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2010 Season in Review
09/10/2010 6:03 PM ET
STOCKTON, Calif.-- In their 61st season in the California League, the Stockton Ports used a terrific second half to vault from fourth place in the North Division of the California League to second place, just 2.0 games out of first. The Ports, who finished the year 74-66 after finishing 31-39 in the first half, won the 2nd Half Championship to advance to the postseason, in search of an unprecedented 12th California League championship title. It was their first 2nd Half crown since 2005, and their first playoff appearance since 2008. But a red-hot Modesto Nuts team swept the Ports in the California League Mini-Series to end the season for the Boys of Banner Island. The Ports' success in the second half is best illustrated by their 14-game winning streak in August, which featured four consecutive sweeps. It was the longest winning streak in the League since the Lake Elsinore Storm won 13 straight games in 2007.

The Ports finished the regular season two games behind the first-place San Jose Giants in their division. They ended the year seventh in the League with a .269 team batting average and seventh in the League with a 4.60 team ERA. The Ports pitching staff was again first in the League with 1,163 strikeouts.

The 2010 club featured several A's prospects including: Grant Green (1st Round, 2009 draft), Stephen Parker (5th, 2009), Ryan Ortiz (6th, 2009), Petey Paramore (3rd, 2008), Jeremy Barfield (8th, 2008), Shawn Haviland (33rd, 2008) , and many more . The Ports also welcomed several MLB players in rehab appearances with the club, including Dallas Braden, Coco Crisp, Mark Ellis, Conor Jackson, Brett Tomko, and Michael Wuertz. The Ports also welcomed A's legend and Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson to Banner Island Ballpark several times during the season, as a Roving Instructor with the Oakland Athletics.

The Ports were honored to end the season with several League Post Season Award winners including the 2010 Turf Manager of the Year (Justin Clarke), the 2010 Clubbie of the Year (Vic Zapien) and three Post Season All-Stars (Grant Green, Shawn Haviland and Stephen Parker). The Ports also had several players rank among League leaders this summer. Shortstop Grant Green finished the regular season ranking among the Top 10 Batters in the league with a .318 average, 174 hits, 107 runs scored, 39 doubles, six triples, 20 home runs and 87 RBI. Green was named the 2010 Ports Player of the Year for his performance. The 2010 season was his first full season of professional baseball. Right-handers Shawn Haviland and Justin Murray finished among the Top 10 Pitchers in the League. Shawn Haviland finished the year 9-6 with a 3.65 ERA and 166 strikeouts in 150.1 innings. Justin Murray posted a 10-4 record with a 3.67 ERA and 83 in 117.2 innings. Haviland finished the year second in the League in strikeouts, while Murray led the league with a .714 winning percentage.

Other Ports players ranked among League leaders as well. Third baseman Stephen Parker led the League with 139 games, and finished fourth in RBI (98), fourth in doubles (38), and second in walks (84). Parker also led among League third baseman with the most games (129), most putouts (94) and most double plays (35). Ports closer Paul Smyth finished tied for second in the League with 28 saves, while Ports lefty specialist Trey Barham finished first with 19 holds and second with 59 appearances. Ports outfielder Jeremy Barfield led the League with 24 outfield assists and tied for the League lead with most double plays by an outfielder (5).

The Ports were also the first team in the League this season to sweep the Weekly Awards. For the Week of August 16-23, Grant Green was selected as the League Player of the Week, while Shawn Haviland was the League Pitcher of the Week for the second time. Haviland won the League Pitcher of the Week award as well for his performance from July 26-August 2. Stephen Parker also won a League Player of the Week award for his work from April 26-May 3, while Jermaine Mitchell won the title for his performance from August 2-9.

