreless 11th inning to pick up the victory for the Riversharks.

Adam Thomas (1-4) gave up the RBI double to Padron and took the loss for the Road Warriors.

The Riversharks jumped on starter Chris Mason right off the bat with three runs in the bottom of the first. Pedro Feliz drove home Lloyd Turner with an RBI single and Camden added two more unearned runs in the inning after third baseman Gabe Suarez couldn’t come up with an inning-ending ground ball.

Daniel Jordan brought the Road Warriors within a run in the top of the 2nd with a two-run home run, his 2nd of the season, to bring his team within a run at 3-2.

Camden built their lead back up to three runs in the bottom of the 2nd as Pedro Feliz hit a two-out, two-run double to give the ‘Sharks a 5-2 advantage.

Mason, the ex-Rivershark, lasted just four innings allowing five runs (three earned) on nine hits and three walks.

The Road Warriors tied up the ballgame in the top of the 5th against ‘Sharks starter J.R. Mathes. With two outs, Jonel Pacheco and and Marcos Cabral reached on back-to-back singles setting up Mike Mooney’s three-run home run, his second of the series, which knotted the score up at 5-5.

Mathes allowed a season-high five runs on nine hits while striking out four in six innings of work.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Towers Complete Game Stops Losing Streak

Josh Towers threw the first nine-inning complete game of the season for the Riversharks as they defeated the Road Warriors by the final count of 5-1. Towers (3-2) allowed just one run on seven hits en route to the victory.

Camden (18-32) jumped ahead in the bottom of the 1st against Warriors’ starter Miguel Martinez. After Danny Richar scored the game’s first run on a wild pitch, Noah Hall hit a two-run double to give the ‘Sharks a 3-0 lead.

Martinez (4-4) also went the distance allowing five runs and eleven hits in his eight innings of work. He has now lost his last three starts.

Towers was able to keep the Road Warriors off the scoreboard until the top of the 6th when Jonel Pacheco drove home Marcos Cabral with an RBI single.

Pacheco finished the contest 2-for-4 and now has five hits in the first two games of the series.

Pedro Feliz gave the Riversharks an insurance run in the bottom of the 7th with an RBI double that plated Raul Padron. Feliz was a perfect 2-for-2 with an RBI on the game.

The Riversharks tacked on one more in the 8th inning when Lloyd Turner brought home Drew Macias with an RBI double to give Camden a 5-1 lead.

Baez Exits Early, Sharks Get Stomped By Warriors

Federico Baez battled control issues early in the Sharks 12-6 loss to the Road Warriors Friday night. Baez lasted only three innings, giving up 7 runs on 6 hits, and walking three.

The Warriors scored 2 runs in the top of the first, and added 3 more in the third inning when right fielder Mike Mooney crushed a ball over the wall in center field, scoring Sean Henry and Carlos Sosa. The slugfest continued into the fourth as the Warriors scored 4 more runs on 4 hits.

Meanwhile, Road Warriors starter Luke Massetti was mowing through the Sharks lineup. Massetti retired the first 10 batters he faced, before Lloyd Turner's double in the fourth started a rally that saw the Sharks plate 3 runs in the inning.

The Sharks rallied again in the bottom of the sixth, thanks to Danny Richar's 2 run home run and Toby Hall's RBI single that cut the lead to 10-6. But that's as close as they were going to get, as the Warriors tacked on 2 more runs in the top of the ninth, and their closer Adam Thomas retired the Sharks 1-2-3 to complete the rout.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Burgamy Placed On Bereavment List, Dittler May Need Surgery

Brian Burgamy has been placed on the bereavment list effective Friday. According to Atlantic League rules, a player placed on the bereavement list must miss a minimum of three games and a maximum of seven games. Burgamy was not in the lineup for today's game against the Road Warriors.

Righty Jake Dittler, who has been on the disabled list since June 2nd, may need Tommy John surgery, according to Sharks radio play-by-play announcers Tyler Olsson and Danny Will.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Pedro Feliz Interviewed By 6ABC

Sharks Lose In Walk-Off Fashion Again

J.R. House brought home John Rodriguez with a game-winning fielder’s choice in the bottom of the 9th as the Long Island Ducks walked off with a 1-0 victory over the Camden Riversharks. The walk-off win was the second for the Ducks in the series as the teams split the four-game series.

