The Fresno Grizzlies held their first Farm Grown Friday on April 5th, and Chukchansi Park was buzzing with all things farming.
Several vendors were stationed along the concourse as part of the Farmer’s Market. Vendors and what they sold included:
- Vintage Cheese – cheese
- Wild West Eggs – free range chicken and duck eggs
- Blossom Bluff Orchards – organic drive stone fruit and persimmons, fresh peaches, plums, nectarines, apricots, pluots, apriums
- Bill Ferry Ranches – fresh orange juice
- Pepichile – fruit and vegetable seasoning
- Adams Olives – bottled olives, olive oil
- Simonian Farming Company – pomegranate jelly
- Friar’s Choice – honey
The Grizzlies Community Fund was also selling broccoli to raise money for its many community programs. Stamoules Produce Company, a Farm Grown founding partner, donated the broccoli.
In addition to the Farmer’s Market, the Grizzlies on the field took part in the “farming” theme by representing their parent club to the entire farm system: the San Francisco Giants.
Over the last two years, the Giants wore special orange jerseys for each Friday home game. The Grizzlies have now taken on such a tradition by wearing new orange alternate jerseys themselves. These are the first new jerseys worn by the Grizzlies since the team did a complete logo overhaul in 2008. The jersey will be worn by the Grizzlies at each Friday home game in honor of Farm Grown Fridays.
During the next – and all future – Farm Grown Friday, Farm Forums will be held in The CRU Club. George Radanovich, former U.S. Representative from the Central Valley, will be the guest speaker for the first Farm Forum.
The Grizzlies look forward to the next Farm Grown Friday on May 3rd!
Nick Noonan collected three hits and two RBI in the Giants’ final Spring Training game in Arizona this year, only improving his chances to make San Francisco’s Opening Day roster.
The left-handed hitter got off to a slow start this spring, tallying only one hit in his first 19 at-bats. Since March 9th, however, Noonan has turned it up by hitting .341 (15-for-44) with eight extra-base hits.
With veteran infielder Tony Abreu sidelined with a knee injury for all but one Spring Training game, Noonan has stepped up his candidacy for a backup infielder role with the Giants.
Noonan entered last season with a .259 career average. He played in 13 games for the Grizzlies in 2011, but the 2012 campaign was Noonan’s first full experience at Triple-A. The San Diego native impressed, batting .296 over 129 games for Fresno. He paced the Grizzlies in hits and games played while also placing fourth on the squad with 62 RBI.
As former Grizzlies manager Steve Decker told Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com, Noonan had to go back to what he knew to find success in 2012:
“I’ve known Nick from day one, so I asked him, `When we drafted you and you were considered a top prospect, what were you good at?’” said Decker, now the Giants’ organizational hitting coordinator.
Noonan replied that he was a pretty good fastball hitter, especially to his pull side gap. So Decker gave him a challenge: “If you get a fastball middle, be ready to hit it to your pull side gap.”
“He has not been late on the fastball since,” Decker said. “He finally figured out … you never come to a fight without your best weapon.”
Noonan and Giants fans alike will find out in the coming days if he cracks his first big league roster.
Twelve. Twelve days. That’s it. The Grizzlies’ 2013 season kicks off in 12 days on April 4th for Opening Day.
Tim Lincecum, who wore jersey number 12 in his brief Grizzlies career in 2007, helps us count down to the big day.
Lincecum’s Grizzlies career looks like this:
4-0 record (5 starts)
1 ER in 31 IP (0.29 ERA)
46 strikeouts and 11 walks
.119 batting average against
For Fresno, four of Lincecum’s five Grizzlies starts were at Chukchansi Park, so the opportunity for everyone in the Central San Joaquin Valley to see the two-time Cy Young winner before startdom was there.
In fact, Lincecum’s last start with Fresno (at Chukchansi Park nonetheless) was a record-setting performance. The right-hander struck out 14 in six innings, setting the Grizzlies franchise record for most strikeouts in a single game. What’s more impressive about Lincecum’s final start in Triple-A is that he didn’t walk any of the 21 batters he faced. Everybody knew on that April 29th day back in 2007 Lincecum was destined for bigger things in his career.
Lincecum is also one of the 17 of the 25 Giants on the 2012 World Series roster that have played for the Grizzlies in their careers.
Of course, as everybody has heard, Lincecum ditched the long hair for a more clean cut look. As seen in the photo above, he fared well with the shorter locks. Based on the logic of haircuts (which is probably more along the lines of illogic of haircuts), the 2013 season could be a bounce back year for Lincecum.
Two weeks away! There are 14 days until Opening Day, and Francisco Peguero helps bring us closer to the 7:05 pm against the Tacoma Rainiers at Chukchansi Park.
The outfielder made his Grizzlies debut in 2012, playing in 105 games for Fresno and batting .272/.297/.394 with 20 doubles, 10 triples, 5 home runs, and 68 RBI.
His 10 triples tied Nate Schierholtz for the second-most by a Grizzlies hitter for a single season in franchise history.
Peguero was pegged (yes, that was intentional) for another season in Triple-A to start Spring Training this year after the San Francisco Giants re-signed Angel Pagan and Hunter Pence and brought back Andres Torres after his one-year absence from the Giants organization.