But the Ports didn't just rank among League leaders, but also Oakland A's farm system leaders. Green and Parker both ranked among the Top 10 Batters in the organization, while Ian Krol, Murray and Haviland were among the Top 10 Pitchers in the farm system. Three of the top five strikeout kings competed with the Ports this summer. Haviland led all A's minor leaguers with 169 strikeouts. Ben Hornbeck was third among A's strikeout kings with 138, while Justin Marks had 136. Paul Smyth led the farm system with his 28 saves. Mike Spina was second among A's minor leaguers with 23 home runs, while Stephen Parker was fourth with 21 and Grant Green fifth with 20. Parker was also first among A's farmhands with 98 RBI. Jeremy Barfield finished third with 92, Mike Spina fourth with 88 and Grant Green fifth with 87. The Ports finished second among A's affiliates with a .269 team batting average. The Ports pitching staff had the highest team ERA among A's affiliates, but also led affiliates with 1,163 strikeouts.

The Ports congratulate their players on a great season, and look to build upon their success in the 2010 season next year with another crop of top A's prospects.

With the 2010 regular season in the books, the Ports look back at some of the highlights of the season.

Stockton Shutouts Rivals- On April 28, the Stockton Ports achieved something that hadn't been done in nearly a year: beat the San Jose Giants in a series at Municipal Stadium. The Ports did so by tossing their first shutout of the 2010 season, blanking San Jose by a final of 3-0 on Wednesday. Michael Wuertz made a rehab start for Stockton, while Justin Murray tossed 5.1 shutout frames to pick up the win. Trey Barham and Paul Smyth also helped combine for the shutout win. Smyth collected his first of 28 saves in the contest.

Barfield Walk-Off Sac Fly- The Stockton Ports picked up their first walk-off victory of the year on May 4, coming back from a three-run deficit against the San Jose Giants in the bottom of the ninth, to win 8-7. Outfielder Jeremy Barfield collected the game-winning RBI, his 16th of the season, on a sacrifice fly to right. It was the first game the Ports have won after being behind after eight innings this season in addition to being the club's first walk-off of the year. The Ports were down 7-4 heading into the bottom of the ninth, with the bottom of the order due. Petey Paramore got things started with a single up the middle. Giants pitcher Jason Stoffel then issued a walk to the No. 9 batter, Kala Ka'aihue. Center fielder Shane Keough then reached first safely on an error by left fielder Wendell Fairley, who bobbled the fly ball. That loaded the bases with no out for Grant Green. Green worked a full count and fouled off a few pitches before striking out. Stephen Parker then stepped up to the plate and also worked a full count before walking. His walk scored Paramore to make it 7-5. Spina then slammed his second hit of the night, a double to right field to tie the game. With one out and two on, Jeremy Barfield came up to bat. He hit a long sacrifice fly to right field to bring home Parker and secure the win for the Ports.

Weather Changes for Storm- On Thursday, May 20, the Stockton Ports came within three outs of dropping the rubber match of their series with the Lake Elsinore Storm and dropping five of seven on their South Division road trip. For the second time this season, however, the Ports rallied when trailing after eight innings to score four in the ninth, stealing the series away from the Storm and winning by a final of 7-5. Trailing 5-3 heading into the top of the ninth, the Ports got their game-winning rally started with the bottom of their order. With Storm reliever Aaron Breit (2-3) on the hill, Jeremy Barfield and Todd Johnson each singled to start the inning. Michael Richard came up next and laid down a terrific sacrifice bunt between the mound and home plate. The ball was mishandled by Breit and Richard reached on the error, loading the bases with nobody out. Shane Keough came up next and, after working the count full, drilled a 3-2 pitch down the right field line to score Barfield and Johnson and tie the game. Grant Green followed and, saddled with an 0-for-12 mark in the series to that point, singled to left to score both Richard and Keough and give the Ports their first lead of the night at 7-5. Ports reliever Andrew Carignan (2-0) pitched a perfect eighth and recording back-to-back strikeouts to end his inning, Paul Smyth (SV, 7) came on to pitch the ninth and struck out the first two batters he faced en route to setting the side down in order and recording his second save of the series.