With the bases loaded and one out in the bottom of the 9th, Riversharks’ manager Von Hayes brought Lloyd Turner in from the outfield to have a fifth infielder. House hit a groundball between shortstop Danny Richar and Turner who was playing up the middle. Turner couldn’t field the ball cleanly on the backhand and his throw home was not in time as John Rodriguez scored the games only run.

The Riversharks (17-31) had two runners on in the 8th and 9th innings but couldn’t convert against Ducks’ reliever Jeremy Hill.

Hill (1-1) threw three scoreless innings out of the bullpen for Long Island and picked up the victory giving up two hits and two walks.

The game was a pitcher’s duel throughout as starters Shane Youman and Eddy Camacho were exchanging scoreless innings.

In his first start of the season, Youman went six innings surrendering only three hits and a walk.

Camacho threw seven scoreless innings allowing just three hits and a walk in his second start of the season.

The Von Hayes Batting Stance Lives On In Michael Rockett

Rockett is an outfielder with the AA Erie SeaWolves in the Eastern League. And apparently a Von Hayes fan.

Jeremy Hunt Released

The Sharks released right-handed pitcher Jeremy Hunt today. Hunt had only appeared in 2 games with the team, both losses, where he was used sparingly. In the June 5th loss to the Bluefish, he faced six batters and got exactly one out, for a gaudy ERA of 108.11.

Hunt managed to lower that number by almost 75 points in his 1 inning of work in the June 9th loss to the Road Warriors.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Sharks Win Extra-Inning Thriller

Raul Padron hit the game-winning home run in the top of the 14th as the Riversharks emerged victorious in fourteen innings over the Long Island Ducks by the final score of 8-7. Camden trailed by as many as six runs to Long Island in a game that lasted four hours and thirty-one minutes.

Camden scored three runs in the 9th to tie the game at 7-7 against Ducks’ closer Bubbie Buzachero highlighted by Danny Richar’s RBI single and Raul Padron’s sacrifice fly that tied the score.

Mike Koplove (1-1) picked up the win after throwing two scoreless innings. The Riversharks bullpen allowed just one run in eleven innings of work.

Jason Monti (0-1) took the loss after giving up the game-winning home run to Padron. Monti allowed the one run in three innings of action.

The Ducks jumped on Riversharks’ starter Carlos Vasquez right away in the bottom of the 1st. Javier Colina hit a two-run home run, his 9th of the season, to give Long Island a 2-0 advantage. Two batters later Matt Esquivel launched his 5th home run of the season, a two-run shot over the left field wall, to double the Ducks lead to 4-0.

Colina and Esquivel have now combined to hit five home runs against Camden this season.

Long Island hit their third two-run homer of the evening in the bottom of the 4th as Freddie Thon hit his 3rd long ball of the season extending the Ducks lead to 6-0.

Vasquez lasted just three innings allowing a season-high six runs on five hits while walking a season-high five batters.

The Riversharks walked a season-high fourteen batters on the game.

Camden battled back in the 5th inning against Ducks starter Mark Diapoules. After Raul Padron drove home Danny Richar with an RBI single, Pedro Feliz hit a three-run home run, his 3rd of the season, to bring the Riversharks within two runs at 6-4.

The Ducks added an insurance run in the bottom of the 7th when Kennard Jones brought home J.R. House with a sacrifice fly making it 7-4 Long Island.

Mike Lamb Signs With The Yankees, Joins AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre

From the Scranton Times-Tribune:

"Two veteran infielders are expected to join the team tomorrow for the series finale against Norfolk.

One is Terry Tiffee, the ex-Minnesota Twins corner man who was signed away from the Lancaster Barnstormers. He was hitting .297 with 10 homers and 41 RBIs.

The other, evidently, is Mike Lamb, the former Astros infielder who has spent 10 of the last 11 years playing in the majors. Lamb has a locker in the Yankees clubhouse. I haven’t seen him yet today. But I’m told he has been signed also. He was hitting .320 with seven homers and 32 RBIs."

So the Sharks lose a big bat, but this isn't necessarily a bad thing. Brian Burgamy's left field misadventures are over. He moves into Lamb's #3 spot, and takes over duties at first. There's only one guy with more RBI's than Mike Lamb in the Sharks lineup, and his name is Brian Burgamy. And any roster move that sees guys like Juan Francia and Raul Padron get more playing time is good news in my opinion.

