Cougars Homestand Preview: June 15-17

Friday 6/15
Cedar Rapids Kernels (Los Angeles Angels farm team)
6:30 p.m. (gates open at 5:15 p.m.)
WBIG 1280 AM (6:15 p.m.)

Jimmy Buffett Theme Night
Team car magnet giveaway for the first 1,500 fans
Pre-game concert by Mr. Myers Band
Cougars players will wear commemorative Hawaiian jerseys
Honor Guard – AFFI District 6 Honor Guard
National Anthem – Geneva Sextet
Take Me out to the Ballgame – led by St. Scholastica School
Post-game fireworks show (Jimmy Buffett Theme)
Fans can run the bases after the game


Saturday 6/16
Cedar Rapids Kernels
6:30 p.m. (gates open at 4:30 p.m.)
WBIG 1280 AM (6:15 p.m.)

Pre-game autograph session with Cougars players
Pre-game dance performance by Stephanie’s Academy of Dance
Color Guard – Cub Scout Pack 61
National Anthem – Acappellago
In-game entertainment by the ZOOperstars!
Take Me Out to the Ballgame – led by Jet Litho
Post-game fireworks show (Wilco theme)
Fans can run the bases after the game

Sunday 6/17
Cedar Rapids Kernels
1 p.m. (gates open at 12 p.m.)
WBIG 1280 AM (12:45 p.m.)

Sunday Funday – free kid-friendly entertainment inside the ballpark
Fans can play catch on the field at Noon
Pre-game autograph session with Cougars players
Live music by Chicago White Sox organist Nancy Faust
In-game entertainment by Birdzerk
National Anthem – Naperville Chorus Chamber Ensemble
Fans can run the bases after the game

Homestand Notes

Calling all parrotheads: The Cougars will host their annual Jimmy Buffett Theme Night for Friday’s 6:30 p.m. game. The Cougars will welcome Mr. Myers Band for a pre-game concert beginning at 5:15 p.m. Cougars players will wear commemorative Hawaiian jerseys that evening, and following the game, the fireworks show will be set to Jimmy Buffett music.

Cougars players will wear commemorative Hawaiian jerseys for Jimmy Buffett Night this Friday.

Cougars players will wear commemorative Hawaiian jerseys for Jimmy Buffett Night this Friday.

Make it a day for Dad: The Cougars have numerous events planned for Father’s Day this Sunday. All fans are encouraged to arrive early and play catch on the field starting at Noon. Fans can enjoy a pre-game autograph session, as well as various kid-friendly entertainment inside the ballpark. Live organ music by famed White Sox organist Nancy Faust will fill the air, and following the game, all fans are invited back onto the field to run the bases. The Cougars are also welcoming Birdzerk to perform his hilarious antics during the game.

Special picnics: In conjunction with Father’s Day, the Cougars are offering a pair of special Father’s Day picnic buffets. The Super Suite buffet features roasted turkey, strip steak, vegetables, salads, desserts, Pepsi products and more. A separate buffet served on the outfield patio deck includes grilled hamburgers, hot dogs, brats, salads, chips, desserts, Pepsi products and more. Reservations are required; call the Cougars at (630) 232-8811.


Team News: Entering play Tuesday, the Cougars trail Beloit by 3 games for the first half wild card spot. Just 6 games remain on the first half schedule, and the Cougars would lose the tiebreaker to Beloit if both teams finished with the same first half record. Beloit won the head-to-head matchup against the Cougars in the first half, going 9-5 against Kane County. With Beloit having lost its last 3 games, the Cougars have had 3 chances to gain ground, but Peoria pulled off a 3-game sweep of the Cougars to close that window of opportunity for Kane County. Jorge Bonifacio (75), Danny Mateo (75) and Lane Adams (73) are all in the league’s top five for base hits. Bonifacio and Mateo are tied for third, just two hits behind the leader. All three Cougars are on pace to finish in the Top 10 among Cougars single-season leaders in that category. In his last 18.1 innings of work, pitcher Matt Ridings has allowed just 3 earned runs.  The Cougars’ team batting average of .262 is fourth-best in the Midwest League.

Alumni News:  Detroit infielder Miguel Cabrera (’01) is 2nd in the American League with 51 RBI and 2nd in hits with 77. Oakland infielder Jemile Weeks (’08) shares the A.L. lead in triples with 4. Minnesota outfielder Josh Willingham is 2nd in the A.L. with a .409 on-base percentage. Cubs pitcher Ryan Dempster (’96) was named co-National League Player of the Week after tossing 15 scoreless innings. Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier leads the N.L with 53 RBI. Fan voting for the Major League Baseball All-Star Game, to be hosted in Kansas City on July 10, is underway. Former Cougars on the ballot include the aforementioned Miguel Cabrera, Jemile Weeks, Josh Willingham, and Andre Ethier, in addition to Boston infielder Adrian Gonzalez (’01), Oakland infielder Cliff Pennington (’05), Milwaukee infielder Alex Gonzalez (’96), and Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz (’03).

A pair of Cougars from last year’s team were named Carolina League All-Stars: pitchers Yordano Ventura and Sugar Ray Marimon. Marimon was named a Midwest League All-Star last season. Fan voting for the Triple-A All-Star Game, to be held on July 11 in Buffalo, is underway. Cougars alumni on the ballot include Albuquerque’s Jeff Baisley (’06), Colorado Spring’s Gregorio Petit (’05), Gwinnett’s Josh Wilson (’00-’01), Sacramento’s Stephen Parker (’09) and Jermaine Mitchell (’07), and Syracuse’s Corey Brown (’08). Pitcher Justin Friend (’08) is second in the Eastern League with 11 saves, and he’s allowed 1 run in 20 innings of relief work.  Infielder Anthony Aliotti (’10) is second in the Texas League with a .319 batting average for Double-A Midland. Teammate Tyler Ladendorf (’09) is 9th on that list with a .299 mark. Teammate Murphy Smith (’09-’10) is 5th best in the league with a 3.13 ERA, while fellow Rock Hound Dan Straily (’10) leads the Texas League with 99 strikeouts and is 2nd across all of Minor League Baseball in that category. Wilmington pitcher Jason Adam (’11) sports a hard-luck 1-9 record, with a 3.78 ERA. Justin Marks of Northwest Arkansas is 9th with a 3.38 ERA.

 (statistics through games played on 6/11)

Where’s Ozzie? Ozzie T. Cougar is scheduled to make upcoming appearances in the community at the following locations:

Saturday, June 16 from 11 a.m.-12 p.m.  – Alsip Park District

Friday, June 22 from 1-2 p.m. – Geneva Park District Kids Day

Saturday, June 23 from 12-1 p.m. – Aurora Boys Baseball


About Kane County Cougars

The Kane County Cougars are the Class-A Affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks.
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