2017 Beloit Snappers: By the Numbers

By Garett Mansfield / Beloit Snappers | September 8, 2017 11:26 AM

The 36th season of Beloit Snappers baseball concluded on Labor Day with a 3-0 victory over the playoff-bound Cedar Rapids Kernels. The 65-73 finish for the Snappers is the first time the team has eclipsed 60 wins since 2013 while ending with a winning record at home (37-33) for the second straight season.

The 2017 Snappers played in many close games that accounted for dramatic endings. Here is an in-depth look at the Snappers year in review as the number do the talking. You can view the final game notes by clicking here.

41 - Players played for the Snappers in 2017.

9 - Players on active roster for all 138 games: Xavier Altamirano, Heath Bowers, Matt Milburn, Jason Goldstein, Collin Theroux, Eric Marinez, Miguel Mercedes, Kyle Nowlin, and JaVon Shelby were on the active roster every day of the season and did not land on the disabled list at all in 2017. Trace Loehr had a stint on the disabled list and was with the team the entire season. Luke Persico joined the team on the third day of the season.

2 - Catchers used all season: Jason Goldstein and Collin Theroux were the only catchers to play behind the plate in 2017, the fewest by any team in Minor League Baseball.

11 - Players promoted: It's all about development. Boomer Biegalski, Will Gilbert, Andrew Tomasovich, Brendan Butler, Nate Mondou, Brandon Bailey, Luis Barrera, Edwin Diaz, Miguel Romero, and John Gorman all moved up High-A Stockton for the first time this season. Dalton Sawyer was moved up to Triple-A Nashville to make a spot start for the Sounds before he joined the Ports rotation. Edwin Diaz ultimately returned to Beloit after the trade deadline created a shuffle from above while Matt Milburn earned his first promotion to Stockton after the season for the California League playoffs.

1 - Top-30 prospect: Dakota Chalmers was the only top-30 prospect according to MLB Pipeline to put on a Snappers uniform in 2017. He was not on the roster after May 27. View the Athletics top-30 prospects here.

0 - Hits allowed on August 23 vs. Quad Cities: Zack Erwin and Joseph Camacho combined for the fifth no-hitter in club history in late August as the River Bandits were on the cusp of clinching a birth to the Midwest League playoffs. Erwin faced the minimum over six hitless innings while Camacho closed out a three-inning save to complete the no-hit feat. It was the first no hitter for the Snappers since May 1, 2010 and the first nine-inning no-no since July 26, 1996 in addition to the second of three total no-hitters in the Midwest League in 2017.

9 - Walk-off wins: There is nothing more exciting than a game-winning hit to send all the fans home happy. The Snappers did this nine times in 2017, including their first victory of the season. Beloit opened the year with Cedar Rapids with a twin bill on April 7 due to wet grounds washing out the true opener the day before. Tied 2-2 in the seventh, Miguel Mercedes cracked the first extra-base hit of the season and scored Kyle Nowlin all the way from first base to win the game. Eric Marinez had two walk-off singles, and Mike Martin drove in the winning run twice as well in the span of four days. One of the most dramatic game-ending hits was J.C. Rodriguez's walk-off home run, the only walk-off homer of the season, that finished the sweep of the South Bend Cubs on July 24 in a game the Cubs led three different times.

20 - Last at-bat wins: In addition to walk-offs, there were 11 other games that the Snappers took the lead in their last at-bat of the game. Nate Mondou hit a pair of go-ahead triples on the road, one in the top of the ninth in the first road game of the season and the other in the top of the 11th inning at Quad Cities over Memorial Day weekend. The Snappers ditched the "never bunt" mantra to win two different games on a suicide squeeze. Trace Loehr dropped a bunt in the 12th on May 19 at Peoria to break a 1-1 tie, and Jesus Lopez squeezed in a run in the second-to-last game of the season in the bottom of the eighth inning. The Snappers lone doubleheader sweep of the year came on August 28 at Burlington as they won both contests in their final turn to bat.

