| Seasons | 2003 | Teams | Beloit Snappers |
2003 West: | Beloit | Burlington | Cedar Rapids | Clinton | Kane County | Peoria | Quad City | Wisconsin |

2003 Scouting Report

Beloit Snappers

Major Change

2003 Teams
Battle Creek
Cedar Rapids
Fort Wayne
Kane County
Quad City
South Bend
West Michigan

This page profiles the 2003 Beloit Snappers, a Single-A affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers and a member of the Midwest League.


Playoff Profile

The Snappers had a very fine second season, despite my predictions, and reached the championship round in the playoffs. That's a successful season by any measure. Part of the second-half improvement was improved performance, part of it was a small mid-season infusion of new blood, and part of it was luck. This team had Prince Fielder--who was clearly the MWL's best player, this season. The offense had plain weaknesses, but scored well. A couple pitchers had excellent seasons, but the staff was generally weak. The Snappers run bases very well, and have some power. But there was no bench, and the defense was terrible.

First baseman Prince Fielder had an outstanding season, and deserved the post-season prizes the League and media bestowed on him. His strong second half largely carried this team to the division title. To be fair, the Snappers put a generally capable offensive lineup out there; catcher John Vanden Berg and outfielder Tony Gwynn made particularly strong contributions. Fielder, Vanden Berg, DH Travis Hinton, and third baseman Jeffrey Eure were power sources. Outfielder Kennard Bibbs led an outstanding basepath crew which also featured second baseman Callix Crabbe and Eure. This was an exciting offense which scored fairly well.

Rotation pitchers Manny Parra and Dennis Sarfate had terrific seasons; both are fine pitchers, and either could star at higher levels. The rest of the Beloit rotation, sadly, was a mess. Closers Bo Hall and Josh Alliston, while used differently than most closers, were very effective; Alliston, in particular seems very talented. Jason Baker showed well in a mixed role. Beyond these few, there are possibilities, but no proven talents.

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

MWL Fan's Guide

Season Summary

  • Second Half: 43-26, .623 (1st place, 4.0 ahead--Second Half Champion)
  • First Half: 32-35, .478 (3rd place, 7.5 behind)
  • Pitching: 75-61, 3.65, 34 saves, 3 complete games, 996 strikeouts
  • Hitting: .260, 639 runs, 67 HR, 172 steals (74% success)
  • Defense: 179 errors (1.31 per game); .686 defensive efficiency
  • April: 12-11 (.522)
  • May: 12-17 (.414)
  • June: 14-13 (.519)
  • July: 21-8 (724)
  • August/September: 17-12 (.586)
  • Playoff Round 1: 2-0 (1.000)
  • Championship Round: 0-3 (.000)
  • Position Players used: 17
  • Pitchers used: 21
    • includes 2 position players used in mop-up roles; one has appeared in several games

Leading Players

  • Best Player on the Team: First Baseman Prince Fielder

  • Best Starting Pitcher: Manny Parra (2.73, 11-2, 117 strikeouts) or Dennis Sarfate (2.84, 12-2, 140 strikeouts)
  • Bullpen Stopper: Bo Hall (2.59, 8-4, 11 saves, 76 strikeouts)
  • Strikeout Pitchers: Dennis Sarfate, Bo Hall, Josh Alliston, Gabriel Mendoza, Justin Gabriel, Craig Breslow
  • Control Pitchers: Manny Parra, Khalid Ballouli, Josh Alliston

  • Best Hitter: Prince Fielder (.313, 27 HR, 112 RBI)
  • Home Run Leader: Prince Fielder (27)
  • High Batting Average: Prince Fielder (.313), Kennard Bibbs (.301)
  • High On Base Percentage: Prince Fielder (.409)
  • High Slugging Percentage: Prince Fielder (.526)
  • Notable Baserunners: Kennard Bibbs, Callix Crabbe, Jeffrey Eure, Tony Gwynn, Pedro Esparragoza, Keith Bohanan
  • Notable Batting Eye: Callix Crabbe, Tony Gwynn

The Snappers at Mid-Season

The Snappers have scored 282 runs and have permitted 301 runs. Don Money uses 3.1 pitchers per game.

I suspect this team's even weaker than it first appears. The corner infielders are strong hitters, and the starting rotation's doing its part to keep this team above water. There are some good arms in the bullpen, too. On the other hand, the offense has no depth, the pitching staff has some very weak links, and the team's defense is the MWL's worst. This is a potentially lethal combination.

First baseman Prince Fielder slumped in early June, but remains a formidable hitter and a fine prospect; he's also drawn more intentional passes than any MWL team. Third baseman Jeffrey Eure has excellent tools, but doen't get on base enough. Outfielder Kennard Bibbs has no power, but a fine batting eye and great speed. Catcher John Vanden Berg and outfielder Steve Moss are decent ballplayers, too. Beyond these five? Nearly nothing. These guys bunt twice as often as any other MWL team.

The starting rotation's been doing its part. Jeff Housman's been too often victimized by his team's weak defense, and both Tom Wilhelmsen and Dennis Sarfate are probably pitching better than team wins leader Manny Parra. Bo Hall and Josh Alliston have had mixed success in late-inning relief; Alliston's another common victim of the team's poor defense.

Promoted and missed: No one.

Worth watching: Closer Jon Huizinga should free up Alliston for other duties.

May 25 Profile

The Snappers feature an excellent pitching staff, but except for the big guy at first base the offense is pretty anemic. The pitchers lead the league in strikeouts. Beloit's defense is just awful.

The pitching rotation is solid; Manny Parra's among the league's best hurlers, while Tom Wilhelmsen and Dennis Sarfate have also been pitching well. The bullpen's scattered; the best--Josh Alliston, Jeff Housman, and Gabriel Mendoza--are very fine, but others are quite weak.

Prince Fielder's playing about as expected; he's a very talented hitter, and reminds folks of Big Daddy. Third baseman Jeffrey Eure is also posting solid numbers, with both power and speed. Kennard Bibbs is a great baserunner, but he hasn't shown much ability to hit. Beyond these three, the offensive talent drops off dramatically.

Pre-Season Profile


Don Money is a very conventional MWL manager, except that his teams bunt far more often than most.

First Round Draft Selection

  • Prince Fielder (2002; 7th player selected)

Team Age Information

  • Average Team Age: 21.6
  • Pitchers: 21.7
  • Hitters: 21.5
  • Oldest Player on the Team: Mark Ernster (December 12, 1977)
  • Youngest Player on the Team: Josh Murray (August 12, 1984)

The average player in the Midwest League this season is about 21.7 years old.

Where they played last season

This summary was based on the team's opening day roster and will not be revised to reflect roster changes.

These Snappers are basically a version of last summer's solid Ogden team.

Team        League          W/L    Place    Hitters Pitchers
High Desert California (A+) 60/80   9(10)      0     0
Beloit      Midwest (A)     57/82  12(14)      3     2
Ogden       Pioneer (R+)    40/35   2(8)       9     8
Brewers     Arizona (R)     26/30   6(7)       1     4

A few of the 2003 Snappers played for two of these teams last season and are counted twice. Two did not play last season (one of them as Double-A experience), and one played in an Independent League in 2002.




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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