"Rise Or Fall" By The Young Werewolves, The Official Song Of The 2011 Camden Riversharks

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

In Which Pedro Feliz Has A Really, Really, Long Day At Work

The Long Island Ducks rallied in the bottom of the 9th to beat the RiverSharks 4-3 thanks to a Ray Navarette 2 out, RBI...infield pop up. The ball barely made it to the pitchers mound, landing between closer Brian Stokes and a charging Pedro Feliz.

The RiverSharks got on the board first in the 4th inning, thanks to a Brian Burgamy sac fly that scored Lloyd Turner. The Ducks would answer right back in the bottom of the inning, as Matt Padgett would single in Lew Ford to tie the game at 1-1.

The Sharks got a run in the 6th without getting a hit. DH Mike Lamb walked, advanced to 2nd on a balk by Ducks pitcher Joselo Diaz, advanced to third on a Brian Burgamy sac fly and finally scored when Raul Padron flied out to center.

Camden made it 3-1 in the 7th, when Danny Richar's ground out scored Noah Hall.

But the Ducks scored 2 runs in the bottom of the inning, knocking out starter JR Mathes in the process. Mathes went 6 2/3, gave up 3 runs on 9 hits and struck out 1.

And the Sharks let a great opportunity pass them by in the top of the 8th. They had the bases loaded and no outs, but couldn't get a run across. Pedro Feliz grounded into a fielder's choice, and Noah Hall and Toby Hall flied out to Ducks shortstop Javier Colina.

Feliz ended his day going 0 for 4. And letting a routine pop-up turn into a walk-off win for Long Island.

Monday, June 20, 2011

How I Know I'm A Sharks Fan

I sat through this game last year. Willingly.

Mascot Randomness

Finley applies the Whammy.

Blueper signing autographs.

Blueper explains the infield fly rule.

Sharks Win Third Straight

Josh Towers pitched eight excellent innings and Mike Lamb delivered the game-winning, RBI single in the top of the 8th as the Riversharks won their third straight ballgame by the final score of 2-1 over the Long Island Ducks. Towers (2-2) surrendered just one run and eight hits in eight innings of work for his second straight victory.

John Bale came on in the 9th inning to pick up his 2nd save of the season.

Long Island (29-16) scored the game’s first run in the bottom of the 2nd when Matt Padgett drove home Lew Ford with an RBI single.

Camden (16-29) wasted no time tying up the ball game in the next half inning. After Lloyd Turner reached with on a two-out error by second baseman Ray Navarette, Mike Lamb doubled to deep left-center field to knot up the score at 1-1.

The duo of Turner and Lamb gave the Riversharks the lead in the top of the 8th against Ducks’ starter Mike Parisi. After Turner lined a one-out double, Lamb followed it up with an RBI single to give the ‘Sharks the 2-1 advantage.

Lamb finished the game 2-for-4 with both RBIs for Camden.

Parisi (5-2) was the hard-luck loser allowing two runs in eight innings of work with nine strikeouts.

Riversharks Win Rubber Match Against Bluefish

Federico Baez pitched six strong innings as the Camden Riversharks won the rubber match of their three-game series against the Bridgeport Bluefish by the final score of 6-1. Camden has now won back-to-back series for the first time this season.

Baez (4-0) scattered five hits and four walks in six innings allowing just one run to pick up the victory. The Riversharks remain undefeated this season when Baez is on the mound.

Camden (15-29) struck first in the top of the 2nd against Bluefish starter Jose Rodriguez. Lloyd Turner hit a two-out, two-run single plating Brian Burgamy and Raul Padron to give the ‘Sharks a 2-0 lead.

Bridgeport (23-21) scored their only run in the bottom of the 2nd against Baez when Andres Perez brought home Luis Lopez with an RBI single.

The Riversharks extended their lead in the top of the 5th when Rodriguez became wild. Rodriguez walked four batters in the inning including a bases-loaded walk to Mike Lamb that brought home Toby Hall. Two batters later, Raul Padron drew a bases-loaded walk against reliever Will Cunnane to make it 4-1 Camden.

