Mallards and Border Cats face off at the Duck Pond tonight

Madison, WI – June 9, 2008. The Madison Mallards return to the “Duck Pond” for a 7:05 game tonight against the Thunder Bay Border Cats. It will be the first meeting of the season between the two teams. Gabriel Shaw will make his Mallards debut on the hill tonight, starting against Thunder Bay lefty Danny Rosenbaum. Tickets are still available for tonight’s game.

Thunder Bay Border Cats (3-7) at Madison Mallards (6-3)
June 9, 2008 – 7:05 p.m. (CT)
Warner Park – Madison, WI

Pitching Probables:
RHP Gabriel Shaw (MAD) – 0 GS, 0.0 IP, 0-0, 0.00 ERA
LHP Danny Rosenbaum (TB) – 1 GS, 5.0 IP, 0-0, 7.20 ERA

Mallards records:
– 0-0 vs. Thunder Bay
– 2-2 at home
– 4-1 on road
– 3-2 vs. South Division
– 3-1 vs. North Division

Madison is…
– 3-1 when scoring first
– 6-0 when leading after 7 innings
– 5-1 when outhitting its opponent
– 4-0 when scoring 7+ runs
– 6-2 when allowing fewer than 7 runs
– 6-1 when making equal or fewer errors than opponent

Last time out for the Mallards: L 6-0 vs. La Crosse, June 6
For the third night in a row the Mallards starting pitcher shined on the hill, but this time the team could not score enough runs for him to pull out the victory as they were shut out by La Crosse 6-0 in front of a season-high 6,312 fans at the “Duck Pond.” Bryan Earley (Lincoln Trail) was stellar through six innings of work, allowing just one base hit and striking out seven batters. But his night finished after a batter reached on an error and he hit a batter to start the seventh, and he was the tough-luck loser on the night. He allowed three runs, none of them earned. The loss was the Mallards second straight at home and dropped their record to 6-3. Loggers starter Pete Woodworth was even better than Earley, pitching into the ninth and scattering six base hits and three walks. He also struck out seven in his eight innings of work and earned his first victory of the season. Woodworth only allowed one Mallard to reach third base, and he did so thanks to a throwing error by the catcher Andy Pascoe. Two of the Mallards six hits were by Russell Harben (South Alabama) who is hitting .455 (5-11) in his last three games. Brandon Wikoff (Illinois) added a hit and reached base three times.

Mallards Musings:
-Matt Jansen (Purdue) and Bryan Earley (Lincoln Trail) have yet to allow an earned run in two starts this season. Jansen has pitched 13 innings and allowed just six hits and two walks, while striking out 10. Opponents are hitting .140 against the left-hander. Earley has pitched 11 innings, allowing just four base hits and striking out 10. They are tied for the league lead with that 0.00 ERA, but both have pitched at least four more innings than the next closest qualifier.
-Despite being short a couple of arms as players are still arriving, the Mallards pitching staff is second in the league in ERA (2.22). The offense checks in at eighth in the league (.248 batting average).
-Travis High (NC State) and Kyle Heim (Iowa) have been a one-two punch out of the bullpen for the Mallards to start 2008. They have both appeared in a team-high five games, and have combined for 17.1 innings pitched, allowing 17 hits and six earned runs (3.16 ERA).
-Brandon Wikoff (Illinois) has remained on a tear to start the 2008 campaign. He is hitting .342 (13-38), mainly as the leadoff hitter, and has reached base at a .419 clip. He has also swiped six bases and scored seven runs. He was a Northwoods League Post-Season All-Star in 2007.
-The Northwoods League South Division has been a close race all season long. Wisconsin has the lead right now with a 7-2 record, but Madison and La Crosse are hot on their heels, both one game back with a 6-3 record.