DOWNLOAD: 2018 SEASON END OF SEASON NOTES
Overall Record: 65-73; 3rd Southern Division, 7th Carolina League
First Half Record: 34-36, .486, 4th place (tied)
Second Half Record: 31-37, .456, 3rd place
Longest Streaks: W5, 7/2-7/6 | L6, 4/26-5/2
Last 10 Games: 6-4 | Last 35 Games: 13-22 | Last 105 Games: 50-55
April: 11-13; May: 16-13; June: 12-14; July: 14-15; August: 11-16; September: 1-2
Home Record: 40-30 (1st: 19-15, 2nd: 21-15)
Road Record: 25-43 (1st: 15-21, 2nd: 10-22)
Division/Non-Division Record: 41-49 / 24-24
SEASON SUMMARY: The Mudcats went 65-73, finishing third in the overall Southern Division standings and 7th overall in the Carolina League. The Mudcats additionally went 34-36 in the first half and 31-37 in the second half while finishing tied for fourth and third in respectively in the Southern Division. The team began the season going 11-13 in April before posting a 16-13 record in May. Carolina's 16-13 mark in May was led in large part to the success of the pitching staff as the Mudcats pitchers, led by starters Cam Roegner and Trey Supak, combined to pitch to a league best 2.65 ERA in May. The offense, meanwhile, totaled 20 home runs in May (team high for 2018), with a team leading six homers coming from Keston Hiura alone. Hiura hit .377/.437/.664 with 46 hits, 29 runs, 13 doubles, six home runs and a 1.101 OPS in May and was later named both the Carolina League's Player of the Month and Brewers Minor League Player of the Month for May.
Video: Keston Hiura 2018 Mudcats Highlights
The Mudcats began June at 27-26 and 3.0 games back of first in the first half standings, but lost 10 of their next 17 games (all without Hiura who was promoted to Double-A on June 1) while finishing the half at 34-36 and 7.0 games out of the first half championship. After hosting the Carolina League All-Star Classic at Five County Stadium during the break (June 19, 2018), the Mudcats then began the second half at 5-4 and finished June at 12-14.
Carolina ended up finishing 14-15 in July while remaining slightly below .500 on the season at 53-54. However, like Hiura, Weston Wilson paced the Carolina offense in July while earning Carolina League Player of the Month and Brewers Minor League Player of the Month honors. Wilson hit .436/.481/.681 with a 1.162 OPS over 27 games in July. Despite Wilson's strong play, and the hot hitting of Cooper Hummel (.309/.463/.497 league best .960 OPS from July 5 through the end of the season), the team would go just 12-18 between August (11-16) and September (1-2) while finishing the second half at 31-37 and 12.0 games out of the second half championship.
OPENING DAY ROSTER:
PITCHERS (14): RHP Luke Barker, LHP Daniel Brown, RHP Victor Diaz, RHP Marcos Diplan, RHP Nattino Diplan, RHP Conor Harber, RHP Alec Kenilvort, LHP Nathan Kirby, RHP Jon Olczak, LHP Cam Roegner, RHP Trey Supak, RHP Braden Webb, RHP Chase Williams
CATCHERS (2): Max McDowell, Robie Rojas
INFIELDERS (6): Luis Aviles, Dallas Carroll, Ronnie Gideon, Keston Hiura, Tucker Neuhaus, Weston Wilson
OUTFIELDERS (5): Ryan Aguilar, Carlos Belonis, Clint Coulter, Cooper Hummel
Manager Joe Ayrault (2nd season with Mudcats, 7th overall with Brewers)
Pitching Coach: Bob Milacki (1st season with Mudcats, 1st season with Brewers)
Hitting Coach: Bobby Bell (1st season with Mudcats, 1st season with Brewers)
Coach: Edwin Maysonet (2nd season with Mudcats, 3rd with Brewers)
Athletic Trainer: Jeff Bodenhamer (2nd season with Mudcats, 3rd with Brewers)
Strength & Conditioning Specialist: Jonah Mergen (2nd season with Mudcats, 8th with Brewers)
2018 BATTING LEADERS
G: 134, Dallas Carroll
AB: 508, Dallas Carroll
R: 60, Weston Wilson
H: 114, Dallas Carroll
2B: 25, Cooper Hummel
3B: 9, Ryan Aguilar
HR: 13, Weston Wilson
RBI: 62, Weston Wilson
BB: 65, Dallas Carroll
SO: 138, Ryan Aguilar
SB: 16, Luis Aviles Jr.