Rodriguez (3-2) lasted just four plus innings allowing four runs on three hits and four walks for his first loss against Camden in three starts.

Camden added two more insurance runs in the top of the 7th courtesy of a two-out, RBI singles by Brian Burgamy and Pedro Feliz to make it 6-1 ‘Sharks.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

If There's Any Justice Left In This World, Jeremy Owens Will Make The All-Star Team This Year...

Because he deserves it. In three games last week against the Sharks, the 'Crabs centerfielder made three separate, INSANE, run saving catches. He's a defensive monster, and a truly nice guy. I hope he gets picked up. Meantime, vote him into the 2011 Atlantic League All-Star Game.

Camden Ends Losing Streak to Bridgeport

The Riversharks pounded out 16 hits en route to a convincing 12-3 victory over the Bridgeport Bluefish. The victory was Camden’s first against Bridgeport this season in eight attempts.

Camden (14-29) struck early and often against Bluefish starter Juan Padilla. The Riversharks scored four runs in the top of the 2nd highlighted by back-to-back RBI singles by Lloyd Turner and Juan Francia.

The ‘Sharks built their lead up to 6-0 after four innings courtesy of a Raul Padron sacrifice fly and a Mike Lamb RBI single. Lamb finished the game 3-for-3 and scored twice as Camden had six hitters with at least two hits.

Eddy Camacho (2-0) went five innings allowing just one unearned run in his first start of the season.

Padilla (2-3) lasted just four innings giving up six runs on nine hits and three walks.

The Riversharks put the game out of reach in the later innings. Camden scored six runs in the final three innings to build their lead as large as ten runs at 12-2.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Who Is This Man, And What Has He Done With Ryan McKellar?

The RiverSharks were unable to complete their sweep of the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs Thursday night, losing 3-2 in spite of solid pitching performances from both the starter and the bullpen. JR Mathes went 6 strong innings and really only got into trouble in the top of the 6th, when he gave up a solo homerun to Crabs shortstop Yunesky Sanchez, and one batter later gave up a 2-run blast to left fielder Ben Harrison.

Brian Burgamy's RBI double scored Lloyd Turner in the bottom of the inning to get Camden on the board, and Mike Lamb's solo shot in the bottom of the 9th cut the lead to just a run, but Crabs closer Jim Ed Warden retired Camden 1-2-3 after that to pick up his 12th save of the season.

The real surprise was Ryan McKellar's 2 innings of relief behind Mathes. McKellar didn't allow a hit, struck out 4 of the 7 Crabs he faced, and looked in complete control his entire time on the mound. The recent shakeup of the starting rotation seems to have shaken up the bullpen as well.

There's hope for the second half yet.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Sharks Win Back-To-Back Games Thanks to Longball, Solid Pitching, Jupiter Aligning With Pluto...

Tuesday night Federico Baez went 7 strong innings, giving up 2 runs on 6 hits, and striking out 4 on his way to his 3rd win of the season. Mike Lamb's 3-run home run in the bottom of the first put the Sharks ahead and they never looked back, adding an insurance run in the 4th when Noah Hall's sac fly scored Lloyd Turner. Sharks cruise to a 4-2 victory.

Wednesday night saw newly acquired righty Josh Towers go 6 innings, giving up one earned run and striking out 5. This time it was Drew Macias' 6th inning 3-run shot that put the game out of reach for the BlueCrabs. Sharks win 6-3.

The Good: The pitching has improved and the bullpen hasn't imploded. 'Nuff said...'Crabs centerfielder Jeremy Owens made spectacular catches in each game, robbing Brian Burgamy and Lloyd Turner of base hits...

The Bad: Von Hayes wasn't in the dugout for either game, because of a death in his family...Toby Hall was plunked, twice, by the same pitcher, in consecutive innings...

The Ugly: 'Crabs reliever Steve Palazzolo, who's listed at 6'10" and 270....'Crabs first baseman Ben Harrison committed 2 errors in the 2nd inning and almost committed a 3rd when he bobbled a grounder from Mike Lamb...The BlueCrabs away unis, which look like something out of bad '50 sci-fi...

Saturday, June 11, 2011

More On J.R. Mathes

Alfred George "J.R." Mathes (born November 9, 1981, in Granger, Indiana) is a left-handed pitcher for the Camden Riversharks organization.

