Wizards Records Being Broken In 2006

Fort Wayne, IN – With six games remaining and a 5-1/2 game lead over the Dayton Dragons for the final playoff spot in the second half of the 2006 Midwest League season, the Fort Wayne Wizards push to the postseason has been led by outfielder Will Venable and a host of players adding their names to the record books.

Will Venable became the club's all-time leader in runs batted in after the Wizards' doubleheader sweep against the Clinton Lumber Kings (Texas Rangers affiliate) on Tuesday. With four runs batted in, Venable now has 86 on the season, topping the 85 RBI of Josh Loggins in 1999 and John Scheschuk in 2000.

Venable is currently among the all-time leaders in average, hitting .310 (currently tied for fifth with Corey Koskie, 1995) with 83 runs (fourth behind Anthony Byrd, 1993 and Kevin Reese, 2001 with 84), 140 hits (tied for 10th with Byrd) and is fourth with 32 doubles, trailing Ken Tirpack from 1993, who had 34.

Infielder Seth Johnston is just behind Venable with 31 doubles and first baseman/designated hitter Daryl Jones leads the team with 12 home runs, three behind Jon Benick, John Woodward and Chad Rupp, who all hit 15 home runs for Fort Wayne.

On the pitching side of the team, closer John Madden is seventh all-time with 19 saves, trailing Clay Condrey from 1999, who had 20 saves and Anthony Kozol from 2002, who had 21 saves.

Brandon Higelin and Jon Link are tied for seventh all-time with 51 appearances this season and Alfredo Fernandez is one behind, with 50 appearances, which ties him with Rob Debrino from 1994 and Cliff Bartosh from 2000.

If the Wizards reach the postseason, the first game of the best-of-three first round will be played at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, September 6 at Memorial Stadium. Fort Wayne would play host to either the West Michigan Whitecaps (Detroit Tigers affiliate) or the Lansing Lugnuts (Toronto Blue Jays affiliate), depending on how the Wizards qualify.

Following first round playoff games in the Midwest League, teams with the best overall record in each division will determine home field advantage for the second round.

Since becoming an affiliate with the San Diego Padres, the Wizards have reached the postseason four times, once during the 2000 season and the last three seasons, including two consecutive years under the direction of manager Randy Ready.

Playoff tickets start at $6.50 each for the first round game and no coupons or ticket vouchers distributed during the regular season will be accepted for tickets.

The Wizards regular season home schedule wraps up with a pair of 7:00 p.m. games on Friday and Saturday against the South Bend Silver Hawks (Arizona Diamondbacks affiliate). Friday night features the fifth annual Christian Speaker event with Shanna Zolman sponsored by Huntington University, along with a post-game Veggie Tales movie, and Saturday is Fan Appreciation Night with a post-game fireworks show.

For ticket information regarding the playoffs or any remaining Wizards game this season, contact the Fort Wayne front offices at 260-482-6400 or visit any area TicketMaster location.

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