| Seasons | 1999 | Teams | Burlington Bees |
1999 West: | Burlington | Cedar Rapids | Clinton | Quad City |

Midwest League 1999

Burlington Bees

Midwest League Playoff Champions

Major Change

1999 Teams
Cedar Rapids
Fort Wayne
Kane County
Quad City
South Bend
West Michigan

This page profiles the 1999 Burlington Bees, a Single-A affiliate of the Chicago White Sox and a member of the Midwest League.

Except when another date is specified, statistics on this page are through end of the season.

  • Burlington, Iowa.
  • Affiliated with the Chicago White Sox.
  • Manager: Nick Capra.
  • Coaches: J. R. Perdew (pitching), Daryl Boston.

Post-Season Profile

On paper, this team looks pretty dull. On the field, they came together well in the second half and walked off with the championship trophy. The Bees had one very fine player, Terrell Merriman, a core of very good players, and an adequate pitching staff. On the other hand, no rotation pitcher really proved himself, there was little bench strength, and the team's fielding was pretty poor.

All in all, things worked out very well.

MWL Fan's Guide

Season Summary

  • First Half: 31-38 (.449), 3rd place, 10.5 behind
  • Second Half: 40-30 (.571), 1st place, 1.0 ahead
  • Pitching: 71-68, 4.79, 35 saves, 953 strikeouts
  • Hitting: .263, 734 runs, 99 HR, 155 steals (70% success)
  • Errors: 222 (1.60 per game)
  • April: 9-11 (.450)
  • May: 11-18 (.379)
  • June: 14-13 (.519)
  • July: 16-12 (.571)
  • August: 17-13 (.567)
  • September: 4-1 (.800)

  • Best Player of the Team: Outfielder Terrell Merriman

  • Best Starting Pitcher: Juan Figueroa (8-4, 3.12, 139 strikeouts)
  • Bullpen Stopper: Brannon Whatley (3-5, 20 saves, 3.47, 52 strikeouts)
  • Strikeout Pitcher: Juan Figueroa
  • Control Pitchers: Juan Figueroa, Edwin Almonte, Mark Buehrle

  • Best Hitter: Terrell Merriman (.306, 15 HR, 77 RBI)
  • Home Run Leader: Eric Battersby (18)
  • High Batting Average: Terrell Merriman (.306), Mario Valenzuela (.323)
  • High On Base Percentage: Terrell Merriman (.411), Ryan Hankins (.402)
  • High Slugging Percentage: Terrell Merriman (.518), Eric Battersby (.470), Ryan Hankins (.476), Mario Valezuela (.476)
  • Notable Baserunners: Terrell Merriman, Eric Battersby, Jason Fennell, Bernie Torres
  • Notable Batting Eye: Jason Fennell

July Profile

Burlington has scored 520 runs since the season began; their opponents have scored 570. The Bees are probably the most-improved team in the league; they've been playing excellent ball in the past few weeks.

Outfielder Terrell Merriman is one of the league's best players; this man's a fine, fine talent. He's supported by third baseman Ryan Hankins and first baseman Eric Battersby; OF Mario Valenzuela and DH Jason Fennell are also valuable.

Mitch Wylie's started six games, pitched extremely well, but only been involved in one decision. Two Bees pitchers, Edwin Almonte and Mark Buehrle, have unusually good control, and look like very promising prospects. The staff has few weaknesses, but is only about average for the MWL.

June Profile

The Bees are playing decent ball in a strong division despite fielding a fairly weak squad. This team's hitting's interesting, if not strong, while the pitching's weak, and the defense is simply awful. They do show some talent on the basepaths.

The lineup has no outstanding star, but there's some good talent here and they can do damage. While there are no outstanding batsmen, there are players who hit well: Outfielders Eric Battersby, Mario Valenzuela, and Terrell Merriman are notable, as is third baseman Ryan Hankins. On a different team, Merriman would be the league's leading base thief; he's very good on the basepaths.

Starter Juan Figueroa's leading the league in strikeouts, and seems very talented; he's made some costly mistakes, though, and it's hurt his record. The bullpen's best is long reliever Edwin Almonte, who consistently throws strikes and has been reasonably successful.

Notable mid-season losses: None.

Also worth watching: Pitchers Mitch Wylie and Mark Buehrle.

May Profile

Things got worse in May: The Bees are a team with few strengths, and many weaknesses.

The squad has some players worth watching: Right fielder Eric Battersby (he's lately been playing first base) has excellent power and shows some speed. Jason Fennell, who's often the DH, also has power and speed, and excellent strike zone judgment. Third baseman Ryan Hankins and center fielder Terrell Merriman are solid players, and very good baserunners.

Pitcher Mitch Wylie's a very good starter; he needs some better luck, though. Long relievers Edwin Almonte and Solomon Johnson throw strikes, and starters Geronimo Mendoza and Juan Figueroa have some potential.

April Profile

The Bees showed a weak offense, poor defense, and pretty much average pitching during April.

Pre-Season Profile


Manager Nick Capra skippered at Bristol in the Appalachian League for the past three years. He's fairly patient with his pitchers and does not like intentional walks; there's nothing particularly remarkable about his offensive strategies.

Where they played last season

These comments and table are based on opening day rosters.

Most of these folks played at Bristol last season, where they formed the nucleus of the Appy League's best team. Most of the rest played for the AZL Sox.

Team          League             W/L     Place    Hitters Pitchers
Winston-Salem Carolina (A+)      79-60   2(8)        1       0
Hickory       South Atlantic (A) 56-84  15(16)       1       3
Bristol       Appalachian (R+)   42-24   1(10)       7      10
White Sox     Arizona (R)        20-34   8(8)        4       6

The Sox routinely move pitchers during the season, so many players are counted twice in this table. One player on this team had a short 1998 stint in AA ball.

First Round Draft Selection

  • Corey Jenkins (1995, 24th pick [Boston])

Returning to Low-A Ball

Members of last season's Hickory (South Atlantic League) team.

  • Matt Bourne (P, 15 games)
  • Tim Currens (P, 28 games)
  • Miguel Felix (P, 21 games)
  • J.R. Mounts (110 games)

Oldest & Youngest Bees

On opening day, the average age of the Bees was 21.3 years. Follow this link for more information about MWL team ages.

  • Oldest player on the team: Brandon Hyde (born October 3, 1973)
  • Youngest player on the team: Eric Fischer (born February 19, 1980)


White Sox

South Bend

The Midwest League plays Single-A, professional baseball in America's agricultural and industrial heartland. 16 teams play a 140 game schedule which begins in early April and ends Labor Day weekend.

This website is a private project and has no official relation with or sanction from the Midwest League or Minor League Baseball.
The opinions expressed on this page are mine, and are worth about that.

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