Game #1: Jackson Generals (SEA) (0-0) at Jacksonville Suns (MIA) (0-0)
Site: Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville – Jacksonville, Fla
Time: 6:05 p.m. CST
Pitching Match-up: RHP Taijuan Walker (1-0, 0.00) vs. LHP Brian Flynn (0-0, 0.00)
Radio: 96.5 ESPN Radio (pregame 5:50) / GAMEDAY AUDIO and TuneIn Radio App.
Online TV: MiLB.tv
Live Stats: Live pitch-by-pitch coverage will be available on MILB GAMEDAY
Game Information: | Game Notes 4-4 at Jacksonville
Archived Generals Interviews: Generals YouTube
Generals Blog: Inside the Jackson Generals
TODAY’S GAME: The Generals begin theier 16th season tonight in the opener of a 5-game series in Jacksonville, against the Suns. This is the first of 10 meetings between the two clubs this season. Jackson won the season series, 6-4 last year.
GENERALS RECAP: The Generals posted a 79-61 record in 2012, which was the best record in the Southern League. The Generals 79 wins are the 3rd-most in franchise history and most since 2005. The Generals went 42-28 to win the Southern League North Division First-Half Division title and finished 2nd with a 37-33 recorded in the Second-Half. The 42 first-half wins ranked 3rd all-time in franchise history during a first half. The Generals were also the first team in the Southern League to record 50 wins, when they accomplished the feat on July 4.Jackson defeated Chattanooga in the first-round North Division finals, but lost to Jacksonville in the Southern League Finals.
OPENING DAY: Jackson has won 3 of their last 4 opening day games. Last season the Generals defeated the Birmingham Barons in Jackson 3-2 on Opening Night. All-time, Jackson is 11-4 on Opening Day with the last set back coming in 2011 at Mississippi.
40-MAN FRENZY: For the first time since Jackson has been affiliated with Seattle (2007) they boast 5 players who are on the Mariners 40-man roster. Starting pitchers Hector Noesi and Chance Ruffin, outfielders Francisco Martinez and Julio Morban and starter Anthony Fernandez who is currently on the DL.
COMING FROM BIG LEAGUE CAMP: The Opening Day roster features 12 players that participated in Major League Spring Training. Those included position players Abraham Almonte, Vinnie Catricala, John Hicks, Francisco Martinez, Brad Miller, Julio Morban and pitchers Jonathan Arias, Tyler Burgoon, Stephen Kohscheen, Hector Noesi, Chance Ruffin, Carson Smith and Taijuan Walker.
“PANK” MOVING ON UP: Coming back for his 3rd season, Manager Jim Pankovits becomes the second-longest tenured Jackson manager. Bobby Dickerson managed in Jackson from 2002-2005 while Jackson was affiliated with the Chicago Cubs. Pankovits ranks 3rd in franchise history with 147 managerial wins.
HISTORIC YEAR FOR MARINERS MINORS: The Mariners 9 minor league affiliates wrapped up the 2012 season, putting together one of the best seasons in club history, combining for a 496-406 (.550) record. The organization led all Major League farm systems in wins (496) and winning percentage (.550). The Mariners 496 organizational wins set a new record for most wins in a single sesaon by any Major League farm system. Six of the Mariners 9 affiliates qualified for the postseason in 2012.
PLENTY OF PROSPECTS: The Generals Opening Day roster features 11 of the Mariners’ Top-30 prospects, according to Baseball America. Those include: RHP Taijuan Walker (2), INF Brad Miller (9), RHP Carson Smith (16), OF Leon Landry (17), INF Jack Marder (20), C John Hicks (21), OF Francisco Martinez (22), OF Julio Morban (23), INF Vinnie Catricala (26), RHP Chance Ruffin (27), LHP Anthony Fernandez (30).
GENERALS IN SEATTLE: There were 8 former Jackson players on the Seattle Mariners Opening Day Roster. RHP Brandon Maurer, RHP Blake Beavan, RHP Stephen Pryor, RHP Carter Capps, RHP Tom Wilhelmsen, INF Kyle Seager, INF Dustin Ackley and OF Michael Saunders.