| Seasons | 2001 | Teams | Wisconsin Timber Rattlers |
2001 West: | Beloit | Burlington | Cedar Rapids | Clinton | Kane County | Peoria | Quad City | Wisconsin |

Midwest League 2001

Wisconsin Timber Rattlers

Major Change

2001 Teams
Cedar Rapids
Fort Wayne
Kane County
Quad City
South Bend
West Michigan

This page profiles the 2001 Wisconsin Timber Rattlers, a Single-A affiliate of the Seattle Mariners and a member of the Midwest League.

Except where otherwise specified, all statistics on this page are through the end of the 2001 season.

  • Appleton, Wisconsin.
  • Affiliated with the Seattle Mariners.
  • Manager: Gary Thurman.
  • Coaches: Scott Steinmann, Scott Budner (pitching).

Post-Season Profile

The Rattlers had an interesting summer, chasing Quad City and Kane County for the first half of the season, then edging out the Cougars for the second half-championship. The team featured excellent pitching, competent defense, and terrific basepath speed. Catcher John Castellano developed into a serious power threat as the season progressed.

As usual, the T'Rat pitching staff led the league in strikeouts; they also had the best MWL team ERA, allowed the fewest hits, and walked very few batters. They accomplished this with a very strong pitching rotation and an effective committee in the bullpen. Starters Jared Hoerman and Kevin Olore had particularly fine seasons.

Most of the Wisconsin hitters were free-swinging, leadoff hitter types; they'd settle for a double or a single, then scramble around the bases for a run. Only John Castellano was a power threat, and until August he was only occasionally effective; for the last month of the season, he was perhaps the League's best hitter with 40 hits and 8 homers. Several of the Wisconsin players would have won the steals title in some other season.

MWL Fan's Guide

Season Summary

  • Second Half: 42-26, .618, 1st place, 2.0 ahead (playoff qualifier)
  • First Half: 42-26, .618, 2nd place tie, 5.0 behind
  • Pitching: 84-52, 2.96, 34 saves, 1225 strikeouts
  • Hitting: .271, 688 runs, 74 HR, 245 steals (71% success)
  • Errors: 169 (1.24 per game)
  • April: 13-11 (.542)
  • May: 17-10 (.630)
  • June: 20-7 (.741)
  • July: 16-12 (.571)
  • August: 17-11 (.607)
  • September: 1-2 (.333)

  • Best Player on the Team: Starting Pitcher Jared Hoerman

  • Best Starting Pitcher: Jared Hoerman (1.49, 9-2, 101 strikeouts)
  • Bullpen Stopper: Aaron Taylor (2.45, 9 saves, 3-1)
  • Strikeout Pitchers: Jared Hoerman, Derrick VanDusen, Kevin Olore, Rett Johnson, Clint Nageotte, Chad Wiles, Roy Wells
  • Control Pitchers: Jared Hoerman, Derrick VanDusen, Kevin Olore, Rett Johnson, Clint Nageotte, Chad Wiles, Roy Wells, John Butler

  • Best Hitter: John Castellano (.334, 14 HR, 81 RBI)
  • Home Run Leader: John Castellano (14)
  • High Batting Average: John Castellano (.334), Jaime Bubela (.304), Pedro Liriano (.326), Jamal Strong (.353)
  • High On Base Percentage: Jamal Strong (.478)
  • High Slugging Percentage: Chuck Lopez (.469), John Castellano (.536)
  • Notable Baserunners: Jaime Bubela, Pedro Liriano, Ariel Durango, John Castellano, Jamal Strong, Blake BoneSheldon Fulse
  • Notable Batting Eye: Jamal Strong

July Profile

The T'Rats are your basic pitching-and-defense team; the offense is built mainly around a bunch of speedsters, with very little power. As usual, the Mariners have sent a strong pitching staff to Appleton.

Wisconsin's pitching rotation is exceptionally strong; they throw strikes, and get hitters out. The bullpen is generally strong, though Chad Wiles is not really a closer. This team's pitching staff makes few mistakes.

Although there's no power in the Wisconsin lineup, there are a bunch of high-average hitters with excellent speed. Jaime Bubela is the team's star, an excellent hitter who should add power to his arsenal as he matures. Most of the other regulars are speedsters; catcher John Castellano is the closest thing to a power hitter, with 8 HRs.

Also worth watching: Spot Starter Jared Hoerman.

June Profile

Although the T'Rats' best talent was harvested at mid-season, an able core of strong players remain with the Appleton squad. This team has Wisconsin's usual strong pitching; they'll have to develop some new hitters for the second season. The Timber Rattler defense is excellent.

Outfielder Jaime Bubela and second baseman Pedro Liriano--valuable hitters, and exceptional baserunners--are still with the team, but will need some help from the rest of the team to put up runs in the second half.

Manager Gary Thurman's been working with a four-man rotation this summer: Eric Grunwald, Kevin Olore, Everrett Johnson, and Clint Nageotte all keep the games close. The fifth slot's been filled by committee; if anything, they've been more effective than the regulars. That committee doubles as a very strong bullpen. Closer Chad Wiles has racked up 14 saves....

Notable mid-season losses: Chuck Lopez, Jamal Strong, & Russ Morgan.

May Profile

Make no mistake: The Timber Rattlers are running a very strong nine out there every night. Most years they'd be the team to beat. This is not "most years," though, and the T'Rats are going to be a little disappointing.

This team's hitting is fine, but a bit weaker than it looks at first glance because they haven't shown a lot of power. Jamal Strong has great speed, and the best batting eye in the MWL. The rest of the lineup is adequate; all are speedsters. These guys play excellent defense, too.

The pitching is strong. The starters have no weak links, though Everrett Johnson has had some bad luck losses to counter two terrific outings. The bullpen is by committee, but it's an excellent committee, with Chad Wiles, Jason Ayala, and John Butler sharing the closer role to very good effect.

April Profile

The Timber Rattlers have their usual fine pitching staff, and some very good hitting to complement that. If the defense improves, they should be able to run with the strong teams at KC and QC.

Pre-Season Profile


This is Gary Thurman's third season as a minor league skipper, and his second at Wisconsin. Thurman's a very conventional manager.

First Round Draft Selection

  • none.

Team Age Information

  • Average Team Age: 22.0
  • Pitchers: 22.4
  • Hitters: 21.5
  • Oldest Player on the Team: Chuck Lopez (born 11/28/76)
  • Youngest Player on the Team: Daniel Floyd (born 1/17/83)

The average player in the Midwest League is 21.6 years old. Average ages were calculated from the opening day roster; age as of July 1, 2001.

This website has more information about team ages.

Where they played last season

This is a brief portrait of how the team was put together. These summaries are based on the team's opening day roster and will not be revised to reflect roster changes.

The Rattlers are essentially last summer's Everett AquaSox, leavened a bit from the other farm teams.

Team      League          W/L   Place    Hitters Pitchers
Lancaster California (A+) 89/51  1(10)       3       1
Wisconsin Midwest (A)     78/60  3(14)       0       4
Everett   Northwest (A-)  37/39  6(8)        9       9
Mariners  Arizona (R)     39/16  1(9)        3       5

The Mariners moved the pitchers around a lot last summer; most of the new Rattler pitchers appeared for two or three teams. The position players were moved less; only two or three are counted more than once. One player was in another organization in 2000, while another played in an independent league. Two of the new Rattlers had brief appearances in Triple-A last season, and one played briefly at the Double-A level.




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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