9-4 - Record in extra innings: With an unblemished 4-0 record when playing extra frames in the second half, the Snappers had some long games during the first half. One of the most memorable extra-inning games was a 1-0 loss at Kane County after 17 innings. Beloit also played in a 15-inning game, another loss, at Peoria on May 18 then played 12 innings the next day. The Snappers were a perfect 4-0 in extra-inning games at Pohlman Field in 2017.

46-0 - Record leading after the 8th inning: The Snappers were one of the best teams in the Midwest League after the eighth inning. They never lost a lead after the eighth, the only team in the league with an unblemished mark in that category. When tied after eight frames, the Snappers won a league-best 11 games. They won twice trailing after the 8th. Down 6-4 in the ninth during their first road game of the year, the Snappers scored three runs to win and also erased a 7-6 deficit on May 30 vs. Clinton before a two-run, walk-off single by Eric Marinez.

31-4 - Record when scoring 7 runs: The Snappers began the season 21-0 when they scored at least seven runs in a game. When they scored at least five runs, they were 42-12.

41-48 - Record in games decided by 3 runs or less: 89 of the Snappers 138 games were close games. Only Clinton, Peoria, South Bend, Kane County, and Wisconsin played more games with three-run finals or closer.

16-11 - Record in July: Despite a season-long six-game losing streak that began on the Fourth of July, the Snappers rolled to win 14 of the last 18 games in July for the first winning month of Snappers baseball since June 2013. The pitching staff dominated the entire month with five shutouts in nine games between July 20 and 30 while leading the Midwest League with a team ERA of 2.57. Relievers Yordys Alejo, Heath Bowers, and Sam Sheehan did not allow a single run to pass on them while Zack Erwin led the rotation with a 0.69 ERA.  

8-21 - Record in August: All the highs of the previous month came crashing down during the dog days of August to squash the Snappers postseason hopes. They won just one series during the entire month, the first set of the month at home against Peoria and then lost 18 of their next 22 games.

51-64 - Record vs. Western Division: One of the keys to earning a playoff spot, the Snappers won just one season series against a Western Division opponent, the Burlington Bees.

164 - New single-season strikeout record by a batter: JaVon Shelby struck out 164 times in 2017 to surpass the previous record of 148 by Matt Olson and Justin Higley. Collin Theroux went down on strikes 143 times, now seventh-most by a batter all-time.

1,155 - Strikeouts by Snappers pitchers: As a unit, the Snappers fanned double digits in 47 games to finish with the second-most strikeouts in franchise history (1,186 in 2005). Highlighted by a 23-strikeout performance on June 26, the Snappers had three pitchers record 10 or more strikeouts in a single outing. Those included Brandon Bailey on June 26, Matt Milburn's team-best 12 on June 23, and 10 by Dakota Chalmers on April 17.

5 2/3 - Innings pitched by position players: Kyle Nowlin, Cole Gruber, and Eric Marinez all made pitching appearances as position players. As a group, they did not allow an earned run. Nowlin picked up the first save by a Snappers position player on May 19 at Peoria.

3 - Midwest League Pitcher of the Week Awards for Zack Erwin: Zack Erwin was one of the best pitchers in the Midwest League after he joined the Snappers in late May. He earned his first honor in the final week before the end of the first half (June 12-18) with 11 total innings of work and just six hits allowed. He threw six shutout innings while he set a new career high in strikeouts with eight on July 10 for his second weekly award. Erwin was honored for a third time after his no-hit performance on August 23. He is the first Snappers pitcher to earn multiple pitcher of the week awards since Daniel Osterbrock did so in 2010, who was the previous no-hitter before the combined no-hitter in August. No pitcher in the Midwest League has taken home weekly honors three times since before 2005.

53 - Outfield assists: Snappers outfielders led the Midwest League in outfield assists including a league-best 16 by Luke Persico.

130 - Double plays turned: The Snappers led the league for much of the season, but finished fifth among Midwest League squads in twin killers. They came close to the club record of 134 set in 2007.