AVG: .274, Weston Wilson
OBP: .397, Cooper Hummel
SLG: .446, Weston Wilson
OPS: .807, Cooper Hummel
minimum 2.7 PA/team games
2018 PITCHING LEADERS
W: 9, Cam Roegner
L: 8, Victor Diaz, Braden Webb
G: 46, Luke Barker
GS: 21, Braden Webb
SV: 20, Luke Barker
IP: 126.1, Victor Diaz
H: 133, Victor Diaz
BB: 56, Braden Webb
SO: 104, Braden Webb
WHIP: 1.15, Cam Roegner
ERA: 2.16, Cam Roegner
minimum 0.8 IP/team games
2018 CAROLINA MUDCATS - 49 PLAYERS USED
PLAYERS PROMOTED DURING 2018
ROEGNER'S SEASON OF FIRSTS: LHP Cam Roegner opened the year at 2-0 with a 0.83 ERA over 21.2 innings pitched and over his first four starts. He carried those numbers into May, and at one point led all of Minor League Baseball in earned run average at 0.76 from May 22 to May 23 and 0.68 from May 25 through May 29. His run to the top of the ERA leaderboard among all full-season league pitchers was aided by a 31.1 consecutive scoreless innings streak from May 2 through May 30. Roegner also led the Carolina League in earned run average during the periods of May 11 through June 4, June 10 - June 23, July 8 - July 9, and July 26 - August 31. Roegner was later recognized as a mid-season All-Star for the first time in his career after putting together a first half run that included him ranked first in the Carolina League in earned run average throughout most of the first half. He later made a spot start with Triple-A Colorado Springs on 7/15. He was then promoted officially to Double-A Biloxi on 7/31 and appeared in five games with the Shuckers before finishing the season in Triple-A on 9/3.
Video: Cam Roegner - 2018 Mudcats Highlights
THE LEADERS: LHP Cam Roegner spent much of the 2018 season as the Carolina League's leader in earned run average. He led the league in ERA during the periods of May 11 through June 4, June 10 - June 23, July 8 - July 9, and July 26 - August 31... RHP Trey Supak led the Carolina League in earned run average (1.76) from June 5 through June 9... RHP Conor Harber led the Carolina League in earned run average (2.20/2.26/2.23/2.18) from July 10 through July 25.
AWARDS SZN: The 2018 Mudcats took home several in-season honors including four Carolina League Player/Pitcher of the Week Awards, two Carolina League Player of the Month Awards, three Milwaukee Brewers Minor League Player of the Month Award Winners, six mid-season Carolina League All-Stars and one Carolina League post-season All-Star.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
4/16-4/22: Ryan Aguilar, OF
4/23-4/29: Weston Wilson, INF
PITCHER OF THE WEEK
5/7-5/13: Cam Roegner, LHP
6/25-7/1: Victor Diaz, RHP
CAROLINA LEAGUE PLAYER OF THE MONTH
May: Keston Hiura, INF
July: Weston Wilson, INF/OF
MILWAUKEE BREWERS MINOR LEAGUE PLAYER OF THE MONTH
May: Keston Hiura, INF
July: Weston Wilson INF/OF
August: Braden Webb (CAR/BIL), RHP
MID-SEASON ALL-STAR TEAM
Cameron Roegner, LHP
Marcos Diplan, RHP
Trey Supak, RHP
Max McDowell, C
Keston Hiura, INF
Tucker Neuhaus, INF
POST-SEASON ALL-STAR TEAM
Luke Barker, RHP
BACK-TO-BACK HONORS: Ryan Aguilar and Weston Wilson earned back-to-back Player of the Week award honors for the weeks ending on April 22 and April 29 respectively. Aguilar was the first Mudcats player to earn the weekly honor and did so after leading the league in average, on-base and OPS during the week ending on April 22. Aguilar went 8-for-15 with a double, a triple, four RBI and five walks while hitting .533/.667/.733 and totaling a 1.400 OPS over five games during his award winning week of play. Wilson was then named Player of the Week for the week ending on April 29 after hitting .412/.500/1.059 with a triple, three home runs, four RBI and a league best 1.559 OPS from April 23 through April 29.
