The Timber Rattlers wrapped up the 2017 season a full 20 games under .500 with a record of 59-79, leaving them in last place in the Midwest League’s Western Division. Only the Lake County Captains, a Cleveland Indians affiliate, finished the year with a worse overall record. Wisconsin finished just 26-42 in the first half of the season, winding up 13.5 games back of first place Kane County (Diamondbacks). They improved somewhat in the second half of the year, going 33-37 and winding up nine games back of the Quad Cities River Bandits (Astros).
As was the case for much of the 2017 season, the Rattlers played close to .500 baseball in the season’s opening month, going 10-11 in April. They finished the month of May with a record of 13-16, but then really hit the skids in June, as they went just 7-21. That ugly month tainted the Rattlers record for the season and included a season-high 12-game losing streak from June 10th-23rd. They were more competitive in July, going 13-15, and again finished a game under .500 in August, with a record of 14-15, before finally splitting their September games, going 2-2.
Wisconsin’s offense was paced by Monte Harrison, who ranked among the team leaders in home runs, RBI and stolen bases, despite only playing half a season with the Rattlers. First-round pick Keston Hiura also joined the ballclub late in the season to provide a spark and he put up impressive offensive numbers in his first season. Catcher Mario Feliciano also turned out to be a pleasant surprise for the ballclub, exceeding expectations both with the bat and the glove, becoming one of the team’s most reliable players despite being one of the youngest players on the squad.
On the pitching side of things, right-hander Trey Supak was dominant in eight early-season outings before being promoted to Advanced-A Carolina. He was joined by the likes of Thomas Jankins, Josh Pennington, Carlos Herrera, Braden Webb, Zack Brown and Cameron Roegner who all contributed throughout the year to give Wisconsin plenty of quality pitching depth throughout their staff.
The Rattlers had three players selected to the Midwest League All-Star team in 2017 with catcher Mario Feliciano, pitcher Braden Webb and outfielder Monte Harrison all named to the West squad. It was Harrison who stole the show, belting a pair of home runs and driving in three en route to being named the game’s MVP as the West knocked off the East by a final score of 5-2.
PLAYER OF THE YEAR
MONTE HARRISON: Though he only spent half the season with Wisconsin, Harrison’s efforts stood out head and shoulders above the crowd. In 63 games before being promoted to High-A Carolina, the former second-round pick hit .265 with an .834 OPS. 24 of his 59 hits went for extra-bases, including 12 doubles and 11 home runs. He also swiped 11 bases and scored 32 runs while driving in 32 as well.
PITCHER OF THE YEAR
THOMAS JANKINS: There were plenty of candidates for Wisconsin’s Pitcher of the Year, but Jankins ability to take the ball all season long gave him the edge as he ranked at or near the top in many of the team’s pitching categories. A 13th-round pick out of Quinnipiac in 2016, Jankins logged a team-high 141.2 innings in 2017, going 9-8 with a 3.62 earned run average and a WHIP of 1.22
Games Played: Demi Orimoloye (125), Ronnie Gideon (113), J. Segovia (111)
Runs: Demi Orimoloye (57), Trever Morrison (48), Mario Feliciano (47)
Hits: Mario Feliciano (101), Demi Orimoloye (100), Joantgel Segovia (91)
Doubles: Ronnie Gideon (28), Tucker Neuhaus (26), Demi Orimoloye (23)
Triples: Jose Cuas (4), Demi Orimoloye (4), Ryan Aguilar (4)
Home Runs: Ronnie Gideon (14), Tucker Neuhaus (13), Demi Orimoloye (11)
RBI: Ronnie Gideon (55), Tucker Neuhaus (47), Demi Orimoloye (45)
Walks: Ryan Aguilar (49), Demi Orimoloye (40), Ronnie Gideon (39)
Stolen Bases: Demi Orimoloye (38), Monte Harrison (11), Joantgel Segovia (11)
Batting Average: Keston Hiura (.333), Weston Wilson (.277), Monte Harrison (.265)
On Base %: Keston Hiura (.374), Weston Wilson (.366), Monte Harrison (.359)
Slugging %: Keston Hiura (.476), Monte Harrison (.475), Weston Wilson (.475)
OPS: Keston Hiura (.850), Weston Wilson (.842), Monte Harrison (.834)
Wins: Thomas Jankins (9), Braden Webb (6), Daniel Brown (6)
ERA: Trey Supak (1.76), Luke Barker (2.84), Josh Pennington (2.97)
Appearances: Daniel Brown (37), Miguel Sanchez (32), Jordan Desguin (30)
Saves: Daniel Brown (6), Luke Barker (5), Braden Webb (3)
Innings Pitched: Thomas Jankins (141.2), Nattino Diplan (88.2), J. Desguin (87.2)
Strikeouts: Thomas Jankins (121), Braden Webb (90), Nattino Diplan (88)
WHIP: Trey Supak (1.04), Drake Owenby (0.98), Josh Pennington (1.05)
TOP 10 PROSPECTS
1. Keston Hiura (2B)
2. Monte Harrison (OF)
3. Trey Supak (RHP)
4. Mario Feliciano (C)
5. Josh Pennington (RHP)
6. Braden Webb (RHP)
7. Zack Brown (RHP)
8. Gilbert Lara (SS)
9. Demi Orimoloye (OF)
10. Carlos Herrera (RHP)