Minor leagues: Ishikawa, Barnette in Class AA

Travis Ishikawa will be starting his fifth season of professional baseball in the minor leagues.

Federal Way grad Travis Ishikawa is starting the 2008 season playing for the Connecticut Defenders for the third season in a row.

Travis Ishikawa will be starting his fifth season of professional baseball in the minor leagues.

The 2002 Federal Way High School graduate is starting the season playing for the Class AA Connecticut Defenders after spending spring training in the San Francisco Giants’ big-league camp.

Ishikawa has played in three games this season and is 1-for-10 with two runs and one stolen base.

Ishikawa, 24, was optioned to Triple-A Fresno on March 20 and played for the Grizzlies during an exhibition game on March 27 against the Giants.

Ishikawa, a first basemen, actually scored the winning run for Fresno during the game. The Grizzlies won the game, 4-3, in front of a standing-room-only crowd of 14,084 at Chukchansi Park in Fresno. It was the Giants’ first visit to Fresno since 2003.

The Giants struck first in their first time at-bat, but Fresno responded with a pair of runs in the bottom half of the inning against San Francisco starter Barry Zito.

After the big leaguers took the lead back with two runs in the sixth inning, the Grizzlies responded with a run of their own to knot the score at 3-3. In the seventh, after Ishikawa reached on an error, Fresno’s Ivan Ochoa doubled to deep-center to score him with what proved to be the game’s deciding run. Zito suffered the loss, while Fresno’s Billy Sadler earned the win with a scoreless inning of relief.

Last year, Ishikawa split the season between Connecticut and Class A San Jose. On the season, the left-hander hit .243 in 104 games. Ishikawa scored 52 runs, had 18 doubles, two triples, 16 home runs and 51 RBIs. He also had 126 strikeouts.

Ishikawa is on the San Francisco’s 40-man roster and played 12 games in the Major League’s in 2006. Ishikawa spent three separate stints with the Giants. In his 12 Major League games, Ishikawa hit an impressive .292 in 24 at bats. He also scored one run, had three doubles, a triple and four RBIs.

Tony Barnette — The Thomas Jefferson grad has started the season for the Class AA Mobile (Ala.) BayBears. The BayBears are a part of the Arizona Diamondbacks’ organization. Barnette was drafted in the 10th round by the Diamondbacks in 2006 after playing two years at Arizona State University.

Last year, Barnette pitched for the South Bend (Ind.) Silver Hawks and finished 8-8 with a 3.60 earned-run average. Barnette started 25 games and had 108 strikeouts in 160 innings. Barnette was selected to play in the 2007 Midwest League all-star game. Mobile opened its season on Thursday.

Barnette pitched the BayBears’ second game of the season and suffered the loss. The Carolina Mudcats won the game, 6-2. Mobile is currently 1-3 on the season.

Brady Everett — The Federal Way High School graduate signed with the Winnipeg Goldeyes of the Northern League last week. The catcher/first baseman had played the last three seasons in the Kansas City Royals’ organization.

The Northern League is independent minor league pro-fessional baseball league, meaning its teams aren’t affiliated with Major League organizations. Winnipeg starts their season in May.

Last year with Burlington, Everett played in 107 games as a catcher and first baseman. Everett hit .266 with 30 doubles, two triples, 10 home runs and 46 RBIs. Burlington is the Class A affiliate of the Royals and located in Iowa.

Everett was the Royals’ 15th round selection in the 2005 draft out of Washington State. He was a first-team, All-Pac 10 catcher his senior year for the Cougars after hitting .340 with 15 home runs and 62 RBIs.

Shea McFeely — The Federal Way High School grad was released last month by the Arizona Diamondbacks’ organization after playing the last two years in the club’s minor league system.

McFeely, a third baseman, was drafted in the 28th round in 2006 by the Diamondbacks. Last year, McFeely hit .234 in 55 games for the Class-A South Bend Silver Hawks. He had eight doubles, four home runs and 14 RBIs.

McFeely played for the national champion Oregon State Beavers in 2006.

Andrew Conklin — The Federal Way graduate signed with the Baltimore Orioles last summer after his sophomore season at South Mountain Community College in Arizona. Conklin, a right-handed pitcher, pitched on Baltimore’s rookie league team in the Gulf Coast League last year. Conklin finished 1-1 with a 4.35 ERA in 20 2/3 innings with 15 strikeouts.

Sports editor Casey Olson: 925-5565, sports@fedwaymirror.com

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