PITCHER HONORS: Cam Roegner and Victor Diaz both took home Carolina League Pitcher of the Week award honors and did so on May 13 and July 2 respectively. Roegner earned Pitcher of the Week honors for the week ending on May 13 after pitching through two straight scoreless outings. In all, Roegner pitched through 13.2 scoreless innings over two starts between May 7 and May 13. He was also 2-0 with a 0.00 ERA and totaled seven strikeouts, three walks, four hits and a 0.51 WHIP over his two starts between May 7 and May 13. Diaz made just one start during his award winning week, but that one start ended up being his best of the season. Diaz pitched to a season high 83 game score while working through 7.0 scoreless innings against the Salem Red Sox on June 29. Diaz did not earn a decision that day, but finished his phenomenal start with seven strikeouts, one walk and two hits allowed over his seven scoreless frames.
HIURA'S MAY: Keston Hiura finished the month of May batting .377/.437/.664 with a 1.101 OPS over 29 games played and was named both the Carolina League's Player of the Month for May and the Milwaukee Brewers MiLB player of the month for May. Hiura finished May leading the Carolina League in OPS (1.101), runs (29), hits (tied, 46), extra-base hits (21) and doubles (13). Hiura bid farewell to the Carolina League by going 5-for-5 with two home runs, three runs and two RBI on May 31 in Lynchburg. He set career highs for hits and home runs in a game in what ended up being his last game with the Mudcats as Milwaukee promoted him to Double-A the following morning. Hiura left the Carolina League ranked 2nd in batting (.320), 1st, 2nd in hits (66), 1st in doubles (16), 1st in extra-base hits (26), tied for 1st in slugging (.529), tied for 2nd in runs (38) and 1st in total bases (109).
WILSON'S JULY: Weston Wilson finished the month of July batting .436/.481/.681 with a 1.162 OPS over 27 games played and was named both the Carolina League's Player of the Month for July and the Milwaukee Brewers MiLB player of the month for July. He finished July tied for first in the Carolina League in OPS (1.162), 1st in average (.436), 1st in OBP (.481), 2nd in SLG (.681), 2nd in runs (26), 1st in hits (41), tied for 4th in extra-base hits (12), 2nd in total bases (64), tied for 3rd in home runs (5) and tied for 4th in RBI (23). Wilson also finished July as the overall MiLB (full-season teams) leader in average (.436) and tied for 4th in OPS (1.162).
Video: Weston Wilson 2018 Mudcats Highlights
ALL THE STARS: The Mudcats placed four players on the 2018 Carolina League Southern Division All-Star team, including CL earned run average leader LHP Cam Roegner, starter RHP Marcos Diplan, INF Tucker Neuhaus and MiLB caught steals leader C Max McDowell. Both INF Keston Hiura and RHP Trey Supak were also named to the Carolina League Southern Division All-Star team, but were unable to participate due to promotions to Double-A Biloxi weeks before the All-Star event.
