Sports News

Cogan, Kerber Highlight First Guests at Fan Fest

Gary SouthShore RailCats BaseballGARY, IN. 1-13-2011 – It may be cold but the Gary SouthShore RailCats are thinking summer fun announcing Tenth Anniversary Team Finalists Tony Cogan and Travis Kerber will appear at the third-annual Fan Fest, Saturday, February 5 at the Radisson Hotel in Merrillville. Discount advance tickets are on sale now online or by calling the ‘Cats at 219.882.2255.

Cogan-Kerber-RailCats-FanFestThe largest celebration of minor league baseball in the Midwest, Fan Fest has brought more than 1,000 fans of RailCats baseball together the last two winters, and this year’s Fan Fest will be extra special with the unveiling of the RailCats Tenth Anniversary Team highlighting the day-long event. Featuring ballpark-style games, appearances from dozens of RailCats coaches, players and administrators, autograph signings, question-and-answer sessions with team decision-makers and more, Fan Fest brings the Fun, Affordable, Family Entertainment of RailCats baseball to fans during the winter.

Cogan wrapped up an outstanding career spanning nine seasons in professional baseball including appearing in 39 games in the majors in 2001 for the Kansas City Royals by announcing his retirement at last year’s Fan Fest. Both a starter and closer during his RailCats career, Cogan proved that being versatile means you can not only compete in multiple roles but also excel. Cogan is a finalist in the Left-Handed Reliever category for the Tenth Anniversary Team and can be found among the leaders in a number of club career records including: earned run average (3.03, Tied for 2nd), innings pitched (276.2, 4th), strikeouts (197, 4th), opponents batting average (.229, 2nd) and (the reason he is listed as a reliever in this voting) saves (25, 2nd). Cogan spent one season as the closer for the RailCats and with 25 saves holds the team record for a single season.

Cogan’s stat lines are impressive and he received a number of league honors over the course of his RailCats career including: Northern League Pitcher of the Week (Sept. 2007, June 2008, Aug. 2008, July 2009, July 2009), Northern League Pitcher of the Month (July 2009) and Northern League Postseason All-Star (2009). The Highland Park, Ill. native was originally selected by the Royals in the 12th round of the 1999 major league entry draft and Cogan played collegiately at Stanford University with longtime RailCats shortstop Jay Pecci.

The only pitcher in RailCats history to spend five seasons in a RailCats uniform, Kerber also excelled as both a starter and a reliever over the course of his career in Northwest Indiana.  Kerber, however, was a finalist for Right-Handed Starting Pitcher on the Tenth Anniversary Team Ballot. Kerber led Northern League relievers in 2005 in ERA and was second among all pitchers in ERA in 2006. The Shawano, Wisc. native is the RailCats leader in appearances (122) firing 321 innings in his career. Kerber recorded the final nine outs to clinch the 2005 Northern League Championship for the RailCats and was a Northern League Mid-Season All-Star in 2006. Kerber was primarily a catcher at North Central College and now serves as Director of the Bulls/Sox Academy in Schererville, Ind.

General admission tickets are available for $15 ($20 at the door), with kids 12 and under and season ticket holders able to buy tickets for just $10.  Every Fan Fest ticket includes an all-day pass to the event, a ticket to the RailCats 2011 Opening Day game on Friday, May 20 at 7:10 p.m. against the archrival Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks and a Fan Fest poster. For more information or to purchase tickets call the RailCats at 219.882.2255 or visit the online merchandise store at www.railcatsbaseball.com.