South Atlantic League
What: Four-game series
When: Thursday through Sunday (7:05 Thursday through Saturday nights, 1:35 p.m. Sunday)
Where: Whitaker Bank Ballpark
Tickets: Call (859) 422-7867
Major League affiliates: Houston Astros (Legends), Colorado Rockies
Probable pitchers (Legends listed first): Thursday, RH Luis Ordosgoitti (1-1, 4.06) vs. RH Alex Gillingham (3-4, 4.59); Friday, LH Luis Cruz (5-3, 3.63) vs. RH Chris Jensen (6-2, 5.32); Saturday, RH Jonas Dufek (3-1, 5.28) vs. RH Daniel Winkler (8-3, 4.93); Sunday, RH Nick Tropeano (5-4, 3.27) vs. LH Tyler Anderson (5-0, 3.32).
Tourist to watch: All-star C Will Swanner (6-foot-2, 195 pounds, from Cardiff, Calif.) leads Asheville with a .620 slugging percentage and a gaudy 1.038 OPS. He ranks second on the team in batting average (.331), on-base percentage (.418) and doubles (18). Over 41 games, he also has seven homers, 31 RBI and 34 runs. Ranked by Baseball America as the 21st-best prospect in the Rockies system, the right-hander was drafted in the 15th round of the 2010 draft out of high school in Carlsbad, Calif., signing for $490,000. He spent his first two pro seasons with the Casper Ghosts of the Pioneer League, batting .277 with 17 homers and 37 RBI over 61 games. Swanner has been efficient versus both right-handers and left-handers this season, hitting .333 against the former and .325 facing the latter. With runners on base, he’s batting .358.
Legend to watch: C Mike Kvasnicka (6-2, 213, from Lakeville, Minn.), a switch-hitter who throws right-handed, played third base for the Legends last season. In addition, he can play in the outfield corners. He got off to a slow start this year, but has steadily picked up the pace and is officially red-hot. Kvasnicka batted .118 in April, .229 in May and is off to a 13-for-36 (.361) start in June. Sunday, he homered from both sides of the plate at Greensboro. Over his last four games, Kvasnicka is 7-for-14 (.500), with three homers, six RBI and five runs. Selected by the Astros in the supplemental first round (33rd overall) of the 2010 draft, out of the University of Minnesota, he signed for $936,000. He is rated by Baseball America as the 25th-best prospect in the Houston system. His father, Jay, was an eighth-round pick in 1988 and made it to Class 3A in the Twins system. Mike broke in with the Tri-City ValleyCats of the New York-Penn League in 2010, batting .234 with five homers and 36 RBI for 68 games. Last year with the Legends, he hit .260 with four homers and 59 RBI over 128 games. He also was an SAL mid-season all-star.
Radio: WLXG-AM 1300
Promotions: Thursday is Autism Awareness Night and Thirsty Thursday ($1 beer and soft drinks). Friday, the first 1,000 fans will receive an Alan “Stein” beer stein in honor of the former Legends president and CEO; it’s also Bluegrass Mobility Night, to be followed by a fireworks show. Saturday is Bark in the Park Night for non-aggressive, well-behaved dogs; entertainment by America’s Best Frisbee Dogs. Also, it’s State Championship Night, honoring all high school athletes who have won individual and/or team championships. Sunday, Father’s Day, all dads are invited to arrive early and play catch on the field with their son or daughter. It’s also Kids Club Sunday, including post-game opportunity to run the bases. Following the Legends-Tourists game, it’s the annual Guns ‘n Hoses softball game between the Lexington police and fire departments.