Swing of the Quad Cities Report – April 19

Our exclusive weekly report on the 2007 edition of the Swing of the Quad Cities of the Single-A Midwest League focuses on Canadian-born infielder Jared Schweitzer.

This week, the 6-7 Swing are on the road in Peoria, Dayton, Fort Wayne, and Burlington so there's not a lot of game news to report from the Quad Cities. The club seems to be slumping a bit on the road with a 2-5 record there, but it is early in the season, so there is no need to worry.

After a big win over Peoria on Sunday, the Swing gave up the next game there, and have been bested by the undefeated Dayton Dragons (Reds, 9-0) for the last two evenings. They've collected 17 hits in two games, but have failed to turn those into runs. I am confident that the warming weather will improve performance, though.

With little to discuss about the games, I'll concentrate this week's report on one of the players. I was able to interview Jared Schweitzer before the team left on their road trip. Instead of asking the same, tired questions that we read every week, I tried to get some personal insight from him about the game, and about himself.

Jared is 23 years old, was selected in the 30th round of the 2006 draft, and played college ball as a Kansas Jayhawk where he led the team with a .369 batting average and a slugging percentage of .573. The infielder hails from from Alberta, Canada.

JP: Jared, thanks for being here and for talking with me. I'm going to be one of the "non-conventional" writers this summer and try to ask some off the wall questions that will give the readers more of a look at who you are and how you think, instead of just talking about your game. Let's start with your opinion on the worst thing about playing baseball.

JS: I think it has to be the travel. We go to Peoria to start the road trip. It's a commuter trip since they aren't 100 miles away. So we play there on Sunday and Monday, come home Monday night and leave on Tuesday for Dayton. We're trying to get to stay in Peoria that night so we have a shorter drive on Tuesday.

JP: What other player on the team is most like you?

JS: I think Isa Garcia. He makes contact and gets the ball in play. I try to do that every time I'm up.

JP: What player is most unlike you?

JS: I'd have to say Jim Rapoport. He's just fast!

JP: If you could change one thing about the game of baseball, what would it be?

JS: I can't say that I'd change anything. I like the traditions and I wouldn't want to get rid of anything.

JP: Growing up, what was your favorite MLB team?

JS: Well, since I'm Canadian, it was always the Blue Jays.

JP: Let's play "worst case scenario." If something happened tomorrow that forced you to give up baseball, what would you do instead?

JS: I'm just two classes away from getting my degree in Sociology, so I'd finish school and find a job.

JP: Besides baseball, what sports do you play or watch?

JS: Well, again, being from Canada, of course it has to be hockey. I also like volleyball.

JP: So, you're wearing number two this year. What's it like to wear Colby Rasmus' number?

JS: Hmmm, I wasn't even aware that he was #2. They're new uniforms, so there's really no pressure.

JP: One last question. We've had a few other Canadian players who have played here in the last few years. What's it like to be in the company of Justin Morneau, Adam Daniels, and the like?

JS: They're great guys and great players. We don't have a lot of Canadians in baseball, so I follow their game closer. I hope I can do as well.

JP: Jared, thanks again for giving us an inside look at who you are. We're looking forward to a great season.

Who's hot this week:

- Elvis Hernandez, again. He was just named Midwest League Pitcher of the Week.
- Brandon Buckman, again. He continues to mash the ball.
- Mark Shorey. He broke through with a bomb in Dayton on Wednesday night. Look for more.
- Christian Lopez. Batting .429 through 21 AB.

Up and coming:

RHP Armando Carrasco, promoted this week to replace Kyle Sadlowski, who went on the DL with a strained oblique muscle.

Who's not hot, if you only look at the stats:

Mike Schellinger. 0-2, 5.40 ERA but he's better than we've seen so far.

Next week: Who is Jim Rapoport?

Jon P. can be reached via email at jon_p_qc@hotmail.com

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