20th Anniversary Team selected

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Winnipeg Goldeyes

Written by Goldeyes News Release

August 10, 2013, WINNIPEG (ISN) – The Winnipeg Goldeyes announced today the Goldeyes 20th Anniversary team, as voted upon by the fans earlier this season.

To celebrate the team, the first 4,000 fans through the gate tonight will receive a set of 20th Anniversary team playing cards, presented by Pepsi.

Position Players

Luis Alen – Catcher (2007, 2010-2013)

The longest serving catcher in Goldeyes history, Luis Alen has become one of the best catchers to ever play independent baseball. He holds a .314 career batting average with Winnipeg in 443 games, which is the third all-time by a Goldeyes position player. The former farmhand of the Florida Marlins and New York Mets has struck out just 71 times in 1,628 plate appearances with Winnipeg.

Terry Lee – First Baseman (1995-1997)

A World Series champion with the Cincinnati Reds, Lee was the Northern League Player of the Year in 1995 and 1996. He still holds the best batting average by a Goldeyes player in a season when he hit .373 in 1995. Lee is the only player in Goldeyes history to win two league batting titles, having done so in 1995 and 1997. In his three seasons in Winnipeg, Lee hit 65 home runs, which has never been beaten by a member of the Fish. He’s four and fifth for most home runs in a season when he hit 23 in 1996 and 22 in 1995.

Brian Duva – Second Baseman (1995-2000)

The speedy Duva was the first player to have his number retired by the baseball club. His No. 5 went above the outfield wall on July 20, 2001. Duva won the Northern League batting title in 1998 after hitting .367, which is the second-best average in a season by a Goldeyes player. He stole 55 bases in 1997, which was a team record at the time and still sits second all-time. Among those 55 steals, six came in Thunder Bay against the Whiskey Jacks on June 6, 1997. Duva stole180 bags in his six seasons with the Goldeyes, which remains a team record.

Brent Metheny – Third Baseman (2007-2009)

The second of Brent Metheny’s three seasons in Winnipeg was his best. He led the team with a .357 batting average, which the fifth best all-time in a single season, and was voted by the fans as the Rogers Player of the Year. It was the highest single-season batting average by a member of the Goldeyes in eight seasons. He hit 43 home runs with the Goldeyes, which remains fifth all-time. In 2007, he was named the Goldeyes Budweiser MVP after leading the team in home runs and slugging percentage.

Max Poulin – Shortstop (2001-2008)

The longest serving player in Goldeyes history, Max Poulin suited up for 676 games with the Goldeyes during eight seasons. It’s a record that will be tough to match. He holds several career records, including hits (631), triples (34) and walks (227). A vacuum at short, Poulin had a .972 career fielding percentage and made good on more than 98 per cent of his plays in 2008. In June 14, 2011, Poulin’s No. 6 was retired by the club.

Carmine Cappuccio – Outfielder (2001)

Carmine Cappuccio played just one season with the Goldeyes, but it was one of the best by any player to throw on the red jersey. In 90 games, he hit .359 with nine home runs and 80 RBI. He missed winning the Northern League batting title by just five percentage points. His 39 doubles that season is still a team record. The accolades poured in after the season. Cappuccio was named to the Northern League Post-Season All-Star team and Baseball America’s All-Independent First Team. He was also selected the team’s Budweiser MVP.

Fehlandt Lentini – Outfielder (2006-2008, 2011, 2013)

Through three different stints, Fehlandt Lentini has proven to be one of the best outfielders ever to play in Winnipeg. In 2006, he set single-season records for runs scored (93), triples (13) and stolen bases (57) and was named the team’s Budweiser MVP and to the Northern League’s Post-Season All-Star team. Lentini has a career record 125 doubles with Winnipeg and became the all-time independent baseball stolen base record holder earlier this year. He has 332 stolen bases in 10 independent seasons.

Chris Kokinda – Outfielder (1996-1999)

While his name isn’t splattered in the Goldeyes record book, Chris Kokinda had four spectacular seasons with the Goldeyes in the team’s first decade. He had a .299 average with 29 home runs and 201 RBI in 338 games. Kokinda was named the Northern League’s Rookie of the Year in 2006.

Juan Diaz – Designated Hitter (2009-2010)

Big Juan Diaz littered Waterfront Drive with plenty of home run balls in his two seasons in Winnipeg. He hit 29 in 2009, which tied Sean Hearn for the most by a Goldeyes player in a season, and 24 in 2010. His 53 homers in just two seasons is the third most in Goldeyes history. Along with his home runs, Diaz drove in 90 runs in 2009, which remains a team record. He was selected as the Budweiser MVP in 2009.

Brian Myrow – Utility (1999-2001, 2011)

After a college career at Louisiana Tech, Brian Myrow started his professional career with the Goldeyes in 1999 and came back in 2011 after reaching the Majors with the San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers. In his third season with the Fish, Myrow got off to a torrid pace, hitting .386 with 10 home runs and 36 RBI in 25 games before having his contract purchased by the New York Yankees.

Harry Berrios – Utility (2002-2006)

In five seasons with the Goldeyes, Harry Berrios posted a .327 batting average, which the season-best all time. His 57 home runs remain second all-time and his 319 RBI remain a team career record. Having played 419 career games in a Goldeyes uniform, Berrios was selected a Northern League Post-Season All-Star three times and twice selected to the Baseball American All-Independent teams.

