Casey Kotchman was a member of the Cedar Rapids Kernels squad that opened New Veterans Memorial Stadium in 2002. Kotchman hit .281 with 5 HR, 30 doubles and 50 RBI in 81 games as the Kernels finished 81-58 under manager Todd Clauss defeating Quad Cities in the opening round and then losing to Peoria in the semi finals of the Midwest League playoffs.
Casey Kotchman has hit .262 with 71 HR and 387 RBI during his nine year MLB career playing for the Angels, Braves, Red Sox, Mariners, Rays and Indians. Kotchman hit .229 with 12 HR and 55 RBI for the Indians in 2012.
Two former Cedar Rapids Kernels were selected in this morning’s Rule V draft. Tyler Kehrer (2010-11) was selected by the Miami Marlins with the third pick in the Triple-A phase of the draft from the Los Angeles Angels organization and Jon Bachanov was selected later that round by the Boston Red Sox after playing in the Chicago White Sox system in 2012.
Tyler Kehrer was selected by the Los Angeles Angels with a first round supplemental pick, 48th overall in the 2009 draft. Kehrer posted a 6-5 record with four saves and a 4.56 E.R.A. appearing as a starter and a reliever while sharing piggyback duties with Tyler Skaggs. If you are not familiar with the term, it refers to them starting every other game during their slot in the rotation while the non starter was slated for the relief work during that said game every time to guarantee each would get their innings and work load needed to continue their professional development. Cedar Rapids finished the season with a 82-56 record under manager Bill Mosiello. The Kernels lost to Clinton in the first round of the Midwest League Playoffs.
Kehrer returned to Cedar Rapids in 2011 and was 2-1 with 3 saves and a 4.18 E.R.A in 35 games out of the Kernels bullpen. Cedar Rapids finished 61-78 under Brent Del Chiaro and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2006.
Jon Bachanov was originally selected by the Los Angeles Angels with a first round supplemental pick, 58th over in the 2007 draft. Bachanov was a member of the 2010 Cedar Rapids team as well. He compiled a 2-0 record with 2 saves and a 5.47 E.R.A. while appearing in 18 games for the Kernels.
Bachanov joined the Chicago White Sox organization in 2011 and split time during the 2012 season playing for the Winston Salem Dash and the Birmingham Barons. He was 7-2 with a 3.95 E.R.A. in 23 games for the Dash before earning a promotion and finishing the season with the White Sox Double-A team in Birmingham.
The Toronto Blue Jays have traded Yunel Escobar, Adeiny Hechavarria, Henderson Alvarez, Anthony DeSclafani, Justin Nicolini, Jake Marisnick and Jeff Mathis (Cedar Rapids Kernels – 2002) to the Miami Marlins to acquire Jose Reyes, Josh Johnson, Mark Buehrle, John Buck, Emilio Bonifacio and $4 million in cash according to reports . The deal saddens me a bit as a Marlins fan to see them slash payroll once again only one year into their new stadium. It does give me a Cedar Rapids alum in Marlins uniform to cheer for again. I know a Marlins fan in Iowa doesn’t make a lot of sense, but I needed a National League team (Yankees fan from birth) and chose them over the Rockies in their expansion year. Dallas McPherson (Cedar Rapids Kernels – 2002) was our last alumni to play in a game for the Marlins back in 2008. Mathis will be facing an uphill battle for playing time with Rob Brantly being a fixture in the Marlins future plans after coming over from the Detroit Tigers along with Jacob Turner in the Anibal Sanchez / Omar Infante trade last season.
Jeff Mathis has hit .198 with 61 doubles, 31 HR and 166 RBI during his eight year MLB career playing for the Angels and Blue Jays. Mathis hit .218 with 8 HR and 27 RBI in 71 games for Toronto in 2012.
Jeff Mathis was part of the 2002 Kernels team that finished 3rd with a mark of 81-58 under manager Todd Claus. The 2002 team swept Quad Cities in the opening round of the playoffs before falling to Peoria in the second round. Mathis hit .287 with 41 doubles, 10 HR and 73 RBI in 128 games for Cedar Rapids. He was inducted into the Cedar Rapids Professional Baseball Hall of Fame in 2011. Mathis was a great community guy making many public appearances for the Kernels while he was in Cedar Rapids back in 2002. He continued the support conducting a catchers camp at Perfect Game’s facilities in the morning during his trip back for our Hall of Fame banquet in 2011.