CLOSING TIME: Luke Barker went 6-4 and pitched to a 2.21 ERA while leading the Carolina League with 20 saves and 38 games finished. He also totaled 63 strikeouts against 16 walks over 61.0 innings pitched and held opponents to a .213 average in 46 appearances (second most in the league). The 26-year-old additionally led qualified Carolina League relievers in fewest baserunners/9 IP ratio (9.30), while also finishing third among relievers in lowest batting average against (.213), fifth in highest strikeouts/9 IP ratio (9.30) and fifth in lowest BB-IBB/9 IP ratio (2.36).
Video: Luke Barker 2018 Mudcats Highlights
PUMMELING HUMMEL: Cooper Hummel finished the 2018 season as the Carolina League's leader in on-base percentage (.397). Hummel also closed out the season reaching base safely in 28 consecutive games (.504 OBP during the streak) and finished the second half with a league leading .446 OBP. Overall, Hummel finished the year batting .260/.397/.410 while finishing the 2018 season ranked 1st in OBP (.397), 6th in OPS (.807) and tied for 4th in base on balls (63). He additionally finished 3rd in the Carolina League in wRC+ (136), tied for 3rd in wOBA (.382), 4th in wRAA (17.1), tied for 9th in wRC (64) and 1st in BB% (15.6%) among qualified players according to fangraphs.com. Hummel finished the season playing in 55 consecutive games and slashed .309/.463/.497 with a Carolina League best .960 OPS and a league high 21 doubles from July 5 through the end of the season (54 H, 32 R, 21 2B, 4 HR, 30 RBI, 44 BB, 50 SO).
DOWN WITH OBP: Cooper Hummel finished the 2018 season as the Carolina League's leader in on-base percentage (.397); becoming the first Mudcat to lead the Carolina League in on-base since Carolina transitioned to the Carolina League in 2012. Hummel was additionally the first Mudcats' player to finish a season as the league leader in on-base since Jeremy Hermida led the Southern League with a (franchise record) .457 OBP in 2005. Former Mudcats to lead the Carolina or Southern League in OBP: Cooper Hummel (.397, 2018 CAR), Jeremy Hermida (.457, 2005 SOU), Josh Willingham (.449, 2004 SOU), Todd Sears (.434, 2000 SOU), Jason Kendall (.414, 1995 SOU).
GOT HEEEM: All-Star catcher Max McDowell began the season with the Mudcats before later receiving a mid-season promotion to Double-A Biloxi. Before his promotion, and through the end of the first half, McDowell led Minor League Baseball catchers in most caught steals (34) and was 2nd in caught stealing/stolen base efficiency (.557) for catchers with at least 30 attempts against in all of MiLB. McDowell also led all MiLB catcher in most assists (61) in the first half of the 2018 season. McDowell totaled 18 CS (.450) during his first season with the AZL Brewers in 2015, 54 CS (.443) in 2016 with Wisconsin and 31 CS (.556) last season with Carolina. He later went on to total 11 CS (.423) with Double-A Biloxi and finished year with 45 CS in 87 ATT (.517).
K RECORDS: Carolina batters combined to total a Carolina League and franchise record 1,311 strikeouts during the 2018 season; breaking the previous Carolina League and franchise record of 1,245 SO set during the 2017 season. Carolina's 1,311 total strikeouts in 2018 were the 7th most in MiLB.
HITS AND Ks: The Carolina offense totaled 262 more strikeouts than hits (1,311 SO, 1,049 H) during the 2018 season. Carolina's difference in total strikeouts over total hits was the 5th largest in Minor League Baseball. The 2018 Mudcats joined the 2017 Mudcats (1,245 SO, 1,081 H) and 2007 Mudcats (1,219 SO, 1,149 H) as the three Mudcats teams to finish a season with more strikeouts than hits.
DUBIOUS DPs: The Mudcats offense hit into a franchise record six (6) double plays on 8/10/18 in Salem... Dallas Carroll: 5-4-3; Devin Hairston : 6-4-3, 5-4-3, 5-4-3; Trever Morrison: 3u-3-6; Rob Henry 6-4-3.