Stockton Salutes Dallas Braden- The Ports joined City of Stockton officials to honor Dallas Braden and display their pride in their Oakland A's pitcher who grew up in Stockton on May 22. Braden threw the 19th perfect game in Major League Baseball history, and second in Oakland A's history, on Mother's Day, May 9, at Oakland against the Tampa Bay Rays. Braden was honored in an on-field ceremony at Banner Island Ballpark on May 22. In addition to recognition by the Stockton Ports, Mayor Ann Johnston presented Braden with a key to the city and a proclamation. The Greater Stockton Chamber of Commerce also presented Braden with the Chamber's newly published table top book about Stockton with a personal inscription and with a Lifetime Honorary Membership in the Chamber. The Ports also gave away a commemorative Dallas Braden poster to fans on May 23 to continue the weekend Dallas Braden celebration.

Spina Walk-off Win- First baseman Mike Spina powered the Stockton Ports to a 6-5 walk-off win over the San Jose Giants (, by collecting a three-run home run in the first inning and the game-winning two-RBI double in the ninth on May 28. It was the second Stockton walk-off of the year, and second at the expense of the Giants. The Ports pitching staff was also terrific in Friday night's game. Starter Kenny Smalley struck out five in 4.1 innings. Lance Sewell, Scott Hodsdon and Paul Smyth combined for 4.2 hitless, shutout innings of baseball for Stockton. The top of the Ports order was active in the game as well, as shortstop Grant Green finished the contest 3x4 and Todd Johnson finished 2x4 with an RBI to extend his hitting streak to 14 games. Spina collected just two hits in the game, but both came when it mattered most. Smyth collected the win, his second, while Jason Stoffel collected his second blown save and third loss of the year for San Jose.

Ladendorf Walks it Off- The Ports won their tenth home game of the year and their 25th game of the season in exciting fashion-a walk-off victory against the Bakersfield Blaze on June 7. Stockton's come-from-behind win was powered by second baseman Tyler Ladendorf, whose RBI single with one out in the ninth inning sealed the 9-8 walk-off victory. All Ports starters collected a hit in the game, and Ladendorf finished 4x4 with two RBI. Ryan Ortiz collected three RBI in the contest, including a two-run home run. Grant Green and Stephen Parker also homered in the game for Stockton.

Ports Tie League Records- On Tuesday, June 15, the bats of the Stockton Ports were as hot as the Bakersfield sun. The Boys of Banner Island authored an offensive script that included a season-high 14 runs on 21 hits in a 14-3 win over the Bakersfield Blaze at Sam Lynn Ballpark. In the offensive outburst, the Ports tied a pair of Cal-League records. The Ports offense slugged 11 doubles in the game, matching a record set twice (High Desert vs. Bakersfield, May 23, 2000, Lake Elsinore vs. High Desert, June 28, 2009), and Stephen Parker hit four doubles in the contest, becoming the 14th player in league history to accomplish the feat.

Ports Showcase Offense on MLB Network- The Stockton Ports showcased their talent in their simulcast game on Comcast Hometown Network and MLB Network on Tuesday, June 29, collecting three home runs en route to an 8-6 victory over the Bakersfield Blaze. David Thomas, Grant Green and Jeremy Barfield each slammed a home run in the game as the Ports totaled nine hits in their victory. Stephen Parker and Ryan Ortiz both collected two hits in the game as well. Southpaw starter Ben Hornbeck allowed three runs on two home runs and eight hits in 5.0 innings of work. Lance Sewell picked up the win for Stockton, tossing 2.1 shutout innings after the Ports broke a tied game for good in the seventh inning. Paul Smyth collected his 11th save on the year, striking out the side in the ninth.

