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The Fat Lady's Finale 

Sky Sox set to close the season on a record-breaking pace

The Sky Sox wrap up their home season this weekend with a four-game stand against the Iowa Cubs Thursday through Sunday. Although the Sox came out of last weekend with a disappointing season-to-date record of 57-70, they have offered several significant highlights along the way, including a season-high 18 runs for the Sky Sox (and a season-high 5 errors) in Sunday's victory over division leaders Salt Lake City.

As the Rockies chase their worst record since their inaugural season in 1993, the Sox have already broken a record by surpassing that season's number of roster moves with 140 transactions -- and counting. Among the standout Sky Sox who have made it stick with the parent club this season are starters Shawn Chacon (6-7, 5.66, 105K) and Juan Uribe (.294), as well as Adam Melhuse, Brent Butler and short-stay Sox players Justin Speier, Sal Fasano and Todd Belitz. And John Thomson (4.67), who notched his first major-league victory in two years on Sunday, may have finally made his rehabilitation stick.

Though the AAA season ends in Omaha over Labor Day weekend, several Sky Sox players have earned the right to extend their seasons with a call up to the Rockies when the rosters expand from 25 to 40 in September. Among those vying for the chance to head north for the fall are pitchers Craig Dingman, Bobby Chouinard, Rob Averette, Joe Davenport and Horacio Estrada and position players Brooks Kieschnick (of), Cliff Brumbaugh (of), Mike Bell (3b), Butch Huskey (1b), Kimera Bartee (of), Josue Espada (ss), Jose Flores (3b) and the rehabbing catcher Ben Petrick.

Earlier this week against the Stingers, the Sox passed the 3 million mark for total fan attendance since returning to Colorado Springs in 1988. The Sox are also within reach of their single-season attendance record, and, weather permitting, should surpass last season's record of 255,301 this weekend.

-- Owen Perkins

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