Alfred George Mathes was nicknamed "J. R." by his grandmother after the character J. R. Ewing from the CBS television series Dallas.mMathes attended Elkhart Memorial High School, where he was recruited as a student athlete to Western Michigan University. He majored in computer information systems and business. He was drafted in the 16th round of the 2004 Major League Baseball Draft scouted by Stan Zielinski.

While at Western Michigan, Mathes was selected to the 2004 All-Mid-American Conference Second Team.

After signing in 2004, Mathes was assigned to the Arizona League Cubs, where he started his professional career. He was soon promoted to the Short-Season A Northwest League Boise Hawks, which won the league championship with a record of 3-0.

After the conclusion of spring training 2005, Mathis was assigned to the Florida State League Daytona Cubs High-A affiliate where he went 11-8. In 2006 his assignment was the Double-A affiliate West Tennessee Diamond Jaxx of the Southern League where his record was 10-8. From 2007-10 Mathes' career was spent in Des Moines, Iowa with the Pacific Coast League Iowa Cubs. His win against the Round Rock Express on July 23, 2010 put him on top of the franchise all time wins leader board at 38. He finished the season with 40 wins as an I-Cub.

Awards and honors

Where I'll Be Wednesday, July 13th 2011

Sharks Win Rain-Shortened Slugfest

Homers the difference in the 7-3 victory

J.R. Mathes picked a good day to make his season debut as the Sharks won 7-3 behind a pair of two-run homers by Mike Lamb and Brian Burgamy.

Camden struck the first blow as Danny Richar scored on a Mike Lamb groundout after leading off the game with a double in the top of the first.

After a leadoff walk by Noah Hall in the third, Lamb drove home two more runs with a home run to deep right field, his fifth on the season.

The Patriots struck back in the bottom half of the inning, however, as Jeff Nettles set the Atlantic League career doubles record with a two-run, two-bagger. The runs were unearned as an error with two outs had extended the inning.

Camden was back at it offensively in the fifth, as Danny Richar led off the frame with a double once again and scored on a Mike Lamb sacrifice fly. Noah Hall later scored on an RBI-groundout by Pedro Feliz.

The Patriots were able to scratch out a run in the sixth inning, as three straight hitters reached base on singles. Justin Huber's base hit plated Wayne Lydon.

Brian Burgamy added his sixth homer of the season when he drilled a two-run shot over the advertisement wall and into the trees behind right field in the seventh.

J.R. Mathes got the win in his first appearance since signing earlier in the week, after going five innings and surrendering no earned runs.

The victory was just the second in twenty tries this year when Camden was out-hit by their opponent.

The final game of the series will be at TD Bank Ballpark on Sunday, June 12th at 1:35pm.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Even A Broken Clock Has A Pitcher's Duel Twice A Day, Or Something...

In what was certainly a change of pace Friday night, a rare pitcher's duel ensued at TD Bank Ballpark as the Sharks lost their second game in a row at the hand of the Somerset Patriots.

Josh Towers, in just his second start of the season, had the deepest outing of the year for a Camden starter as he surrendered 3 runs in an 8-inning, complete game effort.

The Sharks struck first in the top of the third inning, as Juan Francia reached second on a throwing error by Somerset starter Bill Pulsipher. He scored on Danny Richar's double down the left field line.

The Patriots answered in the bottom of the inning, as Matt Hagen hit a solo shot for his fifth home run of the season.

Michael Hernandez added two solo homers himself, good for his fourth and fifth on the year.

The Riversharks will take on the Patriots tomorrow at TD Bank Ballpark at 7:05pm in the second game of the series.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Noah Hall's Wallet Is The One That Says "Bad Motherf*cker" On It

On a swelteringly hot night at Campbell's field, the Road Warriors were just three outs away from a win. They had scored a run in the 8th to tie the game, and took the lead 6-5 in the top of the 9th when Amadeo Zazueta singled in Sean Henry.

But then something amazing happened. In the bottom of the 9th, Danny Richar hit a leadoff single, and Noah Hall blasted a 2 run, game winning homer over the left field fence. The dugout empties and mob Hall at home plate. Sharks win in dramatic fashion 7-6. I have never felt happier to be a Sharks fan.

