• Charlie Greene

In-Season Report 8

Hello Bisons Booster Club members, family and friends,

This is your Booster Club First Vice-President reporting from Buffalo, New York. TRIVIA QUESTIONS: 1. Have any future Major Leaguers pitched perfect games against the Bisons? 2. For what team did Cal Ripken Jr. play before joining the Baltimore Orioles? Answers below. WEATHER REPORT: The lowest temperature at the start of a game if the Bisons had played their sixth home stand of this season would have been 70 degrees on Monday, June 15, a 7:05 PM game, and the highest temperature at the start of a game would have been 87 degrees on Sunday, June 21, today, a 1:05 PM game.   SPORTS PAGE: The Major League Baseball draft was held on Wednesday and Thursday, June 10-11.  The Blue Jays selected 7th and chose Vanderbilt's Austin Martin.  He was listed as a shortstop, but he is willing to play and capable of playing in any position other than catcher and pitcher.    Martin was considered by many analysts to be the "best player available" as well as the "best pure hitter" and was expected to be drafted either first or second.  The Blue Jays were surprised that he still was available at selection 7 and were ready to select him as their #1 choice. Next, Toronto selected 42nd and chose Florida State University Junior right handed pitcher C J VanEyk.  As the 77th overall pick, the Jays chose Jacksonville University Junior RHP Trent Palmer.  Next, as the 106th pick, Toronto selected Loyola Marymount University Junior RHP Nick Frasso.  Their last pick was #136, Zach Britton, a left handed hitting outfielder who completed his junior year at the University of Louisville.  Folks who know a lot more about the draft selections than I do claim that the Blue Jays had the sixth best draft group of all the Major League teams.  Even though the official draft ended, teams are allowed to sign an unlimited number of players who were not drafted.  Within 48 hours after the draft ended, over 100 other players were signed by Major League teams. On Thursday, June 18th, the Blue Jays shut down their training facility in Dunedin, Florida, after a pitcher on the 40-man roster showed symptoms of Covid-19.  He expected to get test results within 3 days.  The very next day, all Major League teams closed their "spring training" facilities because players  and staff members were testing positive for C-19.  Players had been practicing on their own at several training sites.  Then, on Saturday, the 20th, both the Mets and the Yankees announced that they would do their "summer training" at their stadiums in New York City.  Meanwhile, because of possible travel restrictions into Canada, the Jays are readying the stadium in Dunedin in order to play Major League games there by installing MLB level lights for night games.   Even though no official announcement had been made regarding International League games this summer, on Sunday, June 7th, the Scranton Wilkes-Barre Rail Riders announced flexible options to choose from as it relates to tickets purchased for the 2020 season schedule in Moosic where the Rail Riders play, including the AAA All-Star game events scheduled for July 14 and 15.  If folks who have reserved tickets do not respond to the Rail Riders office by July 31st, they will assume folks are content in rolling the money towards the 2021 season.  This implies that, if All-Star activities are not held this year, the Rail Riders are assuming that the events will be held in Moosic in 2021.  (See below for follow-up.) Transactions: On June 10th, the Indianapolis Indians, affiliated with the Pirates, released 7 players including former Bisons second baseman Jake Elmore.  The others were 3 right handed pitchers, 2 outfielders, a left handed pitcher and another second baseman. IN OTHER NEWS: Thursday, June 11th, was a sad day for those of us who had reservations to attend the AAA All-Star Game events in Moosic, Pennsylvania.  Although the cancellation had not been announced officially, that was the day that a representative of the Scranton Wilkes-Barre RailRiders called to inform us that our reservation money was being refunded.  The RailRiders hope to be able to host the AAA All-Star Game events in 2022. If the Bisons had played their home games from June 15 through 21, there would have been an Irish Night, a 90's Night Friday Night Bash with fireworks, a baseball movie night, a Father's Day observance at which children could play catch with their Dad on the field after the game and the Buffalo Bisons Booster Club Batting Practice Event at which Club members would have been able to watch the team batting practice while standing on the field behind the home plate batting cage.  This event always was special because after taking batting practice, most of the players along with coaches and the manager would stop to talk with fans, sign autographs and pose for photos. TRIVIA ANSWERS: 1. Yes, future Major Leaguers have pitched perfect games against the Bisons: Stan Bahnsen on 7/9/67 for Syracuse vs Buffalo, 8-0, 7 innings;and Bronson Arroyo on 8/10/03 for Pawtucket vs Buffalo, 7-0, 9 innings. 2. Prior to joining the Orioles on May 30, 1982, Cal Ripken Jr. played for the Rochester Red Wings.  When he made that first start for Baltimore, he batted eighth and played third base in a 6-0 loss to the Blue Jays.  More notably, Ripken that day began his record streak of 2,632 straight games that would last through September 19, 1998, in a 5-3 win over the Yankees. BACK PAGE: If the Bisons were playing, there would have been 3 games against Scranton Wilkes-Barre and 4 against Pawtucket.  They would have ended the sixth home stand of the season this afternoon, Sunday, June 21st, have a day off on Monday, June 22nd, and then leave for a 6-game road trip, 3 games in Lehigh Valley and 3 games in Pawtucket, before returning home on June 29th.  This is the last season that the Red Sox AAA level team will play in Pawtucket.  For me, one of the sad results of International League games not being played is that fans in Pawtucket and nearby Providence will not be able to say goodbye to their team and their historic stadium. Charlie Greene, First Vice-President, Buffalo Bisons Booster Club

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