Ks in NINE: The Mudcats pitchers set a franchise record for strikeouts in a nine inning game after totaling 19 strikeouts on 5/31 in Lynchburg... Marcos Diplan: 10 SO, Chase Williams: 3 SO, Phil Bickford*: 3 SO, Luke Barker: 3 SO. *Bickford's 2018 season/Mudcats debut.
WALK IT OFF: Seven (7) of Carolina's final 12 home wins occurred in walk-off fashion (7/19, 7/24, 7/25, 8/4, 8/8, 8/17, 8/28). Those seven (7) walk-off wins additionally occurred over Carolina's last 22 home games. Overall, Carolina totaled 12 walk-off wins this season, including...
4/25 vs. MB (Hiura Single): Keston Hiura broke a 1-1 tie in the ninth with a game winning, bases loaded single to right as the Mudcats defeated the Pelicans 2-1 in walk-off fashion on 4/25.
5/5 vs. DE (Hiura - WP): Keston Hiura scored the game-winning run on a wild pitch lost by reliever Locke St. John in the tenth as the Mudcats walked-off the visiting Wood Ducks 4-3 in 10 innings.
5/23 vs. DE (Neuhaus Single): Cooper Hummel came through with a game tying RBI single with two outs in the ninth and Tucker Neuhaus delivered a walk-off single with the bases loaded in the tenth as the Mudcats defeated the visiting Wood Ducks 2-1 in ten innings on 5/23.
5/25 vs. MB (Hiura HR): Keston Hiura delivered a walk-off, three-run home run in the tenth as the Mudcats defeated the Myrtle Beach Pelicans 4-1 in front of a crowd of 4,268 on 5/25.
6/7 vs. DE (Aguilar - E6): Cooper Hummel and Dallas Carroll combined to drive in two, two-out runs in the eighth to tie it at 2-2 and Max McDowell forced in Ryan Aguilar from second in the tenth as the Mudcats rallied back late to defeat the Wood Ducks 3-2 in ten innings on 6/7.
7/19 vs. WS (McInerney BB): Pat McInerney came through in the clutch with a bases loaded, walk-off walk with no-outs in the eleventh as the Mudcats defeated the Dash for the second straight game 6-5 in extras on 7/19. The home win gave Carolina a series win over the first place Dash.
7/24 vs. MB G:1 (Hairston Single): Devin Hairston hit a walk-off single with the bases loaded in the eighth inning in game one of a doubleheader versus Myrtle Beach on 7/24. Cooper Hummel originally tied the game with a two-out, two-run single to left in the seventh to force extras.
7/25 vs. MB (McInerney Single): Pat McInerney delivered the game-winning blow in the last of the ninth as the Mudcats walked-off the Pelicans 6-5 on 7/25. The walk-off win was Carolina's second in three games against the Pelicans and gave them a 2-1 lead in the series.
8/4 vs. SAL (Henry Double): Rob Henry went 2-for-2 with an eighth inning walk-off double while leading the Mudcats to a 3-2 win in game one, but the Mudcats struck out 13 times in game two and were shutout game two 3-0 while finishing with a split in a doubleheader on 8/4 versus Salem.
8/8 vs. LYN (Rodriguez Force): Cooper Hummel started the ninth with a double and went on to score from third moments later on a chopper to second from Nathan Rodriguez as the Mudcats walked-off for the tenth time this season, 5-4 versus the Hillcats on 8/8 at Five County Stadium.
8/17 vs. POT (Carroll SF): Dallas Carroll drove in Weston Wilson with a sacrifice fly in the tenth inning as the Mudcats walked off the Potomac Nationals 5-4 on 8/18 at Five County Stadium.
8/29 vs. DE (Carroll BB): Cooper Hummel walked with the bases loaded to bring in the tying run and Dallas Carroll walked with the bases loaded to win it in the ninth as the Mudcats walked off the Wood Ducks 4-3 with two bases loaded walks on Tuesday night at Five County Stadium in Zebulon.
Video: Henry drives in winning run for Carolina