Peguero, however, did not get the memo regarding the Giants’ outfield situation being all but decided. In 18 Spring Training games, Peguero is hitting .364 with 3 doubles, a triple, and 5 RBI. His .364 batting average only trails Brandon Belt for the highest clip on the Giants (min. 40 AB).
Peguero is competing with Cole Gillespie for the Giants’ fifth outfield spot. The Giants would probably not prefer to have Peguero sitting on their bench and possibly stunting his development, but sometimes roster decision-makers can’t argue with results.
Fifteen days until #FGOpeningDay, and to help us count down, we look back at former Fresno Grizzlies outfielder Jason Ellison.
The Lewis-Clark State College product was drafted by the Giants in the 22nd round of the 2000 June Draft. The outfielder was entering the pro ranks after helping lead Lewis-Clark State College to back-to-back NAIA World Series championships.
Ellison is one of four different former Lewis-State College baseball players to play for the Giants in their pro careers, joining Frank Williams, Marvin Bernard, and former Grizzlies manager Steve Decker.
Ellison played in 347 games with the Grizzlies from 2002-2006. He batted .318 (443-for-1,392) in a Grizzlies uniform over his career, hitting 82 doubles, 14 triples, and 19 home runs to go along with his 108 RBI.
On the Grizzlies’ all-time career records list, Ellison is 2nd in stolen bases (71), 5th in doubles and hits, 6th in triples, and 7th in games played.
Ellison’s career with the Giants organization ended in 2007 when he was shipped from San Francisco to the Seattle Mariners organization in exchange for left-handed pitcher Travis Blackley. Ellison went to South Kitsap High School in Port Orchard, WA and lived near Seattle in the offseason at the time, so the move was welcomed by Ellison.
Ellison’s last season in pro baseball was in 2009 with the Philadelphia Phillies organization. He played in 125 games for Triple-A Lehigh Valley in ’09, batting .261/.332/.339 with 20 doubles, 5 home runs, 37 RBI, and 15 stolen bases. He went unsigned entering the 2010 season, thus ending his pro career.
In addition to playing for the Giants in the big leagues, the native of Quincy, CA also played for the Seattle Mariners, Cincinnati Reds, and Texas Rangers.
Mark your calendars now for Sunday, April 21st. Why? Because for the first time ever, the maker movement will take over a professional baseball game with the Fresno Ideaworks Mini Maker Faire.
What is the maker movement?
From Maker Faire,
Many makers are hobbyists, enthusiasts or students (amateurs!)–but they are also a wellspring of innovation, creating new products and producing value in the community. Some makers do become entrepreneurs and start companies.
Needing a place to exhibit ideas and share projects, the idea of Maker Faire took shape. Maker Faire is “the Greatest Show (and Tell) on Earth — a family-friendly festival of invention, creativity and resourcefulness, and a celebration of the Maker movement.”
MAKE Magazine launched in 2005 to help nurture the ground for the growing maker community.
The Fresno Ideaworks Mini Maker Faire will be the first Maker Faire held in Fresno in addition to the first at a professional baseball game. It will showcase makers from the Central San Joaquin Valley and beyond with their Do-It-Yourself (DIY) projects on display. A Grizzlies game will become a complete learning experience.
The Fresno Ideaworks Mini Maker Faire begins at 12 pm and runs through the end of the Grizzlies game.
The event is for all ages. We are currently seeking makers for event, so if you are interested in sharing your DIY project, please email us here.
As for entry, a Grizzlies game ticket gets you admission into the Fresno Ideaworks Mini Maker Faire. Tickets are available here.
Closer and closer…#FGOpeningDay is now 19 days away! Nate Schierholtz, who wore jersey number 19 with the Grizzlies, helps bring the 2013 opener closer to reality.
The Reno, Nevada native donned a Grizzlies uniform between 2007 and 2009, with his ’09 appearance being an MLB Rehab stint. In his first year at Triple-A, Schierholtz batted .333 with 31 doubles, 7 triples, 16 home runs, 68 RBI, and 10 stolen bases in 109 games. The right fielder eventually made his Major League debut in the same season as his Triple-A debut, playing in 39 games with the Giants in 2007.
In 2008, Schierholtz proved his worth at the Triple-A level again, batting .320 with 22 doubles, 10 triples, 18 home runs, 73 RBI, and 9 steals in 93 games.
On the Grizzlies’ all-time career records list, Schierholtz is tied with Fred Lewis for the second-most triples with 17.
Schierholtz also holds the claim to be the first Grizzlies player to hit for the cycle. He turned the trick on May 26th, 2008 at Las Vegas.
Schierholtz is a Bay Area native as he grew up Danville, California, which is about 35 minutes from AT&T Park in San Francisco. After one year at Chabot College, Schierholtz was drafted by the Giants in the second round of the 2003 Draft.
Schierholtz was a third baseman coming out junior college. He played 134 of his first 166 professional games at third base before beginning his switch to the outfield in 2004.
“Nate the Great” signed with the Chicago Cubs this past offseason. Through 13 Spring Training games, the left-handed hitter was batting .344/.389/.563 with 2 doubles, a triple, a home run, and 6 RBI.