Warriors Sign Chris Mason

Sharks Opening Day starter Chris Mason is now pitching for the Road Warriors. Mason was originally drafted by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in the 2nd round of the 2005 MLB June Amateur Draft.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

6/7/11: Sharks v. Road Warriors

Pitchers duel turned blowout turned narrow escape. That's the best way to describe the Sharks 9-6 win Tuesday over the Road Warriors.

The offense was sparse for both teams until the 6th, when Pedro Feliz started a Sharks rally that led to 7 runs on 8 hits.

And starter Carlos Vasquez cruised through 7 innings, giving up only 1 run on 6 hits, striking out 7 Road Warriors. Then the bullpen took over. Ryan McKellar achieved the seemingly impossible, an ERA of infinity, giving up 4 runs on 3 hits and getting exactly 0 outs.

The Warriors scored 4 runs in the 8th to cut the lead to three, but that's as close as they could get (in 9 innings, you got the feeling that they would've won had they not run out of outs) as John Bale replaced McKellar and got Carlos Sosa looking for the final out.

The Good: Pete Happy has apparently found his groove, going 4 for 5 with an RBI and run scored...Carlos Vasquez went deeper than any starter for the Sharks this season and really looked lights out...Ruddy Yan hustled for a bunt single in the 3rd that saw him sliding headfirst into first base, also crushed a 2 run double in the 6th...Toby Hall was credited with a stolen base after a botched no throw from Warriors catcher Josh Johnson.

The Bad: Ryan McKellar. That is all.

The Ugly: Warriors CF Jonel Pacheco goes 0 for 4 with 2 strikeouts.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

At Least It Wasn't Infinity...

Sharks pitcher Jeremy Hunt's line in this afternoon's 19-11 loss to Bridgeport:

IP: .1 H: 1 R: 4 ER: 4 BB: 3 SO: 1

ERA: 108.11

Wow. More info on Hunt's background here. Hey, a 'Nova grad!

Deck Chairs Rearranged? Check.

Opening day starter Chris Mason has been released by the Sharks. In his 5 starts this season, Mason went 1-2, with a somewhat bloated 5.93 ERA and 10 K's.

Friday, June 3, 2011


Riversharks lose to the Bridgeport Bluefish tonight 9-1. I'm actually considering changing this blog into one that deals with shark attacks. For those keeping tabs, the Sharks are now 8-22.

For some reason, we've picked up a pitcher and a 2nd baseman.

Joshua Eric Towers (born February 26, 1977 in Port Hueneme, California) is a right-handed Major League Baseball pitcher, who is currently a free agent. Towers stands at 6 ft 1 in tall, and weighs 188 lb.

Towers, who wore uniform #7 with Toronto, is one of rare Major League pitchers to have worn a single-digit number.

Towers was drafted by the Baltimore Orioles in the 15th round of the 1996 Major League Baseball Draft. In 2001, Towers made his major league debut, compiling eight wins and ten losses while posting an ERA of 4.49 in 140.1 innings. Towers started 2002 with three straight losses along with two no-decisions in his first five games, giving up eleven home runs during that span. He would finish the year in the Orioles minor-league system.

Towers signed with the Blue Jays as a minor league free agent for the 2003 season. Joining the team midway through the season, he would go on to have a very successful run, appearing in 14 games (eight starts). He would finish the year 8–1 with a 4.48 ERA. In 2004, Towers became the Blue Jays' fifth starter, going a mediocre 9–9 with a 5.11 ERA in 21 games started.

In 2005, after ace Roy Halladay's leg was broken by a line drive, Towers was arguably Toronto's most dependable pitcher. Stepping up when the Blue Jays starting rotation seemed impossibly thin, he would finish the season with 13 wins, tied for the club lead (along with rookie Gustavo Chacín), Towers set career bests with a 3.71 ERA, 33 games started, and 208.2 innings pitched.

Having been signed to a two-year, $5.2 million contract during the off-season as a reward for his impressive 2005 year, Towers started the new season in horrifying fashion, going 0–7, with an ERA of 10.09 in his first seven starts.

