The New Hampshire Fisher ‘Cats are one win away from becoming the Eastern League Champions, which is the coolest thing happening in Blue Jays world right now. Let’s be honest: a lot of fans at this point in time have completely checked out on the 2018 season. And I don’t blame them.
But on the brighter side of bad, we still have our ‘Cats, who, ya know, are the future Jays that we hope will ride us all into the golden flag sunset. With that being said, when the ‘Cats sweep the Akron RubberDucks Friday night, which is Cleveland’s Double-A affiliate, it will be the cherry on top of the large adult son content that has injected life into all of us through this terrible ’18.
It’s been all Bo Bichette, Cavan Biggio, and Harold Ramirez. Yes, the same Harold Ramirez that was included in the Drew Hutchison trade to Pittsburgh. I can now see why so many Buccos fans were wailing all over the Internet about this little doozy of a trade. In case you forgot, the Jays sent the Hutch over to Pittsburgh for Liriano, Reese McGuire, and…Harold Ramirez. The Hutch now plays for the Texas Shitheads, so, ah, yeah, Godspeed Hutch. And thank you Pittsburgh.
I digress. So the trio of Bichette, Biggio, and Ramirez has offensively mashed all season, which has led the team to within 1game of being crowned the Eastern League champs. And, I think, because the depth of talent that this team has and the noise that certain *BICHETTE* *BIGGIO* players have been making all season long, some players have been forgotten in the big shadows that these ‘Cats cast.
Now, it’s no damn secret that Romano, Harris, and Zeuch have put together great seasons on the ol’ dirt hill, but there is one relief pitcher who has absolutely been Nintendo’s-Mike-Tyson-Punch-Out lights out all season long. And that pitcher is 6-foot-1 lefty Travis Bergen. Or maybe we should just start calling him the ‘Beast of Bergen’…or something like that?!?!?!?!?!?!?!? Either way, dumb nickname or not, Some Girls is my favourite Stones album.
Anyway, when Bergen comes out of the ‘pen, he makes Eastern League batters look like Glass Joe – ya know, the wimpy character from Punch-Out, the character who is from Belgium or France or something. Geez, I think I’m really dating myself here. But, fuck it…Nintendo was the greatest goddamn thing that happened to me back in the late eighties.
So back to Bergen. If you don’t know who he is yet, you certainly should. Bergen put up some dirty numbers this year. In 27 games, he posted a .50 ERA and a .98 WHIP. And if you like to swoon over this kind of stuff, it gets even better. In 35.2 innings pitched, the Beast struck out 43 and walked only 9 batters – no burden at all.
Bergen, who was drafted in the 7th round of the 2015 draft, hasn’t had the easiest road to where he is today. The young lefty has had to deal with injuries and was stuck in a NWL-and-GCL cycle, bouncing back-and-forth between the GCL Blue Jays and the Vancouver Canadians. During his limited time pitching in the Rookie League and in Class-A, he still put up impressive numbers. In 28⅔ innings, he posted a 1.88 earned-run average with 40Ks while only giving up 11 walks.
Before his MiLB journey began with the Jays, he was a member of Kennesaw State, where he made 30 starts and 16 relief appearances. He finished with a record of 16-9 and 3.10 ERA. He finished his college career with a 1.18 WHIP, 1.93 BB/9, and 7.46 K/9. But all that stat stuff was a pile of yesterdays ago and this prospect is heading into the future. And there’s a good chance he will make the Jays’ 40-man roster this spring.
Now, I’m no Pete Walker or anything, but from what I’ve seen of Bergen, he pitches off his fastball, has good command, and can locate his stuff.
Let’s just take a look at some videos of Bergen doing his beastly MiLB thing….