Eau Claire Express

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Eau Claire Express
Team Logo
Information
League Northwoods League (North Division)
(South Division 2005-2013)
Location Eau Claire, Wisconsin
Ballpark Carson Park
Year founded 2005
League championships 1 (2010)
Division championships 3 (2007, 2010, 2016)
Former name(s) Eau Claire Express (2005–present)
Colors black, orange
Ownership Bill Rowlett, Andy Neborak, Dale Varsho
Management Spencer Larson (GM)
Manager Dale Varsho
Media Eau Claire Leader Telegram
Website eauclaireexpress.com

The Eau Claire Express is a collegiate summer baseball team playing in the Northwoods League. Their home games are played at Carson Park, in Eau Claire, Wisconsin (USA).

After two straight losing seasons in 2005 and 2006, the Eau Claire Express achieved many firsts during the 2007 season. The team won nine of its final ten regular season games to finish 42-26 overall and claim the 2007 2nd Half South Division title, their first regular season division title in franchise history and qualified for the Northwoods League playoffs, another franchise first.

In the 2007 South Division Championship Series, they faced the 1st Half South Division Champion Green Bay Bullfrogs. They won the series 2-1, claiming the 2007 South Division Pennant, another first in franchise history. In the 2007 Northwoods League Championship Series, they faced the North Division Champion St. Cloud River Bats and were swept 2-0 by the eventual Northwoods League Champions.

The 2008 season ended with the Express missing the Northwoods League playoffs by 1.5 games. The Express finished the season one game below .500.

The Express had one of their best seasons in 2009. They had a great first half, winning the NWL South Division to qualify for the playoffs. However, injuries and summer school depleted the squad in the second half. Eau Claire was eliminated in two games by the La Crosse Loggers in the Northwoods League Divisional round.

In 2010, the Express won the first half of the season again with a 22-12 record. Via www.perfectgame.org, the Express have been ranked as high as #3 in the nation for summer collegiate baseball. The team closed out the 2010 season winning both halves. They followed this up by winning the NWL Championship and www.perfectgame.org ranked the Eau Claire Express the #1 summer collegiate team in the nation.

The Express moved to the North Division for 2014, to accommodate the new NWL teams in Kenosha, Wisconsin and Kalamazoo, Michigan. [1]

The 2016 season saw the Express return to the Northwoods League postseason after winning he season'a first half title. This was the first time the team had qualified for the playoffs since the 2010 season.

Eau Claire opened the playoffs hosting the Mankato MoonDogs in the first round of the Divisional Playoffs at Carson Park. Despite having only a 1-7 record vs. Mankato in the regular season, Eau Claire was able to defeat the MoonDogs to advance.

The next night the team traveled to St. Cloud, Minn. to face the second half champion Rox for a chance to play for the NWL Championship. After blowing a late lead, the Express were able to defeat the Rox in extra innings to win the North Division title.

Awaiting the Express in the NWL Championship Series was the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters, the owners of the league's best regular season record. Eau Claire led game one by a run with two outs in the ninth inning at Witter Field in Wisconsin Rapids, Wis. before giving up a walk-off, two-run home run to lose. The Express would go on to lose game two the following night at Carson Park to end a successful season and concede the Northwoods League title to the Rafters. The title was the first in franchise history for Wisconsin Rapids, in their first trip to the postseason in seven seasons of play.

Express players drafted in the 2007 MLB Draft:

Express players drafted in the 2008 MLB Draft:

Express players drafted in the 2010 MLB Draft:

Express players drafted in the 2012 MLB Draft:[2]

Name Pos College Round Team 2013 Team League
Trent Blank RHP Baylor 30 Col NL Asheville Sally
Tyler Bremer RHP Baylor 27 Chi NL Boise Northwest
Logan Ehlers LHP Howard College 20 Det AL Connecticut NY–Penn
Dietrich Enns LHP Central Michigan 19 NY AL Tampa FSL
Zac Fisher C New Mexico State 27 Chi AL Great Falls Pioneer
Louis Head RHP Texas State 18 Cle AL Carolina Carolina
Lucas Herbst 1B-OF Santa Clara 26 Balt AL Delmarva Carolina
Jordan Kipper RHP Central Arizona 30 Phi NL TCU Big 12
Ryan Longstreth RHP Central Michigan 40 Det AL Connecticut NY–Penn
Jacob Morris OF Arkansas 37 Cle AL Great Falls Pioneer
Logan Vick 2B Baylor 11 Cle AL Carolina Carolina

Express players drafted in the 2013 MLB Draft:[3]

Name Pos College Round Team 2013 Team League
Alex Allbritton 3B New Mexico 21 LA AL Orem Pioneer
Jimmy Allen 3B-OF Cal Poly 23 Bos AL Cal Poly Big West
Trevor Bayless LHP San Diego 22 Oak AL Beloit Midwest
Garrett Custons C Air Force 10 Tor AL Bluefield Appalachian
Jared Dettman LHP Century CC (MN) 17 Atl NL Danville Appalachian
Drew Ghelfi RHP Minnesota 25 Mil NL AZL Brewers Arizona
Brad Goldberg RHP Ohio State 10 Chi AL Winston-Salem Carolina
Michael Holback RHP Cal Poly 25 SL NL Johnson City Appalachian
Devin Moore RHP Indiana State 27 Chi AL Bristol Appalachian
Jacob Morris OF Arkansas 37 Cle AL Great Falls Pioneer
Brandon Peterson RHP Wichita State 13 Min AL Elizabethton Appalachian
Matt Southard RHP Yavapai College 28 Phi NL GCL Phillies Gulf Coast
Cal Towey 3B Baylor 17 LA AL Orem Pioneer
Justin Viele 2B Santa Clara 37 Balt AL Aberdeen NY–Penn
Philip Walby RHP San Diego State 12 NY AL Staten Island NY–Penn
Charlie White OF Maryland 29 NY AL Maryland ACC

References[edit]

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