Pitchers

Rick Forney – Starting Pitcher (1997-2000)

While he’s closing in on a decade as the Goldeyes skipper, Rick Forney put together four solid seasons on the mound for the Goldeyes in the late 90s and into the 2000 season. He’s one of two pitchers in Goldeyes history to win at least 10 games in back-to-back seasons after he won 11 games in each of the 1997 and 1998 seasons. He won nine games in 13 starts in 1999 after starting the season in the Atlanta Braves organization. Forney remains on the Goldeyes career top five list in wins, games started, strikeouts and innings pitched. In 1999, he was selected to the Northern League Post-Season All-Star team and Baseball America All-Independent Second Team.

Ace Walker – Starting Pitcher (2008-2012)

Ace Walker made his mark on and off the field in his five seasons with the Goldeyes. He quickly became a fan favourite in 2008 and then embarked on re-writing the Goldeyes record book. In a team-record 105 starts, Walker has the most wins (47), complete games (13), strikeouts (380) and innings pitched (692.2). He also posted single-season best six complete games in 2009 and 22 starts in 2010. Walker was named the Northern League’s Pitcher of the Year in 2009, becoming just the second Goldeyes hurler to win the award.

Rafael Gross – Starting Pitcher (2001-2004)

Before there was Ace Walker, there was Rafael Gross. In four seasons with Winnipeg, Gross became the all-time wins leader after posting a team record 14 wins in 2001 and 13 victories in 2003. His 36 career victories are now second all-time behind Walker. Almost more stunning than his single-season win totals were his single-season loss totals. He was on the hook for just two losses in 2001 and 2003 and had a high of only four losses in 2002. He was the Northern League’s Pitcher of the Year in 2003 and named to Baseball America’s All-Independent First Team in 2001 and 2003.

Bobby Madritsch – Starting Pitcher (2002)

Another one-year wonder, Bobby Madritsch was spectacular for the Goldeyes in 2002. He went 11-4 in 19 games, including 18 starts, with a 2.30 ERA to be named Baseball America’s Independent Player of the Year. He was also selected to the Northern League’s Post-Season All-Star team and Baseball America’s All-Independent First Team.

Jeff Zimmerman – Starting Pitcher (1997)

Jeff Zimmerman’s one season in Winnipeg led to him becoming a Major League All-Star. Zimmerman went 9-2 with a 2.82 ERA with the Goldeyes in 1997 and was selected the Northern League’s Rookie Pitcher of the Year. The following off-season his contract was purchased by the Texas Rangers and in 1999 he represented the Texas Rangers in the Major League All-Star Game.

Zach Baldwin – Relief Pitcher (2008-2012)

The big southpaw from West Virginia, Zach Baldwin was one of the best left-handed pitchers in independent baseball during his five years with the Goldeyes. He made 157 appearances, which the second most all-time by a Goldeyes pitcher.

Brian Beuning – Relief Pitcher (2007-2008, 2012)

A chance phone call led to Brian Beuning being one of the major reasons the Goldeyes won the 2012 American Association Championship. After setting a team record for games by a pitcher in 2008 when he appeared in 51 contests, Beuning retired to become a state trooper in Minnesota. A temporary role in the bullpen turned into a full-time roster spot in 2012, which turned into Beuning earning the save in four playoff games and winning another.

George Sherrill – Relief Pitcher (2002-2003)

George Sherrill parlayed his two seasons in the Goldeyes bullpen into a nine-year Major League career. Sherrill appeared in 38 games out of the pen in 2002 and 16 in 2003 before having his contract purchased by the Seattle Mariners. He went on to save 51 games for the Baltimore Orioles in 2008 and 2009 and was named to the American League All-Star team in 2008.

Donnie Smith – Relief Pitcher (1998, 2000-2006)

No one has pitched in more games for the Goldeyes than Winnipegger Donnie Smith, who made 206 appearances in eight seasons with the Fish. He also holds the record for the games pitched in the Northern League. He finished his career with a 15-15 record and 3.22 ERA. His 28 saves are the third most by a Goldeyes pitcher. His No. 21 was retired by the baseball club on July 21, 2009.

Ian Thomas – Relief Pitcher (2009-2011)

Coming from VCU in 2009, lefty Ian Thomas become one of the most dominate relief pitchers in independent baseball. After pitching just 16 innings in 2009, he retained in rookie status in 2010 and prompt went 5-1 with a 1.64 ERA in 34 games to be selected the Northern League’s Rookie Pitcher of the Year. Thomas is currently at Double-A Mississippi in the Atlanta Braves organization.

Jamie Vermilyea – Closer (2011)

Jamie Vermilyea saved 17 games for the Goldeyes in 2011, as the team went 60-40 and won the North Division title. He made 45 appearances that season, which is tied for the second-most by a Goldeyes pitcher. A former Major Leaguer with the Toronto Blue Jays, Vermilyea is in his first season as the Goldeyes pitching coach.

Season tickets and nine-game mini packs for the 2013 season are available by calling the Goldeyes office at 204-982-2273.

 

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