Independence Day Fireworks- There was plenty of excitement and drama to be had at Banner Island Ballpark on Independence Day, from game-changing hits to ejections to batting order complications. But the Stockton Ports finished with a bang before a sellout crowd of 5,570. The Stockton Ports came from behind and collected their third extra-innings victory of the season against the Modesto Nuts, 7-5, powered by Stephen Parker's powerful two-run, walk-off home run in the twelfth inning. Todd Johnson gave the Ports their first lead of the game in the seventh inning with a bases clearing triple, but the Paul Smyth blew the lead with two out in the top of the ninth, as Modesto tied the game. The two teams tangoed until Parker slammed his tenth homer of the year to end the game at four hours and eight minutes. It was the longest extra-innings game the Ports have played this season. Johnson finished the game 3x5 with three RBI, and Grant Green and Kent Walton both added a pair of hits in the contest. Parker finished the game with three RBI as well. Lance Sewell picked up the win, his third, in the game, and Jonathan Aristil collected his third loss. Ports relievers Scott Hodsdon, Scott Deal, Brett Hunter and Sewell combined for 5.0 shutout innings in the contest.

Late Heroics Lift Ports- The Stockton Ports put on an exciting game for 3,837 folks at Banner Island Ballpark on Thursday, July 15. Hometown hero LHP Dallas Braden made a rehab start in the game, and Mike Spina hit a walk-off three-run home run to center field to lift the Ports 10-9 over the Visalia Rawhide. It was the second straight win over the Rawhide, and secured the series victory for the Ports. Stockton hasn't defeated Visalia in two consecutive games since April 8 and 9. Scott Hodsdon picked up his first win of the season in the contest. Braden allowed three runs on seven hits in 4.0 innings in his rehab start. Trey Barham tossed 1.1 shutout innings in the contest to help hold the Rawhide. The Ports collected 12 hits in the game, and all but two players had a hit in the game. Jermaine Mitchell and Yusuf Carter homered in the game as well.

Stockton Sweeps Visalia- The Stockton Ports struggled mightily against the Visalia Rawhide, posting just a 4-15 record against them in the First Half. But the Ports found great success against the Rawhide in the second half, and completed a sweep of the Rawhide on July 16 with a 7-5 win at Banner Island Ballpark. The last time the Ports swept an opponent was on June 7-10, when they took four games from Bakersfield at home. This was their second sweep of the season, and their fifth win in their last six games. Stephen Parker sealed the win and the sweep with a three-run shot in the seventh inning off Ryan Robowski. Brett Tomko had a solid start, allowing five runs on seven hits (including two home runs) in 5.0 innings with three strikeouts. Lance Sewell picked up his sixth win, tossing 3.0 hitless and scoreless frames. Sewell hasn't allowed an earned run in his last 16.1 innings, and has allowed just four hits in that span. Paul Smyth collected his 15th save on the year as well.

Sewell Shuts Down Opponents- LHP Lance Sewell had a tremendous season with the Ports, ending the year with a 7-0 record, a 1.76 ERA 41 strikeouts in 46.0 innings. He held opposing batters to a .181 average before being promoted to Double-A Midland in July. For the Ports, Sewell retired 26 consecutive batters and 49 of 50 batters at one point of the season. He tossed 24.0 consecutive innings without giving up an earned run from June 18 to July 27 to end his stint with the Ports.

Ports Make History with 40,000th League Game- The Stockton Ports made a bit of history on Tuesday, July 27, at Banner Island Ballpark, playing the 40,000th game in California League history. But the Ports dropped the milestone game, as the Lake Elsinore Storm scored eight runs in the tenth inning to defeat Stockton, 14-6. The Ports had a 6-5 lead heading into the top of the ninth, but Paul Smyth blew the save, allowing the tying run to score on an RBI single by Cole Figueroa. Smyth and Jose Pina combined to give up eight runs in the tenth inning. Smyth, in addition to collecting his ninth blown save of the year, also collected his fifth loss. Aaron Breit was the winner for Lake Elsinore. Ports starter Brett Tomko was in line for the win, as the Ports had a 6-5 lead when he left the game after five innings. Tomko allowed five runs (including four solo home runs) on six hits in 5.0 innings. Lance Sewell tossed two shutout frames to extend his scoreless streak to 22.1 innings. He has not allowed a run since June 26. The Ports scored all six of their runs on three hits, including two home runs.