4 - Players with double-digit home runs: Miguel Mercedes (16), Collin Theroux (13), Kyle Nowlin (11), and Edwin Diaz (10) all reached double digits in the home run department this season. No Snapper hitter has surpassed 16 home runs since the 2013 season, the first year with the Athletics.

.300 - Mike Martin's batting average: Mike Martin needed two hits on the last day of the season and started the game 2-for-2 to surpass the .300 mark. His .300 average led all Snappers hitters in 2017. Martin is also the first Snapper since Boog Powell in 2014 (.335) to end the season with a .300 average with at least 250 at-bats.

30 - Multi-hit games for Luke Persico: After struggling at the plate in his first handful of games, Luke Persico went on to lead the Snappers with 30 multi-hit games. Persico also led the team in total hits (116) and runs scored (61).

24 - Stolen bases by Mike Martin: Mike Martin led the Athletics organization with 27 total steals in 2017 with 24 of them as a Snapper. He finished with the second-most steals for a Beloit player during the Athletics era behind Chris Bostick with 25 steals in 2013.

28/66/69 - Kyle Nowlin's doubles, RBI, and walks: Kyle Nowlin showed power and patience during his first full season. He hit a team-high 10 doubles during the month of August, had a team-best 16 multi-RBI games, and led the team with 11 games of more than one walk. His 69 walks finished third in the Midwest League. He was the first Snappers hitter since Miguel Sano in 2012 to record 60+ RBI, 60+ walks, and 20+ doubles in a season.

8 - Triples by Trace Loehr: For the second straight season, Trace Loehr led the Snappers in triples. After two seasons in the Midwest League, Loehr is second all-time in Beloit Professional Baseball history in triples behind Brian Finley's 16 three-baggers between 1982-1984.

.414/.763 - Slugging percentage and on-base plus slugging for Edwin Diaz: Edwin Diaz led the Snappers with his .414 slugging percentage and .763 OPS. Diaz set career highs in nearly every offensive category during his third season with the Snappers. The 22-year-old hit .255, scored 49 runs with 77 hits and 43 walks, hit three triples, drove in 45 RBI, and had his first double-digit homer season with 10. He also hit an inside-the-park home run on July 9 at Pohlman Field.

141/135 - Innings pitched and strikeouts by Matt Milburn: Matt Milburn ate up 141 innings and struck out a team-high 135, each putting him in second among all pitchers in the Midwest League on the season.

3 - Multi-home run performances by a batter: Collin Theroux hit multiple homers in the same game twice during the 2017 season. He hit his first two professional home runs in the same game at Pohlman Field on April 14 vs. Peoria. He repeated that performance on June 1. JaVon Shelby also had a two-homer game against Peoria on June 28 at Dozer Park.

38 - Baserunners thrown out by Collin Theroux: Collin Theroux led all Midwest League catchers by throwing out 38 runners attempting to steal a base at a league-best rate of 44.7%.

534 - Managerial wins for Scott Steinmann: The Snappers first-year manager recorded his 500th win as a minor league manager on May 30 against the Clinton LumberKings, his most recent former team. 

64,236 - Fans visited Pohlman Field: Highlighted by 2,874 fans on July 3, the Snappers once again surpassed 60,000 fans in season attendance.

9 - Wins to 2,500 in franchise history: Better see the Snappers early next April to see them achieve history.

11 - Former players made their Major League debut: A record number of Snappers played in their first Major League game during the 2017 season with seven different big league clubs: Daniel Robertson, Dylan Covey, Danny Ortiz, Boog Powell, Bobby Wahl, Chris Bostick, Jason Wheeler, Jaycob Brugman, Daniel Gossett, Ronald Herrera, and Matt Chapman.

The Beloit Snappers have provided the Stateline area with affiliated Minor League Baseball in Midwest League competition since 1982. The Snappers have been the Class-A affiliate of the Oakland Athletics for five seasons since 2013. In the past, they have served as the Class-A affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers and Minnesota Twins.

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

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