Raking Rafters: The Northwoods League’s most dominant lineup resides in Wisconsin Rapids

Published: Jul. 31, 2020 at 9:31 PM CDT
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WISCONSIN RAPIDS, Wis. (WSAW) -The most lethal lineup in the Northwoods League by far resides at Witter Field. The Rafters have hit 30 home runs in 2020, 9 more than the next closest team.

“It’s nice to have other guys in the lineup who can do damage and you can take pressure off yourself,” said first basemen Jack-Thomas Wold.

The Rats also have a four-way tie atop their team leaderboard: Wold, Billy Cook, Ryan Walstad, and Hank Zeisler all have five on the season.

“You know the big saying right now is you don’t make money off of singles or walks,” said Cook, an outfielder for Rapids. “You make money off hitting extra base hits.”

“I’m not the biggest guy in the world like Billy (Cook) over here,” said Walstad, a second basemen. “I never try to hit home runs, it just happens.”

The Rafters power surge has been on display all season, and it has come as no surprise to anyone on the team.

They knew right from the jump they had a chance to be the most potent lineup in the Northwoods League.

“Probably the first day of BP when I felt pretty rusty myself, and I was just watching all these guys swing, and I was just like there looks like there is no rust here,” Wold says. “These guys are just mashing balls.”

While they try not to get caught up in the great Rapids home run chase, a friendly competition definitely exists.

It’s one they all think makes them better.

“You kind of hit one and you’re feeling good,” Cook says. “You go up to them ‘Hey, better watch out.’ or ‘Hey, I’m the leader.’”

“It’s not as much of a motivation thing seeing other people do it, and it’s like I have to do it now,” Wold says. “It’s a comfortable thing. It’s like they both hit home runs this game, maybe it’s a trend. Maybe I’m gonna get one too. Hitting is contagious.”

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