Fort Wayne Wizards season in review

Fort Wayne was 16-4 when tied after five innings – which wasn't the best mark in the league, as West Michigan went 23-6. The club had two months where they boasted a plus .500 record and ended up in the playoffs, wiped out in the opening series, after going 40-30 in the second half.

Prior to his ascent to High-A, Nick Hundley notched an 18-game hitting streak from May 28 through July 1. He hit .406 over that span. Mike Baxter joined the fun with a 15-game mark from August 17 through September 3 before it was snapped on the final game of the season. And Seth Johnston contributed a 13-game streak from April 12 through April 25, hitting .414 over that span.

Will Venable also added a 15-game home hitting streak from June 24 through July 25. He hit .460 over that time with a .534 on base percentage.

David Freese and Brandon Gottier each had an on base streak of 25 games during the year. Freese hit .365 with a .431 on base percentage from July 7 through August 2 and Gottier hit .267 with a .357 on base streak from July 9 through August 17. Gottier also had a 20-game home on base streak where he batted at a .318 clip and Venable batted .269 with a .348 on base percentage over a 20-game road on base streak from July 3 through August 24.

Venable was one of just seven players in the Midwest League to hit over .300 and placed second in the league with a .314 mark. He also was second in RBI's with 91, third in hits with 148, fourth in doubles and on base percentage with 34 and .389, respectively, and tied for the league lead in runs scored with 86.

Closer John Madden placed fifth with 20 saves and three of the top four relievers in appearances came from the Fort Wayne squad. Brandon Higelin, Jon Link and Alfredo Fernandez placed second, third, and fourth, respectively.

Fort Wayne's .263 average was third best in the league and their 672 runs scored and 1,226 hits also placed third. The Wizards led the league in walks with 531 while their 925 whiffs were the second fewest.

On the pitching front, Fort Wayne placed ninth in the 14-team league with a 3.76 ERA. Their 15 shutouts, however, was tied for the best mark and they placed fourth in walks allowed with 395. They produced the lowest amount of strikeouts, however, with 884 – 47 less than the next closest team.

While just one player hit over .300, among those that qualified, six players that appeared in 25 games or more hit above .290 with Nic Crosta pacing the squad with his .382 average in 37 games.

Four pitchers who logged seven starts or more logged an ERA under 3.60 for the season. Five different relievers who logged at least 25 appearances had an ERA under 3.20 with four under 2.90.

Who did you want up with the bases loaded?

Will Venable hit .412 with the bases swamped and was the only Wizard to belt two grand slams. In 42 at bats with the RISP, Crosta swatted .476. David Freese came in a distant second at .324 in 71 at bats.

Who should be on the bump with runners on base?

It was the pick of the litter here – Madden and his .213 average against, Mark Roberts with a .189 mark over 39 at bats or Higelin's .226 mark over 115 at bats. Madden and Higelin again reigned supreme with the bases loaded – allowing a .176 and .182 average, respectively. Higelin also posted a .145 average against with RISP and Wade LeBlanc touted a .185 average against in the same situations.


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