Haviland, Ports One-Hit Storm- Shawn Haviland turned in a great performance on Thursday, July 29, one-hitting the Lake Elsinore Storm, to help lead the Stockton Ports to a 2-1 win. The lone hit he allowed was a solo home run by Cody Decker. The win was Haviland's seventh this season, which also snapped his three-game losing streak. Haviland struck out eight in 7.0 innings. It was the fourth time this season he's tossed a season-high seven innings. Paul Smyth bounced back well from his blown save and loss on Tuesday, as he picked up his 17th save by tossing 2.0 shutout innings with four strikeouts. Grant Green finished the game 1x4 with an RBI single to extend his hitting streak to 13 games. He's batting .375 (21x56) with five doubles, two home runs and 11 RBI in that span. He's just the second Ports batter to hit safely in 12 or more consecutive games. Todd Johnson set the team hitting streak with 15 games in the spring.

Thomson Terrific in Twelfth Straight Triumph- Matt Thomson is no stranger to helping his team keep a winning streak alive. Thomson was a part of the 2008 University of San Diego club that won 16 consecutive games, and he helped the Stockton Ports win their 12th straight game on Thursday, August 19, by striking out 10 batters in 5.0 shutout innings in his California League debut. The Ports defeated the Lancaster JetHawks by a 6-2 final to extend their streak. The win, combined with a Bakersfield loss, gave the Ports a 2.0 game lead in the Second Half standings. After walking the leadoff batter, Thomson settled in and struck out the next six batters he faced. He didn't give up a hit until the third inning. Thomson, the 12th round draft pick by the A's in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft, allowed just two hits and two walks in his 5.0 innings, and picked up the win. He joined the Ports on Thursday after starting the season with the Vancouver Canadians.

Ports Win 14th Straight Game- Returning to the site of their last loss, the Stockton Ports, for the 14th time in a row, refused to lose. The Boys of Banner Island scored early and often as they defeated the San Jose Giants by a final of 9-6 on August 21. The Ports, with losses from Bakersfield and Modesto, now hold a four game lead in the North Division standings and are alone atop the Wild Card standings. Stockton also had a starting pitcher making his Cal-League debut in left-hander Ian Krol (1-0). Krol allowed four runs on four hits in 5.0 innings. Yusuf Carter finished the game 2x5 with a two-run home run while Jeremy Barfield ended the game 3x4.

Ports Come From Behind to Win Home Finale- The Stockton Ports wrapped up the regular season at home with an exciting come-from-behind win on August 30, overcoming the San Jose Giants, by a 9-5 final with a six-run eighth inning. The Ports retain their 4.0 game lead over the second-place Bakersfield Blaze in the second half standings, decreasing their magic number to 4, to clinch the division. Grant Green hit a three-run home run to put the Ports ahead, 6-5, in the eighth, and the Ports went through the order as they added some insurance runs that inning. Green, along with Tyler Ladendorf and David Thomas, collected two hits in the contest. The Ports totaled 11 hits in Monday's win. Stockton starter Justin Murray allowed four runs on five hits in 5.1 frames. Scott Deal picked up his second win on the year, tossing three perfect frames to shut down the Giants and close out the game.

Ports Second-Half Champs After 9-8 Win- For the 11th time in franchise history, the Stockton Ports won a second half division crown, clinching the title on September 3 at Historic Sam Lynn Ballpark. Despite nearly blowing an early six-run lead and a late three-run advantage, the Ports were able to hang on in a thrilling finish, stranding the possible-tying run in scoring position and defeating the Blaze by a final of 9-8. The loss not only clinched the second-half crown for Stockton, but also eliminated the Blaze from playoff contention. Stockton went without a hit from Parker's three-run homer in the second until the start of the eighth when Jeremy Barfield reached on an infield single. The score remained 7-6 until the ninth when the Ports scored two huge insurance runs on RBI singles from Grant Green and Yusuf Carter to make it a 9-6 lead. The runs were charged to Hector Nelo who pitched an inning-plus in relief.

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.