On May 14, Towers pitched a good game against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, throwing eight innings and allowing just two earned runs, leading the Jays to an 8–3 victory. It was his first victory of 2006, but it would not translate into renewed confidence. Towers would go on to lose his eighth game of the season against the Colorado Rockies. The next game was another one against the Devil Rays, but he would leave the game after just 1 23 innings completed, giving up four earned runs. On May 24, the Blue Jays demoted Towers to the Syracuse Chiefs.

Towers would be recalled from Triple-A on June 20, but his struggles continued, and he was once again demoted to Syracuse on June 27.

Following his poor 2006 season, Towers decided to train with teammate and fellow Las Vegas off-season resident Reed Johnson. Towers, along with John Thomson, Tomo Ohka, and Víctor Zambrano was one of the leading contenders to land one of two open spots in the Blue Jays rotation.

During spring training, Towers was dominant, with only one bad outing during the spring. On March 31, it was announced that Towers had won the final spot in the Blue Jays' 2007 rotation to begin the season, although Blue Jays General Manager J. P. Ricciardi admitted that Towers would be "on a short leash".

On April 28, after his third loss of the season, to the Texas Rangers, where he surrendered 5 runs in 1 inning, he was demoted to the bullpen. Victor Zambrano was promoted in his place.[5]

On July 8, Josh Towers pitched eight shutout innings, including 5 23 innings of perfect ball and then watched the Blue Jays head into the all-star break on a high note with a 1–0 walkoff victory over the Cleveland Indians. Towers pitched no walks, three hits for the Jays.

During a game against the New York Yankees on August 7, 2007, Towers intentionally hit Alex Rodriguez with a pitch. Rodriguez approached the mound and the benches cleared. After Rodriguez took first, Towers heard Yankees first base coach Tony Pena "chirping" at him, which led to the benches clearing again. After the game, Towers called Pena a "quitter," referring to his resignation as the Kansas City Royals' manager in 2005, and said he is not in a position to run his mouth. Towers promptly surrendered two runs after the incident, lost the game and was moved, for the second time in the season, to the bullpen.

On February 6, 2008, Towers signed a one-year contract with the Colorado Rockies. He spent four months with the Rockies' Triple-A affiliate, the Colorado Springs Sky Sox. On July 26, he made himself a footnote in the record books when, during the second inning, he surrendered seven RBI and two home runs to Ryan Roberts of the Oklahoma RedHawks.

After becoming a free agent, Towers signed a minor league contract with the Washington Nationals in January 2009. He was released on May 5, 2009 after spending time with the Syracuse Chiefs.

On May 10, 2009, he was signed to a minor league contract by the New York Yankees and sent to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees. On August 8, 2009 he was called and placed on the Yankees roster but was designated for assignment the following day to make room for newly acquired pitcher Chad Gaudin. Towers cleared waivers and was outrighted back to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees. On September 5, he was recalled to the Yankees. The following day he was called in to pitch in a relief appearance for the Yankees, and in doing so, became the 1,500th player to play in an official game for the franchise.

On December 11, 2009, Towers signed a minor league contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He was assigned to the Triple-A Albuquerque Isotopes to start the season. He made eight starts for the Isotopes and was 2-5 with a 8.05 ERA. He was released on May 20, 2010, one day after allowing nine runs and ten hits in the first two innings.

Danny Adam Richar (born June 9, 1983 in La Romana, Dominican Republic) is a second baseman in the Camden Riversharks organization of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball.

Richar originally signed as an undrafted free agent with the Arizona Diamondbacks on July 9, 2001. He played for the Single-A Lancaster JetHawks from 2003 (first professional season) to 2005 including 26 games for the Double-A El Paso Diablos in 2004. He had his most home runs as a minor leaguer with 20 in 2005.

On June 16, 2007, he was traded to the Chicago White Sox for outfield prospect Aaron Cunningham. He hit .346 with 5 home runs in 32 games for the White Sox Triple-A team, the Charlotte Knights, before being recalled by the big league club on July 28, 2007, after second baseman Tadahito Iguchi was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies.

On July 31, 2008, Richar along with pitcher Nick Masset were traded for center fielder Ken Griffey Jr. of the Cincinnati Reds.[1]

On November 4, 2009, Richar filed for free agency. He signed a minor league contract with the Florida Marlins on December 21, and spent the 2010 season with their triple-A affiliate, the New Orleans Zephyrs, where he batted .315 in 128 games.